Wednesday, 3 June 2015


Nutraceuticals [nutrients +medication]. Combining nutrition and pharmaceutical; coined by Dr. Stephen L. DeFelice, chairman of the Foundation of Innovation Medicine. Nutraceuticals, are the starting block catogary of pharmafoods, are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease. They range across isolated nutrients in the form of supliments, precise nutrient diets, genetcially modified foods, including processed staples such as soups and beverages. Nutraceuticals include: vitamins, minerals, herbs or other botanicals, amino acids, and substances such as enzymes, organ tissues, glandulars, and metabolites. Dietary supplements can also be extracts or concentrates, and may be found in many forms such as tablets, capsules, softgels, gelcaps, liquids, or powders. A market research report by Global Health Movement Drives Market for Nutraceuticals to $250 bn by 2018; Probiotics to Touch $39.6 bn and Heart Health Ingredients Near $15.2 bn defining that market as "Dietary Supplements (Vitamins, Minerals, Herbals, Non-Herbals, & Others), and Functional Foods & Beverages.

Pharmafoods [medication+cuisine]. Food-as-pharma is an emerging and significant GigaMarket. That is, synthesized and engineered foods that offer medical benefits will be in the $100 billion range by 2025. There is a steadily growing mountain of independent clinical evidence that holds-up that specific functional foods (often in conjunction with nutraceuticals) can give long-term preventative treatment of many noncommunicable diseases.

Functionalfoods [snacks that benefit physiologically]. All food is in some sense functional insofar as it contains calories and nutrients thatsupport health. The more narrowly construed sense of functional foods are those thathave added ingredients believed to provide additional health benefits. Functional foods are not new. They have existed since the early 1900s when iodine was first added to salt to prevent goiter. Represent one of the most intensively studied and widely promoted areas in the food and nutrition science today. Considered to be those of whole, fortified, enriched or enhanced foods that give health benefits beyond the provision of essential nutrients, when eaten at efficacious levels as part of a balanced diet. Not all foods on the market today that are claimed to be so-called functional foods, lack supported by realiable data to warrant such claims. However, it must be stressed that such functional foods are not magic bullets or universal remedies for poor health habits. Diet is only one aspect of a complete approach to good health.

Examples of include Benecol (a cholesterol-lowering margarine), Kitchen Prescription Soup (with the herbal supplement Echinacea), EggsPlus (nutritionally enhanced eggs with extra omega-3fatty acids), Viactiv (calcium chews), Gatorade and Vitamin Water (supplement beverages), Wow Potato Chips (fat free, fewer calories), Ensemble food products (withsoluble fiber to promote heart health), low-carb food products (from beer to frozen food to fast food), and products geared toward the specific health needs of infants, toddlers,and the aging. They are not intended for the general public.Examples of medical foods include UltraClear (for liver failure), Vistrum (for gastrointestinal balance), and Nephrovite (vitamin supplements for dialysis patients).

However, probiotics — special types of bacteria — do to improve the health and effeicy of the gut. For example, yogurt represents a unique approach to fighting stomach ulcers, which affect 25 million people in the United States alone, and is part of a growing functional food market that now generates $60 billion. Then came so-called functional foods, generally defined as foods with added components or ingredients containing specific medicinal or psychological benefits—yogurts with probiotics or enriched cornstarch These are designed to allow consumers to eat enriched foods close to their natural state, rather than by taking dietary supplements manufactured in liquid or capsule form. Functional foods have been either enriched or fortified, a process called nutrification. This practice restores the nutrient content in a food back to similar levels from before the food was processed. Sometimes, additional complementary nutrients are added, such as vitamin D to milk. Ordinary food that has components or ingredients added to give it a specific medical or physiological benefit, other than a purely nutritional effect. Functional foods must meet three established requirements: foods should be (1) present in their naturally-occurring form, rather than a capsule, tablet, or powder; (2) consumed in the diet as often as daily; and (3) should regulate a biological process in hopes of preventing or controlling disease.

A “functional food” or “nutraceutical” is a food-based product that provides a demonstrable physiological benefit beyond its dietary or nutritional value. This classof foods for specific health uses are designed to assist in the prevention or treatmentof disease, or to enhance and improve human capacities. They include products likevitamin-fortified grains, energy bars, low-fat or low-sodium foods, and sports drinks.

The difference between functional foods, dietary supplements, and other kinds of foods with artificial ingredients is far from clear. Not only are there no clear metaphysical differences, even the legal definitions are vague. Yet, however we might classify functional foods, they are a key part of a trend in food science and marketing that is gradually changing traditional conceptions of diet and medicine.

Functional foods are situated uniquely at the nexus of food science and technology, politics, commerce, and nutrition. As a result, competing interests influence the development of the functional foods in ways that might or might not promote a healthy lifestyle, and might or might not protect our consumer rights and foster the common the good.

Farmaceuticals [produce+medication]. These are medically viable composites or isolated proteins produced from modified agricultural produce or animals. Biotechnology, in particular the merging field of bio pharmaceuticals, features heavily here. Transgenic foods developed via recombine DNA synthesis producing, for instance, Apples with antibiotics, Berries with analgesics, or Grains with anti-inflammatory biochemicals. Specific individual genes are selected which are transferred from one organism to another, whether the class of spices may be interrelated or not. There are many modern genetically engineered medications and vaccines, food and fibers, which are now in use.

Biopharma made in transgenic plants = plant made pharmaceuticals. In 2010 23 percent of total $463 billion pharmaceutical market. Huge reduction in manufacturing costs.

The missing link and starting block here is balanced, healthy diet. The marketing programs in health and fitness magazines and websites, just do not do enough to promote such a equilibrium. The emphasis is on point of sales. That is, to promote single point brands over and above a diverse, normal distributed diet. Not enough data is available of scientific clinical trials for a balanced and healthy diets and what constitute and healthy, balanced diet and evidence for a link between diet and the cause or treatment of a number of diseases.

Product innovation features heavily in the food-as-pharma business. Sales quintessentially starts with how you package the ingredients that is genuinely attractive and differentiated. The key to this process is understanding what motivates consumers most. Targeting the larger-than-life health-conscious early adopters consumers; your beachhead into the market.

Emerging nations growing middle classes features heavily here. The BRICS wages that are on the increase, which all adds up to increased spending by a lower and middle class population of about 800 million people. In many Europe states, and in particular, the the USA, obesity is a concern for consumer growps. But obsisity now stretches beyond these developed nations. According to the The Lancet article Obesity 1: The Global Obesity Pandemic Shaped by Global Drivers and Local Environments, worldwide there are almost 1.5 billion individuals are heftally stout and more than 500 million people obese, 170 million of them children. Even in many low-income countries, non-communicable illness are the dominant cause of preventable disease burden, with 2 to 6 percent of total healthcare costs in many countries related to obesity. In amerce, according to Jamie Olver, Homoside is way down the list of coayse of death when comere to obeity. On average we eat about 1,500 pounds of food in a year. Yet unlike other consumer goods there is a limit to how much we can consume. Although the epidemic of obesity might seem to suggest that this limit is flexible, the reason Americans are obese has less to do with the total mass of food consumed than with total calories, fats, and lack of exercise.

Self-managed healthcare is a trend, and one that is growing in term of volume of participation. What has changed is the movement in preventative medicine toward self-care. In the west, a olding population  as unemployment rates and bonuses fall, consumers will increasingly take matters into their own hands.” And what better way to seize control of one’s health than purchasing food and beverage products and supplements that can help manage and/or prevent chronic conditions?

All countries in Europe are experiencing an ageing population,with a decrease in the number of people of working age per retiree. Japan, and in the longer term China are hit too by this difficulty. Health trends among the elderly are mixed: severe disability is declining in some countries but increasing in others, while mild disability and chronic disease are generally increasing. Hence, a declining working-age population will generate less income for health systems. If the trend continues, expenditure on long-term care is certain to increase with the ageing of the population. It is clear that if appropriate measures are implemented in time, population ageing does not inevitably lead to significantly higher health care expenditure.

The statistics show that the combination of health economics, changing demographics and advances in personal health science confirms that existing healthcare systems, which primarily focus on treating sick people; is simply not geared for tomorrow’s pharmafood world, and urgently needs redesigning, at least to the concept stage. Personalised health nutrition and pharmafood is about finding efficient and cost effective ways to prevent and treat acute and chronic diseases on-the-go.

This is a complete reversal of the focus for most national health systems today. Where more than 80 percent of the attention is on treating the sick, and a mere twenty percent, if that, is focused on up-front prevention. This ratio has to be completely flipped. And given the potential of off-the-shelf nutraceuticals and pharmafood, this has real potential. After all, as they say, it is the 21st century!

This is an real opportunity for pharmafood markets to become commonplace. For instance, suppose that an oncology drug showed better result when paired with a specially designed nutritional supplement produced by the same company that created the drug? Now, suppose that the outcomes were so well studied to the point of inclusion in the drugs label? If results for this combination treatment were sufficiently more succesful than those of other therapies in the same class, could payers require the combination therapy before competitive monotherapies? 

Another challenge is in the internal regulation of marketing. Regulatory groups in pharma are challenged to treat non-pharma products differently.  Medical, Legal and Regulatory reviewers within pharma tend to be appropriately conservative, and asking them to wear a different hat in reviewing marketing and sales materials for supplements or foods can lead to some contentious review meetings, and significant inconsistency in interpretation of regulations.

However, the single greatest challenge to nutraceuticals and pharmafoods may not be internal. Food giant Danone have recognised the potential for in their own portfolios. For them, a push toward medical science in food is attractive for a number of reasons. They like the positive PR that can come from nutraceuticals foods designed for health. Even better than the PR, are the profit margins possible in this category.

While a 25 percent margin on nutraceuticals might be less than pharma is used to seeing in drug products, it is well beyond the single-digit percentages that food companies make on many of their consumer products.
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