OptiBiotix products could have key role in virus fight

OptiBiotix products can help people lose weight and live a healthier lifestyleOptiBiotix products can help people lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle
OptiBiotix products can help people lose weight and live a healthier lifestyle | other

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OptiBiotix Health, which develops compounds to tackle obesity, is looking to expand its weight management products globally following the news that 72 per cent of people in intensive car units with Covid-19 are obese or overweight.

The York-based firm said obesity can exacerbate Covid-19 symptoms, weakening the patient's immunity and increasing the likelihood of death.

OptiBiotix said figures released by the Intensive Care National Audit and Research Centre (ICNARC) have shown that of those admitted into intensive care, 72 per cent were deemed overweight or obese, with a body mass index (BMI) of above 25, or obese with a BMI above 30.

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Dr Bharat Pankhania, senior clinical lecturer at the University of Exeter, said the research shows overweight people are more vulnerable to the coronavirus.

OptiBiotix chief executive Stephen OHara said: "If you are overweight or obese and you catch coronavirus, you are more likely to end up in ICU and also more likely to die of the disease than people who are not overweight.

"Given there is no current treatment or vaccine for Covid-19, a sensible approach is to reduce the risk of serious consequences if you get it. OptiBiotix is a key player in the microbiome market with products which reduce obesity and cardiovascular risk.

"You've got to reduce your risk if you do get it. Overweight and obese people are more likely to die."

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The group started selling its products just over two years ago and now has products in over 70 countries including the health food chain Holland & Barrett, which launched its own OptiBiotix SlimBiome range earlier this year.

The health food chain said: "Backed by strong scientific principles and clinical trials, these innovative supplements have been proven to help you manage your weight while nourishing your body.

"We strongly believe that keeping your weight in check shouldn’t leave you hungry and unhealthy. That’s why each SlimBiome supplement is made of a patented blend of glucomannan, inulin and chromium, as well as essential vitamins and minerals. This blend helps your body to feel fuller for longer, supports your metabolism and reduces cravings."

https://www.hollandandbarrett.com/shop/brands/slimbiome/SlimBiome is sold in fruit flavour sachets which are dissolved in water. If consumed half an hour before a meal, they can drastically reduce appetite.

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Since starting out in the UK, OptiBiotix has expanded into mainland Europe, the US and Asia. Its next target is China and it hopes to launch products there later this year.

As well as fruit drinks, OptiBiotix sells bars, shakes, snack bars and it recently launched Gummies, which taste like Haribo, but are high in fibre and fruit.

A serving of Gummies provides 40 per cent of the recommended daily intake of fibre to support gut health, alongside chromium to help maintain blood sugar levels, and glucomannan to help people feel fuller for longer. They have no added sugar or sweeteners and they are high in fruit.

OptiBiotix said a consumer survey carried out by contacting customers who bought SlimBiome sold in snack bars and shakes as part of a weight management program under the GoFigure range showed that 100 per cent of customers who used the products over a continued period lost weight. The average was a 1.2kg weight loss each week.

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100 per cent of customers reported that using GoFigure products led them to reduce food intake, typically by eating smaller food portions.

Some 93 per cent of customers reported that using GoFigureproducts had led to reduced snacking and 83 per cent reported they felt less hungry when using the product.

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