Milk peptides to help lower high blood pressure

By Alex McNally

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags High blood pressure Nutrition Protein Atherosclerosis

DSM has prepared its next weapon to fight the growing rise of heart
problems with the launch of a peptide ingredient which the company
claims can reduce blood pressure.

Available as a powder for either functional foods or supplements, TensGuard uses peptides from milk to help relax blood vessels in people with high blood pressure. With some one billion people worldwide suffering from high blood pressure - likely to more than double by 2025 - products aimed at cutting this will prove popular. High blood pressure can lead to health problems and falls under the generic term metabolic syndrome. TensGuard contains the lactotripeptide Isoleucine-Proline-Proline (IPP). While lactotripeptides are present in normal dairy products, they are inactive within the original milk protein. DSM said it activated these peptides with the use of enzymes following five years of research. Luc van der Heyden, business manager, explained the firm has used a proprietary enzyme to release the most effective peptides. Van der Heyden told that TensGuard will be launched in the US and Italian markets as a supplement ingredient and DSM will continue its talks with other firms for further launches. He said that there has been lots of scientific literature in the past supporting the role of peptides at relaxing blood vessels, but what was needed is the right kind of peptides. "The research was extensive​," he said, "we tried numerous proteins sources, such as whey and corn."​ The ingredient comes in powder form and is suitable for food applications and to be added to dietary supplements. The two planned launches are for dietary supplements, because the supplement companies are often a lot faster to react than food companies, Van der Heyden said. Metabolic syndrome ​ DSM is dedicated to look into solutions for health problems which fall under the metabolic syndrome banner. A person would be said to have the syndrome if they have three out of the following five conditions: high fasting glucose levels, abdominal obesity; high blood pressure, high blood triglyceride levels; and low HDL (high density lipoprotein) cholesterol. The firm has already launched the first ingredient aimed at reducing post-meal spikes in diabetics in September. InsuVital is hydrolysed casein consisting of bioactive peptides which increase the body's level of the hormone insulin, which in turn lowers blood glucose levels. Cardiovascular health is an increasing topic of concern, and cardiovascular disease causes almost 50 per cent of deaths in Europe, and is reported to cost the EU economy an estimated €169 billion ($202 billion) per year.

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