Curcumin – Clinical Support for Bioavailability of Wacker Product

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24 Feb 2017 --- A clinical study that was recently published in the European Journal of Nutrition shows that the bioavailability of curcumin can be increased significantly with the help of gammadextrin – by a factor of 40 compared to conventional curcumin extract. 

Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant that exhibits anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and hypoallergenic properties, but is not readily absorbed in the human bloodstream. CAVACURMIN, a powder-form gammadextrin-curcumin formulation, can be easily processed in food supplements, such as tablets, capsules and energy bars or functional beverages. 

“Another aspect that is very interesting for consumers is the fact that curcumin is a classical antioxidant, which means its main mode of action is via free-radical scavenging. Some studies even imply that curcumin not only neutralize free radicals, but also boosts the activity of the body’s own antioxidant enzymes, and thus helps to protects our cells from oxidative stress and damage,” she notes.

Curcumin, the active compound in turmeric has been shown to exhibit anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and hypoallergenic properties. However, because it is not water-soluble, it is not readily absorbed in the human bloodstream. With the aid of gammadextrin, curcumin’s bioavailability can be increased significantly – an effect that has now been scientifically proven once more. An independent double-blind crossover clinical study performed in the USA compared the relative absorption of CAVACURMIN (gammadextrin-curcumin formulation) with pure curcumin extract (95%) and two commercially available curcumin preparations designed to increase bioavailability. After oral ingestion of the substance, the blood of the study participants was analyzed at regular intervals over the course of 12 hours.

It was shown that CAVACURMIN was absorbed approximately 40 times more efficiently than the standard extract, and at least 4.6 times better than the next best comparable commercial product.  

The cyclic oligosaccharide gammadextrin increases the bioavailability of curcumin due to its unique properties. Gammadextrin is hydrophilic on the outside with a hydrophobic cavity on the inside, which allows it to accommodate other hydrophobic substances. In this way, cyclodextrins can bind ingredients, release active agents or stabilize sensitive substances and interfaces.  

To increase bioavailability, the water-soluble gammadextrin can encapsulate fat-soluble curcumin, for example. Hydrophobic curcumin thus gets a hydrophilic shell and therefore forms a molecular dispersion in water that leads to a much better absorption by the human body.  

As a free-flowing, dispersible powder, CAVACURMIN is suitable not only for dry or powdered food supplements, such as tablets, capsules and energy bars, but also for functional beverages. The alternative that cyclodextrins offer for many food-supplement formulations is not only cholesterol-free and non-allergenic, but also plant-based. Produced enzymatically from starch, cyclodextrins are manufactured by WACKER entirely from renewable raw materials. 

“We are very pleased with the positive results of the clinical study on the enhanced bioavailability of curcumin by gammadextrin,” said Helmut Reuscher, sales and technology director for Nutrition at WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS. “According to our customers, high bioavailability is getting more and more important in food supplements. We are very proud that our innovative cyclodextrin platform is finding more widespread use and allows our customers to make a contribution to the development of enhanced food supplements.”   

Rachela Mohr (pictured), Business Development Nutrition, WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS spoke with NutritionInsight: “At WACKER, we Click to Enlargehave been working with cyclodextrins for many years now so we surely know the properties and possibilities of these molecules very well. When we’ve developed this particular gammadextrin-curcumin complex CAVACURMIN a few years ago, we could see with our own lab tests that the bioavailability of curcumin can be increased significantly. We had some positive expectations when this clinical study started so we were very excited to see that the results were so positive for our product, especially in comparison to other market products.” 

“Generally speaking, curcumin is a quite powerful antioxidant that is supposed to have many positive properties, such as anti-inflammatory, hypoallergenic and antibacterial effects,” she explains. “Personally, I have the impression that the anti-inflammatory properties are most interesting for consumers. Inflammation processes, especially chronic inflammation, are a critical factor with many different diseases. For this reason, curcumin is already used successfully to treat joint pains due to rheumatism and arthrosis, or for gastrointestinal symptoms,” Mohr adds. 

Mohr finalizes: “In addition to the bioavailability, further studies may examine the antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties, as these effects are of particular interest for the consumers and the dietary supplements market.”

by Elizabeth Kenward

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