BeniCaros® is a plant-based, award-winning, upcycled carrot fiber that trains the innate immune system to respond faster and smarter

The growing interest in personal fitness and healthy aging fuels a strong demand for immune-boosting products containing vitamins, herbal extracts, probiotics, and more. Following recent outbreaks in infectious diseases and global pandemic, people are more invested in their health and well-being than ever. Between the years 2021 and 2022, 27% of global vitamin and mineral supplement launches had an immune health claim, up from less than 20% five years ago (1). Although immune health remained a focus following COVID-19 pandemic most consumers are now moving towards dietary supplements that deliver multiple benefits like digestive health, sleep, cognition, and others for overall health maintenance (2). 

Research has shown that digestive health has been associated with immune health. The gut microbiota that resides in the gastrointestinal tract provides essential health benefits to its host, particularly by regulating immune homeostasis (3,4). Therefore, nutrition can be a key influencer of immune function. Gut bacteria is known to thrive on complex carbohydrates and fiber which can be obtained from plant foods, like apples, broccoli, carrots and yams. 


What is BeniCaros® 

Nutrileads, one of the innovators in health ingredients, has recently launched the plant-derived prebiotic fiber BeniCaros®. It is a soluble prebiotic carrot fiber that has been clinically proven to deliver multiple immune health benefits. A first-of-its-kind ingredient with a unique dual mode of action, BeniCaros® is driving innovation in functional foods, beverages, and supplements. It is a patented bioactive polysaccharide (fiber) known as cRG-I (rhamnogalacturonan-I) derived from upcycled carrot pomace. BeniCaros® trains the immune system to be fit year-round through a unique dual mode of action. Due to its one-of-a-kind structure (medium to high complexity polysaccharide), it selectively stimulates the growth of beneficial microorganisms. It leads to the increased production of metabolites such as short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) (5). SCFAs can leave the gut, move around the body via circulation, and interact with immune cells, thereby influencing immune responsiveness. The immune cells recognized and ‘trained’ by BeniCaros® in the small intestine can move throughout the body. When they reach the respiratory tract (or other locations), they play an important role in the early immune response against infections. Because trained immune cells can respond faster, people consuming BeniCaros® can experience less severe symptoms for a shorter duration if they are infected by a common cold virus, for example. 

BeniCaros®’s immunoprotective effects have been proven scientifically through multiple in vitro, in vivo, and ex vivo studies the results of which have been published in the literature (5,6,7,8). Furthermore, these benefits were recently proven clinically through a randomized, double‐blind, placebo‐controlled trial where Nutrileads investigated the effect of cRG‐I at 0 g/day, 0.3 g/day and 1.5 g/day. The results of the study demonstrated that intake of cRG‐I was safe, well‐tolerated, and accelerated local cellular and humoral innate immune responses induced by RV16 infection. cRG‐I accelerated innate immune responses to RV16 in a linear dose‐dependent manner. Daily consumption of BeniCaros® before the rhinovirus infection significantly accelerated protective innate immune and antiviral responses, resulting in a 20% reduction in severity of symptoms, and a 25% reduction in symptom duration6. Moreover, BeniCaros®’s prebiotic effects are appropriately selective and achieved with significantly less gas production than the other common prebiotics. 

Image: BeniCaros® dual mode mechanism of action

Formulation Advantage 

In spite of the complex polysaccharide structure and effective prebiotic efficacy, BeniCaros® possess simpler physicochemical properties that are amicable to incorporate this fiber into a wide variety of formulations. Being a naturally derived fiber that is water soluble, without a taste and highly effective at a low dose of 300 mg per day makes it very compatible in a dietary supplement format. A daily dose fits easily in a gummy, or a capsule or a tablet. The smaller dose also makes BeniCaros® easier to incorporate into food and beverages. 

BeniCaros® which is gluten-free, non-GMO, Halal and Kosher certified is now available for organic labelling. 


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About the Expert

Dr. Nilesh Patankar, Head of Formulation & Innovation

Currently working at Quadra as Head of Formulation and Innovation. This is an industry liaison role through which Nilesh provide the required scientific, technical expertise and support to Quadra’s customers and suppliers. Before joining Quadra, Nilesh obtained a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences from University of British Columbia, Canada and have worked in the Pharmaceutical R&D and product development for over twelve years. Nilesh’s expertise includes end-to-end product development, scale-up and technology transfer for a variety of dosage forms. Nilesh possesses extensive knowledge of ingredients and their functionality in the finished products. Nilesh has six research articles published in high impact international journals with over one hundred citations.

  1. Mintel: The Future of Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements: 2022. 
  2. Immunity plus: The latest trend in dietary supplements: 2023 
  3. Ley RE, Peterson DA, Gordon JI. Ecological and evolutionary forces shaping microbial diversity in the human intestine. Cell 2006; 124:837-48. 
  4. Hsin-Jung Wu and Eric Wu. The role of gut microbiota in immune homeostasis and autoimmunity. Gut Microbes 3:1, 4–14; 2012; 4-14. 
  5. Pieter Van den Abbeele, Lynn Verstrepen, Jonas Ghyselinck, Ruud Albers, Massimo Marzorati and Annick Mercenier.  A Novel Non-Digestible, Carrot-Derived Polysaccharide (cRG-I) Selectively Modulates the Human Gut Microbiota while Promoting Gut Barrier Integrity: An Integrated in Vitro Approach. Nutrients 2020, 12, 1917-1938. 
  6. René Lutter, Annemarie Teitsma‐Jansen, Esther Floris, Saeeda Lone‐Latif, Abilash Ravi, Yanaika S. Sabogal Pineros, Tamara Dekker, Barbara Smids, Ridha Khurshid, Marcela Aparicio‐Vergara, Rianne Ruijschop, Lara Ravanetti, Wim Calame, Alwine Kardinaal and Ruud Albers. The Dietary Intake of Carrot‐Derived Rhamnogalacturonan‐I Accelerates and Augments the Innate Immune and Anti‐Viral Interferon Response to Rhinovirus Infection and Reduces Duration and Severity of Symptoms in Humans in a Randomized Trial. Nutrients 2021, 13, 4395-4409. 
  7. Van den Abbeele, P.; Duysburgh, C.; Cleenwerck, I.; Albers, R.; Marzorati, M.; Mercenier, A. Consistent Prebiotic Effects of Carrot RG-I on the Gut Microbiota of Four Human Adult Donors in the SHIME®Model despite Baseline Individual ariability.Microorganisms 2021, 9, 2142. 
  8. McKay, S.; Oranje, P.; Helin, J.; Koek, J.H.; Kreijveld, E.; van den Abbeele, P.; Pohl, U.; Bothe, G.; Tzoumaki, M.; Aparicio‐Vergara, M.; et al. Development of an Affordable, Sustainable and Efficacious Plant‐Based Immunomodulatory Food Ingredient Based on Bell Pepper or Carrot RG‐I Pectic Polysaccharides. Nutrients 2021, 13, 963.