Palmitic Acid Ingredient May Reduce Pain, Inflammation


Palmitoylethanolamide, or PEA, is a naturally occurring bioactive lipid that helps the body combat reduce pain and inflammation.

Photo © Sebastian Kaulitzki/

A company called Innexus Nutraceuticals (Nijmegen, Netherlands) is showcasing a palmitoylethanolamide pain-relief ingredient, branded OptiPEA, at the upcoming Vitafoods Europe trade show. Palmitoylethanolamide, or PEA, is a naturally occurring bioactive lipid that helps the body combat pain and inflammation. According to the company, OptiPEA is made from sustainably sourced RSPO-certified palmitic acid and ethanolamine.

Samuel Zonneveld, CEO, Innexus, claimed in a press statement that OptiPEA can provide consumers with a pain-relief alternative to drugs, which he said may bring unwanted side effects. “Because of the difficulties in treating chronic pain, it is not uncommon for sufferers to take matters into their own hands. At the same time, the problems that result from sustained use of opioids-both pharmaceutical painkillers and non-prescription drugs-are becoming ever clearer.” The company is not targeting OptiPEA as a drug ingredient but rather as an ingredient in dietary supplements.

He continued: “PEA doesn’t have any negative side effects. Yielding consistently positive results in replicable research since its discovery in 1952, its efficacy and safety have been documented in over 658 scientific articles. PEA represents a natural and effective alternative to these drugs, and one that is suitable for long-term use.”

OptiPEA is manufactured entirely in Europe using a patented production process. Zonneveld told Nutritional Outlook that while other PEA ingredients are produced in Asia, Innexus is the only company to manufacture a PEA ingredient entirely in Europe.

Zonneveld added that OptiPEA is “under application” for use in dietary supplements in Europe, Canada, Australia, and “possibly other countries worldwide.” He continued: “In the U.S., PEA does not have an official status, so [there is a question as to] whether it’s approved or not. However, it is sold in the U.S. as dietary supplement.”

The company will showcase the ingredient at VitaFoods Europe, held this year from May 15-17 at Palexpo, Geneva.

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