Parma, 04.07.2011

Fifth batch of Health Claims published

On 30 June 2011 EFSA published the fifth batch of opinions on so-called article 13 (2)-claims. The small amount of positive assessments was not surprising, among them nothing new as the need of 130 g glycaemic carbohydrates for a normal brain function. For some dietary fibres as arabinoxylans or beta-glucans the positive impact on the postprandial blood glucose rise has been confirmed. This claim could be of interest for people with diabetes mellitus. A surprise is the positive opinion that fat contributes to the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins. Up to now EFSA declined the assessment of claims related to the bioavailability of substances, based on the judgement that these claims does not fall under the definition of health claims. The winners are lactose-free of lactose-reduced products, that – what a miracle – reduce lactose derived gastro-intestinal discomfort.
Even if the typical beverages for sportsmen succeeded with water absorption and maintenance of endurance performance, applications to more specific substances as ribose, L-carnitine, HMB, L-tyrosine or casein hydrolysates failed. Also the impact on the acid-base-balance with respect to calcium and potassium has not been proven sufficiently.
Apart from some few applications that shall be finished by July (e.g. isoflavones and creatine), the first part of applications is almost ready. So wait and see what the Commission will make out of this. Still open is also the fate of the so-called botanicals.