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Bone Health Ingredients Stand Tall in New Research: Page 3 of 4

Bone Health Ingredients Stand Tall in New Research: Page 3 of 4

Photo © iStockphoto.com/Yuri_Arcurs
Photo © iStockphoto.com/Yuri_Arcurs

Crossover Ingredients

In addition to the minerals and vitamins that dominate the bone-health category, formulators are looking to other proven ingredients.

Known primarily as a beauty supplement ingredient, collagen is making a name for itself as a cutting-edge ingredient for bone health. “Bone itself is a living tissue comprising 75% inorganic materials, primarily calcium phosphate crystals, and 25% collagen calculated by dry mass,” says Eden Somberg, MS, LAc, director of business development at AIDP (City of Industry, CA). “So when we supplement with minerals and vitamins only, we’re not addressing over one-quarter of the structural composition, and that’s a significant number.”

AIDP first completed a three-month study on women, focused on calcium-collagen chelate supplementation; recently, the company followed this study up with a longer-term evaluation, completed in 20156. Performed at Florida State University, AIDP’s KoACT ingredient was put to the test for helping to prevent or reverse bone loss in postmenopausal women. The study protocol also included a calcium supplement, says Somberg, which allowed researchers to compare the ingredients head-to-head. “The study concluded that KoACT prevented bone loss in the patient population when calcium could not prevent bone loss in the same study group,” Somberg explains. “The duration of the study was one year, and it demonstrated that KoACT significantly increased biomarkers of bone synthesis.”

KoACT is not merely a blend of calcium and collagen, the company explains; rather, it is a matrix including both ingredients that specifically enhances the efficacy of each, the company says. It’s appropriate in a variety of applications, from capsules to bars, beverages, and stick packs.

Yet another crossover ingredient that formulators are exploring when it comes to bone health is antioxidants—specifically, carotenoids. A study published this year in Osteoporosis International7 correlated a high concentration of serum carotenoids with high bone mineral density in middle-aged and elderly adults, especially women. In this study, researchers followed 1,898 Chinese women and 933 Chinese men aged 50 to 75 years for a duration of about three years. They analyzed serum alpha-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lycopene, zeaxanthin, and lutein by liquid chromatography, and gauged bone mineral density of the whole body as well as targeted areas like the lumbar spine, total hip, and femur regions. They found that high levels of alpha-carotene, lycopene, and beta-cryptoxanthin were associated with higher bone mineral densities at most of the skeletal sites in the postmenopausal women, and higher alpha-carotene levels were significantly associated with higher bone mineral density in the hips of the women. In men, only high serum alpha-carotene was significantly associated with increased density, and at all sites but the lumbar spine.

“This research supports the use of natural mixed carotenoids for maintenance of bone mineral density in adults, and especially women,” says Bryan See, regional product manager for ExcelVite Inc., a Malaysia-based company that offers EVTene, a carotenoid ingredient which mirrors the content of carrots (35% alpha-carotene, 65% beta-carotene). “Women are generally at higher risk of losing bone mass because women have smaller bones compared to men. This study suggested that increased intake of mixed carotenoid with high content of alpha-carotene benefits both men and women.”

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