Seniors – living longer, living healthier

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Nutrition for seniors is a new and evolving market place

By 2050 the UN predicts that proportion of people over the age of 65 will more than double from 7.6% to day to 16.2%. Tomorrow’s elderly population will differ from those of the past. They will live longer and more active lives. They will enjoy better health than previous generations and look to maintain their independence for longer. This is not without its challenges.

Sarcopenia is the progressive loss of muscle mass and strength associated with aging. It can lead to a dramatic decline in physical ability that ultimately can threaten independence. Sarcopenia often goes unnoticed because at the same time fat tissue mass can increase – masking the loss of muscle mass and deterioration in overall body composition.

Preventing muscle loss by optimising protein consumption through the day

It is now recognised that low protein intake in some meals (i.e. breakfast), may contribute to age related loss of muscle mass. Protein intake in western diets is typically skewed towards the main meal each day, typically the evening meal. As illustrated below this fails to maximise potential muscle growth and function.

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By distributing protein intake more evenly throughout the day, net muscle protein synthesis can be stimulated more – therefore assisting in the retention of muscle mass and strength over time. Thirty grams of a high quality protein per meal (i.e. breakfast, lunch and evening meal), rich in essential amino acids and in particular leucine, is key to stimulating muscle protein synthesis throughout the day.

The benefits of optimal protein

Because protein helps maintain skeletal muscle mass and strength it is particularly important for aging consumers. Muscle is a key site for storage (“a sink”) of nutrients after eating. Maintaining as large a “muscle sink” as possible contributes to a healthier body composition. Protein intake and healthy muscles help support strong bones. Consuming high quality protein in combination with resistance exercise helps to preserve healthy muscles providing seniors with better health and quality of life.

Our nutritional solutions for the seniors market

We specialise in developing bespoke solutions and innovative whey proteins, rich in essential and branched chain amino acids that promote the retention of skeletal muscle. We offer extensive portfolios of high quality proteins for the preservation of muscle mass, including whey protein hydrolysates, isolates and concentrates.

Gateway to age appropriate nutrition

Through our research partnership with Food for Health Ireland, we have designed a unique diary protein formulation which has been clinically proven to increase lean muscle mass and significantly improve femoral bone mineral density (BMD) in healthy men and women (50-70yr). With the unprecedented projections regarding population aging, dietary interventions to support healthy and active aging will remain a priority. We continue to investigate next generation ingredients to improve muscle, bone and metabolic health so our customers can make the most of these emerging opportunities in this market.

Find out more about our Healthy Aging research programme here.

Find out more about our brands:

Optipep, our innovative range for specialised nutritional applications includes hydrolysed whey protein isolates (90% protein) and hydrolysed whey protein concentrates (80% protein). Targeted hydrolysis enzymatically digests the native proteins into smaller fractions and peptides. These are rapidly digested and absorbed delivering essential protein nutrients for growth and maintenance of muscle mass. Learn more about Optipep® Infant and Optipep® Sports.

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Isolac, our whey protein isolate range, for use in performance nutrition, infant formulae, dietetic products and clinical nutrition, are high in protein (90%), low in fat and lactose. We use cross flow micro-filtration technology, a natural process that removes fat and lactose while concentrating the valuable whey protein fractions. Read more about Isolac here.>

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Carbelac, our high quality whey protein concentrates offer great versatility across a wide range of food and beverages due to its functional (texture and mouthfeel enhancement) and nutritional (higher protein) benefits. Through ultrafiltration, we target premium concentrates with 35-80% protein. Read more about Carbelac here.>

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