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Healthy and Amazing Aging

Healthy and Amazing Aging Healthy Aging

Wellness, science and technology are merging and becoming a mainstream way to deliver dramatic improvements for healthy aging and longevity.

As indicated by the tale of Ponce de Leon searching for the fountain of youth, to the recent fascination with the secrets from the “Blue Zones,” a demographic and/or geographic area of the world where people live measurably longer lives, the prospect of long life and vitality has extremely broad appeal.

Given population projections, the market for natural products that address aging offers tremendous opportunities, said John Gehbauer, business manager with BASF Nutrition & Health in New Jersey, adding that the company prefers to say “healthy aging” instead of “anti-aging” since aging is inevitable. The “Baby Boomers” (those born between 1946 and 1964) started turning 65 in 2011, and the number of older people will increase dramatically during the 2010–2030 period. The older population in 2030 is projected to be twice as large as their counterparts in 2000, growing from 35 million to 72 million and representing nearly 20 percent of the total U.S. population. Gehbauer noted that seniors want products that help maintain their health, appearance and mobility, while their families and caregivers are also interested in preserving their wellness.

Brian Zapp, director of marketing with Applied Food Sciences, Inc. in Texas, pointed out that the market for anti-aging products continues at an average compound annual growth rate of 7.8 percent. “Although the numbers vary between $122 B, Transparency Market Research, to $290 B, one thing is certain, the market is large and continues to grow as Boomers become more present in their quest for looking and feeling younger.” (By 2030, approximately 70 million Americans will be aged 65 or older) “This in turn has created a market for functional anti-aging ingredients close to $10 B.

And it’s not just Boomers interested in these products, Zapp added. According to the NPD Group, Inc. (www.npd.com/wps/portal/npd/us/solutions/retail-tracking/), anti-aging continues to be a key motivator for purchases among woman skincare users from most age groups. Seventy-five percent of woman tells NPD they use skincare products to look the best they can for their age.

“Anti-aging and longevity, of course, not only relate to how we look,” said Zapp, “but also how we feel and how our bodies cope with the aging process. There are many products on the market today that can help our cells trigger youthful gene expression, provide DNA protection and enhance cellular function. In addition, the constant need for every age and demographic group to have more energy with our fast passed lives is a major factor in how we feel and ultimately how we age.”

Ingredients for Healthy Aging

When it comes to ingredients for healthy aging, antioxidants are here to stay, noted Zapp, and continue to evolve into more functional delivery vehicles for both topical applications in skincare as well as internal applications for cellular health. “The added desire for more natural, easy-to-understand ingredients is one of the fastest growing segments in both oral and topical applications around the world, which is a good thing since, by design, this is where antioxidants are typically derived from,” he said. “For anti-aging products, we have noticed a great jump in the use of botanicals such as green coffee extract and tea extracts, which provide some of the highest natural contents of free radical fighting antioxidants but also provide cell stimulation and even skin tone.

“Addressing the overall lack of energy is probably one of the largest and most popular topics associated with aging,” Zapp continued. “A deeper look at energy production and adrenal shows that the serum hormone DHEA is on the constant decline as we age and that by age 70 it may be reduced by as much as 75 percent to 80 percent from peak levels in our lifetimes. This may be why there is a growing population of older consumers who are seeking more caffeine, which can act as a short-term solution for that quicker pick-me-up. However the experienced health-conscious consumer is not interested in the sugary market of traditional energy drinks. We have noticed a large increase in the energy category, as a whole, going more natural and also adopting the ‘clean label’ look.”

Dan Lifton, president of New York-based Proprietary Branded Ingredient Group, Maypro Industries, said the common ingredients that are put forward for their anti-aging/healthy aging abilities typically include vitamin D, vitamin C and vitamin B12. “However, despite their reputation, the science is divided when it comes to these ingredients,” he said.

The Maypro anti-aging ingredient line, instead, features antioxidants, as well as other proprietary ingredients that have been shown in numerous trials to work against the various aspects of aging. “Various forms of CoQ10 have gained interest in the field, as the substance has been shown to increase energy levels and improve cardiovascular health,” Lifton explained. Maypro offers MicroActive CoQ10, formulated for maximum bioavailability. The ingredient has a 24-hour sustained release and doubles CoQ10 levels from baseline after three weeks in 100 percent of users.

A new ingredient for healthy aging, Lifton added, is Sirtmax, a proprietary black turmeric extract that helps to stimulate enzyme Sirt1 activation to support healthy aging, inhibit weight gain, reduce visceral fat reduction and maintain blood glucose levels within the normal range.

The Maypro patented and branded ingredient line also features an extract of lychee and green tea, Oligonol, that won the 2007 Best New Product Award at the 3rd International Conference on Polyphenols and Health (ICPH IFIA/HFE), the NutrAward for Best New Ingredient in 2008 and the SupplySide West Scientific Excellence Award in 2011. Oligonol has been proven to counteract poor blood circulation, oxidative stress and inflammation—the three most problematic symptoms of aging.

In addition, Maypro’s BioPQQ is the only natural New Dietary Ingredient (NDI)-approved PQQ (pyrroloquinoline quinone) on the market and won the Engredea Editors’ Choice Award for Ingredient with the Best Science in 2013. The substance is the first new vitamin discovered since 1948, playing a key role in increasing cell life and energy production, Lifton said.

The New Jersey-based Seppic, Inc. supplies Ceramosides and SOD (superoxide dismutase) B that are two innovative and scientifically studied ingredients that aid in healthy aging. Ceramosides is one of the latest and trendiest ingredients in the beauty-from-inside-out segment and SOD B a powerful antioxidant, according to the company.

“Skin youth and hydration depends on key lipids called ceramides,” explained Sebastien Merchet, Seppic’s nutrition business development manager. “When aging, we start losing ceramides, resulting in dry and itchy skin, pulling sensations and wrinkles. Phytoceramides are ceramides that come from plants; they are highly concentrated in Ceramosides along with digalactosyl diglycerides (DGDG). Ceramosides brings new ceramides to the skin via the bloodstream and help restore the water barrier and replenish cracks. DGDG has been scientifically studied to have a key impact on ceramides absorption (thanks to its amphiphilic properties), the patented complex of the two lipids, phytoceramides and DGDG, found in Ceramosides provides a quicker and stronger effect on skin health at a low dose,” Merchet explained.

SOD is one of the body’s primary antioxidant that acts at the source of the oxidative stress reaction and slows down the aging process. “Our three primary antioxidants are SOD, catalase and glutathione peroxidase,” Merchet said. He explained that, as we age, we produce less primary antioxidants, reducing our defense against oxidative stress. SOD B is a patented complex with a high content of SOD coming from a French melon specie. SOD B has been microencapsulated for protection from gastric acids and to be progressively released into the intestinal tract. SOD B acts possibly via an induction of Nrf2, a transcription factor known to induce primary antioxidant enzymes synthesis in the body and induces the endogenous expression of SOD (superoxide dismutase), CAT (catalase) and Gpx (glutathione peroxidase).

At BASF, part of the focus is on traditional ingredients with an innovative edge. The company works with its customers so they can reach their target consumers with products including carotenoids for eye health, vitamins B, D, E and K for overall health, sterols for heart health, omega-3s for heart health and cognitive function, and Tonalin CLA to reduce body fat and maintain lean muscle. “Lutein was just recently again associated with improved outcome for people with macular degeneration,” Gehbauer said. “Vitamin D has been studied for the maintenance of bone density and prevention of falls. Vitamin K is also recognized as a contributor to bone health. Lycopene is associated with prostate health for older men. Additionally, a recent study suggested that high doses of vitamin E may help to slow cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients.” The company is innovating with new delivery formats that make it easy and convenient for seniors to take their dietary supplements. “More than three quarters of the population of those aged 55 plus regularly use vitamins, and usage of vitamins, minerals, and supplements increases with age. However, while many seniors have difficulty swallowing pills, most dietary supplements are still in traditional formats like pills and tablets,” Gehbauer said.

BASF actively develops consumer-friendly innovations in delivery systems for every life stage. Examples of such delivery systems include a broad range from chewable tablets, orally disintegrating tablets (ODT), gummies, emulsions, stick packs and chewable soft gel capsules. When certain ingredients are used, integrated taste-masking or modified release technologies may be needed.

For example, fish oil soft gels with delayed release technology can bypass the stomach and release the fish oil in the small intestine to minimize a fishy aftertaste.

To make it easier for seniors to swallow fish oil supplements, BASF has introduced a broad range of high concentrate omega oils high in EPA or high in DHA depending upon the consumer target group and targeted health condition. By creating a smaller pill or capsule, it’s easier for consumers to take the product.

Scientists state that chronic inflammation is a pathological condition characterized by continued active inflammation response and tissue destruction. At Washington-based Bergstrom Nutrition, Tim Hammond, vice president of sales and marketing, pointed out that oxidative stress and recurring inflammation are associated with poor physical functioning and are believed to accelerate the aging process. “Research indicates that OptiMSM supplementation may serve as an adjunct therapy to support our health as we age,” he said. “OptiMSM is a well-researched, high-quality MSM with clinical data demonstrating that it can help minimize oxidative stress and provide nutritional support for a healthy inflammatory response within the body.”

Beauty From Within

Looking at beauty from the “inside-out” has been a growing topic in anti-aging as well, but this is often a difficult approach for consumers to understand, said Zapp. “A simpler way of looking at it is that “we are what we eat,” and that a reflection of how we look and feel is oftentimes a mirror of our cellular health and how it has been affected over time. As we age our bodies need to help to remove the buildup of toxins and free radical damage that has occurred to otherwise healthy cells. Supplementing with agents like glucarate can help increase the body’s natural pathway for detoxification removing harmful toxins, pollutants, and chemicals that are affecting cell health.” Glucarate continues to make innovative progress in the space of nutricosmetics as it can be fortified in better-for-you foods and beverages or used more traditionally in supplements.

Zapp pointed out that beauty from within is only just starting to capture a significant market share or interest in the U.S. relative to other countries. “This is mainly because the U.S. consumer wants to see instant results expecting beauty products to work and have some reaffirmation of product efficacy if not the moment they are used, then very shortly thereafter. It is difficult to see or feel the benefits of oral and ingestible beauty products because they have long-term cellular benefits to the dermal layers of the skin, hair or even nails. Beauty, encompassing the entire definition, is moving away from the conventional cosmetic beauty model and becoming more intrinsic in both definition and delivery.”

Rod Benjamin, director of research and development and technical services with Bergstrom Nutrition agreed that the “beauty from within” category is already significant in Europe and especially Asia. “The American consumer is starting to realize that healthy skin, hair and nails are difficult to achieve without proper nutritional support. While collagen is recognized in this category, additional ingredients are gaining traction as new research supporting their efficacy becomes available. For instance, MSM has historically been considered as a source of nutritional sulfur that can support areas like keratin and disulfide bonds within the collagen matrix of the skin. While studies have strongly suggested that MSM may play this role, actual scientific substantiation of efficacy in the area of nutritional support in the personal care category is limited.”

Benjamin added that Bergstrom recently concluded a number of studies that are pending publication and will bring additional scientific credibility to OptiMSM’s use in both the nutritional and topical personal care categories.

Up-and-coming ingredients for the beauty from within field, in general, noted Merchet, are collagen, hyaluronic acid, CoQ10, omegas, green teas, phytosterols, vitamins and minerals. Seppic’s Ceramosides and SOD B are most recent but are gaining a lot of attention for this category.

Both ingredients have been researched separately by several in vitro and in vivo studies and human gold standard clinical studies. Ceramoside was found to improve skin moisture and elasticity. SOD B may improve skin appearance by reducing visual cellulite.

Consumer Demands on Natural

As with weight loss, unfortunately, there is no quick fix to anti-aging. “Healthy aging begins with adopting a lifestyle that includes a nutrient-dense diet, regular exercise, appropriate sleep and stress management,” said Hammond. “Beyond this, certain nutraceuticals—such MSM—may provide beneficial nutritional support.” Additionally, there are the consumers who want to stick with traditional topical cosmetics while others want to build it into their nutrition. “This puts a heavy demand on ingredient suppliers,” said Zapp. “Standardization and certification are two of the easiest ways for suppliers to meet that flexible demand from manufacturers.

In addition, the word “natural” is under growing scrutiny because it lacks regulatory definition, Zapp added. “For instance a ‘naturally derived’ ingredient might still be processed with harmful chemicals or pesticides before it reaches consumers, which could easily defeat the very purpose of its health benefits … additionally for a botanical ingredient to make that jump into the growing world of functional foods/beverages, it also has to be considered GRAS. To obtain this status is often a tedious and costly process that many suppliers are not willing to undergo.”

For Applied Food Sciences, Zapp added, it is important that the company takes these extra steps to help manufacturers take the guesswork out of what they are offering their consumers. “That is why we offer USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture)-certified organic ingredients, as well as ensuring all of our products are self-affirmed GRAS. This broadens our ability to have an answer for the diversity of solutions that manufacturers require today.” NIE

For More Information:
Applied Food Sciences, Inc., (512) 732 8300
Bergstrom Nutrition, 360-693-1883
Certified Nutraceuticals, (951) 600 3899
BASF Nutrition & Health, (800) 527-9881
Maypro Industries, (914) 251-0701
Seppic, Inc., (973) 882-5587
Tetrahedron, +33 (0)1 41 83 75 00


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