Digestive biscuits are becoming popular as a part of a healthy diet because they keep you full during a busy day while offering healthy nutrition in the form of dietary fiber. As these biscuits contain a decent amount of fiber, they may improve digestion and manage blood sugar levels.
Can they be used as a healthy substitute for regular biscuits? Are digestive biscuits healthy enough to be a part of your diet? Know all the nutrition facts and possible negative effects of digestive biscuits.
Digestive Biscuits: Facts
Digestive biscuits were created in the 1830s. The Scottish doctors who originated the idea were looking for simple food to encourage healthy digestion.
The combination of ingredients in the flat, round wafers proved very popular, and they were soon being mass-produced. The original recipe included whole-grain flour, butter, and baking powder.
The first commercially-produced digestive biscuits were patented as malted bread, and early recipes included spices such as caraway seeds which were believed to ease flatulence.
What Are Digestive Biscuits?
Digestive biscuits are semi-sweet biscuits with a crumbled texture. They are available in many variations and becomes an instant hit as a replacement for several unhealthy snacks.
It has a rich, nutty flavor with a hint of sweetness from the included sugar. The typical digestive biscuit contains coarse brown wheat flour which gives it its distinctive texture and flavor.
Further, it has partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, whole meal, cultured skimmed milk, partially-inverted sugar syrup, raising agent, sugar, and salt.
Ingredients In Digestive Biscuits
Most digestive biscuits contain the following nutrients:
- Coarse Brown Wheat Flour: It gives the biscuit a distinctive texture and flavor.
- Wholemeal: It is used as a source of fiber.
- Vegetable Oil: It keeps the biscuits moist and prevents them from breaking.
- Raising Agents: These are used to create a fluffy crumb in the biscuits. Most biscuits use sodium bicarbonate as a raising agent.
- Malt Extract: It improves the crispness, texture, and taste of the biscuit.
- Sugar: It is used in the granulated form to impart a sweet flavor. It also gives a tender texture to the biscuit.
- Salt: It is used to enhance the taste.
Few other biscuit variants may also contain oatmeal dried whey, cultured skimmed milk, and powdered nuts.
Digestive Biscuits: Nutritional Values (Per 100 Grams)
- Energy: 478 calories
- Carbohydrates: 62 grams
- Fat: 21 grams
- Protein: 7 grams
- Dietary Fiber: 3 grams
- Sodium: 500 mg
- Sugar: 16 grams
Digestive Biscuits: Health Benefits
When consumed in moderation digestive biscuits may offer a number of health benefits. Most digestive biscuits are rich in fiber. Fiber helps reduce hunger. However, the link between regular consumption of digestive biscuits and reduced hunger is unclear.
Digestive biscuits are high in refined crab sugars and high on the glycemic index which means they can cause a rapid rise in blood glucose levels, leading to excessive insulin production and a sudden drop in blood sugar.
Further, the fiber in these biscuits helps absorb water and softens stools. It also promotes digestion and may relieve constipation. Additionally, it may aid in weight loss. Fiber may keep the stomach full for long. This may increase satiety and regulate food intake, and potentially aid weight loss.
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Why Digestive Biscuits Should Be Eaten In Moderation
Digestive biscuits are loaded with salt. Four digestive biscuits have the same sodium content as a packet of potato chips. Further, they contain empty calories and unhealthy fats. They also have a bit of fiber and protein as they would facilitate your digestion.
They have no other beneficial vitamins or minerals. Thus, they offer zero nutritional value. The digestive biscuits are highly processed and are packed with preservatives for increasing the shelf life. They have 10% saturated fat from altered vegetable oils, which are unhealthy.