The firm claims this is the first functionally-labeled food in Japan that has been confirmed in clinical trials using products and submitted results to the Consumer Affairs Agency.
In Japan, Food for Specified Health Uses (FOSHU) require human clinical trials supporting the scientific health benefits of the products.
On the other hand, FFC products do not require pre-approval by the government, although supporting evidence need to be submitted.
In response to queries from NutraIngredients-Asia, Toshihiro Tomita from the public relations group at FANCL Corporation explained the functional ingredient in the supplement.
“It contains piperine and the derivatives derived from long pepper which is said to improve peripheral blood flow, and has the function of maintaining peripheral body temperature.”
Hihatsu is a plant belonging to the Pepperaceae family, and has been used traditionally in India and China as a spice, seasoning, and for cooling purposes.
FANCL conducted a clinical trial to assess the benefits of the functional ingredient.
They recruited 60 women aged 20 to 65 and divided them equally into a placebo group and treatment group (given one capsule of cold care supplement).
Participants from both groups were told to soak their hands in cold water for two minutes. The researchers compared the changes in the subsequent peripheral blood flow and skin surface temperature between both groups.
The treatment group observed improved peripheral blood flow, and the skin surface temperature recovery rate was significantly higher after 10 minutes.
Tomita said the recommended dosage is one capsule per day which contains 120 µg of piperine.
It is “recommended for those who are concerned about coldness due to cold in winter and coldness in the periphery due to cooling in summer.”
According to him, the supplement can be taken any time of the day.
The product contains hihatsu extract powder (long pepper), starch / hydroxypropyl
methylcellulose, calcium stearate, and caramel colour.
FANCL will launch the product on November 20, which will be available via mail order, retail stores, wholesales including supermarkets and convenience stores in Japan.
It will retail at JPY1,500 (US$13.75) for a pack of 30 capsules.
FANCL said it received feedback from customers throughout the year about the cold, hence motivated them to develop the cold care product.
There are currently various types of anti-cold products, such as bath salts, hot drinks, and warmers in the market, but the firm believes there will be a continuous demand for anti-cold functional labelled products in foods and supplements.