A food bulking agent is a food additive that increases food volume or weight of food keeping its utility or functionality intact. It only increases the bulk of food and does not affect its nutritional value.
Bulking agents are non-nutritive additives. Soluble fibres such as guar gum and psyllium husk are some of the most common forms of bulking agents. Other common bulking agents include:
- Carnuba Wax
- Glycerin –
- Beta Glucan
Bulking agents are commonly used in meal replacements, low calorie foods, cereals, pastries, breads and most processed food. They also assist with weight loss aids primarily thanks to their ability to deliver fullness and decreased appetite.
Bulking agents have a special role in the food manufacturing and are responsible for making breads, cake and other food taste so soft. This is because the spongy porous structure makes them have soft palate.
Powdered cellulose can also be used as a bulking agent for sweet baked dry mixes.
There are two main types of the daily use bulking agent: the biological agent (yeast) and the chemical agent, such as sodium bicarbonate.
Yeast is a very important bulking agent in flour products. Not only does it help with product volume expansion, but it can also improve the flavour and nutritional value of the products.
Alkaline leavening agents, such as sodium bicarbonate are chemical agents and can also be used for increasing the volume of baked goods.
Compound bulking agents are used in a lot of formulations, and these can be quite different depending on the specific food production. Depending on the use of different acidic substances, the gas production rate is different, for example when using acidic materials that are organic acid or calcium hydrogen phosphate, the reaction of producing gas is fast; whilst aluminum potassium sulfate, ammonium aluminum sulfate is slow to react, and they usually need to react at high temperature. This affects the texture and appearance of the finished product.
Chemgrit Food sources and supplies various bulking and leavening agents for the baking, confectionary industry. For information contact Chemgrit Food.