Taurine is garnishing much attention in the news lately due to a recent study published in Science Magazine (Singh, 2023) touting its biological importance in anti-aging. It’s making some assumptions about human biology as taurine levels have been shown to decline with age, but taurine has been on the dietary supplement scene since its discovery in 1846.
If you are a current or aspiring dietary supplement brand owner interested in formulating a nutraceutical product containing taurine, I encourage you to continue reading. In this article, I will define what taurine is, summarize the findings of recent clinical studies conducted on taurine, what health benefits taurine offers, and how Vitaquest can help you manufacture a high-quality taurine supplement.
Let’s Start by Answering the Question – What is Taurine?
Named after the Latin “Taurus,” meaning ox or bull, taurine is a sulfur-containing non-essential amino acid found in abundant quantities in the heart, skeletal muscle, eye, testis, and central nervous system. Taurine can be synthesized from cysteine and/or come from dietary protein sources such as shellfish, meat, or whole milk.
Taurine is implicated in a variety of metabolic and cellular functions including but not limited to osmoregulation, cell membrane, intracellular calcium homeostasis, as well as functioning as an anti-inflammatory and modulating energy expenditure. It may also serve as an epigenetic control mechanism for the regulation of fatty acid and glucose metabolism. Furthermore, taurine is implicated in bile formation and microbiome balance in the gut as well as cholesterol control (Yamori 2010; Mizushima, 1996). Taurine has been shown to promote insulin control, support eye health, neurotransmitter receptor function, and blood pressure regulation. There are a good number of human studies published on the use of taurine, and it is very well tolerated with little to no reported toxicity or side effects even when 3-5g/day were taken (Moludi,2022; Yamori, 2010; Shao2008).
Details on The Study About Taurine
The study conducted by a group of scientists from the National Institute of Immunology in New Delhi found that daily doses of taurine in mice, monkeys, and worms led to improved metabolism, strength, bone density, and memory. Inflammation and DNA damage also decreased, while antioxidant capacity increased.(Singh, 2023)
Natural synthesis and intake of taurine declines over time, causing human taurine levels to decrease with age. But what happens when you increase taurine levels? Without the illnesses and side effects caused by aging, middle-aged mice in the study expanded their life span by 10% to 23%. After finding success in their study, scientists wonder whether increasing taurine levels can yield similar results among humans.
While more studies must be done, these findings are a breakthrough, prompting a surge in the popularity of taurine supplements. (Singh, 2023)
How Do People Use Taurine in Other Cultures?
The recent buzz does seem justified when you consider previous trends in life extension and quality of life studies hitting the news, like that of resveratrol and the “French paradox.” Similar comparisons can be made for taurine since it is implicated as one of the primary drivers for the heart-protective diet and low obesity rates observed in Japanese culture, which is attributed to their high consumption of fish and shellfish. In these comparative studies between subjects from Japan and other Western nations, the administration of taurine revealed its fundamental role in promoting heart health. Taurine emerged as a pivotal component in maintaining a positive impact on cardiovascular well-being, particularly in cases involving dysregulated lipid and glucose metabolism. These metabolic disturbances frequently result in an imbalance of energetic homeostasis between lipids and carbohydrates, which are prevalent issues observed among individuals in the US population. (Moludi, 2022; Yamori, 2010; Yamori 2009; Mizushima, 1996)
What Are the Reported Health Benefits of Taurine Supplements?
Consumer searches for taurine supplements have skyrocketed since this report was released (see the graph below from Google Trends). While taurine is already an additive in popular energy drinks, forward-thinking supplement brands are looking for ways to add this popular supplement to their product line. Protein powders are another source of taurine. Taurine is also popular in capsule form.
Until now, taurine supplements were most popular among the health and fitness audience segments; however, this new study suggesting that taurine can nutritionally support and promote ocular, cardiovascular, and cognitive health have widened the market to average consumers.
One of the great benefits of good press for taurine is that it will gain more attention and more research. Taurine, along with other sulfur-containing amino acids and small molecules, are fundamental to our metabolic agility and evolution as a species. With its excellent safety profile and dietary tolerance, taurine has the potential to rise to the forefront of supplement industry research. It not only promotes human health, but also fills gaps in an all-plant diet while aligning with the environmental imperative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by decreasing our reliance on animal products. As research continues to uncover the potential benefits of taurine supplements, more consumers are recognizing its value beyond the fitness realm.
How Can Vitaquest Help You Manufacture a High-quality Taurine Supplement?
Don’t miss your chance to take advantage of the taurine supplement trend and meet the needs of your customers. If you’re looking for a forward-thinking manufacturing partner that can help you take your supplement from idea to market, contact our team at Vitaquest. Made up of the industry’s leading scientists, manufacturing experts, and packaging professionals, we possess over 45 years of experience helping brand owners like you deliver what’s next in this ever-changing and evolving supplement industry. Contact us or call 800-526-9095 to learn more about our nutraceutical manufacturing services and solutions!