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Category: Nutrition (Page 1 of 8)

Consuming low-calorie sweeteners at the same time as carbohydrates impacts the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar

Nature »

Sugar substitutes make people feel they can indulge in a sweet treat or a soft drink without the calories. But research suggests that consuming low-calorie sweeteners at the same time as carbohydrates prevents the body from using blood sugar effectively, increasing the risk of health problems.

Dana Small at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, and her colleagues asked 60 healthy people to consume 7 beverages of a single type over 2 weeks. The beverages contained either sugar, the low-calorie sweetener sucralose, a non-sweetening carbohydrate or both sucralose and the carbohydrate.

Replacing red meat with plant protein will help you live longer better

In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) stated there was enough evidence to classify processed meat as “carcinogenic to humans” and red meat as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”

CNN »

In the first study, which tracked more than 37,000 Americans with an average age of 50, those who ate the most plant protein were 27% less likely to die of any cause and 29% less likely to die of coronary heart disease when compared to people who ate the least amount of plant protein.

“It isn’t enough just to avoid red meat — it’s also about what you choose to eat in place of red meat,” Dr. Zhilei Shan, lead study author and postdoctoral research fellow at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, said in a news release.

Shan pointed out that nuts, seeds, legumes and whole grains contain more than just protein. They include healthy fats, vitamins, minerals and antioxidant “phytochemicals,” which he said “have been associated with lower risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers.”

Over 40% of American adults are obese. Nearly 1 in 10 are morbidly obese.

More than 4 in 10 Americans are now obese.

Key findings from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study »

  • In 2017–2018, the age-adjusted prevalence of obesity in adults was 42.4%, and there were no significant differences between men and women among all adults or by age group.
  • The age-adjusted prevalence of severe obesity in adults was 9.2% and was higher in women than in men.
  • Among adults, the prevalence of both obesity and severe obesity was highest in non-Hispanic black adults compared with other race and Hispanic-origin groups.
  • The prevalence of severe obesity was highest among adults aged 40–59 compared with other age groups.
  • From 1999–2000 through 2017–2018, the prevalence of both obesity and severe obesity increased among adults.

This research corresponds to earlier studies that suggest half of adult Americans will be obese within 10 years.

More » Associated Press

New research associates the consumption of dairy milk with a much greater risk of developing breast cancer

Evidence suggest that consistently drinking as little as a quarter of a cup of dairy milk per day was associated with an increased risk of breast cancer of 30 percent.

Drinking one cup per days was associated with a 50 percent increase.

Drinking two to three cups of milk per day increases the risk 70 to 80%.

Science Daily »

Current U.S. Dietary guidelines recommend three cups of milk per day. “Evidence from this study suggests that people should view that recommendation with caution,” Fraser said.

Dietary intakes of nearly 53,000 North American women were evaluated for the study, all of whom were initially free of cancer and were followed for nearly eight years. Dietary intakes were estimated from food frequency questionnaires (FFQ), also repeated 24 hour recalls, and a baseline questionnaire had questions about demographics, family history of breast cancer, physical activity, alcohol consumption, hormonal and other medication use, breast cancer screening, and reproductive and gynecological history.

By the end of the study period, there were 1,057 new breast cancer cases during follow-up. No clear associations were found between soy products and breast cancer, independent of dairy. But, when compared to low or no milk consumption, higher intakes of dairy calories and dairy milk were associated with greater risk of breast cancer, independent of soy intake. Fraser noted that the results had minimal variation when comparing intake of full fat versus reduced or nonfat milks; there were no important associations noted with cheese and yogurt.

“However,” he said, “dairy foods, especially milk, were associated with increased risk, and the data predicted a marked reduction in risk associated with substituting soymilk for dairy milk. This raises the possibility that dairy-alternate milks may be an optimal choice.”

Canada’s Food Guide was updated in January for the first time in more than a decade. Noticeably, there was a de-emphasis on dairy consumption and the suggestion Canadians should instead consume more water.

More » News Medical, Daily Mail

Mediterranean diet increases good gut bacteria which is linked to healthy living

Half the participants were asked to eat more vegetables, legumes, fruits, nuts, olive oil, and fish – and less red meat and dairy.

Paul O’Toole, University College Cork

Since our everyday diets have such a big affect on the gut microbiome, our team was curious to see if it can be used to promote healthy ageing. We looked at a total of 612 people aged 65-79, from the UK, France, the Netherlands, Italy and Poland. We asked half of them to change their normal diet to a Mediterranean diet for a full year. This involved eating more vegetables, legumes, fruits, nuts, olive oil and fish, and eating less red meat, dairy products and saturated fats. The other half of participants stuck to their usual diet.

We initially found that those who followed the Mediterranean diet had better cognitive function and memory, less inflammation, and better bone strength. However, what we really wanted to know was whether or not the microbiome was involved in these changes.

[…]

Many of the participants were also pre-frail (meaning their bone strength and density would start decreasing) at the beginning of the study. We found the group who followed their regular diet became frailer over the course of the one-year study. However, those that followed the Mediterranean diet were less frail.

The link between frailty, inflammation, and cognitive function, to changes in the microbiome was stronger than the link between these measures and dietary changes. This suggests that the diet alone wasn’t enough to improve these three markers. Rather, the microbiome had to change too – and the diet caused these changes to the microbiome.

[…]

Future studies will need to focus on what key ingredients in a Mediterranean diet were responsible for these positive microbiome changes. But in the meantime, it’s clear that the more you can stick to a Mediterranean diet, the higher your levels of good bacteria linked to healthy ageing will be.

Paul O’Toole, Professor of Microbial Genomics, School of Microbiology and APC Microbiome Institute, University College Cork

This excerpt is from an article published at The Conversation. Read the original article.

Taking vitamin supplements during chemotherapy for cancer could be counterproductive

CBC »

Researchers at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, N.Y., followed 1,134 breast cancer patients. The six-year study was part of a Phase 3 clinical trial to determine the best dose and schedule for three chemotherapy drugs in high-risk, early-stage breast cancer.

As part of the research, participants filled in surveys about their use of supplements before and during chemotherapy, as well as their lifestyle, diet and exercise habits.

Among the 18 per cent who took vitamins like A, C or E, all of which are antioxidants, their risk of the cancer returning was 40 per cent higher than the participants who didn’t take supplements.

Consuming oatmeal for breakfast instead of eggs and white toast might lower people’s risk of stroke

Reuters Health »

Most ischemic strokes occur when a clot blocks an artery carrying blood to the brain.

To minimize that risk, the American Heart Association (AHA) recommends not smoking, getting regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, keeping blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar in check, and eating a diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and lean protein with limited sweets and fats.

Replacing one weekly serving of eggs or white bread with oatmeal was specifically associated with a 5% lower risk of ischemic stroke from blockages in small arteries, the researchers note.

Nearly all toddlers and infants in the US eat foods containing added sugars and artificial sweeteners on any given day

Vishwadha Chander, Reuters »

Based on data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from 2011 through 2016, the study team found that 98.3% of toddlers (ages 12 months to 23 months) and 60.6% of infants (age up to 11 months) consumed added sugars, mainly from yogurt, baby food, snacks and sweets, bakery products and fruit drinks.

[…]

… only the American Heart Association (AHA) provided guidance for infants and toddlers, said study leader Kirsten Herrick, who conducted the research while at the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics.

In a 2017 statement, the AHA said children under 2 years must avoid consuming added sugars entirely.

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