Actiful-physical-and-mental-benefits

Actiful® - New Publication Reveals Physical and Mental Health Benefits in Elderly

Actiful® – New Publication Reveals Physical and Mental Health Benefits in Elderly

Maastricht, The Netherlands, August 29th, 2022

Press release
A new randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial with Actiful® was recently published in the Journal of Nutrition, Health & Ageing. The study investigated whether Actiful® improves physical fitness and mental well-being in healthy elderly. Additionally, blood biomarkers for oxidative stress and endothelial function were measured. Key findings of the study were an improvement in handgrip strength, a measure of physical fitness, and psychological functioning facets, such as thinking, memory, learning, and concentration.

Actiful-physical-and-mental-benefits

The study

The new research, published in the Journal of Nutrition Health & Ageing, was conducted by researchers at Maastricht University led by Dr Freddy Troost in collaboration with BioActor, the developer and manufacturer of the branded ingredient, Actiful®.

Actiful® is a citrus flavonoid and pomegranate complex designed to boost vitality and support energy levels for an active lifestyle. The ingredient is standardised for its content in highly bioavailable 2S-hesperidin, an important citrus flavonoid which already showed in previous BioActor studies the efficacy in improving blood flow and sports performances in both highly trained and recreational athletes.

The new study investigated whether daily supplementation with 700mg of Actiful® would affect physical fitness and psychological functioning in a healthy elderly population.

As life expectancy increases rapidly, the elderly population is growing in numbers. Ageing is one of the main risk factors for a wide variety of diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline and reduced physical function. Therefore, strategies to support vitality in senior subjects are becoming increasingly relevant.

 

The methods

The study included 36 active seniors aged between 60-75 years old. The design of the clinical trial was a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study. All participants received both treatments and placebo: four weeks of supplementation with Actiful® and four weeks of supplementation with the placebo, separated by a washout period of 4 to 8 weeks.

During the intervention, participants completed the WHOQOL-100 questionnaire, a list of 100 questions created by the World Health Organisation and validated to assess the quality of life. In addition, a senior fitness test and handgrip measurements were performed, which are validated measures of physical performance.

Furthermore, nitrate levels were measured as a marker of endothelial function. Nitrate is considered an important signalling molecule involved in endothelial function by inducing vasodilation, leading to improved blood flow.

Oxidative stress was also evaluated by determining malondialdehyde (MDA) plasma levels. Oxidative stress is an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in your body and can damage cells, proteins and DNA, contributing to ageing.

 

The results

The study results indicate that four weeks of daily Actiful® supplementation significantly improved handgrip strength in healthy elderly. Handgrip strength is an important measure of physical fitness associated with reduced all-cause mortality, as well as increased cognitive function, mobility, and functional status.

According to the researchers, a potential mechanism that might be associated with improving handgrip strength is improved mitochondrial function. In fact, the role of hesperetin – the main metabolite of Actiful®, in mitochondrial functioning, increased intracellular ATP production, and mitochondrial spare capacity was already observed in vitro.

“With age, the number and functionality of mitochondria decreases. Dysfunctional mitochondria have reduced the capacity for producing ATP – our muscles’ principal energy source. Therefore, the next step is to confirm the effect of Actiful® on mitochondrial biogenesis and functionality in humans in vivo”, the researchers commented.

In addition to the handgrip strength, also psychological function improved after the 4 weeks of supplementation with Actiful®.

Specifically, the researchers found a significantly higher score for the treatment group than the placebo in the thinking, memory, learning, and concentration facet. As the quality of life is an important factor in successful ageing, improved psychological functioning is deemed increasingly relevant.

MDA and NO3 were also analysed as a measure of oxidative stress and endothelial functions. After supplementation, plasma MDA decreased compared to the placebo, a sign of improved oxidative stress status.

Finally, higher production of NO3 was observed. NO3 is an important signalling molecule involved in endothelial function by causing vasodilation in smooth muscle cells and can contribute to improving blood flow and exercise capacity, as demonstrated in previous studies.

Overall, the study results suggest that Actiful® consumption results in improved physical performance and better quality of life, which are two crucial factors in successful ageing.

We are pleased with the results of this clinical trial, which includes improvements both in physical fitness and mental well-being, as well as improved oxidative stress markers. These results have piqued our interest regarding potential underlying mechanisms of action, which are currently being investigated in our new clinical trial.” Commented Sanne Ahles – clinical researcher at BioActor.

 

Opportunity for innovation

Actiful® has been developed to support vitality and energy levels contributing to healthy ageing. The active ingredient can already be found in various products on the market worldwide. Actiful® is easy to formulate, and it can be added to a wide variety of dietary supplements in several convenient formats, including gummies, effervescent tablets, capsules, ready-to-use sachets and drinks.

 

About BioActor

BioActor, based at the Maastricht Health Campus, Netherlands, is a life science company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive ingredients for the nutrition & consumer health industries. The company focuses on the development of plant-based health ingredients for active living and healthy ageing. The goal is to provide the nutrition & consumer health industries with clinically tested innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

Feel free to contact BioActor via info@bioactor.com for more information on the possibilities that Actiful® has to offer.
Further information can be found on: www.actiful.eu and www.bioactor.com


man-training

The effects of Hesperidin on exercise performance - New publication from BioActor in collaboration with Maastricht University

The effects of Hesperidin on exercise performance – New publication from BioActor in collaboration with Maastricht University

Maastricht, The Netherlands, July 22nd, 2022

Press release
The review recently published in Nutrients was conducted by BioActor in collaboration with Maastricht University and examined the potential mechanisms through which hesperidin can improve exercise performance.

man-training

A review on hesperidin and exercise performance

Nutrients, a leading peer-reviewed scientific journal of human nutrition, has recently published a review about hesperidin’s effect on exercise performance. The research was conducted by M. Imperatrice, a clinical researcher at BioActor, in collaboration with the Maastricht University’s Department of Human Biology.

 

This review collects the results of randomized controlled trials (RTCs), animal studies, and in vitro studies providing more evidence on how hesperidin, a flavanone abundantly present in citrus fruits, could lead to enhancement in exercise performance.

 

According to the review’s results, hesperidin is able to improve endothelial function (via increased NO availability), inhibit ROS production, decrease production and plasma levels of pro-inflammatory markers, and improve anaerobic exercise outcomes (e.g. power, speed, energy).

 

We are really proud to share the results collected in our review about the potential mechanisms linking hesperidin to enhanced anaerobic performance, namely improved endothelial function, reduced exercise-induced oxidative stress, and inflammation. For elite and recreational athletes, hesperidin could be a promising food supplement to optimize the oxygen and nutrient supplies of the muscles, stimulate muscle contraction, and enhance muscle recovery between training sessions. The ergogenic effects that hesperidin can bring to the spectrum of improved exercise performance are promising and should be investigated further. With our “Actiful 2” ongoing Clinical Study, we are going to deepen this knowledge by investigating both the effects of hesperidin supplementation on endurance exercise and on changes in intramuscular markers via skeletal muscle biopsies.” said M. Imperatrice.

 

BioActor’s interest in hesperidin has resulted in the development of two active ingredients. The first ingredient branded under the name WATTS’UP® and targeting sports performance has already been tested in two randomized placebo-controlled clinical trials, one with highly trained athletes and one with moderately trained subjects. The second ingredient goes under the name Actiful® and targets energy and vitality. This ingredient has already been tested in randomized placebo-controlled clinical trials, in elderly subjects, showing physical and mental benefits.

 

About BioActor

BioActor, based at the Maastricht Health Campus, Netherlands, is a life science company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive ingredients for the nutrition & consumer health industries. The company focuses on the development of plant-based health ingredients for active living and healthy ageing. The goal is to provide the nutrition & consumer health industries with clinically tested innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

Feel free to contact BioActor via info@bioactor.com for more information on the possibilities WATTS’UP® and Actiful® have to offer.
Further information can be found on: www.wattsup.eu, www.actiful.eu and www.bioactor.com


BioActor-starts-new-clinical-trial-on-Actiful

Started new clinical trial with Actiful®

Started new clinical trial with Actiful®

Maastricht, Netherlands, May 4th, 2022

Press release
BioActor has officially started a new clinical trial with Actiful® in healthy middle-aged adults. Actiful® is BioActor’s innovative citrus and pomegranate complex ingredient designed to enhance vitality and support an active lifestyle.

BioActor-starts-new-clinical-trial-on-Actiful

The new randomized double-blind placebo-controlled study

BioActor announced today that it has officially started the new intervention study on Actiful®.

Actiful® is an orange and pomegranate complex with demonstrated health benefits such as improving blood flow,  increasing energy levels, improving mitochondrial efficiency and boosting mental well-being.

This is the second clinical study that will be conducted with Actiful® and it will be performed in collaboration with Maastricht University at the research facilities in Maastricht and Venlo.

Duting this new double-blind placebo-controlled study, 52 healthy middle-aged (40-65 years) will take the supplements (or the placebo) for a duration of 12 weeks. The aim of this study is to assess the effects of Actiful® on physical fitness, vitality and quality of life.

The primary outcome (VO2max) will be estimated by use of the Ekblom-Bak submaximal test, a novel test performed on a cycle ergometer.

Additionally, a sub-group of participants will undergo a skeletal muscle biopsy to explore the effect of Actiful® on mitochondrial biogenesis and muscle repair.

As we age, we tend to have less energy and lose vitality. Functional foods and dietary supplements containing polyphenols are seen as an excellent strategy for long term sustained energy production. BioActor is addressing this need by developing a unique product- Actiful®. This product consists of all-natural ingredients from oranges and pomegranates.

“I’m really excited to be part of this project as the combined effect of hesperidin and punicalagin on enhanced performance has never been studied before”, says Maria Imperatrice, the study executive researcher in Maastricht. “We are very curious to explore their effect on human exercise and deepen the knowledge of the effect of polyphenols on mitochondrial biogenesis and muscle regeneration.”

About BioActor

BioActor, based at the Maastricht Health Campus, Netherlands, is a life science company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive ingredients for the nutrition & consumer health industries. The company focuses on the development of plant-based health ingredients for active living and healthy ageing. The goal is to provide the nutrition & consumer health industries with clinically tested innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

Feel free to contact BioActor via info@bioactor.com for more information on the possibilities Actiful® has to offer.

Further information can be found on:  www.actiful.eu and www.bioactor.com


How-to-increase-endurance-performance-during-sport

How to increase endurance performance during sport

How to increase endurance performance during sport

April 14th, 2022

Do you experience an overall lack of energy during sports activities? Then it’s time to increase your endurance performance during physical activity. In this article, we will explain what endurance is, why is important for you and which nutrients and supplements can support your diet, boost your energy levels, help you recover faster, and enhance your overall performance during your training.

How-to-increase-endurance-performance-during-sport

Endurance Performance in different sports

Endurance is the ability to sustain an activity for extended periods of time and usually relates to aerobic or anaerobic exercise [1].

Aerobic endurance applies to sports like long-distance running or swimming where athletes exercise for extended periods of time. In this type of exercise, the body relies on supplying nutrients and oxygen to working muscles.

On the other hand, anaerobic endurance is related to high-intensity exercises that may last minutes such as weightlifting. In these cases, a different type of endurance (strength) is necessary to achieve the maximum number of sets and reps in a workout plan.

Nowadays, many athletes also focus on activities that include resistance with the body (calisthenics) or equipment such as weight machines and barbell exercises. In these cases, a different type of endurance (strength) is necessary to achieve the maximum number of sets and reps in a workout plan.

The conclusion in each case is that high volume of training puts extreme demands on the body from a physical (strength & power), mental (focus) and energy (endurance) retention standpoint.

Why is endurance performance important?

Endurance can benefit your overall wellness by improving heart health, lowering the levels of cholesterol and blood pressure, preventing injuries and controlling your weight.

As it concerns your performance skills, studies have shown that endurance helps athletes develop skills like agility, speed, power, and strength. More specifically, it is an efficient way of maintaining your energy levels before fatigue sets in.

As an example, you can consider a basketball player who wants to jump for rebounds in the final minutes of an intense game or even a marathon athlete that needs to run the last kilometers of a demanding race.

Thus, endurance can keep your circulatory system healthy and make the difference between winning or losing in different sports.

Ways to boost your endurance during sport

As Paul Krebs, MD, of Premier Orthopedics, part of Premier Physician Network asserted, “body has the ability to get oxygen to the body and to the muscles that are using it during exercise.” A workout program focused on endurance training can lower the level of work-related fatigue [2]. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends all adults get 150 minutes of aerobic exercise each week.

However, nutrition is also an essential factor that influences the endurance of athletes. More specifically, it has been proved that nutritional supplements in performance endurance and enhancement are essential for athletes, even though there is a lack of knowledge of their use. Thus, athletes need reliable information regarding supplements they can trust and use in their daily demanding life [3]. In the next section, we will focus on the ingredients that a supplement should include for increasing endurance performance.

Ingredients for endurance

L-Glutamine

Even if the body can synthesize glutamine, its levels might not be sufficient for athletes. The body can become depleted of glutamine in case of high intensity training [4] and as a result, athletes seek to increase the dosage intake by supplementation.

L-Glutamine accelerates muscle recovery while it helps athletes to exercise harder. The increased sodium uptake reduces muscle fatigue and breakdown while maintaining muscle growth.

The recommended dosage for L-Glutamine is between 3 to 6 grams [5].

Carbohydrates

As it was mentioned previously, athletes need endurance for different types of training. For example, marathon runners exercise for extended periods of time and require a lot of carbohydrates to sustain their performance.

Any athlete who exercises for more than 60 to 90 minutes requires carbohydrate intake during their performance to sustain sufficient energy levels for fueling muscles since their glycogen stores may only last a limited time.

A combination of carbohydrates with a small amount of protein has been shown to efficiently prevent the amount of muscle damage that occurs during an endurance exercise [6].

The daily recommended dosage for Carbohydrates depends on the type of exercise. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND), and Dietitians of Canada (DC) recommend:

• Moderate endurance exercise (1 hour per day): 5-7 g/kg of body weight per day.

• Moderate to high-intensity endurance exercise (1-3 hours per day): 6-10 g/kg of body weight per day.

• Moderate to high-intensity endurance exercise (4-5 hours per day). 10-12 g/kg of body weight per day.

Caffeine

Caffeine is a stimulant that athletes can use to temporarily boost their energy [8]. More specifically, it can increase the heart rates when athletes feel fatigued, and it has been proven to improve endurance performance [6].

Even if caffeine reduces athletes’ perception of effort, it is important to be aware of the side effects it might have in higher intakes [9]. Some of the side effects of too much caffeine are anxiety, insomnia, muscle breakdown, rapid heart rate and high blood pressure.

It is also possible that caffeine has the opposite result where the consumption of many caffeinated beverages is followed by fatigue [10].

The recommended clinical dose of caffeine is between 3 and 6 mg/kg.

Citrus flavonoids (hesperidin) – Power and endurance in one ingredient

If you want to increase your endurance, strength, and power during a high intense training, you should bear in mind an extra ingredient with the name of citrus flavonoids (hesperidin). BioActor has developed a proprietary ingredient that is optimized for bioavailability and performance, backed up by two clinical studies: WATTS’UP®.

WATTS’UP® was studied for its beneficial effects on endurance performance and high-intensity performance at a daily dose of 400-500 mg.

The first clinical trial was conducted at the Dutch Olympic training facility. It confirmed that WATTS’UP® is capable of significantly improving aerobic power in endurance athletes in comparison to placebo.

A second clinical trial was tested during the Wingate Anaerobic Test. It confirmed that WATTS’UP® can be very efficient for Peak Force, Anaerobic Power, and Endurance compared to placebo.

In conclusion, proper nutrition in addition to a well-designed training plan, can enhance sporting performance and reduce recovery time.


Which ingredients shoul be included in a pre-workout formula

Which ingredients should a pre-workout formula include?

Which ingredients should a pre-workout formula include?

January 13th, 2022

If you are looking for the ideal pre-workout formula, you came to the right place. In this article, we explore the most relevant ingredients that your pre-workout formula should include to target power, focus and endurance.

Which ingredients shoul be included in a pre-workout formula

Tingles and rashes, this is what the average gym visitor is looking for in a pre-workout formula. However, sometimes it can be difficult to choose the right product due to the endless lists of ingredients.

You may find yourself asking questions like: “Do I really need all these things?”, “What is it that really matters?”. If this is the case, in this article, we explore a few effective ingredients to target the 3 main benefits a high-quality pre-workout should provide: power, focus and endurance.

What is a pre-workout?

Pre-workouts are known to most as cocktails of rash- and tingle-causing formulations. However, these days, formulations are more sophisticated than they used to be. They are consumed by athletes from all disciplines briefly prior to their workout or training.

The goal of consuming these types of formulas is to enhance acute exercise performance [1]. You can find pre-workouts in different forms, like drinks, gels or capsules, yet ready-to-drink powders are by far the most common format.

Getting the most out of your workout

If you are considering consuming a pre-workout for improving your performance, you can pay attention to a few things before buying.

First, you would like to have an effective product that addresses three main benefits: power, focus and endurance.

Further, you would like this product to have a rapid onset of these effects, ideally within 15-30 minutes of intake.

Finally, you can consider choosing a formula that contains natural ingredients and avoid consuming high amounts of stimulants like caffeine.

In the next section, we look at the ingredients that you should be looking for in a pre-workout.

Ingredients for power

These ingredients provide fuel to maximize high-intensity movements within your training or workout [2].

 

Citrulline malate. Clinical dose: 6 g

This ingredient consists of citrulline, a non-essential amino acid, and malic acid, an intermediate in the citric acid cycle.

Citrulline malate is linked to improved blood flow during exercise by augmenting nitric oxide (NO) levels, as citrulline is a NO precursor [3].

Currently, it is unclear whether the performance improvement is linked to this mechanism, but several studies support an improvement in peak power output after citrulline malate consumption [4,5].

 

Creatine. Clinical dose: 3 g

Creatine is one of the most well-researched ingredients in sports nutrition. Creatine supplementation increases intramuscular creatine levels. Short-term energy generation in muscle tissue comes virtually 100% from creatine – the phosphorylated isoform, Cr-P.

Daily intake has been demonstrated to promote anaerobic performance in the gold standard Wingate Test [6]. Researchers also found beneficial effects on exercise recovery with creatine intake, reducing exercise-induced muscle damage [7].

Ingredients for focus

These ingredients make sure that you can focus on your movements to execute them with high precision [2]. Focus is more famously referred to as mind-muscle connection.

 

Brainberry®. Clinical dose: 65 mg

If you are looking for an alternative to caffeine to boost your focus, you might want to learn more about Brainberry®.
Brainberry® is a natural Aronia berry extract developed by BioActor to enhance cognitive performance. Research conducted on Brainberry® revealed that the consumption of Brainberry® can increase focus, psychomotor speed and mental flexibility [8,9].

In particular, a study which was performed on 35 professional basketball players, showed important benefits after one week of supplementation, highlighting the ability of Brainberry® to significantly enhance cognitive performance and improve basketball-specific skills like shooting, rebounding and dribbling.

Brainberry®’s benefits are attributed to the high levels of Cyanidin-3-O-Galactoside contained in the extract, a compound which plays an important role in improving brain health and cognitive functions.

Want to know more about Cy3Gal and how it is involved in brain health? Read this article!

 

Caffeine. Clinical dose: 200 mg

Similar to creatine, caffeine is one of the most well-researched ingredients in sports nutrition [2], often referred to as the primary ingredient responsible for acute ergogenic effects.
Low doses (3 mg/kg body weight) have been linked to improved alertness, vigilance, mood and cognitive processes during exercise [10].

However, a comparison between non-caffeine and caffeine-containing pre-workout formulas concluded that the caffeine-containing pre-workout reduces calmness. If you are training in the evening, this might be a reason to pass on caffeine [11].

Ingredients for endurance

These ingredients are important to provide nutrients to feel energized until the end of your workout [2].

 

Beta-alanine. Clinical dose 4-6 g

Beta-alanine is a carnosine precursor, a compound that buffers lactate build-up in the muscle tissue, prolonging the feeling of soreness.

It has been shown that 4-6 g of beta-alanine consumption per day for two weeks improves high-intensity exercise performance. Regular consumption maintains a certain level of intramuscular carnosine levels, as beta-alanine is the limiting factor in carnosine production [12].

 

Carbohydrates. Dose depending on exercise type [13]

This ingredient depends a lot on the exercise type you are performing. Typical gym sessions last between 45-120 minutes, for which a small amount of rapidly absorbed carbohydrates shortly before exercise can be beneficial.

Carbohydrates are the main energy source during resistance exercise and are mobilized from glycogen stores. A small amount of carbohydrates is able to support glycogen store replenishment [14].

Endurance exercise is typical of a longer duration and would require a larger pre-workout carbohydrate amount to optimize glycogen stores. Slow-release carbohydrates could be a consideration for this type of athlete, as they deliver energy over a longer period of time.

Citrus flavonoids (hesperidin) – Power and endurance in one ingredient

If you want to take your pre-workout to the next level, an additional ingredient you may want to include in your pre-workout formula, are citrus flavonoids (hesperidin).

WATTS’UP® is a natural Citrus sinensis extract researched and developed by BioActor. The recommended daily dose (clinical dose) for this ingredient is 400-500 mg.

Two randomized placebo-controlled clinical trials conducted by BioActor confirmed that WATTS’UP® is able to significantly improve peak force, endurance capacity and anaerobic power in trained subjects.

Further research revealed that WATTS’UP® works by stimulating nitric oxide (NO) synthesis in blood vessels, thus stimulating vasodilation and better blood flow. [15]

Moreover, it was demonstrated that WATTS’UP® boosts mitochondria efficiency and respiration capacity, resulting in 33% higher ATP production – the fuel for our muscle [16].


BioActor and Topsport Limburg start collaboration on new sports nutrition product line

BioActor and Topsport Limburg start collaboration on new sports nutrition product line

Maastricht, The Netherlands, November 8, 2017

Press release

Bioactor and Topsport Limburg collaborate on testing innovative sports nutrition products in athletes. After receiving a grant from the LBDF, the first research project will clinically test the product MUSCLE’UP® on athletes. Additionally, further validation test will be done on Biactor’s product WATTS’UP®.

The Ultimate Collaboration

BioActor Sports Nutrition Sciences (‘BioActor’) and Topsport Limburg announced earlier this year the start of a collaboration to jointly test innovative sports nutrition concepts in athletes.

The first product concept that is being tested at Topsport Limburg’s Performance Center is MUSCLE’UP®, a peptide product for recovery. BioActor obtained a grant from the Limburg Business Development Fund (LBDF) to execute a translational research project with MUSCLE’UP®. The MUSCLE’UP® project aims to develop a product with clinical results in athletes and a validated production process at an acceptable cost of goods.

Both parties will also collaborate on further validation in athletes of BioActor’s performance product WATTS’UP®. WATTS’UP® was recently tested in 2 studies in athletes and showed significant improvement in total power produced, both in endurance and strength athletes.

 

Geert Ruigrok, managing director of Topsport Limburg comments: “BioActor’s scientific approach to sports nutrition makes them an ideal partner for developing targeted nutrition for elite athletes”.

 

Hans van der Saag, CEO of BioActor comments: “BioActor is delighted to work with Topsport Limburg, as our products must meet the needs of elite athletes. Topsport Limburg provides a unique ecosystem of best in class sports facilities and top athletes”.

Van der Saag further states: “BioActor wants to bring real innovation to the sports nutrition industry. BioActor tests all of its products in scientifically robust studies in athletes working with partners like Topsport Limburg and the Department of Movement Sciences at Maastricht University. We have a pipeline with innovations both in performance and recovery and are planning to launch at a tune of 1 new product each year.”

 

About BioActor

BioActor, based in Maastricht, Netherlands, is a product development company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive ingredients for the nutrition & healthcare industry. The company focuses on the development of innovative activities that address active living and healthy aging. The goal is to provide the nutrition & healthcare industry with science-based innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

Feel free to contact us via info@bioactor.com for more information on the possibilities WATTS’UP® has to offer.
Further information can be found on: www.wattsup.eu