Glanbia Nutritionals to use microencapsulation to boost ashwagandha efficacy
The ingredients goliath will use microencapsulation technology NutraShield to support and protect KSM-66 root extract to improve efficacy and application dosage when included in a formulation with other vitamins and minerals.
Microencapsulation protects nutrients with a matrix coating that locks-in and stabilises active ingredients enabling formulations with a higher-than-average concentration of ashwagandha extract.
The protective coat enhances the impact and function of nutrients by masking odours and flavours, controlling colour intensity, converting oils to powders and delaying the release of nutrients.
Resulting formulations will contain ashwagandha concentrations approximately 15-25% above standard dosage, which is the highest concentration of root extract on the market today, while “retaining all the natural constituents of the herb in its original balance”, according to Glanbia, and high bioavailability.
Ashwagandha root is predominantly used over plant leaves in nutritional solutions due to its adaptogenic benefits (it is non-toxic and has stress-relieving properties) and clinical efficacy - established in numerous clinical trials.
Conversely, there is very little supporting evidence on the therapeutic attributes of plant leaves, which are traditionally used to treat skin conditions, (like burns and sores) and not for consumption. As such, leaves are not recommended for use by either Indian or EU regulatory bodies.
Extracting high concentrations of ashwagandha is extremely challenging to maintain the balance of therapeutic constituents of the original herb. Consequently, it has taken 14 years to perfect KSM-66, which is produced using a propriety solvent and alcohol-free extraction process in a fully sustainable vertical production process.
Glanbia Nutritionals' Senior Bioactive Product Technology Advisor, Dr Ram Nimmagudda, commented: “The combination of such a well-established and superior ashwagandha extract, like KSM-66 Ashwagandha, with our decades of experience in nutrient optimisation provides customers with a powerful ingredient solution for their ready-to-mix powders, ready-to-drink beverages, chewables, gummies and effervescents.”
Ixoreal Biomed has collaborated with various academic and research institutes to establish significant clinical testimony on the health benefits of ashwagandha, which is widely used in Indian alternative medicine (Ayurveda) to relieve stress and anxiety, promote endurance, increase muscle strength and recovery, and improve memory and cognitive function.
Research also attests to its value as an aid to sleep for insomniacs, in weight management, and in promoting normal thyroid function.
A recent eight-week evaluation on the pharmacological impact of ashwagandha root extract on sleep in healthy volunteers and insomnia patients and found the sleep patterns of both groups improved, although results were more significant for the insomnia group.
KSM-66 Aswagandha Root Extract was found to significantly reduce ‘perceived stress’ in a 2017 double-blind randomised, placebo-controlled trial and produced a 32.7% reduction in Perceived Stress Scale (PSS) scores and 22.2% fall in serum cortisol (stress hormone) from baseline compared to the placebo.
Reductions in bodyweight were also observed, suggesting it could also be used for body weight management in adults under chronic stress.
Eight weeks of treatment with the extract in another trial also determined its effectiveness in normalising serum thyroid in subclinical hypothyroid patients.