According to the study, an intake of up to 12 grams of Arrabina per day resulted in zero negative gut or bowel reaction. Like other prebiotics, Arrabina is believed to play a pivotal role in the microbiome by allowing non-digestible organic components to enter the GI tract to fuel beneficial probiotic bacteria.
Arrabina is a naturally-occuring fiber on the FDA’s fiber list, and is found in many leaves, stalks, and shells of plants. Unlike other dietary fibers, it is highly difficult to extract. Comet Bio extracts its Arrabina from upcycled, post-harvest plant materials, which allows farms and food/beverage manufacturers to provide consumers with a prebiotic fiber and, in turn, reduce agricultural waste, which has sustainability benefits. Comet Bio projects that, globally food waste amounts to $46 billion in losses.
“It’s hard to extract it at a form that’s useful and commercially viable and functionally relevant for structure and function claims and health benefits. In our novel extraction process, we extract it from wheat straw which is left over after wheat harvest,” Andrew Richard, CEO of Comet Bio, said. “We use steam, pressure, and filtration, and extract an arabinoxylan in a form relevant to our health claims.”
The placebo-controlled, double-blind study involved 44 healthy participants who took Arrabina at 6 or 12 grams per day, or a placebo, which was formulated into a powdered drink mix. The trial period lasted three weeks with a washout period. It was consumed daily over a period of time, and participants ranked their experience on eight areas for gut and bowel discomfort, including gas, bloating, nausea, and more. Additionally, consumers completed a bowel habits questionnaire and a likeability questionnaire.
There were no statistical differences between Arrabina at either dosage and the placebo, signifying a high tolerability.
“Within tolerance we wanted to look at bloating specifically, which is very commonly reported from prebiotics consumers. We’re comparing data to inulin from the literature, and we found much lower percentages of participants reporting bloating as a symptom,” Richard said.
Compared to a 5 gram dose of inulin, a 12 gram dose of Arabinoxylan resulted in drastically lower reported symptoms of bloating. Arrabina resulted in less than half the degree of bloating, at over twice the dose in the clinical trial.
The clinical trial also took a look at microbiome results. The researchers found that, by end of treatment, bifidobacteria proliferated significantly.
“This supports and is in line with our existing health dossier, and adds to the body of knowledge we have on the benefits of Arrabina,” Richard said.
Further, a likeability survey found that there were no significant differences between Arrabina and the placebo. This signifies that there was no taste, texture, appearance preference interfering with the results of the survey.
The bowel habits questionnaire found that there were no significant differences between Arrabina and the placebo, signifying that the prebiotic fiber did not place any strain on gastrointestinal health.
“More importantly, this is a novel and innovative product and process and a way to get a useful prebiotic commercially available for a whole host of applications,” Richard said. “Gastrointestinal tolerance is a huge issue for all prebiotic products, and it’s something that every manufacturer and every consumer wants to know about in the existing marketplace.”
Richard said that further clinical studies are intended in order to look at other benefits that might be imparted by Arrabina, as well as further studies delineating quantities of beneficial bacteria increases by species.