Men´s health. The struggle with performance

It is an honor to be a man – but it is not always easy. Sometimes a man´s life is challenged by too many priorities. Men need to be successful in their job, they want to have time for family, for sports and for friends. They want to be a good father as well as a perfect lover. In doing so, they often overlook their own health. Suddenly they wake up and realize they are not the shaped, good-looking youngster anymore, who manages everything professional, calm and with the right sense of humor. Than it is time to lay back and rethink about life and priorities.

But today´s men find ways to keep up with daily challenges. Nutrition and exercise are key in helping men of all ages live healthier and fuller lives. But, let´s be honest, packing a healthy lunch or cutting fruits for breakfast is not at the top of men´s priority list. Thus, food supplements and functional foods can support men in obtaining the nutrients they need conveniently.

Support for an active lifestyle

Packed with testosterone, the 20s are generally a very healthy time for young men. During this period their body is primed for power sports and muscle growth. Most men are ambitious and want to get the best training effect they can get. Plant extracts can give a training boost and efficient regeneration after the workout  and support an active lifestyle. Products based on mango or cacao support cardiovascular capacity and lemon verbena preparations support muscle strength and recovery.

Even if men are not the bodybuilding type, protein is an important nutrient to promote muscle growth and overall health. Protein shakes and bars are prominent tools men consume to make sure they get enough muscle-building protein while working out. Beyond that, emerging research has also set the stage for natural ingredients targeting mental focus during sports (e.g. branched chain amino acids or lemon balm).

Career and family. Natural support

The 30s and 40s are probably the busiest period of a man´s life. It is the time when men establish a career, work long hours, start a family and have to pay off the mortgage. With so many commitments, stress becomes an important concern and can have a big impact on their quality of life and performance. Unfortunately, many men draw on to caffeinated drinks to keep up their energy level, which may on the long run cause health problems. Plant extracts such as lemon balm are healthy and natural alternatives to stay alert and can help men to cope with occasional stress in a cool-headed, focused and structured way. Stress does not only affect mental health, but can also compromise physical health. Who hasn´t got an upset stomach or irritable bowel before a difficult decision or when projects don´t run smoothly? Grandma´s advice to have a cup of chamomile or fennel tea is clearly valuable. But, we normally don´t have hot water and a tea bag at hand, when we need it most. New, easy-to-handle formulations containing perilla for instance are attractive options to improve gastrointestinal discomfort.

Midlife crisis. Please don’t panic

Years ago a typical age for midlife crisis was around 35. As we get older, men’s midlife crisis commonly occurs now in the late 40s. This is the age, when men recognize some of the targeted lifetime achievements may not become true. Please don´t panic. This is not a joke but a serious advice. Find your own strategies to calm down and to deal with stress. When you're under stress, your brain produces hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol that put your body on alert. As a result, your pulse quickens and blood pressure rises. In the early days of mankind, this physical reactions prepared our body to deal with difficult situations by confronting it or by running away from it – the so-called “fight or flight” response. Nowadays, stressful situations often remain unmanaged and stress becomes chronic. Chronic stress may results in constantly elevated heart rate and blood pressure eventually damaging the artery walls and increasing the risk of heart disease. L-arginine or compounds found in beetroot juice, cocoa seeds or mango fruit can improve microcirculation by relaxing blood vessels and thus supporting your stressed heart.

Age. A sensitive issue

Like most periods of men's life, the time 55+ also consists of many changes such as retirement, kids leaving the house and more free time. Having more time for themselves, they realize they aren't youngster anymore. They lay back and rethink about life and priorities. At this time more men start to take care of themselves, e.g. by taking up a new hobby. Exercise is becoming important to maintain health and mobility. However, a lack of energy and shortness of breath can restrain us from getting in motion. Ingredients targeting age-associated impairments of microcirculation and metabolism can help overcome such constraints and support men in their silver years to live life at the fullest. L-arginine or compounds found in beetroot juice, cocoa seeds or mango fruit can improve microcirculation by relaxing blood vessels and thus increase the oxygen and nutrient supply to the cells. Additionally, special fruit extracts are suggested to regulate energy homeostasis resulting in better muscle function and physical energy.

Men’s Health. A growing market worldwide

Market data already reflect an increasing demand of cognitive performance ingredients by men. Among the approximately 30 million adults taking supplements for brain health, men under the age of 50 are most likely to use these (Nutraceuticals World 2015).

Vital Solutions. Ingredients for men´s health

Having a strong expertise in ingredients supporting men´s health, Vital Solutions offers natural and effective solutions for various applications including cardiovascular health, cognitive health and sports nutrition. With our products Careflow™, Bluenesse® and Recoverben® we allow our industry partners to develop innovative concepts to help their male consumers taking small steps for a healthy life span for without compromising on taste.