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Poly creates healthy food options

S'pore Poly comes up with healthier pre-mixes for baked goods, sausages

Published on Dec 6, 2012 5:25 PM

This article first appeared in The Straits Times on Dec 6, 2012.

They are hardly the standard options for weight-conscious foodies.

But gourmet sausages, brownies and cupcakes could soon find their way onto dieters' menus after students in Singapore came up with healthier versions.

The Singapore Polytechnic (SP) team has created pre-mixes for baked goods with a low glycemic index - meaning sugar is released into the body more slowly.

This makes the cakes more suitable for those with diabetes.

The team's gourmet sausages - which include popular varieties such as chipolatas and bratwurst - contain a quarter less saturated fat on average than regular ones.

They will be available in supermarkets from early next year. The pre-mixes went on sale yesterday at baking specialist Phoon Huat.

Dr Jasmine Leong, a senior lecturer in food science and technology at SP, said the aim was to develop "more healthy food options for Singaporeans". In 2010, more than one in 10 people in the Republic was obese or had diabetes.

Ms Teo Kiok Seng of Alivia Foods, which is producing the pre-mixes, said it was targeting not only diabetics, but also those who were generally health-conscious. "It will make you feel full for longer and have fewer cravings," she said. "It's good for weight management."

Suppliers are confident that the flavours will please Singaporeans' notoriously fussy taste buds.

Ms Claris Koh, executive manager at Wang Foong Foodstuffs Suppliers, said retailers had given her positive feedback on the sausages. "One said that the taste was quite comparable."

Dr Leong said customers would be more likely to accept the changes if they were introduced in stages. "As we reduce the fat, salt or sugar content, we have to reduce it gradually so that consumers may come to accept it."

The global market for foods with additional health properties is forecast to be worth $38 billion by 2014. Forty per cent of the demand will be from Asia-Pacific.