Inulin extracted from chicory root.
A programme on the television flagged up the problem of fatty deposits around the heart and liver, even in seemingly fit people, and suggested that inulin was a good supplement to combat this.
Inulin is a dietary fibre that is non-digestible, passing through the small intestine into the large intestine, where it ferments and stimulates the growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria (bifidobacterium). This action makes it what is termed a prebiotic.
Inulin is also present in onions, bananas, garlic, leeks and asparagus, and higher concentrations are found in dandelion root and chicory root.
Whilst prebiotics are known to have many health benefits, due to their effect on beneficial intestinal bacteria, there are no health claims currently allowed for them. The current surge of interest is due to the possible effects of inulin on triglycerides, which it is thought to lower.