HEALTH

Designer Whey teams with ‘The Biggest Loser’ to promote whey protein

BY Michael Johnsen

CARLSBAD, Calif. Designer Whey on Thursday announced that it is joining forces with NBC’s weight loss program The Biggest Loser to help contestants and viewers retake control of their lives by creating a co-branded protein product, The Biggest Loser Protein by Designer Whey, which is already available in stores and online.

The Biggest Loser offers contestants life changing tools to regain their health through supervised dieting and exercise, and Designer Whey offers everyone life changing products for better results inside and out,” said David Jenkins, chief executive officer of Designer Whey. “We are excited to see, along with the rest of America, the positive impact that our research-proven Designer Whey products will have on The Biggest Loser contestants and fans.”

Contestants of The Biggest Loser season seven will use the cross-branded Designer Whey and The Biggest Loser Protein in their quest for better health on the show, and after. The Biggest Loser Protein by Designer Whey will be available in four flavors: blue blueberry, red raspberry, chocolate deluxe and vanilla bean The Biggest Loser Protein by Designer Whey has been developed through a licensing agreement with NBC Universal Television, DVD, Music and Consumer Products Group, the company reported.

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WebMD, FDA form partnership

BY Michael Johnsen

ROCKVILLE, Md. The Food and Drug Administration and WebMD, which attracts nearly 50 million unique visitors each month, on Wednesday announced a collaboration that expands consumer access to the agency’s health information.

The joint effort reflects the FDA’s emphasis on using innovative, technology-based strategies to carry out its foremost mission, which is to promote and to protect the public health, the agency stated.

“We are enthusiastic about this collaboration with WebMD because it will enable us to reach more consumers with accurate, science-based information that can help them improve their health,” stated Andrew von Eschenbach, FDA commissioner. “This is an important step forward in our effort to form partnerships to help bring timely safety alerts and other public health information to a wider audience in the most effective and convenient way.”

The partnership includes a new online consumer health information resource on WebMD.com (www.webmd.com/fda) where consumers can access information on the safety of FDA-regulated products, including food, medicine and cosmetics, as well as learn how to report problems involving the safety of these products directly to the FDA. In addition, WebMD will bring the FDA public health alerts to all WebMD registered users and site visitors that request them. The cross-linked joint resource will also feature FDA’s Consumer Updates—easy-to-read articles that are also posted on the FDA’s main consumer web page.

FDA Consumer Updates will also be featured at least three times a year in WebMD’s bimonthly magazine, which reaches nearly 9 million consumers. The magazine is distributed to physician office waiting rooms across the country.

Consumers have increasingly consulted all types of sources to find health information, and the Internet is their fastest growing resource, according to a national study released in August 2008 by the Center for Studying Health System Change. Researchers found that 32 percent of American consumers conducted online health searches in 2007, compared with 16 percent in 2001.

The study also found that most consumers who researched health concerns reported positive outcomes. More than half of those surveyed said the information changed their overall approach to maintaining their health. Four in five said the information helped them better understand how to treat an illness or condition.

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New book highlights unfamiliar supplements

BY Michael Johnsen

HOUSTON A recently published book—The Top 20 Life-Changing Nutrients You Can’t (Shouldn’t) Live Without, by Ward Bond—highlights a number of dietary supplements that may as yet be unfamiliar with American consumers, including aequorin, Lion’s Mane, maca and andrographis, publisher Nutritional Living Media announced Wednesday.

Within the book, Bond predicts that such exotically-named supplements as Lion’s Mane will be common household names in short order and quotes clinical tests proving the value of these and other exotic products.

“Conventional medicine has been slow to acknowledge the benefits of these tested and proved supplements,” Bond said. “But the evidence of their health benefits has become so overwhelming they no longer can be ignored.”

According to the book, Japanese scientists discovered a compound in Lion’s Mane which causes brain neurons to re-grow. Studies also confirm many of its traditional uses, supporting the digestive system, and acting as a tonic for the nervous system.Aequorin, a jellyfish protein, has been shown to have anti-aging properties; maca has been reported to help improve stamina, endurance and mental concentration; and andrographis is used as an immunity booster.

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