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New Research, New Demands

<p>Ingredient studies, consumer research and an overall increase in health-awareness could lead to new demands within the industry.</p>

Knowledge and awareness are crucial for staying up-to-date within the natural products industry. The latest ingredient studies, recent consumer research and the overall increase in consumer health-awareness could lead to new demands for both innovative ingredients and educational events.

Studies show microbes in the digestive tract have evolved to help the body digest complex carbohydrates, such as the yeast in beer and bread, and new research demonstrates how these gut bacteria may also support the development of new treatments for yeast infections and autoimmune diseases. (Nature. 2015. 517: 165-169)

According to the research, a common gut bacterium called Bacteroides thetaiotomicron can degrade yeasts, and the discovery of this process could accelerate the development of prebiotic medicines to help people suffering from bowel problems and autoimmune diseases. The new findings provide a better understanding of how the unique intestinal soup of bacteria—termed the microbiome—has the capacity to obtain nutrients from humans’ highly varied diets.

Another ingredient often linked to digestive health is fiber, and new consumer research from BENEO illustrates the latest consumer perception of fiber, involving its natural functionality and health benefits. The research showed 67 percent of 1,000 consumers interviewed found “high in natural fiber" an appealing claim for food and beverage products. In addition, the results showed a clear preference for natural products, with 47 percent of respondents actively seeking natural fibers, while 45 percent consider non-GMO products “better."

In addition, there is a high level of consumer awareness that fiber is an important ingredient for a healthy and balanced diet—93 percent of consumers responded that fiber is good for their overall health. Consumers are also aware that fibers contribute to a healthy gut and aid weight management, with 91 percent responding that fiber is beneficial for their intestinal health and 68 percent saying fiber helps them feel fuller longer. Moreover, 63 percent maintain that fiber helps them eat less during the day.

The population’s increasing health-awareness has led to a higher demand for products and technology that can empower consumers to take control of their health—and this includes sexual health. Fruitful Way Ltd. pioneered a new, natural fertility and conception toolkit for couples who are trying to get pregnant, which includes a science-backed dietary supplement paired with a sophisticated fertility app.

For couples living a busy, around-the-clock lifestyle, using the scientifically designed Fruitful supplements in conjunction with the Fruitful iPhone app can increase the chances for conceiving during the first 12 months of trying, according to the company. The Fruitful fertility supplements help optimize and prepare the mother’s body to conceive, and prepare the father’s to make it happen. Each tailored supplement contains effective levels of scientifically backed healthy ingredients to optimize the process of getting pregnant and support safe conception and pregnancy. The app uses proprietary technology, push messages, data sharing and daily reminders to help define the fertility window.

Health education will soon go even further through a new webinar series and educational campaign from Fruit d'Or Nutraceuticals. On the heels of the company’s successful seminar held at SupplySide West, Fruit d’Or will spearhead the webinar and campaign to position its Cran Narurelle organic cranberry “beyond UTIs" in 2015.

During the company’s SupplySide West seminar, keynote speaker Christian Krueger of Complete Phyto Chemical Solutions discussed the critical need for standardization, efficacy and authenticity of cranberry material. He also presented new analytical tools for testing both for authenticity and total overall proancthocyanidins (PACs) in cranberry material and products, and he introduced new reference standards for evaluating both soluble and insoluble PACs present in cranberry. The seminar’s success and the new information presented by Krueger will serve as the keystone for further educational events slated for 2015.

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