Three neuro trends in Nutraceutics
Concentration, Memory, Mental energy, ... Nutraceutical themes linked to Brain Health are more and more numerous. Let's discover 3 emerging trends that seem to be developing and that are offering real opportunities in terms of innovation and differentiation for the Nutraceuticals of tomorrow.
1. Cognitive Health & Neuroprotection
The aging of the population has a significant impact on nutraceutical trends, all the more so in the case of products intended for cognitive faculties. People are now becoming aware of the importance of preserving their cognitive capital. Therefore, the "neuro" concepts switch from a targeted and limited approach to "memory & concentration"; towards a more holistic approach targeting cognitive Health more globally. This is the reason why the health of our neurons is essential, and diet plays there a key role.
Nutraceuticals offer a unique opportunity to address this question naturally and effectively.
There is thus a myriad of medicinal plants and phytomolecules of interest in this area. Polyphenols are obviously great classics, but other molecules such as tanshinones from Red Sage (see article on the neurological benefits of tanshinones), bioactive ginsenosides from rare forms of ginseng (see articles on Rg3 & Rg5) or the cannabinoids (see the article on β-caryophyllene) offer fascinating potential that is still underused.
2. Balancing Nootropics
Improving mental performance is not a new trend. This aspiration occupies a prime position in biohacking (a vision perfectly illustrated by the film "Limitless"). However, by moving away from "pure performance" to move towards a form of mental clarity and balance, the field of possibilities for natural nootropic active ingredients has widened considerably.
The significant interest in adaptogenic plants such as Bacopa, Ginseng, and Ashwagandha is obviously not unrelated. These plants indeed offer resilience in the face of daily stress while promoting mental dynamism and preserving cognitive capacities. These ingredients are also positioned as an advantageous alternative to "energizing" active ingredients like caffeine, since their balancing activity can also lead to better sleep.
Adaptogens are not the only ones to offer this alternative and other phytomolecules such as mangiferine (a glycosylated xanthone from mango leaves) are also appearing on the market.
Pre- and Probiotics are occupying an increasing place in nutraceutical innovation. The neurological sphere is no exception. The brain / gut axis is at the heart of many studies and neurobiotics (influence on the neurological sphere via the microbiota) could become one of the flagship trends of the coming years. These make it possible to consider well-being and stress management more holistically and restores food to its central place in Health and well-being.
Although there are still very few neurobiotic active ingredients, there is no doubt that the growing number of scientific data about this discipline will lead to the emergence of new products in the coming years. A better understanding of the benefits of certain existing active ingredients could also contribute to the phenomenon. Thus, certain medicinal mushrooms (mycotherapy) seem to present benefits on the neurological sphere thanks to their specific polysaccharides. These polysaccharides seem to play on the balance of the intestinal microbiota, and the link of cause and effect could well make them ingredients of choice in this trend of tomorrow.
Once again, adaptogenic plants could also play a key role with direct (neuroactive) and indirect (via microbiota) action.