Phytaphix launches botanical blend to manage MS symptoms

By Olivia Haslam

- Last updated on GMT

© Phytaphix
© Phytaphix

Related tags Multiple sclerosis Immune system Inflammation botanical

Botanical supplement startup Phytaphix has launched a new blend targeting inflammation, fatigue and nervous symptom function to ‘empower’ consumers with multiple sclerosis (MS).

Conor Kerley, PhD, nutrition researcher and company founder, introduced his polyphenol-packed plant brand in 2020​ after delving into botanical research as a means to try to manage his symptoms of MS - an autoimmune condition impacting nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.

The brand’s most recent product Neuro Phix entered the market this month in time for World MS Day (May. 30) providing ingredients such as boswellic acid, ellagic acid, curcuminoids, ginger root, silymarin and vitamins B12 and D3 in a capsule format. 

As Dr. Kerley explained, the 12 nutrients were chosen because, in human studies, they were found to contribute to various aspects of health, including reduced tiredness and fatigue and maintaining normal inflammation response, normal muscle function and normal psychological function. 

"Dealing with inflammation or oxidative stress are the things we know the right kind of nutrition can have a major impact on," he said.

"Boswellic acid is a specific compound found in Indian frankincense, and is therefore not commonly consumed worldwide, except through certain nutritional supplements," Dr. Kerley noted. "However, research indicates that boswellic acid may help decrease inflammation​ and potentially improve cognitive health."

The blend also includes: ellagic acid, a compound found in pomegranate with antioxidant properties that has been shown to reduce inflammation, pain, depression and fatigue​; curcuminoids known to support immune function through the management of oxidative and inflammatory stress​; piperine, an alkaloid found in black pepper, which enhances curcumin absorption​; and silymarin, a compound found in milk thistle, included for its benefits for liver health​, as some medications for MS can cause side effects​ such as drug-induced liver injury. 

Vitamin B12 is also included in two different forms, methylcobalamin and cyanocobalamin.

"Methylcobalamin is absorbed better by the body but doesn't stay in the system as long as cyanocobalamin, which isn't absorbed as well but has a longer duration in the body," Dr. Kerley explained. "Both types, as well as vitamin D, are crucial for maintaining neurological function​."

Consumer demand

According to Dr. Kerley, queries about food supplements are one of the most common on websites for MS support as well as across social media, with a high proportion of the people with the disorder choosing to take food supplements. 

He argued that supplementation can empower people with MS to feel they are taking charge of their health and wellness.

The new product joins the growing line-up of targeted blends including: Immune Phix, Joint Phix, and Nervous System Phix, as well as the new Lipoic Acid Phix to support cognitive function and protect cells from oxidative stress.

For Dr. Kerley, scientific backing is the top priority in developing the product. However, he explained that it can get frustrating for brands that are doing everything they can to offer an efficacious product when many companies care more about profit.

"Some days while I'm spending 20 hours reading through research papers, I’m kind of wondering, if I just spent those 20 hours shouting on TikTok and Instagram like every other brand maybe I would be comfortable somewhere on a yacht," he said. "But that's not who I am, and that certainly wouldn't help me sleep at night."

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