Dietary Supplement Ingredients to Watch: Grass Ingredients

January 27, 2011

Grass ingredients also topped SPINS’s ingredients-to-watch list, with more suppliers introducing new launches. Matt Phillips, CEO of Cyvex Nutrition, estimates his company will see up to 40% growth in the category this year. Last year, it launched expanded versions of its alfalfa line, including Alfapro Agglomerated, a dispersible grade, and highly bioavailable Alfalfa 95%.

Grass ingredients also topped SPINS’s ingredients-to-watch list, with more suppliers introducing new launches. Matt Phillips, CEO of Cyvex Nutrition, estimates his company will see up to 40% growth in the category this year. Last year, it launched expanded versions of its alfalfa line, including Alfapro Agglomerated, a dispersible grade, and highly bioavailable Alfalfa 95%.

In December, NP Nutra launched a new line of certified-organic, chlorophyll-rich green grass superfoods, including wheatgrass, barley grass, and alfalfa grass powders, as well as “new kids on the block”: oat grass, buckwheat grass, and rye grass powder.

“There’s a huge contingent of educated, health-aware consumers who know that green grass ingredients…are a convenient way to boost their diet with a wealth of enzymes, amino acids, antioxidants, phytochemicals, vitamins, and chlorophyll, all working synergistically to help detoxify the body and promote vibrant health,” says Marina Linsley, NP Nutra’s marketing director.

“Supplementing the diet with cereal grasses has actually been around since the 1940s and a mainstay of the healthfood industry,” says Jeff Wuagneux, CEO and president of RFI Ingredients, which offers its Sourcestainable line of organic cereal grasses. “Their popularity has mainly been because they supply high levels of chlorophyll, B vitamins, minerals, and other phytonutrients, in small volumes. However, the growth of this market has been on the upswing, possibly because of the recognition that cereal grasses can play an important role in alkalizing the body.” Chlorophyll plays an important role in de-acidifying the body by oxygenating tissues, breaking down carbon dioxide (which is acidic), and facilitating the elimination of acids, he says. They are also rich in alkalizing minerals such as calcium, iron, zinc, and copper.

“The concept of the Alkalizing Diet is gaining popularity,” he adds. “Acidosis is a major health concern for the vast majority of Western nations because of lifestyle and diet choices. Industrialized diets include acidic or acidifying elements such as meat, cereal, coffee, tea, alcohol, and sugars, and not enough intake of alkaline foods such as vegetables. An excess of acid in the body manifests in a variety of symptoms such as pain in the joints, urinary tract, or gastrointestinal tract; or overall fatigue and a weakened immune system. Countering acidification is as simple as reducing the acids the body is taking in and increasing alkaline foods or alkaline supplements.”

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Ingredients to Watch: Game On