Rhodiolife® : strict selection of the 'Golden Root' Rhodiola for attention and memory support, performances, besides very strong adaptogenic properties

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Rhodiola rosea L. (Crassulaceae), also known historically as “Golden Root” from the “Golden Montains” (Mongolian word ‘Altan’), is the most popular phytomedicine traditional used to increase physical endurance, work productivity, longevity, memory and attention, resistance to high altitude sickness, fatigue, depression, and disorders of the nervous system.

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3D HPLC profile or Rhodiola

Fig.1 - 3 dimensions HPLC profile of Rhodiola

Comparison between Rhodiola roots and Rhodiolife, our rhodiola extract

Fig. 2 - Comparison between Rhodiola roots and Rhodiolife, our rhodiola extract

Topical use of Rhodiola - study on sunburns

Fig.3 - Topical use of Rhodiola - study on sunburn protection

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A wide array of human health benefits related to mental health and physical performance has been clinically demonstrated using the unique phytomedical form of R. rosea extract specifically standardized to rosavins. Rhodiola rosea possesses valuable anti-fatigue, anti-stress, and anti-depressant properties ; it stimulates the bioelectrical activity of the brain and improves memory and mental performance. In addition, it also increases stamina and accelerates the physical recovery processes after intense training workloads ; it stimulates muscle energy status, improves glycogen synthesis in the muscles and liver and increases muscle protein synthesis and anabolic activity.

The right product from the right place at the right time

While Rhodiola as a genus may have originated in the mountainous regions of Southwest China and the Himalayas, botanists have established that Rhodiola rosea naturally display a circumpolar distribution in mountainous regions in the higher latitudes and elevations of the Northern Hemisphere. In central and Northern Asia, the genus is distributed from the Altai Mountains across Mongolia into many parts of Siberia.
Rhodiola rosea used for the production of RhodioLife® is wildcraft collected from this part, under the Russian Government License. Altai Mountains represents a pristine area free from contamination in of the most well preserved and remote natural environments.
Nektium is involved from the early beginning in the collection practices, with SOPs describing the stage of the plant growth, best time of collection and ecologically non-destructive systems.

Nektium is one of the very few Nutraceutical companies which has been granted an Export License by the Russian Government for the exportation of Rhodiola rosea roots from the Altai (Altay) region (Siberia). Nektium closely collaborates with its supplier implementing procedures that provide general technical guidance for the sustainable collection and processing of Rhodiola rosea roots, following the overall context of quality assurance and the WHO guidelines on Good Agricultural and Collection Practices (GACP). This includes the collection of the plants in the wild, as well as primary processing of the plant material, such as drying, packaging in bulk, storage and transport of the raw materials until it arrives to the Nektium factory. The impact of collection on the environment and ecological processes, and the welfare of local communities are also considered.

Active Ingredients

Activities related to Rhodiola rosea have been traditionally attributed to the presence of four principal active ingredients (see figure 1) : salidroside, rosin, rosavin and rosarin (Sokolov, 1985; Furmanowa, 1998).
The root of R. rosea shows six distinct groups of chemical compounds that Nektium succeeds to preserve during their very gentle process (see figure 2). The Phenylalkanoids are the main contributors, incl. :
• Phenylpropanoid : Rosavins are products of the phenylpropanoid metabolism. Tosavins (ie. rosavin, rosin and rosarin) are specific to the root from Rhodiola rosaea. The rosavins are the constituents currently most often selected as the marker compounds for standardization of extracts, although they are not necessarily the only pharmacologically active ingredients for its medicinal properties.
• Principal phenylethanoids consist of glycosides and salidroside has been reported as the most active tyrosol glycoside, being associated, together with rosavins, to the anti-depressive and anxiolytic effects (Maslowa, 1994; Tolonen, 2003). Other phenylethanoids have also been isolated but with today limited scientific literature concerning the bioactivity (Jiménez 1994).

Nutraceutic Applications

Depression : R. rosea is said to assist the transport of serotonin precursors, tryptophan and 5-HTP into the brain. (Studies shows that serotonin brain neurotransmitter is involved in many functions such as pain perception, behavior, smooth muscle contraction, temperature regulation, appetite, etc...

Sport Performance and muscles recovery : Rhodiola extract one hour before exercise significantly increases capacity for endurance exercise. It also shortens recovery time after long workouts, to increase strength, and anti-toxic action.
Rhodiola extract reduces levels of C-reactive protein, an inflammatory marker, and creatinine kinase, a marker of muscle damage (Abidov M & al., 2004). An other study from Nektium suggests that Rhodiola extract protects against peroxide-induced oxidative stress through the modulation of HPS70 (heat shock protein) in C2C12 muscles cells.

Memory : R. Rosea increases the bioelectrical activity of the brain which improves memory and brain energy. A study also described the Acetylcholine Esterase Inhibitors in Rhodiola rosea. It helps the body adapt to stress by affecting the levels and activity of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, neurotransmitters found in different structures in the brain and influencing the central nervous system. It appears that Rhodiola inhibits the breakdown of these chemicals and facilitates the neurotransmitter transport within the brain. In addition to its impact on the central nervous system, Rhodiola can increase the chemicals that provide energy to the muscle of the heart and prevent the depletion of adrenal hormones induced by acute stress. (Tori Hudson, 2006).

Cardiovascular : Linked to the anti-stress action (and decrease of catecholamines and corticosteroids released by the adrenal glands during stress), R. rosea decreases the amount of cyclic-AMP (c-AMP) released into cardiac cells, and so assist the uptake if lire intracellular calcium for greater heart muscle contraction (regular beat).

Nutraceutic Applications (follow)

Immune System : It stimulates and protects the immune system (homeostasis), and increases the natural killer cells (NK) in the stomach and spleen. This action may be due to its ability to normalize hormones.

Response to Stress : Rhodiola rosea balance the body’s stress-response system. Adaptogenic plants naturally increase the body's non-specific resistance and normalise the functions of the body, with a more resourceful manner when facing stressful situation. R. rosea impacts central monoamine levels.

Nervous system : Case studies have reported that R. rosea helps with depressive syndromes, memory loss, anxiety, cognitive dysfunction and menopause related symptoms.

Nutracosmetic applications

Supplementing with Rhodiola rosea is a whole-body approach to maintaining health and wellness. While most supplements address specific conditions, Rhodiola rosea acts on many biological systems and can counteract one of the primary causes of illness – chronic stress, asthenia and premature aging. In today’s frenetic society, a one-size-fits-all supplement regimen with herbs and vitamins is ineffective. Each person is physiologically unique and requires a specific protocol for health. Supplementing with Rhodiola rosea is the foundation for an individualized supplement protocol because of its ability to heighten the body’s innate ability fight stress – related illness. Rhodiola rosea has been demonstrated to be effective in different important applications:

Stress : the effects of the stress on skin have been extensively proved. Stress is a well-known triggering factor in the appearance or exacerbation of psoriasis, alopecia areata, atopic dermatitis, acne, and other skin disorders. Panconesi et al. described the psychophysiology of stress in dermatology and found that the skin and central nervous system are related embryologically. The parasympathetic nervous system is critical to regulating our stress response. Rhodiola rosea enhances parasympathetic function and fortifies the stress response system, improving our ability to overcome stress and reducing our risk of stress-related health problems.

Anti-aging properties : Application of Rhodiola rosea extract as a useful method of retarding the signs of photoaging and protecting the skin from UV damage. Photoaging can include signs of aging such us skin atrophy and means the thinning and/or general degradation of the dermis caused by free radicals damage which is often characterized by an alteration and degradation of collagen and/or elastin due to extrinsic factors such as photodamage caused by exposure to UV radiation. Rhodiola rosea extract can help in the prevention or retarding skin aging, including wrinkles lines appearance, skin atrophy and thinning appearance reduction. Those properties of Rhodiola rosea extract are associated with:
• DNA Repair
• Collagen synthesis
• Oxiden scavenger
• UV Radiation absorption (see figure 3)
• Figure on the right shows dose-dependent sunburn cell formation in living skin equivalents cells. Pretreatment with Rhodiola rosea significantly reduces the formation of sunburn cells via UVB irradiation. Rhodiola rosea pre-treatment significantly reduces UVB induced sunburn cell formation in LSE. Looking at the UV-Vis spectrum of Rosavins (Rosarin, Rosavin, Rosin), the absortion spectrum has a maximum in same wavelength than UV radiations.

Benefits of Rhodiola for Wrinkles : Enhances Skin Barriers : first, preventing your skin from wrinkling is protecting it from sun damage, which is the chief culprit in pre-mature aging of the skin. One study published in the June 2008 issue of the "Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology" showed that extracts of Rhodiola rosea improved the skin's defensive barrier functions against the stress of UV rays. Subjects of this study were classified as having sensitive skin.

Supports Elastin Production : Elastin is the rubber band effect in the skin that enables it to bounce back instead of sagging or wrinkling. Genetics play the largest role in determining how fast skin will wrinkle with the fairer skin having the highest risk of damage, according to the experts at SkinCarePhysicians.com. Applying Rhodiola rosea extract to delicate areas of the skin may help prevent premature wrinkling as the herb increases two types of molecular components needed by the body to create elastin. According to the cosmetic company, Origins, one of their skin care products containing Rhodiola showed significant reductions in line-wrinkles after an 8 week clinical test.

Supports Collagen Production : The dermis is the second of three layers of skin, sitting just below the epidermis. The dermis consists of collective tissues, including elastin and collagen, which support the skin and provide its flexibility. When in good supply, elastin and collagen prevent sagging and wrinkling. Imagine the skin as a trampoline, which has to rebound after every stretch and strain. Rhodiola rosea elevates the number of hydroxyproline and hexosamine molecules, which are necessary for the body to make collagen.

Antioxidant and Stress Support : Rhodiola rosea can be used to treat the body holistically as it contains neuro-supportive ingredients and antioxidants, which assist the body in coping with stress. Consider the effects of stress and the role it plays in the skin's vibrancy. According to a February 17, 2010 article on the Fox News health blog, Rhodiola rosea contains pharmacological active compounds called rosavins, which are able to assist the body systems with oxygen deprivation, stress and immune support -- all important considerations for skin management.

Gontran Gaillot