French use their loaf to battle obesity

21st January 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 21 (AFP) - To combat the growing problem of obesity in France, a new baguette for slimmers is to be launched next week in boulangeries across the country.

PARIS, Jan 21 (AFP) - To combat the growing problem of obesity in France, a new baguette for slimmers is to be launched next week in boulangeries across the country.

The "Optimatin" loaf has the same refined taste as a classic baguette but contains a unique combination of grains and fibres that staves off hunger for longer, according to its inventor, food scientist Claude Godard.

"I discovered that nine out of 10 obese people who came to see me do not eat breakfast," explains Godard who has a dietary consultancy in the eastern town of Chalon-sur-Saone.

"But a substantial breakfast based on bread actually worked in reducing their appetite later in the day. From there came the idea of developing a baguette that performs this task even more effectively."

With government backing Godard worked with the cereal research company Eurogerm to find a mixture of ingredients that sustains sugar levels and at the same time "boosts gastric volume" to create a more enduring sensation of fullness.

"This is not some kind of 'diet bread,'" Godard said, reflecting on the ongoing popularity of low-carbohydrate diets such as the Atkins and South Beach diets.

"It is just a way of helping people rebalance their food intake."

"Two trends are discernible in France today. More and more people are obese, and less and less bread is being consumed. We are trying to get the message out that contrary to popular belief, bread can help reduce weight."

Weighing 250 grams - about the same as a normal baguette - the "Optimatin" is divided into six parts. Consumers are recommended to eat three at breakfast, two at lunch and one in the evening.

Costing EUR 1.2 (USD 1.5), which is about one and a half times the cost of a regular loaf, it will be available in 2,000 boulangeries across France from Monday.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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