AG Herb MIX: mixed extract of four kinds of herbs - 機能性食品素材 - アークレイ - ARKRAY

AG Herb MIX: mixed extract of four kinds of herbs - 機能性食品素材 - アークレイ - ARKRAY

Mixed herbal extract

AG Herb MIX: mixed extract of four kinds of herbs

Four kinds of herbs

chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile), dokudami (Houttuynia cordata), hawthorn berry (Crataegus laevigata), and grape (Vitis vinifera).
  • Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile)1)

    Chamomile, also called “kamitsure” in Japan, is a classic herb that is well known for its use in herbal teas, etc. In general, there are German and Roman chamomiles. Roman chamomile is used here. Roman chamomile is a perennial plant native to Europe. Its dried flower head is called Roman chamomile flower and used as the raw ingredient. Its traditional benefits include the maintenance of a healthy digestive system and anti-inflammatory activity.

    Note: The picture shows a Roman chamomile with a different flower shape to the actual raw ingredient (photograph taken in the herb garden of Uji city botanical park in 2006).

  • Dokudami (Houttuynia cordata)2)

    Dokudami is a perennial plant distributed widely throughout the temperate and subtropical zones in eastern Asia including Japan, China, Taiwan, Himalaya, and Indonesia. It is listed in the Japanese Pharmacopoeia with the name “juyaku” (ten medicines). As the name suggests, it is said to have ten medicinal effects and has been utilized since long ago. Its benefits include bacteriostasis and detoxification activities. The leaves of dokudami (above ground part) are used here.
  • Hawthorn berry (Crataegus laevigata)1)

    In the United States and Europe, hawthorn berries are used as a herb helpful for the heart. Its activity is milder than that of digitalis. Studies indicate it improves a wide range of functions in the circulatory system. The hawthorn plant is found in northwestern and central Europe from England to Latvia, the west side of the Pyrenees, and northern Italy. Its fruit is spherical or oval and deep red in color. The berry of hawthorn plant is used here.
  • Grape (Vitis vinifera)1)

    The grape is a plant cultivated worldwide as the raw ingredient for wine as well as a food. It is becoming clear from investigations that, not only wine, but also grape leaf and seed extract have antioxidant activity and excellent health benefits for blood vessels. The grape leaves are used here.
Why were these four herbs selected?
There are some natural plant ingredients reported to have anti-glycation activity. It is considered that polyphenols are the main active substances. The distribution of polyphenolic substances is deeply related to plant evolution and classifications, being utilized as one of the indexes of scientific plant taxonomy (chemotaxonomy). Therefore, the plants that belong to the same taxonomic family or tribe are expected to contain polyphenolic substances with similar structures3). As shown in the figure on the right, AGEs formation in a living body has multiple paths with bypasses and branches. In addition, the glycation and oxidation reactions are complexly tangled4). Therefore, it is necessary to simultaneously inhibit multiple paths using several ingredients in order to obtain useful anti-glycation activity in a living body. As a result, when selecting and combining plant ingredients with anti-glycation activities, the utilization of several kinds of polyphenolic substances should be realized by considering the knowledge of plant taxonomy.
Plant raw ingredients for AG Herb MIX
Accordingly, we explored the anti-glycation activities in various plant extracts based on the following five aspects and evaluated their commercialization and functionality as food materials.
  1. Familiar to Japanese people as foods and a high level of safety can be secured.
  2. Herbs that belong to different groups of the plant taxonomy.
  3. Anti-aging activities through anti-glycation can be verified.
  4. Inhibition of glycation in a living body.
  5. Stable supply of the ingredients can be secured easily.
Consequently, we identified the anti-glycation activities in dokudami (Houttuynia cordata), hawthorn berry (Crataegus laevigata), Roman chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile), and grape leaf (Vitis vinifera). These plants are familiar to Japanese people, widely consumed, different with respect to plant taxonomy (right figure), and can be stably supplied as raw ingredients.