Q: "I've seen this new 'Whole Water' advertised which claims to have protein and fibre. How do they get protein and fibre into water? And why would they do it?"
A: Whole Water is a water-based product recently launched by Fonterra. It's a low-energy drink with just 130kJ in a 500ml bottle. This compares to 0kJ in plain water; 216kJ in 500ml h2go flavoured water; and 700+kJ in 500ml fruit juice. Note that 500ml is two cups.
Whole Water contains protein from milk (not suitable for anyone with cow's milk allergy) and a soluble fibre. Both the protein and fibre are dissolved in the water giving it a slightly murky look but they barely alter the texture. The idea is that both protein and fibre are believed to enhance satiety or the feeling of fullness, so drinking something like this should make you feel fuller than plain water and may help people to reduce snacking on high-energy foods.
The product was tested in conjunction with Massey University among a group of 39 women aged 25-40 years. After having the 500ml drink at 10am, over half the women reported not feeling hungry at all by midday, compared to only 13 per cent when they did not have the drink at 10am.