With science’s understanding of gut health expanding to consider its impact on the wider body, the food and beverage industry is uncovering new ways to serve the ‘worried well’ market.
Probiotics are a significant emerging trend, with manufacturers increasingly including bacterial strains in everything from snack bars to smoothies for convenient health management from the gut outwards. This meets the growing demand from health-conscious yet time-poor consumers for greater value from the food and drink products they buy, with functional innovations allowing the public to look after their wellbeing on the go.
Forward-thinking companies are now uncovering exciting new ways to fortify everyday edibles with beneficial ingredients, offering an alternative to complicated supplement regimes and taking the hassle out of nutrition.
What are Probiotics?
Simply put, probiotics are the body’s ‘good bacteria’; the live microorganisms which keep you feeling at your best.
However, to understand how they work and why we need them, it is important to explore the gut a little. In addition to helping the digestion process, the gut also plays a vital role in our overall wellness by accommodating the human microbiome – the ecosystem of trillions of microorganisms which live in our body, including bacteria, fungi and viruses. It can weigh up to 2kg and works symbiotically with the host, providing crucial nutrients while we support microorganisms through our diet.
Beyond gastrointestinal issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and Crohn’s disease, science is rapidly revealing the extent of the microbiome’s effect on our general wellbeing. Strong connections have now been identified between gut microbiota and cardiovascular health, immune function, weight control, athleticism, mental health and more, demonstrating its pivotal role in our prosperity.
For the microbiome to work at its best, it needs to maintain a favourable bacterial balance, which can be upset by factors such as stress, hormonal changes, poor diet, medication and antibiotic usage. When this happens, people often experience negative outcomes and turn to probiotics to restore intestinal equilibrium, creating enormous market potential for commercial solutions.
How Can We Consume Probiotics?
Options for enhancing our probiotic intake have traditionally been limited to capsule and powder supplements or dairy goods, with formulation challenges limiting more varied applications. However, as progress is made in manufacturing stability and bacterial strain identification, these ingredients are now increasingly accessible via fortified nutraceutical products such as cereal and frozen items. Instead of reaching for the medicine cabinet, the public can now look after their gut wellness by cooking a tasty pasta dish or snacking on confectionary treats.
This is where Cornelius comes in. At the forefront of distributing quality probiotic solutions, the company is equipping the food and beverage industry with the microbiome modulation innovations needed to entice health-focussed consumers and remain competitive.
The Probiotic Solution
A key example from Cornelius is GanedenBC30, a probiotic from Kerry, the taste and nutrition company. Cost-effective and stable during processing, it readdresses the microbiome’s balance to help deliver digestive health, immune benefits and protein utilization support.
What makes the product so special is its ability to withstand transit through the gastrointestinal tract. Many probiotics struggle to survive in functional food and drink goods due to the rigours of manufacturing and shelf life, meaning large quantities are needed in formulation to ensure a clinically relevant dosage reaches the gut alive. However, GanedenBC30’s natural protection defends it throughout its journey, requiring fewer ingredients and enhancing profitability.
Unlike many competitors, GanedenBC30 can be squeezed, baked, frozen and boiled to create delicious products with excellent texture and mouth taste – transforming approaches to immunity and general health management.
The food and beverage industry is making it easier for consumers to take care of their bodies by optimising the gut’s wellbeing. With greater access than ever to an expanding range of functional solutions, the public can now maintain probiotics levels with everything from drinks to snack bars, confectionary and even pasta.