Inulin is a phytonutrient that helps your body deal with its own insulin needs - allowing your pancreas to "catch its breath."
These days the body's over-flooded sugar moderating systems are under increasing pressure. In spite of unrelenting abuse, a tiny bit of pancreatic tissue called the islet of Langerhans keeps most of us safe from diabetic trauma. This vital group of cells, about the size of a finger, is all that stands between your health and the combined assaults of massive quantities of highly reactive refined sugars, and a shortage of soil chromium. There is a resultant shortfall in dietary chromium. Chromium is essential for the pancreas to create enough insulin molecules to keep up with counter-balancing the effects of the flood of sugar. We all need to supplement meaningful amounts of GTF chromium in a life-created, bioactive, ready to use form.
Do not confuse genuinely natural GTF chromium with the less desirable manufactured chromium picolinate form. Nutritional support of the blood-sugar-balancing system is essential for energy and endurance, as well as appetite moderation and the burning of excess fats. Inulin is major constituent of burdock root, dandelion root, elecampane root, chicory root, agave, and the Chinese herb codonopsis. Botanically, inulin is a storage food in many plants. Inulin has a mildly sweet taste, and is filling like starchy foods, but because it is not absorbed, it does not affect blood sugar levels. Despite the similarity of its name to insulin, inulin has no connection with that hormone either chemically or through physiological activity. Inulin is soluble in hot water, but only slightly soluble in cold water or alcohol, so is not present to any significant extent in tinctures.
Recent research has shown an important physiological action for inulin (Gibson, Roberfroid). Like some pectins and fructooligosaccharides, inulin is a preferred food for the lactobacilli in the intestine and can improve the balance of friendly bacteria in the bowel. Subjects in one trial were give 15 grams of inulin a day for fifteen days. Lactobacillus bifidobacteria increased by about 10% during that period. Gram-positive bacteria associated with disease declined. Bifidobacteria digest inulin to produce short chain fatty-acids, such as acetic, propionic, and butyric acids. The first two may be used by the liver for energy production, while butyric acid has cancer-preventing properties within the intestine (Spiller, 1994). Recent animal research also shows that inulin prevents precancerous changes in the colon (Reddy, 1997).
Plants with the highest inulin content, with the exception of Echinacea, have been used in ethnomedicine to improve intestinal health. Echinacea has not been traditionally consumed as a decoction or eaten in food quantities. It would not necessarily be desirable to prepare it as a tea, because key immune-stimulating constituents are only soluble in alcohol. Saussurea is commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine as a "spleen tonic" or digestive tonic. In some regions of China, Inula helenium is freely substituted for saussurea (Hsu). Note that elecampane, although pigeonholed by modern North American herbalists as a lung tonic, was used by the Eclectics both as a lung and digestive tonic (Felter). Another common Chinese digestive and "spleen" tonic that contains inulin is codonopsis, an ubiquitous ginseng substitute in contemporary traditional Chinese medicine. Inulin helps moderate blood sugar and is used for endurance, even temperament, appetite moderation & fat reduction.
Inulin is commonly obtained from Dandelion, Chicory and Agave is also present in Dahlia tubers under the name of Dahlin. After undergoing a special treatment, Dahlia tubers will yield the pure Laevulose that is sometimes called Atlanta Starch or Diabetic Sugar, which is frequently prescribed for diabetic and consumptive patients, and has been given to children in cases of wasting illness. There was a very considerable business done in this product before the War by certain German firms. In a paper read at the Second International Congress of the Sugar Industry, held at Paris in 1908, it was stated that pure Laevulose is preferably made by the inversion of Inulin with dilute acids, and that the older process of preparation from invert sugar or molasses does not yield a pure product. The first step in the technical production of Laevulose is in the preparation of Inulin, and Dahlia tubers or Chicory root, which contain 6 to 12 per cent of Inulin are the most suitable material. Chicory root can readily be obtained in quantity, and Dahlia plants, if cultivated for the purpose, should yield in a few years a plentiful supply of cheap raw material.
For extraction of the Inulin, the roots or tubers are sliced, treated with milk of lime and steamed. The juice is then expressed and clarified by subsidence and filtration, the clear liquid being run into a revolving cooler until flakes are produced. These flakes are separated by a centrifugal machine, washed and decolorized, and the thus purified product finally treated with diluted acid, and so converted into Laevulose. This solution of Laevulose is neutralized and evaporated to a syrup in a vacuum pan. Laevulose can be produced in this manner from Chicory roots and Dahlia tubers at an enormous reduction of price from the older methods of preparing it from molasses or sugar. Its sweet and pleasant taste are likely to make it used not only for diabetic patients, but also in making confectionery and for retarding crystallization of sugar products.
Dahlia inulin is the optimum nutritional food for the natural intestinal flora, which is otherwise known as probiotics. Promoting the optimal growth of these vital organisms helps to maintain the health of the pH of your body's digestive system. This makes it useful for both athletic sports supplements and for people who are wanting to control hunger or appetite cravings in order to lose weight. Research had indicated that Dahlia inulin keeps blood sugar levels constant for up to 10 hours thus controlling cravings and hunger. Dahlia inulin has also been shown to conserve the body's glycogen stores, increasing the total energy reserves, providing an effective means of suppressing appetite. Additionally, significant research has been done to support chromium as an effective supplement in the management of weight loss. Because it is involved in the metabolism of glucose, this essential mineral maintains stable blood sugar levels and will, therefore, help to promote the loss of fat and also increase lean muscle tissue.
Dahlia inulin has also been shown to conserve the body's glycogen stores, increasing the energy reserves providing endurance, strength, vigor, and stamina. Dahlia inulin is especially good when combined with chromium in a supplement helps in the metabolism of glucose, thus stabilizing blood sugar levels and helping to increase lean muscle and boost endurance. Dahlia inulin is a complex carbohydrate and when combined with the herb Siberian Ginseng, it can help power you through even the toughest workouts, athletic programs, or competitive events.