Food Digestion

, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 1–12

Glycaemic Impact Regulation Based on Progressive Geometric Changes in Solid Starch-Based Food Particles During Digestion


DOI: 10.1007/s13228-011-0009-2

Cite this article as:
Monro, J.A., Mishra, S.S. & Hardacre, A. Food Dig. (2011) 2: 1. doi:10.1007/s13228-011-0009-2


Glycaemic impact is an important health-related property of foods which may be controlled by regulating glycaemic carbohydrate release during digestion. Equations were derived for designing surface-digested particles of defined glycaemic impact. They related the proportion (P) of a particle digested after T minutes of digestion to the initial particle diameter (D0 millimetres) and the mean rate of superficial volume erosion (E cubic millimetres per minute):
  1. (a)

    Spherical particles:

$$ P = 6TE{{{\pi }}^{{ - 1}}}D_0^{{ - 3}} $$
  1. (b)

    Cylindrical particles of initial length L0:

$$ P = 4TE{{{\pi }}^{{ - 1}}}{L_0}{\,^{{ - 1}}}D_0^{{ - 2}} $$
  1. (c)

    Flat structures of depth D, length L0 and width W0

$$ P = TE{L_0}^{{ - 1}}D_0^{{ - 1}}W_0^{{ - 1}} $$
Using spreadsheets based on the equations, erosion rate was continuously adjusted from its initial value in response to non-linear and progressive reduction in particle surface area during digestion. Then, for a given digestibility, the particle dimensions required to deliver the time-dependent proportions of nutritionally distinct carbohydrate fractions, rapidly digested, slowly digested and inaccessible digestible starch, could be determined. The results were confirmed by in vitro digestion. The glycaemic impact of starch may potentially be manipulated using the relationship between time, digestibility and particle dimensions, by delivering it in the form of solid food particles whose rates of digestion depend on surface area predetermined by their geometry.


FoodStructureStarchGlycaemiaDigestion in vitro

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • John A. Monro
    • 1
    • 3
  • Suman S. Mishra
    • 1
  • Alan Hardacre
    • 2
  1. 1.New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research LimitedPalmerston NorthNew Zealand
  2. 2.Institute of Food Nutrition and Human HealthMassey UniversityPalmerston NorthNew Zealand
  3. 3.New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research LimitedPalmerston NorthNew Zealand