Archives for Weekly Science for Holistic Health

This week in science for holistic health – 23Jul2016

      Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This edition: Foods, Diets & Eating – Children need enough energy and protein to grow when on an elimination diet Supplements & Nutrients – Too much vitamin D can be toxic (hypercalcemia) Anatomy & Physiology – Autoimmune thyroid disease should be screened for B12 deficiency PLUS MORE… Foods, Diets & Eating The impact of the elimination diet on growth and nutrient intake in children with food protein induced gastrointestinal allergies. BACKGROUND: Non immunoglobulin E (IgE) mediated allergies affecting the gastrointestinal tract require an elimination diet to aid diagnosis. The elimination diet may entail multiple food eliminations that contribute significantly to macro- and micro-nutrient intake which are essential for normal growth and development. Previous studies have indicated growth faltering in children with IgE-mediated allergy, but limited data is available on those with delayed type allergies. We therefore performed a study to establish the impact on growth before and after commencing an elimination diets in children with food protein induced non-IgE mediated gastrointestinal allergies. … RESULTS: We recruited 130 children: 89 (68.5 %) boys and a median age of 23.3 months [IQR 9.4-69.2]. Almost all children (94.8 %) in this study eliminated cow’s milk from their diet and average contribution of energy in the form of protein was 13.8 % (SD 3.9), 51.2 % (SD 7.5) from carbohydrates and 35 % (SD 7.5) from fat. In our cohort 9 and 2.8 % were stunted and wasted respectively. There was a statistically significant improvement in weight-for-age (Wtage) after the 4 week elimination diet. The elimination diet itself did not improve any of the growth parameters, but achieving energy and protein intake improved Wtage and WtHt respectively, vitamin and/or mineral supplements and
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This Week in Science for Holistic Health – 16July2016

This Week in Science for Holistic Health   Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date!   This edition: Foods, Diets & Eating – Yes! Low FODMAP foods for IBS. Supplements & Nutrients – First European-approved supplement for CVD Lifestyle – Leucine for muscle loss due to inactivity PLUS MORE… Foods, Diets & Eating Efficacy of the low FODMAP diet for treating irritable bowel syndrome: the evidence to date. This review summarizes the published clinical studies concerning the management of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) using restriction of Fermentable Oligosaccharide, Disaccharide, Monosaccharide, and Polyols in the diet (low FODMAP diet). In recent years, the data supporting low FODMAP diet for the management of IBS symptoms have emerged, including several randomized controlled trials, case-control studies, and other observational studies. Unlike most dietary manipulations tried in the past to alleviate gastrointestinal symptoms of IBS, all studies on low FODMAP diet have consistently shown symptomatic benefits in the majority of patients with IBS. However, dietary adherence by the patients and clear dietary intervention led by specialized dietitians appear to be vital for the success of the diet. Up to 86% of patients with IBS find improvement in overall gastrointestinal symptoms as well as individual symptoms such as abdominal pain, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, abdominal distention, and flatulence following the diet. FODMAP restriction reduces the osmotic load and gas production in the distal small bowel and the proximal colon, providing symptomatic relief in patients with IBS. Long-term health effects of a low FODMAP diet are not known; however, stringent FODMAP restriction is not recommended owing to risks of inadequate nutrient intake and potential adverse effects from altered gut microbiota. In conclusion, the evidence to date strongly supports
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This Week in Science for Holistic Health

     Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This edition: Foods, Diets & Eating – Mediterranean diet for pregnancy Supplements & Nutrients – CoQ10 for heart failure Lifestyle – Diet and activity for older adults and cancer prevention Anatomy & Physiology – Diagnosing non-celiac gluten sensitivity PLUS MORE… Foods, Diets & Eating Maternal Dietary Patterns and Pregnancy Outcome. …  The studies detailed above highlight the importance of emphasising healthy dietary choices in preconception counseling to optimise not only reproductive outcomes but also general maternal health. Current guidelines of preconception care emphasise that nutrition and certain lifestyle factors play an important role in pregnancy. This review finds evidence that, for European countries, the Mediterranean diet is a relatively healthy diet. Importantly, the diets with higher intake of fruits, vegetables, legumes and fish have positive pregnancy outcomes in general and this conclusive evidence should be communicated to women specifically. As a modifiable factor, diet is a key area for intervention in pregnant women, but the precise content of the intervention is yet to be elucidated.   Celiac disease: understanding the gluten-free diet. PURPOSE:  The only effective and safe treatment of celiac disease (CD) continues being strict exclusion of gluten for life, the so-called gluten-free diet (GFD). Although this treatment is highly successful, following strict GFD poses difficulties to patients in family, social and working contexts, deteriorating his/her quality of life. We aimed to review main characteristics of GFD with special emphasis on factors that may interfere with adherence to it. METHODS:  We conducted a search of various databases, such as PubMed, Google Scholar, Embase, and Scielo, with focus on key words such as “gluten-free diet”, “celiac disease”, “gluten” and “gluten-free diet adherence”.
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This week in science for holistic health – 25Jun2016

    Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This edition: Foods, Diets & Eating – “…dietary-associated risk is the most important behavioral factor influencing global health…” Supplements & Nutrients – Anti-inflammatory herbs Lifestyle – Exercise for well-being, muscle, belly fat, weight loss and reduced risk of cancer Anatomy & Physiology – Effect of gut microbiome on bone health PLUS MORE… Foods, Diets & Eating Nutrition and Cardiovascular Disease: Finding the Perfect Recipe for Cardiovascular Health. Note from Leesa: This quote blows my mind, “…dietary-associated risk is the most important behavioral factor influencing global health…”! The increasing burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) despite the progress in management entails the need of more effective preventive and curative strategies. As dietary-associated risk is the most important behavioral factor influencing global health, it appears the best target in the challenge against CVD. Although for many years, since the formulation of the cholesterol hypothesis, a nutrient-based approach was attempted for CVD prevention and treatment, in recent years a dietary-based approach resulted more effective in reducing cardiovascular risk worldwide. After the publication of randomized trials on the remarkable effects of the Mediterranean diet and the Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet on CVD, new efforts were put on research about the effects of complex dietary interventions on CVD. The purpose of this paper is to review the evidence on dietary interventions in the prevention and disease modification of CVD, focusing on coronary artery disease and heart failure, the main disease responsible for the enormous toll taken by CVD worldwide.     Potential Benefits of Dietary Fibre Intervention in Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Intestinal dysbiosis is thought to be an important cause of disease progression and
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This week in science for holistic health – 18Jun2016

This Week in Science for Holistic Health Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! Weekly science news to keep holistic health professionals up-to-date with current research.   This edition: Foods, Diets & Eating – We are still looking at effects of foods on our gut microbiota Supplements & Nutrients – More evidence needed for probiotics for IBS Lifestyle – Can we predict sedentary behaviour in children? Anatomy & Physiology – We don’t really know the full effects of human milk on infants’ microbiome PLUS MORE… Foods, Diets & Eating Gut microbiota, diet and obesity-related disorders – the good, the bad and the future challenges. Diet has been shown to be a major factor in modulating the structure of the mammalian gut microbiota by providing specific nutrient sources and inducing environmental changes (pH, bile acids) in the gut ecosystem. Long-term dietary patterns and short-term interventions have been shown to induce changes in gut microbiota structure and function, with several studies revealing metabolic changes likely resulting from the host-microbiota cross-talk, which ultimately could influence host physiology. However, a more precise identification of the specific dietary patterns and food constituents that effectively modulates the gut microbiota and brings a predictable benefit to the host metabolic phenotype is needed to establish microbiome-based dietary recommendations. Here we briefly review the existing data regarding gut microbiota changes induced by different macronutrients and the resulting metabolites produced via their respective fermentation, including their potential effects on obesity and associated metabolic disorders. We also discuss major limitations of current dietary intervention studies as well as future needs of applying cutting-edge ‘omic’ techniques and of progressing in functional microbiota gene discovery to establish robust causal relationships between the dietary-microbiota-induced changes and metabolic health or disease   A Daily Snack Containing Leafy Green Vegetables, Fruit, and Milk Before and during Pregnancy
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Nope, chromium doesn’t help with blood sugar (and other myths) – This Week in Science for Holistic Health – 11Jun2016

    Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This edition is the “debunk edition” (with a few disproves of common beliefs): Before we begin, know that these “debunk” articles are not based on some random “new study”, but are fairly strong reviews and/or meta-analyses of many published studies; so they hold more weight than any individual observational study.(1) Food & Eating – Cocoa is not so anti-inflammatory after all. Supplements & Nutrients – No evidence that chromium helps with glycemic control in T2DM. Disease Prevention – Calories matter!  Higher energy density = increased adiposity, weight, BMI and obesity. Anatomy & Physiology – Yes, there is “metabolically healthy obese”. PLUS MORE… Food & Eating Impact of Cocoa Consumption on Inflammation Processes-A Critical Review of Randomized Controlled Trials. BACKGROUND:  Cocoa flavanols have strong anti-inflammatory properties in vitro. If these also occur in vivo, cocoa consumption may contribute to the prevention or treatment of diseases mediated by chronic inflammation. This critical review judged the evidence for such effects occurring after cocoa consumption.  … CONCLUSIONS:  Little evidence exists that consumption of cocoa-rich food may reduce inflammation, probably by lowering the activation of monocytes and neutrophils. The efficacy seems to depend on the extent of the basal inflammatory burden. Further well-designed RCTs with inflammation as the primary outcome are needed, focusing on specific markers of leukocyte activation and considering endothelial microparticles as marker of vascular inflammation.   Food Literacy: How Do Communications and Marketing Impact Consumer Knowledge, Skills, and Behavior? Workshop Summary. In September 2015, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s Food and Nutrition Board convened a workshop in Washington, DC, to discuss how communications and marketing impact consumer knowledge, skills,
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This Week in Science for Holistic Health – 4Jun2016

    Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date!   This issue: Food & Eating – Alcohol’s health promoting AND health depleting effects. Supplements & Nutrients – Supplements in pregnancy. Disease Prevention – Tai chi for bone health?  (more research needed). PLUS MORE… Food & Eating Alcoholic Beverage Consumption and Chronic Diseases. Epidemiological and experimental studies have consistently linked alcoholic beverage consumption with the development of several chronic disorders, such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus and obesity. The impact of drinking is usually dose-dependent, and light to moderate drinking tends to lower risks of certain diseases, while heavy drinking tends to increase the risks. Besides, other factors such as drinking frequency, genetic susceptibility, smoking, diet, and hormone status can modify the association. The amount of ethanol in alcoholic beverages is the determining factor in most cases, and beverage types could also make an influence. This review summarizes recent studies on alcoholic beverage consumption and several chronic diseases, trying to assess the effects of different drinking patterns, beverage types, interaction with other risk factors, and provide mechanistic explanations.     Running on empty: a review of nutrition and physicians’ well-being. Resident and physician burnout is a complex issue. Adequate nutrition and hydration play important roles in the maintenance of health and well-being of all individuals. Given the high prevalence of burnout in physicians, we believe that in addition to issues related to heavy workload, structure and length of shifts, the current status of physicians’ nutrition and hydration and their effects on their work performance and well-being should also be addressed. In this review, we summarise the current evidence on the potential effects of nutrition and hydration on physicians’
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This week in science for holistic health – 28May2016

    Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This issue: Food & Eating – How the heck do they create dietary guidelines? Supplements & Nutrients – Why you don’t need to be overly concerned with green tea extracts Disease Prevention – IF you eat breakfast, it should have protein and fiber Anatomy & Physiology – Nutrition for heart and bone health PLUS MORE… Food & Eating Foods, Nutrients, and Dietary Patterns: Interconnections and Implications for Dietary Guidelines. Dietary guidelines provide evidence-based statements on food choices to meet nutritional requirements and reduce the risk of prevailing chronic disease. They involve a substantial amount of research translation, and their implementation has important health consequences. Foods, however, are complex combinations of nutrients and other compounds that act synergistically within the food and across food combinations. In addition, the evidence base underpinning dietary guidelines accesses research that reflects different study designs, with inherent strengths and limitations. We propose a systematic approach for the review of evidence that begins with research on dietary patterns. This research will identify the combinations of foods that best protect, or appear deleterious to, health. Next, we suggest that evidence be sought from research that focuses on the effects of individual foods. Finally, nutrient-based research should be considered to explain the mechanisms by which these foods and dietary patterns exert their effects, take into account the effects of ingredients added to the food supply, and enable assessments of dietary sufficiency. The consideration of individual nutrients and food components (e.g., upper limits for saturated fat, added sugar, and sodium) provides important benchmarks for evaluating overall diet quality. The concepts of core and discretionary foods (nutrient-rich and nutrient-poor foods, respectively) enable distinctions between
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Another obesity edition – This week in science for holistic health – 21May2016

    Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This issue: Food & Eating – Is fat the sixth taste? Supplements & Nutrients – How important is selenium, really? Disease Prevention – Obesity from mom’s microbes and epigenetics? PLUS MORE… Food & Eating Preserving Brain Function in Aging: The Anti-glycative Potential of Berry Fruit. Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are naturally occurring macromolecules that are formed in vivo by the non-enzymatic modification of proteins, lipids, or nucleic acids by sugar, even in the absence of hyperglycemia. In the diet, AGEs are found in animal products, and additional AGEs are produced when those foods are cooked at high temperatures. Studies have linked AGEs to various age-related physiological changes, including wrinkles, diabetic complications, and neurodegenerative disease, including Alzheimer’s disease. Dietary berry fruits have been shown to reduce the severity or slow the progression of many physiological changes and disease pathologies that accompany aging. Emerging evidence has shown that the phytochemicals found in berry fruits exhibit anti-glycative activity. In this review, we briefly summarize the current evidence supporting the neuroprotective anti-glycative activity of berry fruits and their potential to preserve cognitive function during aging.  Lipids and obesity: Also a matter of taste? Obesity is undoubtedly one of the major public health challenges worldwide because of its rapid progression and deleterious effects of associated diseases. The easier access to tasty and energy-dense foods is thought to greatly contribute to this epidemic. Studies also report that obese subjects and animals (rats and mice) preferentially consume foods rich in fat when they can choose. The origin of this eating behavior remains elusive. Over the last decade, the existence of a taste of fat, besides
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The Obesity Edition – This week in Science for Holistic Health – 14May2016

  Welcome to This Week in Science for Holistic Health! I scour the science news for interesting and relevant research for a holistic approach to health to keep you up-to-date! This edition: Food & Eating – Strategies to reduce intake of discretionary foods (for chronic disease). Supplements & Nutrients – Yes we DO have nutrient deficiencies! Disease Prevention – Obesity: the role of gut microbiota and genetics. Anatomy & Physiology – Eating too much can trigger inflammation and metabolic disorders. PLUS MORE… Food & Eating Discrete strategies to reduce intake of discretionary food choices: a scoping review. On a population level, dietary improvement strategies have had limited success in preventing the surge in overweight and obesity or reducing risk factors for chronic disease. While numerous multi-component studies have examined whole-of-diet strategies, and single component (i.e. discrete) dietary intervention strategies have targeted an increase in core foods (e.g. fruits, vegetables, dairy), there is a paucity of evidence on the effectiveness of dietary intervention strategies targeting a decrease in discretionary choices. The aim of this review was to identify dietary intervention strategies that are potentially relevant to reducing intake of discretionary choices in 2-65 year olds. A scoping review was carried out to map the literature on key discrete dietary intervention strategies that are potentially applicable to reducing discretionary choices, and to identify the targeted health/nutrition effects (e.g. improve nutrient intake, decrease sugar intake, and reduce body weight) of these strategies. Studies conducted in participants aged 2-65 years and published in English by July 20, 2015, were located through electronic searches including the Cochrane Library, Medline, Embase, CINAHL, and Scopus. Three thousand two hundred and eighty three studies were identified from the search, of which 44 met the selection criteria. The dietary intervention strategies included reformulation (n = 13), substitution (n = 5), restriction/elimination (n = 9), supplementation
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