Three microbiota trends in Nutraceutics
In the context of nutraceutical innovation, the microbiota is the source of all covetousness. Health potential seems infinite. If current scientific data do not allow us yet to pinpoint the benefits of pre- & probiotics, each new study not only seems to validate the interest but also to widen the field of possibilities. Here are three emerging trends for nutraceutical innovation in the gut microbiota world.
1. DIVERSIFICATION AND SPECIALIATION
Given the number of scientific data reporting an interest in various fields of Health, the supply of “microbiotic” products should diversify and specialize as the notoriety of this discipline increases. Here are some examples of future areas around microbiota and Health:
Neurobiotics are products whose objective is to exert neurological benefits by influencing the intestinal microbiota. The gut-brain axis is increasingly taken into consideration by medical research. There is no doubt that a holistic approach to stress management and mental balance will find its place.
(already on the market) Immunobiotics are products whose objective is to support immune defenses by influencing the intestinal microbiota. The explosion of interest in immune defenses should quickly feed this branch of microbiotics.
Metabiotics are products whose objective is to regulate the metabolism (glycemic and lipid) by influencing the intestinal microbiota. There are, for example, pre- and probiotics linked to Akkermansia muciniphila, the abundance of which seems correlated with metabolic balance.
Dermobiotics are products whose objective is to promote skin health by influencing the intestinal microbiota (it should not be confused with the cosmetic trend aiming to regulate the skin microbiota). The growing interest in nutricosmetics should encourage stakeholders to take an interest in the link between skin health and intestinal microbiota.
2. PREBIOTICS 2.0
Prebiotics are food substances that selectively promote the proliferation of bacteria in the microbiota, which are considered beneficial for health. Conventionally, prebiotic substances are polysaccharides such as inulins (from chicory) or gum arabic (from acacia). Other polysaccharides, initially presented for their positive impact on the immune defenses, could also make an entry in this field. We find ginsans of Korean ginseng or the various β-glucans of medicinal mushrooms (Maitake, Reishi, etc.). Polysaccharides are not the only molecules to meet this definition. Many other plant substances can have a direct or indirect positive impact on the microbiota: Polyphenols (quercetin, baaline, etc.), phenolic acids (chlorogenic acid, ursolic acid, etc.), carotenoids (lycopenes, astaxanthin, etc.) and even components of essential oils (geraniol, citrals, etc.).
3. PERFORMANCE 2.0
Increasingly present in food (Kombucha and other Kefir are making a comeback) and cosmetics (like lactic ferments in Asian cosmetics), fermented products may well take an important place in the nutraceutical landscape of tomorrow. They have a double interest. They could not only promote microbiotic health, but also increase the bioavailability of certain phytomolecules (ex: active molecules in glycosylated forms) and thus increase the efficiency of other plant active ingredients.