Nestle are attempting to make a drink that can trigger the metabolism and burn fat in the same way as mild levels of exercise.
A group of scientists in Switzerland who are working for the food giant believe they can target an enzyme in the body which regulates the metabolism with a compound called C13, according to Bloomberg.
Although a snack bar or energy drink is a way off yet, the team of eight are currently experimenting with fruit and vegetable extracts in order to see which ones best target the AMPK enzyme.
The enzyme can help people who can’t tolerate or continue rigorous exercise. Instead of 20 minutes of jogging or 40 minutes of cycling, it may help boost metabolism with moderate exercise like brisk walking. They’d get similar effects with less strain.
- Kei Sakamoto, food scientist at Nestle
The development could help people in old age or those with debilitating diseases like diabetes and those who are morbidly obese.
Testing on animals will not start for a few years, Sakamoto confirmed to Bloomberg, but Nestle's share price rose by 0.3 per cent as news that they were beginning to target an area coveted by pharmaceutical companies broke this week.
The border between food and pharma will narrow in the coming years. Companies with a diversified, healthy food portfolio will emerge as the winners.
- Jean-Philippe Bertschy, analyst at Bank Vontobel AG, Zurich