Men still need help staying healthy

Men still need help staying healthy

The American life-expectancy gap has narrowed, to 76.7 years for men and 81.3 years for women. Still, men tend to use and abuse their bodies. Here are ingredients that can help.

With age, the stakes rise for common men’s health conditions. Men are more at risk for cardiovascular heart disease (including heart attack and high blood pressure) and some cancers, especially prostate cancer. Men also can experience stress and depression. Men’s hormone (testosterone) levels tend to decline after age 30, and can lead to sleep disturbance and changes in sexual function. Men’s health risks such as high cholesterol can be controlled; other risks can be minimized through nutrition and lifestyle choices.

Prostate support in particular is in vogue again after experiencing a sharp 8.6 percent decline in mainstream markets during the midst of the recession.

Fi: How do you see the market progressing in the coming year? What is the key driver?

Dr. Rudi E. MoerckDr. Rudi E. Moerck, President & CEO, Valensa International

Last year, the first of the more than 80 million baby boomers turned 65. They are an economic force to be reckoned with. Baby Boomers are responsible for more than half of all consumer spending, buy 77 percent of all prescription drugs, and 61 percent of OTC medications. The saw palmetto market has been growing steadily by this aging population for nearly 15 years, because symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) begin to develop in the mid 50s.

Today, more than 70 percent of men age 50+ exhibit symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia. This number will grow substantially in ensuing years, with studies showing that 90 percent of men in their 70s and 80s will be affected by BPH. Today, more than 1 million new cases of BPH are reported in the US and Europe each year. This number will rise as the baby boomer population ages.

The yield of the upcoming saw palmetto berry crop will obviously determine the availability and price of saw palmetto extract and powders for the coming year. The heavy rains in Florida throughout July may have an adverse effect on berry harvest and therefore may negatively influence the amount of saw palmetto available and the price of oil and powder. Fortunately, our vertically integrated supply chain will ensure that Valensa will be able to provide the best available saw palmetto products available in the marketplace.

On a broader spectrum, we foresee a bright future. The recession has not impacted Valensa directly and we see very positive growth in the nutraceutical arena despite tough economic times. In our case business is excellent. The industry is beginning to buy into our quality-first message and has supported the introduction of some exciting new products, including our new Prostate 360 formula which combines the clinically proven Parry Tomato Lycopene with the patented USPlus saw palmetto extract in a stable, efficacious formula for prostate health. Valensa’s 2011 sales were up over 70 percent compared to previous years. To date, 2012 sales have exceeded expectations.

Fi: How does your saw palmetto ingredient fit into the overall men’s health picture?

RM: While it is one among many in our product portfolio, USPlus is the ingredient upon which Valensa was founded more than a decade ago. Our headquarters are in a protected saw palmetto grove in Eustis, Florida, near Orlando. Our dominance in this category can be attributed to our decision early on to use Deep Extract ultra-high pressure supercritical CO2 extraction as our method of manufacturing. This is a high cost approach that delivers the best quality saw palmetto in the marketplace. In essence, we are getting more nutrients in our USPlus saw palmetto than from products based on chemical extracts. The dark color of our extract indicates a premium product with the highest efficacy available. Independent assays have shown that USPlus contains three times the beta carotene, ten times the amount of lutein and 30 times the zeaxanthin of typical saw palmetto extracts. Valensa makes USPlus the way nature intended saw palmetto to be.

Fi: Saw Palmetto is mentioned as one of the more frequently economically adulterated/pixie dusted ingredients out there. How does a supplier/manufacturer who wants to do it right compete?

RM: As a nutraceutical, saw palmetto extract (oil) is one of the longest standing and most trusted products in the market today. It is the #3 nutraceutical supplement by sales volume in the United States. In the United States consumer saw palmetto sales are approximately $200 million. Around the rest of the world, sales are roughly $500 million—for a global market size of around $700 million.

Within the segment, saw palmetto powder sales are beginning to drop while saw palmetto extract sales are increasing. The reason for the change is that retail marketers are beginning to understand that there have been no clinical trials on dry powder products derived from immature green berries, while a large body of positive clinical trials on ripe saw palmetto berry extracts have been completed. In fact, advanced meta-analyses across a wide range of clinical trials has been conducted and reported in peer reviewed scientific papers that clearly indicate the overwhelming evidence of the positive effects of saw palmetto extract in ameliorating the most common form of prostate health problem.  

For example, clinical trial results show that 320 mg saw palmetto extract was as effective as prostate health drugs Finasteride, Dutasteride and Tamsulosin in avoiding the most common urinary tract complaints in older men. To achieve this clinically proven effective dosage, nearly 3,200 mg of saw palmetto powder per day would have to be taken (assuming that any clinical trial had established its effectiveness). Most green berry powder products, while containing 320 mg of powder only contain 32 mg of extract (oil). To achieve the same effective dosage, consumers would need to ingest 10 of the powdered product doses.

For these reasons, Valensa is seeing exceptionally strong growth for our USPlus and organic USPlus saw palmetto extracts as marketers and consumers begin to respond with our commitment to providing the best products on the market. It proves that consumers are willing to pay for quality when they can get it and understand that inferior products exist and are to be avoided in the marketplace. 


Condition Specific Directory: MEN’S HEALTH

African Bush Products Inc.



AGD Nutrition LLC

Vitamin D




LongJax, the root of the Malaysian herb Eurycoma longifolia Jack, has been used for centuries as a natural way to increase libido and enhance sexual performance and stamina. Long Jax has been shown to increase testosterone levels and increase sexual energy. LongJax is 20:1 root extract, solvent free and water extracted. 


[email protected]

City of Industry, California


Albion Advanced Nutrition

Zinc Arginine Chelate

A highly bioavailable form of zinc and arginine, both of which are known to help in the male reproductive organ function.

[email protected]


Saint Clair Shores, Michigan


Alchem USA

Yohimbine HCl

Alchem’s yohimbine extracts and HCl are a favorite among mature men to improve libido and sexual performance. It can also promote fat loss and suppress appetite.

[email protected]


Minnetonka, Minnesota


Bioenergy Life Science Inc.

Bioenergy Ribose

A randomized, placebo-controlled trial of Baby Boomers complaining of persistent fatigue showed that Bioenergy Ribose reinvigorated them, and gave them new energy and greater exercise tolerance. Subjects were given 3g doses twice per day of either Bioenergy Ribose or Dextrose. The Bioenergy Ribose-supplemented group improved in three major measures of fitness and exercise tolerance, key to overcoming fatigue.


[email protected]

Andover, Minnesota


Biotropics Malaysia Berhad

Physta Standardised Tongkat Ali Extract

Physta contains bioactive components of extracts from roots of tongkat ali (Eurycoma longifolia) through patented extraction technology. The active component, eurycomanone, has been standardized to ensure therapeutic values. It contains 100% pure soluble extract using aqueous solvent and freeze drying through assiduous quality control for consistency.

+603 2245 8000

[email protected]

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Cypress Systems



Decas Botanical Synergies LLC

PACran Prostate


Ecuadorian Rainforest LLC

Maca root

Maca is a superfood that contains an array of vitamins (B1, B2, C), amino acids, iron, minerals and fatty acids. A double-blind clinical trial conducted by Morgagni-Pierantoni Hospital, Forli, Italy, concluded that maca had a significant effect on subjects with mild erectile dysfunction.


[email protected]

Belleville, New Jersey


Embria Health Sciences



Gencor Nutrients Inc.

Testofen fenugreek extract

Testofen is a natural solution for promoting healthy free testosterone levels and healthy libido. A proprietary extract of fenugreek seeds, it's standardized for a unique matrix of saponins that Gencor names Fenuside. Testofen is backed by two human clinical studies showing it has aphrodisiac, anabolic and androgenic properties.

[email protected]


Anaheim, California


Ixoreal Biomed Private Ltd.

KSM-66 ashwaganda


Nutraceuticals International Group

Maca OSS


NutraGenesis LLC

ZTEN For Men

ZTEN For Men is a multifunctional anti-aging nutraceutical for men’s health, rejuvenation, and vigor. ZTEN is a proprietary blend of multi-patented, GRAS-affirmed ingredients including Sensoril, a standardized extract of the revered Ayurvedic adaptogen ashwagandha, and Synetrim CQ, a standardized extract of Cissus quadrangularis.


[email protected]

Brattleboro, Vermont


Ocean Spray Ingredient Technology Group

Cranberry fruits, concentrates, purees, powders


OmniActive Health Technologies Ltd.

Lutemax 2020


Pharmachem Laboratories Inc.


Made from the whole cranberry through a proprietary process, Cran-Max is powerful enough to be effective with just one capsule per day. It is the only cranberry supplement made using the patented Bio-Shield technology, which protects the cranberry from destruction by gastric acid in the stomach.


Kearny, New Jersey


Telos Ceuticals LLC

Carogac: Richest Natural Source of Lycopene and Carotenoids


Terry Laboratories LLC

Aloe vera powders and liquids

As men age, digestive issues become important aspects of health. Aloe vera has been shown to correct and balance the digestive system. When the digestive system is working properly, the body functions on a more normal basis. Aloe vera is a great way to keep the digestive system in balance.


[email protected]

Melbourne, Florida


Valensa International

USPlus Saw Palmetto

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