An article in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition highlighted pectin ? a fibre found in some fruit, vegetables and cereals ? as potentially assisting in appetite control.

Found to reduce the number of calories consumed, a pectin formula was shown to lead to weight loss in obese women, so could it help you lose weight to improve riding performance?

The evidence

Researchers found there was an immediate effect in 29 overweight women taking part in their study, with a 10 per cent reduction in energy intake shown between lunch and dinner as a result of consuming a beverage containing pectin. The two-part beverage produced a stable high-fibre gel in the stomach, only providing a 40 calorie intake. Much of the reduction in intake was reported to be from carbohydrate in the meal.

Layman lowdown

For those who are clinically obese and show little interest in increasing their intake of pectin through regular fruit and vegetable intake, this may be a worthwhile intervention to reduce calorie intake. But for those with more natural restraint, the effects may be minimal and require further investigation.

This study does, however, highlight a useful technique to reduce total calorie intake in periods when weight loss is required, ie. eat more fibre. Pectin can be found in bran, apples, grapes, prunes, plums, oranges, peppermint, cabbage, carrots and squash. Including a mix of these foods, which naturally increase feelings of fullness, in your everyday diet, will reduce your intake of more calorie-dense foods.

CW says

Don?t waste your money on a pectin supplement. Instead achieve weight loss hand in hand with health benefits by increasing your intake of high-fibre foods with low energy density while reducing your intake of fatty foods with high energy density.