InSea, a a two brown seaweeds aqueous extract, is a powerful inhibitor of digestive enzymes. (Photo: Stock File)
Brown algae extract submitted for health claim
Tuesday, May 18, 2010, 16:50 (GMT + 9)
French company Algues et Mer has submitted an article 13.5 proprietary and emerging science weight management health claim for an extract of brown algae under the European Union (EU) nutrition and health claims regulation (NHCR).
The start-up’s report contains three studies pertaining to the polyphenols extract InSea. It was registered with the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) last week, according to Jean-Noël Villemin, sales and marketing manager at the company.
Algues et Mer in conjunction with French claims consultancy Nutraveris, he told, has focused particularly on EFSA opinions and guidance -- especially opinions on article 13.5 -- while putting together its claim with one clinical and two in vivo studies.
“We have learnt from what has gone before so we are very confident about this dossier,” Villemin told Nutraingredients.
He expressed certainty despite the fact that EFSA has thus far issued just one weight management-related, positive health claim opinion for liquid meal replacements.
“We have been very careful to ensure the studies were conducted on healthy subjects and that that same dosages were used in the studies as appear in the InSea products [500mg per meal],” he continued.
He told that attention had also been given especially to the science behind the claim. The company worked to ensure the submitted claims focused on science instead of end-product marketing messaging.
InSea is a two brown seaweeds aqueous extract, which according to its manufacturers is a powerful inhibitor of digestive enzymes, α-amylase and α-glucosidase. It is a regulator of glycemic and insulinemic control mechanisms, with its consequences on satiety, lipogenesis, fat assimilation and impaired glucose tolerance (IGT)
The dossier’s two suggested claims are that the product “helps maintain normal activity of post-prandial glycaemic regulation mechanism” and that it “helps improve insulin sensitivity.”
According to Villemin, using vocabulary such as “insulin control” provides the firm with a better chance of success because it tends to resemble the language used in scientific literature. This is important given EFSA’s mass dismissal of weight management and other health claims to date.
“You have to be clever to find claims in this market,” he said.
The claim is usable from the time of submission under article 28.5 of the NHCR even though it has not yet been assessed by EFSA’s Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA).
Even if the claim is rejected by the NDA, Villemin informed that Algues et Mer would be permitted to engage in weight management marketing for InSea for at least two more years, the period it may take for any EFSA opinion to become law in the EU.
The company has worked on the polyphenols extract for some three years along with Quebec-based partner Innovectiv. The extract became available in North America in 2009 and has been introduced within three food supplement products there plus one in Taiwan.
The extract will be launched in Europe officially this week at Vitafoods exhibition, a global nutraceutical event held in Geneva, Switzerland.
By Natalia Real