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New insights on lutein and cognition

NutraCap Admin

Cognition is described as the ability to think, learn and remember. As people age, the brain naturally changes, affecting memory, learning and other cognitive functions. Some older adults suffer from mild cognitive impairment, in which they have more memory or thinking problems than other people their age. Dementia is the loss of cognitive function and behavioral abilities to such an extent that it interferes with daily life. Memory loss, though common, is not the only sign. A person may also have problems with language skills, visual perception or paying attention.

Dementia comes in different forms, although Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form in people over the age of 65. Alzheimer’s is a progressive disease beginning with mild memory loss, possibly leading to the inability to carry on a conversation and respond to the environment.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) considers Alzheimer’s and dementia a growing health epidemic with profound social and economic implications, especially given the current trends of an aging population. The number of older people in the United States with Alzheimer’s is projected to grow to 13.8 million by 2050, a nearly three-fold increase from 4.7 million in 2010.

Read The Full Article HERE

Ingredients to support cognitive performance and mood

NutraCap Admin

The nootropics industry is growing and changing, with an increasing array of products formulated for specific conditions. Elyse N. Lovett, marketing manager, Kyowa Hakko U.S.A. Inc. attributes this to growing knowledge about “the synergistic effects of ingredients and stronger health claims made when formulating with multiple ingredients.”

Aging adults are most interested in preventing memory loss and cognitive decline. However, Lovett has seen a shift with “focus, attention and concentration becoming more attractive as aging Boomers become more active.”

Development and Performance

Maintaining focus can be challenging in a fast-paced society with multiple ways to reach people and many digital devices vying for one’s attention. Choline, Bacopa monnieri, inositol-stabilized arginine silicate and medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) help cognitive performance.

Choline helps synthesize cell membranes and neurotransmitters including acetylcholine. Acetylcholine is necessary for various aspects of brain and nervous system functioning, including memory and mood.1,2 Most people consume less than the adequate intake (AI) for choline,3 and though the body makes this nutrient, it isn’t made in sufficient quantities.4 Good or excellent sources of choline include beef, poultry, soybeans and eggs. 5 Though long considered for its potential to attenuate degenerative and vascular cognitive decline, citicoline (CDP-choline) is an ingredient making waves in younger populations, as well. According to Lovett, Kyowa Hakko as a proprietary form of citicoline “clinically studied to support mental energy, focus, and attention in adolescents and adults.”

Read The Full Article HERE

Can the FDA really shut down the frothy CBD market?

NutraCap Admin

Amid the champagne corks popping and footballs spiking as hemp becomes legalized thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill that sailed through the U.S. Congress this week, questions remain over whether the FDA will maintain its conservative interpretation of statutes and somehow reel in the booming CBD market.

The FDA, after all, was able to successfully eliminate the billion-dollar ephedra market in 2004. It also nipped in the bud the burgeoning red yeast rice market in 1998—this is the closest analogue to the CBD market today because red yeast rice contained the lovastatin molecule, which is active ingredient in the $19 billion-dollar pharmaceutical market of statin drugs. There, the FDA ruled that red yeast rice manufacturers were concentrating levels of monacolin K, which is chemically identical to the active ingredient in the cholesterol-lowering drug lovastatin. This, by law, made the supplements into illegal patented drugs.

Hemp-derived CBD players assert that they are not concentrating CBD within the hemp plant, only growing hemp plants that naturally exude high levels of CBD with less than 0.3 percent levels of THC. And that may be true. The FDA still asserts that CBD is a drug: This past June, the FDA approved GW Pharmaceuticals’ Epidiolex CBD isolate.

According to FDA, CBD was first authorized for investigation as a new pharmaceutical drug and the subject of substantial clinical investigations that have been instituted and made public. If a drug comes first, it cannot then later become a supplement. However, a supplement can then later be made into a drug, as with the Lovaza brand pharmaceutical fish oil concentrate. Pharma trumps supplements.

More to the point, the 2018 Farm Bill that just passed both houses of Congress explicitly stated that while the law will remove hemp from the Controlled Substances Act and thus remove the Drug Enforcement Agency from any regulatory action around hemp or CBD, the FDA remains the federal regulatory authority in charge of the market.

Read The Full Article HERE

New research on curcumin’s health benefits

NutraCap Admin

The big question about turmeric and curcumin asks how long its explosive growth will last. Will this superstar spice ingredient sustain its popularity and reach omega-3 status or fade into the background as a once-hot natural product trend? Thanks to the wide body of data generated in recent years, curcumin’s benefits categories have broadened substantially.

Sports nutrition is an up-and-coming benefit sector for curcumin, especially in light of its potential to reduce inflammation and soreness caused by strenuous exercise. The antioxidant benefits of curcumin and its ability to modulate inflammatory pathways underscores its potential as an adjunct to recovery.1

In a recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, curcumin was shown to be an effective supplement for recovery after strenuous exercise.2 An additional study also reported a reduction in 24-hour pain scores as well as increased muscle performance after a muscle-damaging exercise.3

Curcumin is also finding potential in heart health, where the effects of its anti-inflammatory properties are being researched. Recently, a highly bioavailable form of curcumin was studied in a healthy population to examine its role in endothelial function, which plays a critical role in cardiovascular health.4 Curcumin’s direct impact on healthy circulation was measured using flow mediated dilation (FMD).

The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed supplementing with 200 mg of curcumin had a clinically meaningful impact on potentially reducing cardiovascular disease by up to 50 percent in healthy individuals.

Read The Full Article HERE

Krill oil for heart health

NutraCap Admin

The market for heart health supplements is thriving. According to Nutrition Business Journal (NBJ) data, the market for heart health ingredients has the potential to reach more than US$3 billion by 2020. With that in mind, there are many options for consumers seeking out heart health products.

Omega-3s are considered a strong contender in this market. In fact, research has shown long-chain omega-3s support healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels, normal blood clotting processes, as well as a regular heartbeat, all of which contribute to keeping both the heart and its arteries healthy.1,2 The anti-inflammatory nutrients found in omega-3s can help balance the body’s level of inflammation, promoting overall health and wellness.3

Every person’s omega-3 needs are different and the amount of EPA and DHA one would need to take to raise their Omega-3 Index into the target range will vary. Not all omega-3s are created equal. They vary in structure and function, and only marine-based omega-3s (or long-chain omega-3s) contain EPA and DHA.

Krill oil provides EPA and DHA mainly in the form of phospholipids. The body immediately recognizes phospholipid omega-3s and incorporates them into the cells before carrying them to the tissues and organs that need them the most, such as the heart. On the contrary, other sources of omega-3s are delivered as triglycerides and must be processed in the liver before they can be taken up by the cells and used by the body. Therefore phospholipid-bound omega-3s, like krill oil, raise one’s omega-3 index more efficiently as compared to other omega-3 oils.4

In addition to omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA, krill contains the essential nutrient choline, which is crucial for cell structure, function, and signalling.5 Choline is found to positively contribute to cardiovascular, liver and cognitive health. Furthermore, the astaxanthin found in krill oil helps keep its omega-3s naturally fresh and stable.

Read The Full Article HERE

Hemp and CBD reportedly will be officially legalized in Farm Bill

NutraCap Admin

Although the Congressional committee reconciling competing U.S. Senate and House versions of the Farm Bill are tight-lipped about the exact language that’s been agreed upon, it sounds like the bill, now expected to be signed next week, will legalize industrial hemp.

That spells good news for purveyors of hemp-derived CBD.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who made sure he sat on the Congressional reconciliation committee, tweeted that CBD will continue its extraordinary trajectory.

“Thanks for your hard work, @SenPatRoberts,” tweeted McConnell, “for our farmers, rural communities and all Americans. Pleased that my provision to legalize industrial hemp is included in the Farm Bill.”

This was confirmed by two other reconciliation committee members, Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX) and Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN), according to a Bloomberg Government reporter, also on Twitter.

The hemp provision reportedly will remove hemp from the federal list of controlled substances, and hemp farmers will be able to apply for crop insurance. Hemp must contain less than 0.3 percent THC. The bill would push hemp regulations both to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and not the Department of Justice as well as to individual states to decide whether or not they want to go forward with commercializing hemp and hemp products including CBD. States can either develop their own plans or just abide by federal regulations that are to be developed by the USDA.

Farmers in the U.S. have planted more than 77,000 acres in 2018, according to Vote Hemp, about three times the amount grown in 2017.

The farm bill removes CBD from the Controlled Substances Act, thereby removing the DEA from enforcing – mistakenly or not – CBD products. However, the farm bill does not change requirements of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, which means CBD is still subject to FDA regulations. Keeping the FDA involved – outside of its role as regulator of dietary supplements – still maintains an element of risk to CBD businesses.

Read The Full Article HERE

New research on curcumin’s health benefits

NutraCap Admin

The big question about turmeric and curcumin asks how long its explosive growth will last. Will this superstar spice ingredient sustain its popularity and reach omega-3 status or fade into the background as a once-hot natural product trend? Thanks to the wide body of data generated in recent years, curcumin’s benefits categories have broadened substantially.

Sports nutrition is an up-and-coming benefit sector for curcumin, especially in light of its potential to reduce inflammation and soreness caused by strenuous exercise. The antioxidant benefits of curcumin and its ability to modulate inflammatory pathways underscores its potential as an adjunct to recovery.1

In a recent randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, curcumin was shown to be an effective supplement for recovery after strenuous exercise.2 An additional study also reported a reduction in 24-hour pain scores as well as increased muscle performance after a muscle-damaging exercise.3

Curcumin is also finding potential in heart health, where the effects of its anti-inflammatory properties are being researched. Recently, a highly bioavailable form of curcumin was studied in a healthy population to examine its role in endothelial function, which plays a critical role in cardiovascular health.4 Curcumin’s direct impact on healthy circulation was measured using flow mediated dilation (FMD).

The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed supplementing with 200 mg of curcumin had a clinically meaningful impact on potentially reducing cardiovascular disease by up to 50 percent in healthy individuals.

As the buzz around turmeric and its active component, curcumin, continues to spread, market opportunities for these popular ingredients are expanding.

Read The Full Article HERE

Probiotics for improving mental health

NutraCap Admin

The microbes in the gut produce neuroactive compounds that connect to the brain, affecting behavior and mood. There are more than 100 million neurons in the gut—nerve cells, which are normally perceived as brain cells. In fact, the gut is sometimes called the little brain because it is the largest area of nerves outside the brain.

An increasing number of studies link gut health to mood and mental health. In a four-week probiotics study, compared with participants who received a placebo intervention, participants who received probiotics showed a significantly reduced overall cognitive reaction to sad mood, which was largely accounted for by reduced rumination and aggressive thoughts, resulting in evidence that probiotics may help reduce negative thoughts associated with sad mood (Brain Behav Immun. 2015 Aug;48:258-64).

Research involving 15 human studies discovered patients who supplemented with Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus strains for one to two months experienced improvements in anxiety, depression, autism, obsessive-compulsive disorder and memory, including spatial and non-spatial memory, showing the efficacy of probiotics on central nervous system function (J Neurogastroenterol Motil. 2016 Oct 30;22(4):589-605).

In a study of 40 patients with depression, individuals who took probiotic supplements also reaped benefits. Taking probiotic supplements for eight weeks decreased depression levels and reduced levels of C-reactive protein (a marker of inflammation) and hormones such as insulin, compared to people who did not take a probiotic (Nutrition. 2016 Mar;32(3):315-20). After the eight-week intervention, patients who received probiotic supplements had significantly decreased Beck Depression Inventory total scores.

Read The Full Article HERE

Trends in digestive health

NutraCap Admin

Digestive health has become increasingly important. Yes, it’s on-trend, but why is it really so important? Because it’s all about the “gut.” Martha Carlin, CEO of The Biocollective Research, is one of many people doing important work related to the gut. She became interested in the topic after reading Martin Blazer’s book Missing Microbes. In a recent episode of the Business Leaders Podcast, Carlin said, “For people who don’t know what the human microbiome is, that’s the trillions of bacteria, fungi, viruses and archaea that live in and on our body. We’re actually more microbial than we are human.”

Carlin isn’t alone; even Hippocrates acknowledged: “All disease begins in the gut.” 

As product developers continue to incorporate functional attributes to address consumer need states related to gastrointestinal (GI) health, a good place to start is with a combination of probiotics and prebiotics, a positive synergy referred to as synbiotics. Probiotics gained recognition in recent years with the growing popularity of foods like yogurt, kimchi and sauerkraut. Probiotics add healthy bacteria into the body, while prebiotics feed the healthy organisms in the gut.

Product development trends over the last five to six years have focused on—or even obsessed over—probiotics, with less emphasis on prebiotics. However, both are needed for optimal health. Obtaining effective probiotics strains and adequate prebiotics via diet to improve GI health isn’t easy; in order to have healthy gut, supplementation with both is often advised.

Roughly one-fourth of U.S. adults seek foods and beverages with high amounts of probiotics or prebiotics, according to a 2017 national consumer survey conducted by Packaged Facts. The interest is spurring innovation in the food and beverage industry.

The future mission of product developers is to focus on effectively formulating with both prebiotics and probiotics. It is important for the long-term progression of digestive health to incorporate the synbiotic approach. It will take into account solutions based on the total body, focusing on introducing products that can effectively address areas like immune system, gut health and overall well-being.

Read The Full Article HERE

Experts debate pros, cons of mandatory product registry for dietary supplements

NutraCap Admin

A veteran lawyer in Washington supports a requirement that companies register their dietary supplement product labels. The general idea—incorporated in legislation introduced in previous years on Capitol Hill—could lead to reform of the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA).

“I really believe that this movement has picked up speed this year,” said Scott Bass, an attorney who heads the Global Sciences team at Sidley Austin LLP.

Based on his discussions with myriad groups, the lawyer revealed, the idea’s “time has come.” He said it was possible to see “activity on this front as early as the fourth quarter” of 2018.

“And I don’t mean activity in the sense of the law passed,” Bass acknowledged, “but I mean serious legislative attention.”

In an interview during an annual symposium in California for the dietary supplement industry hosted in October by the Council for Responsible Nutrition(CRN), Bass laid out his support for a mandatory product registry.

“Unless we have a system where FDA can say, ‘We know what’s on the market in the list’ [of registered products] and then can easily find out what is not on that list and can easily enforce, we’re not going to be able to stem the rising tide of illegal products,” he asserted. “There really is no choice because FDA can never enforce against outliers unless they know what’s on the market legitimately.”

Added Bass: “Second, how can a company offer a product to consumers that is supposedly a health product and then say, ‘But I don’t want the government to know about it.’ It just makes no sense.”

Read The Full Article HERE

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