The powder sachet drink launched under the brand Jinvigorate, which stands for Jatcorp-Invigorate, has a GI value of 23 according to test results from the University of Sydney.
It is also certified as a low GI product by the GI foundation. Based on the foundation, a GI value of 55 and below could be considered a low GI.
The product has been launched in pharmacies including Priceline, Power Pharmacy in the domestic market since February. Outside of Australia, it is also targeting China and South Korea, with plans to sell it in South Asia as well.
Other than diabetic patients, the company also sees health-conscious individuals as their target consumers.
Speaking to NutraIngredients-Asia, innovation manager Sahar Omidnia said the product was developed as the team was seeking a way to create a diabetic-friendly product that contain low or no sugar.
“Dairy products usually have a high level of lactose (the sugar naturally present in cow’s milk), and so are unlikely to contain low level of sugar.
“Also, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are encouraged to reduce our sugar intake, since high sugar intake could affect our immune health.
“And so we thought to ourselves, how can we fit the concept of dairy and low sugar together?” she said.
The product was made to contain 2.9g of sugar per sachet and also contains other components that are useful in controlling blood glucose level.
One of the ingredients is chestnut astringent skin extract.
“We thought of adding ingredients from traditional medicine into the formulation and found that the Japanese have been using chestnut skin to control sugar level,” she said.
Existing research has shown that chestnut astringent skin extract could inhibit pancreatic alpha-amylase in human and animal studies.
Resistant dextrin, which is resistant to digestive enzymes, are also added into the formulation to suppress the rise in blood sugar.
As diabetic patients tend to have other metabolic and cardiovascular diseases, the team also reduced saturated fats from the milk, replacing it with medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) oil instead.
While hospital is a potential retail channel, the company is focusing on introducing the product in over 100 pharmacies in Australia at the moment.
Also a supplement
Aside from blood glucose, the R&D process also took care of meeting consumers’ needs for micronutrients, which is why vitamin D, chromium, and zinc were added.
“We thought, what else can we do to enhance the formula. I have seen diabetic patients buying supplements such as L-carnitine and magnesium separately and I thought of putting the nutrients required into a single formulation to achieve a synergistic effect,” Omidnia said.
The formulation, which took four months to complete, was then sent to the University of Sydney to test on human subjects against another reference formula.
The test proved that “all assumptions [about the suitability of the formula] was right,” said Omidnia.