Galactans, belong to the FODMAP group of oligosaccharides. Oligosaccharides are multiple carbohydrates made up of 3 to 9 simple carbohydrates. In other words, large chains of sugar. Galactans are made up of chains of galactose molecules with a glucose molecule at the end. Galactans are also called Galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS).
Galactans are not absorbed into the body, but leave the body through the stomach, small intestine and large intestine in the form of faeces.
Our bodies cannot ‘cut up’ galactans with enzymes, so it cannot be absorbed into the body through the intestinal wall. Galactans are therefore transported to the large intestine, where they can attract moisture and are fermented by the intestinal bacteria, releasing gases and acids.
The remarkable thing is that, in principle, no one can break down galactans. The only difference is that the intestines of one person react much more violently to it than the intestines of another person. This is why not everyone suffers (as much) from galactans.
Galactans are mainly found in certain vegetables and legumes. Some examples of products that are high in galactans are: Beans, beetroot, lentils, chickpeas, broccoli, cabbage, pistachios, cashew nuts.
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