A popular chip strain that’s grown in the United States, which is a good source of protein, fiber and vitamins, has been toasted by scientists at the University of Minnesota.
The strain, named Rainbow Chip, is widely grown and can be found in a variety of foods and is often used in sandwiches and baked goods.
Scientists from the university’s Department of Plant Pathology, Food Chemistry and Food Safety studied the strain’s effects on human food consumption in mice.
“The strain we tested had a significant impact on the diet and the weight gain of mice,” said Dr. Brian Cottle, a researcher in the Department of Molecular Biology at the university.
“We showed that the strain was able to increase the amount of energy intake by 15 percent and it significantly decreased the amount the mice consumed of fat and protein.”
The strain is also a popular choice for toasting because it is relatively inexpensive to produce, said Cottled.
“You can get Rainbow Chip at the local store for a little over $2 a pound,” he said.
Cottled and his colleagues are now planning to study Rainbow Chip in mice and humans in order to find out if it can be used in the future to boost our overall health and well-being.
They’re currently studying the effect of the strain on the brain and liver, but are also planning to explore how the strain affects the immune system and how it affects the metabolism of the body.
“It’s really exciting that the effects of this strain are so beneficial to the human body and that the results are so interesting,” said Cotte.
Rainbow Chip is also being used to enhance the taste of bread and other foods, so the researchers are looking into other uses for the strain.
“This is just the first step, but we’ll see if there’s other applications for Rainbow Chip,” Cottred said.
“I think there are a lot of people who want to be healthier and feel better, and they want to take their food choice more seriously,” said Rachael Tannenbaum, a research associate in the department of Molecular and Cell Biology at U of M.