Consumer Education

A new website educates consumers about the cholesterol-lowering benefits of natural plant sterols. Cognis' extensive line of Vegapure® natural plant sterols and sterol esters are now marketed to consumers under the brand name Heart Choice™. The website,, is a one-stop shopping portal for information. Launched in conjunction with The Vitamin Shoppe's introduction of its Heart Choice natural plant sterols dietary supplement, the website is part of a broader program to communicate science so it is easy to understand, using messages and formats that consumers can relate to. Cognis, Laura Troha, 708-579-6173,,

Tough Tomatoes

Lycopene is the powerful heart healthy antioxidant found in tomatoes. Recent studies demonstrate that natural tomato lycopene complex, containing lycopene and other antioxidant tomato phytonutrients, has significant advantages over synthetic lycopene. LycoRed, a leading natural lycopene producer, will introduce at IFT a prototype of a tasty smoothie fortified with a premix containing 33% of the recommended daily intake of an array of vitamins and minerals plus 5mg of lycopene. This innovative product is an outgrowth of LycoRed's new approach to creating healthier foods through fortification and coloring with two novel natural tomato lycopene ingredients: Lyc-O-Mato Powder and Tomat-O-Red. IFT Booth #1570. LycoRed Corp., Dave Thomas, 877-LYCORED,

Gift of the Sea

A dietary supplement consisting of the jellyfish protein aequorin has displayed potent anti-aging activity in their laboratory studies. Quincy Bioscience will be releasing their first product derived from ten years of research in the form of an orally acceptable dietary supplement product branded as Prevagenâ„¢. The anti-aging potential displayed is an ability to keep brain cells alive longer in controlled tests. Prevagen is a novel product that, in technical terms, acts as a calcium-binding protein. Calcium-binding proteins deplete in several areas of the body as part of the aging process. Quincy Bioscience, Mark Underwood, 414-303-0814,,

Healthy Starch

Since the beginning of 2005 alone, there have been 15 studies published on the health benefits of natural resistant starches around the world. The studies show that natural resistant starches offer benefits in intestinal/colonic health as well as metabolically important benefits in glycemic management and energy. National Starch Food Innovation's high-amylose corn RS2 resistant starch can increase the body's fat-burning ability by 20%-25%, and is important in reducing the glycemic and insulin impact of foods. Hi-maize® from National Starch also increases insulin sensitivity in healthy people. Insulin sensitivity is a critical factor in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. National Starch Food Innovation, David Manion, 908-685-5000,,

A Lock on Oxidation

Health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids have been known for years and sales of omega-3 in the dietary supplement market have been growing exponentially. Consumers recognize the nutritional value of the physiologically essential omega-3 fatty acids. The problem has been that adding omega-3 oils directly into foods can cause off-flavors because all forms of omega-3 fatty acids are prone to oxidation. Ocean Nutrition Canada Limited has developed a revolutionary form of micro-encapsulation technology and branded it as Powder-locâ„¢, a patented process that microencapsulates the oil in a gelatin matrix with double-shell protection for inclusion in foods. Powder-loc creates double protection for the oil from both oxidation and the stress of food processing, as well as withstanding high temperatures even during pasteurization. Ocean Nutrition Canada Limited (ONC),

Nutraceuticals Selling in Southeast Asia

Even though a majority of the population in Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam consider nutraceutical products to be luxury items, the market is growing on account of the products' health benefits. Introduced in the 1990s, nutraceuticals were successful in the U.S. and Europe. Southeast Asia, with its large population, shows significant potential for manufacturers in this region. Nutraceutical ingredients targeted at weight loss such as conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and green tea extracts experienced high growth rates in 2005. Despite the health benefits offered by these products--such as a sense of well-being, better performance in daily activities, preventive healthcare and improved physical appearance--some consumers are wary, due to their high cost. Moreover, health claims on nutraceutical products are not allowed in Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore.

Manufacturers need to educate consumers on their benefits as well as create brand awareness and acceptance through extensive advertising and marketing. Frost & Sullivan, Janina Hilgrub, Corporate Communications,

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Fat Cells Linked to Alzheimer's

People in their early 40s who had a high fat content in the upper arms and shoulders were much more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease later in life, according to the latest study linking obesity and dementia. The research is the first to look at how fat distribution around the body during midlife is associated with the risk of Alzheimer's. It also advances the understanding that fat is not just inert tissue, but rather a cell type that can secrete substances that can be harmful to the brain. The study, presented at the recently held American Academy of Neurology annual meeting in San Diego, involved 8,776 people ages 40 to 45. The study adds to research linking Alzheimer's and obesity, as well as related conditions such as high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.

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Eating Towards Peace

A new healthy snack bar scored a 2,347% in sales gain in one year, making it the single fastest growing energy and health snack bar in the natural foods category as reported by SPINS data. According to Daniel Lubetzky, Founder and CEO of PeaceWorks LLC, maker of KIND Fruit + Nut, the bar encourages support for international campaigns for peace. Five percent of profits from the bar go to aiding conflict resolution in the Middle East. These snack bars, made from premium whole nuts including almonds, Brazil nuts, peanuts, walnuts and macadamia nuts, are a good source of fiber, low in sodium, gluten- free, wheat-free and dairy-free (except for yogurt- and chocolate-coated).

PeaceWorks was established in 1994 to act as a catalyst for peace by encouraging joint business ventures among people of different backgrounds in volatile regions worldwide. PeaceWorks donates 5% of its profits to the PeaceWorks Foundation's OneVoice Movement. PeaceWorks, Rebecca Schmidt, 212-616-3006, ext. 210,,

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