Adaptogenic effects of herbal extracts
The term ‘adaptogen’ refers to natural compounds or plant extracts that increase adaptability and survival of organisms to stress. They exhibit anti-fatigue effects during stress and show promising potential against age-related conditions. Adaptogens stimulate cellular and organism defense systems by means:
– activating intracellular and extracellular signaling pathways and expression of stress-activated proteins and neuropeptides;
– enhancing survival against oxidative stress;
– ameliorating and postponing aging by activation of mediator genes of stress response and modulation of longevity pathways.
Scientific community is trying to identify key molecular mechanisms that are in common among more than 70 plants which have adaptogenic action, to provide a rationale for the use of adaptogens in stress- and age-related diseases, as shown in the following pictures (retrieved from Panossian et al., 2018).
Among all adaptogens, Ginseng is one of the oldest one. Etymologically, panax means ‘all-healing’ or ‘panacea’. Chinese Materia Medica documents its usage since 5,000 years ago. Pharmacopeias across Japan, Korea, USA, Canada, Germany, UK, France and Austria recognize its ability to boost vitality and wellbeing.
Ginseng adaptogenic effect is apparently a function of the ginsenoside saponin glycosides contained in the root and are linked to a corticosteroid-like action. In fact, endocrinological studies have suggested that ginsenosides may augment adrenal steroidogenesis (production of steroid hormones) via an indirect action on the pituitary gland. The hormones produced by the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis are well known to play a significant role in the adaptation capabilities of the body. In the picture the involvement of Ginseng is shown (retrieved from Nocerino et al., 2000).
General literature data:
– Nocerino E, Amato M, Izzo AA. 2000. The aphrodisiac and adaptogenic properties of ginseng. Fitoterapia 71: S1-S5
– Panossian A. 2017. Understanding adaptogenic activity: specificity of the pharmacological action of adaptogens and other phytochemicals. Annals of the NY Acad. Science. Issue: Phytochemicals in Medicine and Food. 1401: 49–64
– Panossian A, Seoc EJ, Efferthc T. 2018. Novel molecular mechanisms for the adaptogenic effects of herbal extracts on isolated brain cells using systems biology. Phytomedicine 50: 257–284
– Patel S. & Rauf A. 2017. Adaptogenic herb ginseng (Panax) as medical food: Status quo and future prospects. Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy 85: 120–127
The Covid-19 world emergency is leading to an increase of the botanicals’ demand. However, at present, there are no scientific evidences proving the direct activity of botanicals, vitamins and, in general, of food supplements, against coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 infection. Therefore, it is strictly necessary to give proper information when advising products with unproven uses. This monograph is a state-of-the-art overview about the relationship between nutraceuticals and the alteration of some physiological conditions, to sustain psycho-physical health and to boost resiliency.
*Our body always tries to respond to infections; however, sometimes the body could overreact. It is well known that when SARS -CoV-2 enters the lungs, it triggers an immune response, but, in some patients, excessive levels of cytokines are released, resulting in a hyperinflammation, that may eventually kill the patient. Cytokine storm is a common complication of many respiratory diseases, with infectious-origin or not. Healthy people already using food supplements for boosting the immune system could continue doing it; however, it is unknown what happens in case of acute infection and cytokine storm. It is important to highlight that ongoing clinical trials are not using immunostimulant therapies.
Botanical extracts to sustain psycho-physical health
Plants and botanical extracts are extensively known for their long traditional uses on many physiological pathways. They are used in healthy subjects to maintain their overall health and to prevent the developing of some risk factors; the functional claims of the following plants are retrieved by Annex I of the Italian Decree DM 10 August 2018 and are supported by literature data.
BLACK ELDER: it has expectorant and diaphoretic properties. It is traditionally known for the relief of common cold symptom.
DERMOGRANATE®: many studies suggest the following functional properties: vasculo-protective, reduction of oxidative stress and platelet aggregation, influence on endothelial cell function, regulation of blood pressure (attenuates hypertension and atherosclerosis in humans), regulation of lipid metabolism in metabolic disorder-associated diseases and type 2 diabetes, anti-inflammatory (reducing the cytokine storm). Moreover, ellagic acid has mitochondria protective activity.
GINSENG: it has tonic-adaptogen activity since it is used for the relief of mental stress. It is recommended in case of physical and mental fatigue. It is a good antioxidant.
HAWTHORN: its traditional use is strongly related to the enhancement of cardiovascular system functioning. In particular, it has cardio-tonic, coronary dilator, antiarrhythmic properties and regulates the blood pressure. Its flavonoids have antioxidant activity. It is also considered a nervine herb, positively acting on stress, anxiety, insomnia and mild depression.
LAVANDER: it is another important nervine herb, recommended for the relief of mild symptoms of mental stress and anxiety (it has spasmolytic properties), and as sleep aid. It is also considered a good mood enhancer.
LEMON BALM: it belongs to nervine herbs and is widely known as an antispasmodic, mild sedative, anxiolytic and nootropic plant. It is recommended for insomnia of nervous origin, for memory improvement and for the relief of mild symptoms of mental stress, and as mood enhancer. It has also antioxidant and antiviral activity.
OMEOLIPID®: it is a blend of three plants with many physiological properties: OMEOlipid acts on the metabolism of lipids (cholesterol) and carbohydrates (it is hypolipidemic, anti-cholesterolemic, hypoglycemic). It regulates the blood pressure; it is a good antioxidant and improves liver functions.
PASSION FLOWER: it is considered a nervine herb; it is traditionally used for the relief of mild symptoms of mental stress, mental fatigue and as a sleep aid in insomnia.
PURPLE CONEFLOWER: it is used for the relief of common cold and flu symptoms, thanks to its activity on immune system and anti-inflammatory properties.
THYMOX-EPO® was proved to have anti-inflammatory and expectorant activities in respiratory epithelial cells. It is used in productive cough associated with cold and bronchitis. It is balsamic, antiseptic for the throat and the respiratory system. It has also strong antioxidant activity.
Italian Decree DM 10 August 2018, EMA monographs and assessment reports, ESCOP monographs.
Campanini E. (2006) Dizionario di fitoterapia e piante medicinali II Ed. Tecniche Nuove, 1-635
Capasso F., Grandolini G., Izzo A.A., Fitoterapia, Springer-Verlag Italia; 2006.
Gruenwald J. PDR for herbal medicine, 4th Ed. Thomson, 2006.
Abascal K, Yarnell E. Nervine Herbs for Treating Anxiety. Alternative and Complementary Therapies. Dec 2004.309-315.
Guo YR, Cao QD, Hong ZS, Tan YY, Chen SD, Jin HJ, Tan KS, Wang DY, Yan Y. The origin, transmission and clinical therapies on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak – an update on the status. Mil Med Res. 2020 Mar 13;7(1):11.
Gralinski LE, Menachery VD. Return of the Coronavirus: 2019-nCoV. Viruses. 2020 Jan 24;12(2). pii: E135.
To read more articles specific for each plant and application please contact us.
Verdellimon extract has anti-allergy and anti-oxidant properties!
Click here to download the brochure and to learn more about it
An incredible antioxidant and weight loss aid!
Click here to download the scientific article to learn more about its beneficial effects
This work was presented at ‘Pharmacology 2019 Congress’ in Edinburgh
High Quality Goji Berry dry extract
To wish you well-being and longevity using EPO’s botanicals!
Botanical information: Goji berries (Lycium barbarum L.) belong to the Solanaceae family that yields numerous foods, including potatoes, tomatoes and eggplants. Goji is usually found in Asia, particularly in Northwestern China. The plant is known as kuko in Japan and gugija in Korea, while its common name, Goji, derives from the Chinese name gouqi.
Active compounds: The high biological activity components are polysaccharides, carotenoids, phenolic acids and flavonoids. Moreover, Goji berries can also be an excellent source of macronutrients and micronutrients, including minerals and vitamins.
Galenic form: Goji Berry dry extract is standardized to contain 40% polysaccharides.
Traditional uses: Goji berries have become popular over the years due to its public acceptance as a “superfood” with highly advantageous antioxidant and nutritive properties. It is also widely used for its cardiovascular and ocular protective effects and its ability to decrease blood lipids and glycemia.
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CINNAMON IS NOT ONLY A SPICE!
Cinnamon is one of the oldest known herbs: obtained from an exotic tree, indigenous to Sri Lanka and Southwest India, it is mentioned in the Bible as well as in Sanskrit, Egyptian, Greek and Roman texts. Its inner bark, after drying and curling into rolls known as “sticks” or “quills”, is mainly used as a spice, especially in Christmas cookies, herbal teas and other winter comfort foods or delicacies. Nevertheless, Cinnamon can claim a very long traditional use, as a tonic, carminative, spasmolytic, eupeptic and antiseptic agent; in Ayurvedic medicine Cinnamon is a major digestive herb, but it is also said to improve circulation, nocturia, arthritis, male impotency and cardiac insufficiency. In recent times the plant has attracted much interest for its ability to lower serum lipids and blood glucose: in a meta-analysis the consumption of Cinnamon was associated with a statistically significant decrease in levels of fasting plasma glucose, total cholesterol, LDL-C, triglycerides levels and an increase of HDL-C levels, while in a recent randomized, placebo controlled clinical trial the intake of 1 g Cinnamon powder for 12 weeks reduced fasting blood glucose and glycosylated Hb among poorly controlled type 2 diabetes patients.
Those benefits have been attributed to cinnamaldehyde and to the polyphenolic fraction, some natural, powerful antioxidants and radical scavengers.
ARE YOU SURE THAT YOU ARE USING THE RIGHT CINNAMON?
The name ‘Cinnamon’ is correctly used to refer to Ceylon Cinnamon, also known as ‘True Cinnamon’ (Cinnamomum verum J. Presl). Despite this, other species are sometimes sold as Cinnamon, i.e. Chinese Cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia (Nees & T.Nees) J.Presl). The True Cinnamon is considered totally safe, while there is a concern about the Chinese one, especially in case of prolonged use, due to its coumarin content; Chinese Cinnamon is a cheaper alternative to the true spice coming from Sri Lanka and recent studies have proved that most of the Cinnamon powder on the food market is mislabeled and comes from Chinese Cinnamon.
EPO SRL is now launching a Cinnamon extract for the food market, whose botanical species is certified through DNA barcoding test, a technique for characterizing species using a short DNA sequence from a standard part of the genome; the technique is similar to a supermarket scanner, which identifies products by reading black bars of the UPC (Universal Product Code): the sample is identified by finding the closest matching between its isolated DNA sequence and a reference sequence of an official barcode database.
EPO’s True Cinnamon Dry Extract, standardised to contain 25-30% polyphenols, associates the taste and flavour of the powdered spice with safety and health benefits, especially in cardiovascular protection and glycemia control, of a concentrated source, such as an extract.
Fireweed is a spontaneous plant, traditionally used for prostate ailments. From this plant (Epilobium angustifolium L.), we produces a concentrated dry extract, standardized to contain 15% Oenothein B, for food supplements.
The promotion of biodiversity, organic cultivation and circular economy is a value we share with NeoruraleHub, in fact we have partnered with them to create the first plantation of Fireweed!
Watch the video to learn more about this innovative project and contact us for further information on efficacy studies!
Here the right botanicals by EPO
Click on each plant to learn more…
Let prostate problems fly away… with the right ingredient!
What is it? ENOTprost is the new extract of Epilobium angustifolium L. standardized to contain 15% Oenothein B, one of the most active compounds of this plant!
The botanical species is certified by the DNA barcoding analysis.
Why should I use it? Its effects are prostate-specific: anti-inflammatory and antioxidant! The inflammation and oxidative stress should be fought and controlled as they are risk factors for the development and cronicity of prostatic problems: the most common is the inflammation (prostatitis), as well as the benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and cancer (prostatic adenocarcinoma).
Who can use it? Subjects with higher risk are men aged 50 and over, although prostatitis can also affect young people, especially sportsmen and cyclists.
How to get it? Ask for a sample and click here to learn more about efficacy studies!
Nature, Tradition and Science serving beauty!
we have selected some extracts to help you to formulate a food supplement for skin care! Botanicals have always been a perfect adjuvant for the beauty of the skin and body.
Download here a short monograph and do not hesitate to contact us for more information.
We will be present, as every year, at VITAFOODS 2019.
Don’t miss our new extracts and visit us at stand G112
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our offices will be closed from December 22nd to January 1st.
EPO Srl wishes you a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year.
EPO is involved in many national and international projects both as a partner or project leader.
The goal is the continuous improvement of our products in terms of efficacy and safety, our facilities and our environment.
EPO Srl is one of the 12 partners (9 SME and 3 Universities) of the Foodnet project, promoted and funded by Regione Lombardia. The project objective is to improve the diet of senior people (65+) by providing them with the nutrients they need through smart and tasty functional food. EPO Srl is entrusted to identify, evaluate and produce botanical extracts as innovative ingredients for functional food.
For more information: https://www.eposrl.com/foodnet/
EPO 4 GREEN aims to the improvement of product quality and environment, acting on production processes and technologies, with the special attention to the reduction of the use of primary resources, as water and electricity.
For more information: https://www.eposrl.com/epo-4green/
Strengthening its focus on health, sustainability and ecology, EPO Srl is launching a new line of organic products.
What are the offers?
Lemon balm – Organic
Melissa officinalis L., known as Lemon balm, is a perennial herbaceous plant, typical of the Mediterranean areas, with a strong lemon scent. It has been traditionally used as antispasmodic, mild sedative (anxiolytic) and nootropic (for memory improvement); it has also antioxidant, anti-thyroid and antiviral activity. It is recommended for insomnia of nervous origin and for gastro-enteric ailments.
Download here our brochure on Lemon balm and contact us for more information!
Passion flower – Organic
Passiflora incarnata L., known as Passion flower, is a perennial herbaceous plant, widely cultivated in Central and South America and Europe. It is traditionally used for the relief of mild symptoms of mental stress and as sleep aid in insomnia, mental fatigue and menopause. It is also used as spasmolytic and carminative.
Download here our brochure on Passion flower and contact us for more information!
Click here to download our Organic Certificate
Regione Lombardia – biologico
Legambiente – biologico
Omeolipid is an association of Artichoke (Cynara scolymus L.), Caihua (Cyclanthera pedata (L.) Schrad.) and Fenu greek (Trigonella foenum-graecum L.)
that can be used in food supplements.
Omeolipid combines the traditions of three different countries:
Artichoke is a Mediterranean plant; its cultivation in Europe dates back to ancient Greece and Rome. Its active substances (caffeoylquinic acids, flavonoids, sesquiterpene lactones) are concentrated in the leaf, acting as digestive, colagougue, hepatoprotective and depurative.
Caihua is a traditional plant from South America; the fruit contains flavonoids and in Peru its use is documented since 3700 b.C. as hypothensive, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory and hypocholesterolemic.
Fenu greek is a milestone of the Ayurvedic medicine, alleviating kapha and vata. The seeds contain saponines, coumarines, flavonoids and alkaloids. They have hypocholesterolemic, diuretic, diaphoretic, carminative, hypoglycemic, demulcent properties and they are traditionally used to treat obesity and diabetes.
Click here to download the full report and to get more information on the effects and usage of Omeolipid and contact us for technical documents.
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris L.) is a well-known Mediterranean plant, belonging to the Lamiaceae family. The thyme extract is traditionally used as natural remedy for many purposes. Therefore, download our brochure and do not miss the properties of our thyme extract!
EPO Srl has always been committed with the protection of the environment and the promotion of culture. EPO Srl supports the FAI – Fondo Ambiente Italiano – by joining the Corporate Golden Donor membership program. FAI keeps and opens several historical properties, preventing their degradation, hence promoting the conservation of the cultural heritage of Italy; moreover, FAI sustains the environment protection and contributes to culture dissemination.
EPO – sostiene il FAI
For more information visit https://www.fondoambiente.it/