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Technical FAQs

What is Enova™ brand oil?
Enova™ oil is a new edible oil that is composed predominantly of diacylglycerols or diglycerides (DAG), unlike conventional vegetable oils, which are primarily made up of triacylglycerols or triglycerides (TAG). With its light yellow color and mild flavor, Enova™ oil looks and tastes like a conventional vegetable oil, but research shows that it may offer health benefits not found in conventional oils. Compared to conventional oils, less Enova™ oil is stored in the body as fat.

What is the nutritional content of Enova™ oil?
The nutritional profile of Enova™ oil is similar to that of conventional vegetable oil. It contains 120 calories in a 1 tablespoon (14 grams) serving. Total fat (14 grams) is predominantly unsaturated - 8 grams polyunsaturated, 5 grams monounsaturated. Less than 1 gram (0.5 gram) is saturated, which is half the saturated fat of canola oil. Enova™ oil is naturally cholesterol free, and each serving provides 30% daily value of vitamin E. Enova™ oil also has the least amount of saturated fat than any other conventional oil, and has zero grams of trans fat (refer to Nutrition Facts).

What is the process that increases the DAG in Enova™ oil?
DAG oil is manufactured through a process that begins with glycerol and fatty acids prepared from soy and canola oil. The fatty acids are esterified or linked to glycerol to form diacylglycerols in the presence of an enzyme, a commercial microbial lipase, which is specific for the 1 and 3 positions of the glycerol molecule. Then, the oil is refined into Enova™ oil.

What makes it different from other oils?
Enova™ oil is predominantly DAG oil. The DAG found in Enova™ oil is ingested with fatty acids predominantly in the 1,3 positions on the glycerol backbone. 1,3 DAG are converted into 1- (or 3-) monoglycerides by the 1,3 lipases in the small intestine, similar to the body’s handling of other fats and oils.

How does Enova™ oil work?
Substituting Enova™ oil for other oils may help lower blood lipids, especially triglycerides, after a meal. The metabolism or breakdown of DAG oil by the intestine and the liver may enhance the reduction of body weight and body fat. The fatty acids from both DAG and TAG oils are absorbed through the intestinal wall. Once inside the epithelial cells of the small intestine, however, resynthesis of TAG from the monoglycerides from DAG oil is difficult since the middle position on the glycerol backbone is vacant and the body’s enzymes for resynthesis are predominantly specific for the 2-monoglycerides. So, fatty acids do not get completely repackaged into TAG and chylomicrons, but instead more are broken down and sent to the liver to participate in beta-oxidation reactions. Triglycerides, on the other hand, are completely packaged into chylomicrons and transported through the lymph into the bloodstream to be stored as fat.

How much DAG oil do you need to consume to be effective?
Further research is currently underway to better determine the exact amount required to achieve optimal health benefits. However, studies to date suggest that people who consume the equivalent of 10 to 20 grams per day of DAG oil as part of a sensible diet received Enova™ oil’s health benefits.

What is the level of intake that is considered safe?
Our recommended serving size is 2 tablespoons per day, the amount used in our clinical studies of efficacy. You can safely replace all of your existing conventional cooking or salad oil use with Enova™ oil. During toxicological studies, no upper tolerable limit was discovered.

How does Enova™ oil fit into a sensible diet? Can I use Enova™ oil in place of conventional oil?
Enova™ oil can easily fit into a sensible diet as a replacement or alternative to other vegetable oils used in home cooking. Enova™ oil established as GRAS (generally recognized as safe) for margarine-like spreads and any home cooking oil application, including baked goods, soups and sauces, pizza, and salad dressings. It will act just as conventional oil would within those foods.

Why should you use Enova™ oil?
Any adults who are interested in consuming a sensible diet and maintaining a desirable weight should use Enova™ oil. Consumption of Enova™ oil in place of other types of oil may have an impact on body weight and body fat changes. Initial studies of people on a calorie-controlled diet indicate that body weight and body fat losses may occur to a greater extent when consuming 25 to 30 grams of Enova™ oil daily in place of conventional oil. Additional studies have shown reductions in post prandial serum triglyceride levels of over 30% when DAG is included in the diet. However, studies to date suggest that a replacement of 10 to 20g per day of conventional oil with Enova™ oil have shown significant beneficial differences in health markers as compared to traditional oils.

How will the product be sold and when?
Enova™ oil is now available nationally at retail grocery stores beginning in January 2005. It will also be available from the Enova™ oil Web site, www.EnovaOil.com. Enova™ oil also has the potential to be used as an ingredient in some prepared foods, so products using Enova™ oil for consumers may also be available in the future.

What research do you have to demonstrate the safety of DAG oil?
Studies with animals and human subjects have shown no adverse effects from single dose or long term consumption of DAG oil. In short and long term oral toxicity studies performed on rats, no DAG-related toxic effects were found. In clinical studies with human subjects, no adverse effects were detected; while lowering of post-meal blood TG was observed, no change in free fatty acids, b-lipoprotein, insulin, ketones, cholesterol or clinical chemistries were observed in comparison to traditional TAG oil consumption. Other studies have shown that DAG oil does not affect the absorption of fat soluble vitamins.

What research has been done that demonstrates the effectiveness?
There are numerous clinical and animal studies which have shown health benefits of DAG oil. Especially those which support the claim: “Compared to other cooking and salad oils, less Enova™ oil is stored in the body as fat. Results of the studies have been published in peer-reviewed publications, including the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Lipids and the Annals of Nutrition Metabolism. To learn more. click here

What is GRAS? Why is GRAS important for food products?
GRAS means that a food or food ingredient has been determined to be “generally recognized as safe” and satisfies certain requirements by law. DAG is a naturally-occurring component in all fats and has long been part of our eating regimens. Based on this and other scientific evidence verifying its safety, Kao Corporation and ADM Kao LLC have successfully notified the FDA of the GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status of Enova™ oil for use in home cooking oil, vegetable oil spreads, salad dressings, margarine-like spreads, mayonnaise, bakery products, nutrition bars and beverages, soups and sauces, gravies, pizza and frozen dinner entrees; however, Enova™ oil will act just as a conventional oil would within those foods.

Is Enova™ oil a fat substitute?
No. The diacylglycerol (DAG) oil in Enova™ oil is found in all natural vegetable oils at low concentrations. It is not an artificial fat substitute. We process natural soy and canola oils with a biological enzyme to produce the DAG content found in Enova™ oil.

Are there any potential side effects?
Because Enova™ oil is digested the same way as conventional vegetable oils, the potential side effects are no different than those of a conventional oil. In addition, studies with animals and human subjects have shown no adverse effects from single dose or long term consumption of Enova™ oil.

What Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids are in Enova™ Oil? At what ratio are they present?
Enova™ oil contains linoleic acid (C18:2, n-6) and linolenic acid (C18:3, n-3). Both of these fatty acids come from the natural soy and canola used to manufacture Enova™ oil. The Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratio is approximately 10:1.