Goldmine founder eyes adaptogen potential for “Millennial burnout”
29 Apr 2021 --- Adaptogens have major potential to address the burnout associated with the Millennial generation. This is according to Rachael Gorjestani, founder of Goldmine, which has just rolled out three of its adaptogen powder blends to over 40 US Whole Foods Market stores.
“Also known as ‘The Burnout Generation,’ Millennials are two-thirds of the workforce, with 96 percent reporting suffering from so much stress that the struggle to stay energized and focused is impacting their everyday lives. Moreover, 65 percent of all consumers say they seek functional benefits from their food and drink,” she tells NutritionInsight.
This is amplified by dissatisfaction with the healthcare system and the awareness around preventative health through lifestyle and diet. The result is that this new functional market is growing quickly and includes adaptogens.
“With wellness as a dominant lifestyle value, changing consumer behaviors are creating new markets. Healthier eating habits, especially by Millennials, are pushing big F&B companies to reshape their product lines and replace legacy brands with newer, healthier ones,” she points out.
Reformulation moves have impacted the soft drink, nutrition bar and bakery sectors, to name just a few.
Adaptogens work by normalizing the body’s response to stress. They increase the body’s ability to resist the damaging effects of stress via the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.
For an herb to be categorized as an adaptogen, the herb must have the capacity to address both under and overstimulated responses in the body.
“This is partly why adaptogenic herbs can benefit a wide range of people, whether their body is overstimulated – like in cases with autoimmune disorders – or under-stimulated, like with fatigue or a weakened immune system,” explains Gorjestani.
While Millennials are interested in adaptogens for their health-optimization and stress relief properties, retirees tend to seek out ways to support their bodies, cognition and immune system to stay healthy.
A global footprint
Gorjestani also notes variation in which adaptogens have been traditionally used in different regions. For example, eleuthero was originally used by Indigenous peoples in the Taiga region of Siberia, Russia. It is used to decrease disease and infection and increase endurance, strength and quality of life.
Meanwhile, Reishi mushroom has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for at least 2,000 years. Known as the “mushroom of immortality,” it is used to support longevity and health.
Meanwhile, ashwagandha is a mainstay of Ayurveda for its impact on immunity, digestive health, aging and overall health.
In light of adaptogens’ varied uses, the ingredients hold “great potential.” However, Gorjestani flags that companies must prioritize supporting farmers who grow their herbs organically and sustainably.
“We believe in investing in growing locations focused on regenerative farming practices that are responsible and sustainable. We want to protect these herbs so they can grow for generations to come, which means wild harvesting herbs and commercially cultivating herbs in a manner that does not strip the soil.”
Growing conditions are also a key R&D factor. Just like with any plant, the location of where an adaptogen grows, how healthy the soils are, how and when it is harvested, and how it is processed all impact its potency and bioavailability.
This means that for products like tea, herbs may need to be simmered, not just steeped. For powders, mushrooms need to be extracted so the chitin walls are broken down and paired with the necessary ingredients, like vitamin C.
“You must pay close attention to the absorbability of the herbs. Some of what is on the market is just ground-up mushroom powder. Without the right extraction and heating, these mushrooms do not offer many benefits to the body,” Gorjestani emphasizes.
Northern California roll-out
Goldmine’s three adaptogen powder blends help boost energy, respond to stress and improve overall wellness. The company expects them to be on-shelf in 42 Whole Foods Market locations in Northern California by early May. The choices are:
- Goldmine Adaptogen Powder: A signature blend of five USDA-certified organic adaptogenic herbs and super mushrooms that help boost wellness and build resilience to stress – chaga, reishi, cordyceps, ashwagandha and astragalus.
- Supershroom Immunity Support: A blend of four mushrooms and herbs paired with lucuma and ginger for easy drinking. Nutrient-dense and packed with anti-inflammatory immune protecting compounds, polysaccharides, this blend supports and strengthens the immune system.
- Adaptogen Powder Packets: Conveniently packaged in a single-serve packet with the most popular blend.
The products were designed to be easily incorporated into any daily wellness ritual or beverage, such as coffee, juice, tea, smoothies or water.
“Partnering with Whole Foods Market is synergistic with our brand values – we pride ourselves on sourcing responsibly from USDA certified organic farms and building a mission-driven company that also tastes great, too,” concludes Gorjestani.
By Katherine Durrell
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