Maltodextrin - What is a maltodextrin?

What is a maltodextrin?

Maltodextrins and Corn Syrup Solids

What is a maltodextrin

Maltodextrins are easily digestible carbohydrates made from natural corn starch. The starch is cooked, and then acid and/or enzymes are used to break the starch into smaller polymers (a process similar to that used by the body to digest carbohydrate).

Maltodextrins are generally sold as dried powders.

Maltodextrins are polymers of dextrose (sometimes labeled "glucose polymers").

Maltodextrins do not contain significant quantities of protein, fat or fiber.

Maltodextrins are not produced from and do not contain malt products.

Corn-based Maltodextrins are safe for patients with celiac disease since they do not contain proteins from wheat, barley, oats or rye.

Maltodextrins are not known to contain MSG.

Diabetics should follow the advice of their physicians. maltodextrins glycemic index should be considered metabolically equivalent to glucose (dextrose).

The finished product

  1. Is easily digestible
  2. Is a convenient source of energy
  3. Contains approximately 4 calories per gram
  4. Is cold-water soluble
  5. Has low or no sweetness
  6. Helps in producing many liquid and dried nutritional products

Maltodextrins and corn syrup solids are each mixtures of glucose polymers produced by the controlled depolymerization of corn starch. They are most often categorized by dextrose equivalence (DE). DE is a measure of reducing power compared to a dextrose standard of 100. The higher the DE, the greater the extent of starch depolymerization, resulting in a smaller average polymer size.

Maltodextrins are defined by the FDA as products having a DE less than 20. They are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) food ingredients. Maltodextrins are excellent solids builders for standard and low-fat products. They are effective spray-drying aids for flavors, fruit juices, and other hard-to-dry products. They also are easily digestible carbohydrates for nutritional beverages.

Corn syrup solids are defined by the FDA as dried glucose syrup with a DE of 20 or higher. They are also considered a GRAS ingredient. Corn syrup solids have moderate sweetness and low viscosity. They are used to build solids in meat and dairy products, as a nutrition source in infant formulas, and as a drying aid for spray-dried fats.










Malt-dextrin has many applications, including in the:

1) Confectionary industry: used to increase flexibility, prevent granulation and melting, lower sweetness, change taste, improve institutional framework and prolong storage life of sweets. This sweetener reduces the incidence of toothache, obesity, blood pressure, diabetes etc.

2) Beverage industry: used as a raw material, after reasonable mixing, maltodextrin will increase natural smell, reduce nutritional loss, improve dissolubility, lower sweetness, reduce costs and further increase economic profits.

3) papermaking industry: with high fluidity and good cohesive force, maltodextrin can be used as a surface glue and bonding agent for paint and coatings. Its good fluidity and transparency not only attach on the surface but also penetrate the paper, raising the fibers' cohesive force, meanwhile improving appearances and physical properties.

4) Other industries: maltodextrin has good stability on emulsification, so can be used as a coverer and absorbent in cosmetics for increasing luster and skin elasticity. It can also be used in the production of solvents and powdered insecticides.

Sports and Nutrition
Energy Beverages
Soluble glucose polymers, low sweetness, clean flavor, instant dispersibility
Energy Bars Improves softness in high protein bars
Readily-digestible carbohydrate, helps maintain texture, clean flavor profile
Nutritional Supplement Beverages / Infant Formula Complete solubility, low sweetness, easily digestible, clean flavor, instant dispersibility
Maximize carbohydrate within body osmolality

Abstract - August 1997 -- Design Elements
By: Lynn A. Kuntz

Sports and nutrition

For sports, infant and medical beverages - such as oral rehydration and low-residue liquid feeding products - maltodextrins provide complex carbohydrates, and allow the formulation of a product that matches the osmolality of bodily fluids (280 to 300 mOsm/Kg). This can eliminate cramping and other undesirable side effects caused by rehydration with water.
To provide a balance of caloric concentration and osmolality, maltodextrins can be used as part of the carbohydrate source. The lower DE/higher molecular weight products provide lower osmolality on a weight basis than sugars, such as dextrose, fructose or glucose. If the goal is to deliver a certain level of calories, much higher levels of maltodextrins can be used, while still maintaining the body's osmotic balance. Because maltodextrins do not contribute sweetness, they are typically combined with sugars for flavor.

"In most sports beverages, you balance the sweeteners, such as fructose, sucrose and dextrose, with maltodextrins to try and optimize the carbohydrate profile and osmolality," Armstrong says. "If you just added maltodextrins, even an 18 DE, it would only be slightly sweet, but not as sweet as you'd want it to be. If you used only other sweeteners, such as fructose or sucrose, at the same level as the maltodextrins, it would probably be too sweet and the osmolality would be too high."
Maltodextrins can help out in the process, too. "For liquid beverages, you normally want to preblend some of the gums and other hard-to-disperse ingredients, such as vitamins, with maltodextrin," Armstrong recommends.

Maltodextrin is found in the following products

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