Having your cake and eating it: The role of grain properties on digestibility and glyceamic response to sweet bakery products

Lead Research Organisation: University of East Anglia


With the huge global health impact of obesity and type 2 diabetes, there is an urgent need for strategies that reduce the glycaemic potency of carbohydrate-rich bakery products. Removing sugar from sweet bakery products is not straightforward and tends to affect the product quality as well as taste. However, lowering the glycaemic potency of the starch-rich ingredients (milled grains) could provide new solutions to mitigate the adverse effects of added sugar in sweet bakery products.
In this project you will investigate how and why the carbohydrate (starch) digestibility differs between different grain types and assess if slowly digested grains can modulate the overall glycaemic response to sweet bakery products.
This topical, multidisciplinary project spans food science, carbohydrate biochemistry, nutrition and human physiology and provides plenty of opportunities to develop new skills across disciplines: You will learn how to study the complex processes involved in starch digestion and apply these approaches to study how the type of grain and particle size affects the digestibility of the final product. You will then be trained in other complementary techniques (e.g., microscopy, calorimetry, particle size analysis) and use these specialist tools to understand the mechanisms underpinning the digestibility of food products. You will also learn how to conduct research involving human participants, and will have the opportunity to undertake a human study to test your hypotheses emerging from laboratory studies.
Working with the industrial partner, you will help to design a placement study with them and gain experience of strategic innovation and research and development within a real commercial environment. You will also gain experience in communicating your research to different audiences, participate in international conferences and publishing your results in high quality journals.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/W510440/1 01/06/2022 31/05/2026
2701359 Studentship BB/W510440/1 01/06/2022 31/05/2026