Known as Princess Luna, the brand gained increased popularity in China after the launch of its probiotic capsule for vaginal health two years ago. The product was one of the bestsellers based on sales volume and revenue in Tmall in 2021, according to a report by Technology for Mobile and Online (TMO) Group and Health Products Association-China (HPA-China).
One of its latest launch, Princess Luna Fat Burner Probiotics, claims to reduce abdominal fat and waist circumference with the use of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis postbiotics and the extracts of bitter orange, climbing vine Jiaogulan (Gynostemma pentaphyllum), and ginger root.
Speaking to NutraIngredients-Asia, Olga Stepanko, regulatory and R&D manager at Mom’s Garden, said that the product was designed to promote the body’s metabolism, unlike those that worked by producing laxative effects and water loss.
“With our market research, we discovered that in China, most products for weight management act through the gut and produce laxative effects. They could be helpful in the short term, but it is not sufficient for achieving healthy physiological weight and maintaining it, especially in the long term.
“We saw that there was a lack of good products that act on the body's metabolism, such as activating processes aimed at reducing body fat. Thus, we tried to create something new, something that will present a good alternative to the products currently sold on the market,” Stepanko said.
In this case, the firm has selected botanical extracts that serve as AMPK activators to promote the body’s metabolism.
The AMPK signalling system is a central regulator of energy which coordinates anabolic, catabolic, and metabolic pathways in the body.
“Among other things, it also regulates the energy expenditure of adipose tissue. Recent studies highlighted that some external substances could act as AMPK activators, providing new insights on fat metabolism and obesity treatment.
“Our R&D team focused on this mechanism of action when developing the product,” said Stepanko.
Aside from botanical extracts, the postbiotic or heat-killed form of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis was added to improve abdominal fat reduction.
A three-month clinical trial showed that the postbiotic could improve anthropometric adiposity biomarkers, such as waist circumference and body mass index, especially in women.
Princess Luna Fat Burner Probiotics is currently sold in China via e-commerce platforms such as Taobao.
Supplements for children
On the other hand, the company is growing its children’s health supplement portfolio sold under the brand Inne, with the launch of Inne liquid iron earlier this year.
The product is formulated with spinach and alfalfa powder that serve as sources of dietary iron.
“China is a very important market for us…The problem [for the children nutrition sector] is that birth rate is decreasing. But at the same time, parents are spending more on each child and they want premium products for their babies,” said Naeyoung Kang, director of innovation and branding at Mom's Garden GmbH.
The Inne liquid iron sachet was designed to prevent and address dietary iron deficiency, as well as providing an alternative to prescribed medicines, said Kang.
“The Asian diet is very different from the European diet. Our market research found that the iron supplement category is a big market.
“There are children who are having mild or more severe iron deficiency and are prescribed with different treatments for iron supplementation and parents have been searching for better supplementation sources that are more natural, more effective, and maybe also better accepted by children. That's because if children don't like the product, it is very difficult to prevent iron deficiency,” he said.