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<<30313233343536373839>> Total results:5062 References Per Page:

“Natural” Stimulant Found In Nutritional Supplements Is Actually Synthetic – And Dangerous

July 12, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A substance known as DMAA (1,3-dimethylamylamine), which is marketed as a “natural” stimulant in a variety of pre-workout and nutritional supplements, is actually a synthetic compound, U.S. researchers have found. Some DMAA products claim the compound is derived from geranium plants. But the deaths of two U.S. soldiers after using DMAA-based supplements led to closer scrutiny. Investigators not only found no DMAA in geranium plants, they determined that DMAA comprises four synthetic compounds called stereo-isomers. They recommended that the FDA either regulate or ban “products in which significant amounts of pharmacological compounds are added.”
Ying Zhang et al., "1,3-Dimethylamylamine (DMAA) in supplements and geranium products: natural or synthetic?", Drug Testing and Analysis, July 12, 2012, © John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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Body
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Worldwide
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United States of America

Obesity Itself Does Not Directly Cause Poor Performance In School

July 12, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Despite previous findings that obese children do poorly in school compared to their thinner peers, new research shows that being overweight does not by itself damage educational performance. For the study, British researchers analyzed data on 4,000 children who were part of a larger study of kids born in the 1990s. They looked for any correlation between children’s obesity (measured by body mass index) and school test results. Heavier children did do poorer in school, they noted, but when other genetic markers – e.g., coming from a socially disadvantaged family – were taken into account, there was no link between obesity and exam performance.
Stephanie von Hinke Kessler Scholder, "Obese Kids as Bright as Thinner Peers", News release, early findings of study funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (U.K.) , July 12, 2012, © Economic and Social Research Council
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
Conditions
Kid's Health
Pre-School/School
Teen
Dieting & Weight Control
Obesity
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Worldwide
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Europe
United Kingdom

Menopausal Symptoms May Be Reduced By Losing Weight, Eating Low-Fat Diet

July 11, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Hot flashes and night sweats are frequently experienced by women before or after menopause as their estrogen levels decline. But U.S. researchers who looked at the effects of a low-fat diet and weight loss on nearly 49,000 postmenopausal women found that those who lost ten or more pounds (or 10 or more percent of their weight) were more likely to eliminate hot flashes and night sweats after a year. It especially helped if their diet was low in fat and rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. “Weight loss or weight gain prevention may offer a viable strategy to help eliminate hot flashes and night sweats associated with menopause," the researchers said.
Candyce H. Kroenke et al., "Effects of a dietary intervention and weight change on vasomotor symptoms in the Women's Health Initiative", Menopause, July 11, 2012, © The North American Menopause Society
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
Conditions
Food & Nutrition
Women's Health
Menstruation & Menopause
Dieting & Weight Control
Other Food & Nutrition
Obesity
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Worldwide
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United States of America

Daily Iron Supplements Not Necessary To Prevent Anemia In Pregnant Women

July 11, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Pregnant women need not take iron supplements every day to get the same health benefits, according to a review of clinical studies. In addition, they experience  fewer side effects. Iron supplements are taken during pregnancy to prevent anemia, a condition that harms not only mothers but their infants. But an analysis of 18 clinical trials involving more than 4,000 women found that iron supplements taken only two or three times a week were just as beneficial; and women were less likely to experience side effects like nausea, constipation and high hemoglobin levels.
Juan Pablo Peña-Rosas et al., "Intermittent oral iron supplementation during pregnancy", Cochrane Reviews, July 11, 2012, © John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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Switzerland

Modest Weight Gain Should Not Deter Smokers From Quitting

July 10, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
French and British researchers who analyzed the results of 62 clinical studies to assess the impact of quitting smoking on weight found an average weight gain of 4-5 kg (8.8–11 lbs) after 12 months, most of which occurred within the first three months. But they also found that changes in body weight varied widely: 16 percent of quitters actually lost weight, while 13 percent gained  more than 10 kg (22 lbs.) after 12 months. The researchers said the average weight gain was higher than expected, but the health benefits of quitting far outweigh the modest gain in body weight and should not keep smokers from quitting.
H.-J. Aubin et al., "Weight gain in smokers after quitting cigarettes: meta-analysis", BMJ , July 10, 2012, © BMJ Publishing Group Ltd
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
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Better For You
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Heart & Cardiovascular
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Obesity
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Europe
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France

Herbs And Spices Can Play A Role In The Global Fight Against Obesity

July 9, 2012: 06:46 PM EST
Presenters at a scientific meeting of the research arm of spice manufacturer McCormick & Company recently reviewed scientific research on the potential weight management benefits of culinary herbs and spices. A University of Colorado scientist said small changes in lifestyle and diet, like eating spices “that increase satiety,” could be both beneficial and sustainable. A Dutch scientist noted that consuming red pepper containing capsaicin induces feelings of fullness. And a University of Illinois researcher listed  the health benefits of compounds found in Latin American herbs, spices and herbal tea.
"McCormick Science Institute Scientific Advisory Council Convenes in UK", News release, McCormick & Company, July 09, 2012, © McCormick & Company
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Obesity
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United Kingdom

Study Finds Out Why Sleep Deprivation Can Lead To Weight Gain

July 10, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
German researchers who investigated the possible link between short term sleep deprivation and weight gain have found that sleep-deprived people eat more calories because they are hungrier. They also tend to burn fewer calories because physical activity is reduced. Both phenomena increase the risk of weight gain. Sleep deprivation increased feelings of hunger and raised the amount of the "hunger hormone" ghrelin detected in their blood. After just one night of disrupted sleep volunteers moved around less, decreasing calorie burning, because they felt more tired. Lastly, staying awake for one whole night reduced the amount of energy used by the body when resting.
"Should We Sleep More to Lose Weight?", News release, presentation at the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior , July 10, 2012, © Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
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Mind
Sleep & Relaxation
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Germany

“Reward Sensitivity” May Explain Why Some People Are More Vulnerable To Overeating

July 10, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
An Australian psychologist has found that “reward sensitivity” is the personality trait in women that is most closely associated with a greater liking of junk food images found in, for example, television ads, and with an increased urge to eat junk food. The study monitored 75 men and women who watched a 30 minute film embedded with junk food, healthy food, or no food in the commercials. Participants rated the pleasantness of food images and their desire to eat after watching the films. Reward-sensitive women – but not men – experienced greater pleasure and a stronger urge to eat after watching TV ads featuring junk food, compared with ads showing healthy food or no food at all.
Natalie Loxton, "Reward Sensitivity Increases Food “Wanting” Following Television “Junk Food” Commercials", News release, presentation at the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior, July 10, 2012, © Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior
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Body
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Brain
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Moderate But Regular Drinking Reduces Risk Of Rheumatoid Arthritis By Half In Women

July 10, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Swedish research finds that women who regularly consume more than three alcoholic drinks a week for at least 10 years cut their risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis in half, compared with non-drinkers. The study analyzed detailed dietary and lifestyle data on 34,141 women born between 1914 and 1948. After adjusting for factors such as age, smoking and dietary habits, women who drank more than three standard glasses of alcohol per week in both 1987 and 1997 had a 52 percent reduced risk of rheumatoid arthritis compared with non-drinkers. One standard glass of alcohol was defined as about 500 ml (16.9 oz.) of beer, 150 ml (5.1 oz.) of wine or 50 ml (1.7 oz.) of liquor. The reduced risk was similar for all three types of alcoholic drink.
D. Di Giuseppe et al., "Long term alcohol intake and risk of rheumatoid arthritis in women: a population based cohort study", BMJ, July 10, 2012, © BMJ Publishing Group Ltd
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Sweden

Nutrient Supplement Improves Memory Of Early Alzheimer’s Patients

July 10, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A nutrient-rich liquid supplement fed to early Alzheimer’s patients improves memory, a two-year European clinical study has found. The supplement mixture, known as Souvenaid (Nutricia, Danone), contains three naturally occurring dietary compounds: choline, uridine and the omega-3 fatty acid DHA. The study followed 259 patients for six months. Patients taking Souvenaid or a placebo improved their verbal-memory performance for the first three months, but the placebo patients deteriorated during the following three months. The Souvenaid patients continued to improve. According to the inventor of the supplement, Souvenaid appears to stimulate growth of new synapses, or nerve connections, in the brain. Alzheimer's patients gradually lose those connections, leading to memory loss and other cognitive impairments.
Philip Scheltens et al., "Efficacy of Souvenaid in Mild Alzheimer’s Disease: Results from a Randomized, Controlled Trial", Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, July 10, 2012, © Journal of Alzheimer's Disease
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Body
Food & Nutrition
Mind
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Stretch Your Life Expectancy By Stretching Your Legs – Study

July 9, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Scientists who pooled and analyzed data from five studies involving 167,000 adults found an association between a sedentary lifestyle and lower life expectancy. They suggested that cutting the amount of time spent sitting every day to under three hours would add an extra two years to life expectancy. Likewise, restricting time spent watching TV to under two hours daily would extend life expectancy by an extra 1.38 years. The authors emphasize that their analysis “assumes” a causal association rather than proving that there is one. They also caution that the findings don’t necessarily mean that someone who leads a more sedentary lifestyle can expect to live two or 1.4 years less than someone who is more active.
Katzmarzyk and Lee, "Sedentary behavior and life expectancy in the USA: a cause-deleted life table analysis", BMJ Open, July 09, 2012, © BMJ Publishing Group Ltd.
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Body
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Glycemic Index Of Many Varieties Of Rice Is A Healthy Low To Medium

July 9, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A British study of 235 types of rice finds that the glycemic index can vary from 48 to 92 – with an average of 64. The low to medium GI of many varieties of rice means they can be a healthy part of the everyday diet, especially for people like diabetics who need to control blood sugar levels. Rice varieties like India's most widely grown rice variety, swarna, have a low GI; varieties like doongara and basmati from Australia have a medium GI. Low GI foods are those that measure 55 and less; medium GI measures between 56 and 69; and high GI foods measure at 70 and above.
Fitzgerald et al., "Identification of a Major Genetic Determinant of Glycemic Index in Rice", Rice, July 09, 2012, © Springer
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Body
Conditions
Food & Nutrition
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New Diabetes Control Technologies Are Expensive, But Make Life Easier For Type 1 Diabetics

July 9, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Though new diabetic control technologies are expensive, people with type 1 diabetes are happier with them than with conventional methods of keeping track of, and regulating, blood sugar, new U.S. research has found. Diabetics report that using blood sugar sensors and insulin pumps to monitor and control blood sugar levels is easier than pricking fingers ten times a day and giving themselves several insulin shots. Insulin pumps are attached to a small tube and needle that goes under the skin in the belly area. The devices provide insulin around the clock, as needed. The researchers reviewed data from 33 randomized controlled trials that compared the newer technologies to conventional methods.
Hsin-Chieh Yeh et al., "Comparative Effectiveness and Safety of Methods of Insulin Delivery and Glucose Monitoring for Diabetes Mellitus", Annals of Internal Medicine, July 09, 2012, © The American College of Physicians
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Body
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Hollywood Should Rate PG-13 Movies As “R” If They Show Onscreen Smoking

July 9, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Slapping an “R” rating on youth-oriented movies that show smoking would dramatically reduce exposure and lower adolescent smoking by as much as one-fifth, according to U.S. scientists who studied the influence of movie smoking on 6,522 adolescents. Youth smoking would be reduced by 18 percent if smoking in PG-13 movies was largely eliminated, all else being equal. "The benefit to society in terms of reduced healthcare costs and higher quality of life is almost incalculable," the researchers said, if Hollywood applied an R rating to youth-targeted movies that showed smoking.
Sargent et al., "Influence of Motion Picture Rating on Adolescent Response to Movie Smoking", Pediatrics, July 09, 2012, © American Academy of Pediatrics
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Body
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Kid's Health
Teen
Heart & Cardiovascular
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Meta-Analysis Of Clinical Trials Finds That Cranberry Products Protect Against UTI

July 9, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. and Chinese scientists who reviewed 13 clinical trials involving 1,616 individuals found significant evidence that consumption of cranberry-containing products protects against urinary tract infections (UTI) in certain populations. Cranberry products were more effective in women with recurrent UTI, females generally, cranberry juice drinkers, “and people using cranberry-containing products more than twice daily,” the authors wrote. They urged caution in interpreting the conclusions from the analysis, however, “because of the substantial heterogeneity across trials.”
Chih-Hung Wang et al., "Cranberry-Containing Products for Prevention of Urinary Tract Infections in Susceptible Populations", Archives of Internal Medicine, July 09, 2012, © American Medical Association
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
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No Link Between Weight Gain And Short-Term Mortality – Study

July 6, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A new U.S. study seems to belie earlier research linking higher short-term mortality with weight gain. The researchers analyzed national data from 2000 to 2005 from nearly 51,000 adults aged 18 to 90 years who participated in surveys on health-care utilization and costs. They found that people who were overweight or obese had no higher risk of death during a six-year follow-up period compared to normal weight individuals. The researchers said their results should not be construed to mean obesity is not a threat to individual or public health. In fact, weight loss is advisable because obesity has a significant impact on quality of life.
A. Jerant et al., "Body Mass Index, Diabetes, Hypertension, and Short-Term Mortality: A Population-Based Observational Study", The Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, July 06, 2012, © American Board of Family Medicine
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
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Diabetes
Obesity
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United States of America

Algae Extract Boosts Good Cholesterol, May Reduce Risk Of Heart Disease

July 6, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. researchers report that a commercially available algae extract increases good cholesterol and improved the ratio of good cholesterol to bad, possibly decreasing the risk of heart disease. In experiments in hamsters, the clear liquid form of ProAlgaZyme (Health Enhancement Products, Inc.) was administered as part of the drinking water over four weeks. The result was not only an increase in HDL – “good” cholesterol – but a change in the expression of genes involved in the reverse cholesterol transport mechanism. The researchers said they expect a similar outcome in humans.
Andreea Geamanu et al., "ProAlgaZyme and its subfractions increase plasma HDL cholesterol via upregulation of ApoA1, ABCA1, and SRB1, and inhibition of CETP in hypercholesterolemic hamsters", Journal of Nutrition and Dietary Supplements, July 06, 2012, © Dove Medical Press Ltd
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United States of America

Synthetic Protein Quickly Activates The Immune System To Fight Flu Viruses

July 6, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A powerful synthetic protein known as EP67 – administered within an hour of exposure to the flu virus – kicks the immune system into high gear to fight the threat, U.S. researchers report. EP67 has been mainly used as an adjuvant added to vaccines to help activate the immune response. The new study shows that the protein works on its own to spur the immune system to fight any  flu strain. Influenza vaccines have to exactly match the currently circulating flu strain. Although the testing has so far been done in mice, "EP67 could potentially be a therapeutic that someone would take … to help the body fight off the virus before you get sick."
Sam D. Sanderson et al., "Innate Immune Induction and Influenza Protection Elicited by a Response-Selective Agonist of Human C5a", PLoS ONE, July 06, 2012, © Sanderson et al.
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Scientists Figure Out Why A Protein Meal Leaves People Feeling Fuller

July 5, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
French scientists report that they now understand the back-and-forth signaling loop between the brain and gut that generates a feeling of fullness after eating a high-protein meal. Stimulating certain receptors (mu-opioid) on the major blood vessel in the gut enhances food intake, while blocking them suppresses intake. Peptides produced by digestion of dietary proteins block the receptors, curbing appetite. The researchers say that this finding not only explains why people feel fuller after a high-protein meal, it paves the way for new approaches to the treatment or prevention of obesity.
Duraffourd et al., "Mu-Opioid Receptors and Dietary Protein Stimulate a Gut-Brain Neural Circuitry Limiting Food Intake", Cell, July 05, 2012, © Elsevier Inc.
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France

Exercises Provide Cost-Effective Treatment For Dizziness Associated With Inner Ear Problems

July 5, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A British study reports that certain exercises can reduce persistent dizziness within a matter of weeks and for as long as a year. Dizziness associated with a common condition known as “vestibular dysfunction,” usually associated with an inner ear problem, causes considerable anxiety, limitation of activity, and risk of falling. Prof. Lucy Yardley has developed a booklet that teaches – very cost-effectively – a set of exercises for vestibular rehabilitation. The exercises are relatively simple, including turning the head right to left and back again or nodding the head up and down. Her testing of the booklet’s exercise program among 300 dizziness patients forms the basis of the current study.
L. Yardley et al., "Clinical and cost effectiveness of booklet based vestibular rehabilitation for chronic dizziness in primary care", British Medical Journal, July 05, 2012, © BMJ Publishing Group Ltd
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Study Finds That Higher Doses Of Vitamin D Reduce Fracture Risk Among Elderly

July 5, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Higher doses of vitamin D – between 800 and 2,000 IUs a day – help reduce bone fractures in both men and women aged 65 and older, according to a Swiss-funded multinational study. The researchers pooled results of 11 randomized clinical trials investigating vitamin D supplementation and the risk of bone fracture among 31,000 older adults. They also found no benefit in taking vitamin D supplements in doses lower than 800 IUs a day for fracture prevention. In the U.S., the dietary reference intake (DRI) for vitamin D in older adults is a minimum of 600 IUs a day for adults between 51 and 70 years-old and 800 IUs in adults over 70.
Heike A. Bischoff-Ferrari et al., "A Pooled Analysis of Vitamin D Dose Requirements for Fracture Prevention", New England Journal of Medicine, July 05, 2012, © Massachusetts Medical Society
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New Lupin-Based Breakfast Cereal Packs A Nutritional Punch

July 3, 2012: 12:12 AM EST
Western Australia university researchers have teamed with a local food manufacturer to produce a lupin-based breakfast cereal that is low glycemic index, gluten free, high in dietary fiber and protein, and low in fat. Other breakfast cereals on the market contain small amounts – two to three percent – of lupins, though a minimum of 20 percent is necessary to provide health benefits. The new Super Lupin cereal contains 30 percent lupins. The product, manufactured by Lupin Nutrition Food, comes in five varieties: plain, blueberry, blueberry with fruit and nuts, tropical, and banana.
"Lupin Enriched Cereal Has "Huge Worldwide Potential"", Food Ingredients First, July 03, 2012, © Curtin University/ CNS Media BV
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Research Shows Organic Tomatoes Are Richer In Healthy Nutrients

July 3, 2012: 12:47 AM EST
Spanish researchers have shown that organically-grown tomatoes are richer than conventional  tomatoes in compounds that are beneficial to human health. Known as polyphenols, the compounds have been associated with prevention of cardiovascular and degenerative diseases, as well as some forms of cancer. The researchers say the difference between organic and conventional tomatoes is found in the manure used as fertilizer in organic farming. Plants respond to the manure by activating defense mechanisms that increase the levels of all antioxidants. “The more stress plants suffer, the more polyphenols they produce,” the authors said.
Anna Vallverdú-Queralt et al., "Evaluation of a Method To Characterize the Phenolic Profile of Organic and Conventional Tomatoes", Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, July 03, 2012, © American Chemical Society
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Saturated Fats Adversely Affect Fertility Treatment Outcomes

July 3, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A U.S. study investigating the impact of various types of dietary fats on in vitro fertilization (IVF) has found that women who eat higher amounts of saturated fats tend to have fewer mature eggs available for the IVF process. Dietary fats studied in 147 women included saturated, monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, omega 6, omega 3 and trans fats. Women with higher intakes of total fat had fewer acceptable eggs (oocytes) retrieved than women with lower intakes. Fat consumption was also inversely associated with embryo quality and number of live births.
Jorge Chavarro, "A High Intake of Certain Dietary Fats Associated With Lower Live Birth Rates in IVF", News release, presentation at the annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology, July 03, 2012, © European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology
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Maintaining “Energy Balance” Is Key To Winning Obesity Battle

July 3, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
The U.S. should be focusing less on food restriction and weight loss to fight obesity, and should instead pay closer attention to “energy balance”: a combination of food intake, energy expenditure through physical activity and energy (fat) storage. The researchers argue that obesity cannot be reduced simply by dieting, there has to be a physical activity component. The proposal is based on the idea of a “regulated zone,” where energy balance is managed by using strategies that match food and beverage intake to a higher level of energy expenditure than is typical in the U.S. today. “Without increasing physical activity in the population we are simply promoting unsustainable levels of food restriction,” they said
J. O. Hill et al., "Energy Balance and Obesity", Circulation, July 03, 2012, © American Heart Association, Inc.
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“Healthier” Pizza May Soon Reach U.K. Supermarket Shelves

July 3, 2012: 01:04 AM EST
A Scottish university professor working with a private firm is developing what he claims is “the only nutritionally balanced pizza you can buy,” though the pizza is not actually on the market yet. The first three versions of the healthier pizza include fairly traditional toppings: cheese and tomato, spicy chicken with peppers and jalapeños, and ham and pineapple. What’s new and different, however, is a base flecked with Hebridean seaweed, a low-sodium seasoning that provides iron, iodine and vitamin B12. The tomato sauce contains red pepper to boost the vitamin C content. The developers are negotiating with a major U.K. supermarket chain to put the new products on store shelves.
Felicity Cloake, "Healthy pizza: too good to be true?", Guardian, UK, July 03, 2012, © Guardian News and Media Limited
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Higher Levels Of Coffee Consumption Are Detrimental To IVF

July 3, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A Danish study involving 4,000 in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) patients has found that drinking larger amounts of coffee has an adverse effect on pregnancy rates. The study found that drinking five or more cups of coffee a day reduced the clinical pregnancy rate by 50 percent and the live birth rate by 40 percent. The researchers said they were not surprised by the link between pregnancy rates and coffee drinking, but “we were surprised by the magnitude of the effect.”
Ulrik Schiøler Kesmodel , "Five or More Cups of Coffee a Day Reduce the Chance of IVF Success by Around 50 Percent", News release, presentation at European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology annual meeting, July 03, 2012, © European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology
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Denmark

Eating At Campus Dining Facilities Has A Positive Impact On Freshmen

July 3, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
First-year college students who eat together in a campus dining facility not only feel they have more social support, they also get better grades, according to a Kansas State University professor’s survey. The professor polled more than 300 freshmen who ate in a dining center that served several dormitories at the school. Sixty-two percent of students said eating in the dining center made them feel more socially connected; 77 percent said they were rarely or never lonely when people sat near them. Students who ate at least 11 times a week in the center earned an average GPA of 3.4; those who ate fewer than seven times per week in the center earned an average GPA of 3.0.
Abigail Bauer, "Campus Dining Centers Make the Grade in Boosting Students' Academics, Social Support", News feature, Kansas State University, July 03, 2012, © Kansas State University
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Study Seems To Confirm “Obesity Paradox”: Being Overweight Protects Heart Patients

July 3, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A new U.S. study confirms the so-called “obesity paradox”: in both men and women with advanced heart failure, obesity (determined by body mass index) reduced the risk for adverse outcomes, including death, the need for a heart transplant, and the need for ventricular assist device placement. Researchers analyzed data on 2,718 advanced heart failure patients treated at UCLA Medical Center from 1983 to 2011. Conversely, both men and women with a normal BMI and waist circumference were at a substantially higher risk for adverse outcomes.
Adrienne L. Clark et al., "The Obesity Paradox in Men Versus Women With Systolic Heart Failure", American Journal of Cardiology, July 03, 2012, © Elsevier Inc.
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HEALTH & WELLNESS
Body
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Food & Nutrition
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Fast Food Diet Puts Chinese In Singapore At Extreme Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

July 2, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A study conducted by U.S. scientists in Singapore has found that a diet that includes large amounts of fast food significantly increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. People who eat fast food meals only once a week increase the diabetes risk by 20 percent compared to those who avoid fast food altogether. The risk skyrockets to 80 percent when people consume fast food items four or more times a week. The findings were based on data from a 16-year study of the eating habits of 52,000 Chinese residents of Singapore who experienced a recent and sudden transition from traditional foods to Western-style fast food.
Andrew O. Odegaard et al., "Western-Style Fast Food Intake and Cardio-Metabolic Risk in an Eastern Country", Circulation, July 02, 2012, © American Heart Association, Inc.
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Green Banana Pasta Is Gluten-Free And Tasty, Study Finds

June 28, 2012: 07:04 PM EST
Add another weapon to the arsenal in the fight against celiac disease: gluten-free pasta flour milled from green bananas. Gluten is a protein found in wheat and other flours. It triggers the debilitating gastrointestinal reaction known as celiac disease. The new green banana pasta, developed  and taste-tested successfully in Brazil among people with and without celiac disease, also helped with intestinal regularity, cholesterol and glycemic indexes, according to researchers. Other ingredients in the past dought included egg whites, water and thickening gum products.
Carrie Murphy, "New Gluten-Free Pasta Is Made From Bananas (And I Want To Eat It!)", Blisstree, June 28, 2012, © b5media Network
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Low Glycemic Load Diet Found To Be Better For Keeping Weight Off

June 27, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Researchers at Children’s Hospital in Boston who studied the impact of three common diets on 21 overweight and obese adults over four years found that a low-fat diet seems to increase the risk of regaining weight. The researchers, curious about which diet is better at keeping weight off after initial weight loss, found the risk was less with a low-glycemic index diet, and least with a very low-carbohydrate diet. "These findings suggest that a strategy to reduce glycemic load rather than dietary fat may be advantageous for weight-loss maintenance and cardiovascular disease prevention,” the authors wrote.
Cara B. Ebbeling et al. , "Effects of Dietary Composition on Energy Expenditure During Weight-Loss Maintenance", JAMA, June 27, 2012, © American Medical Association
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Kids Who Cook At Home Are More Likely To Pass Up Junk Food

June 27, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A survey of students in 151 schools in Alberta province found that kids who participated in cooking and meal preparation at home showed a greater preference for eating fruits and vegetables over junk food. About a third of students surveyed said they helped cook meals at least once a day, and another third said they helped one to three times a week. Only 12.4 percent stayed out of the kitchen entirely. One of the researchers said the findings show the value of getting kids interested in meal preparation in the home, and suggested there could be a role for schools as well.
Yen Li Chu et al., "Involvement in home meal preparation is associated with food preference and self-efficacy among Canadian children", Public Health Nutrition, June 27, 2012, © Cambridge University Press
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Omega-3 Fatty Acids Plus Curcumin Improve Mobility In Spinal Cord-Damaged Animals

June 27, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A study in rats with spinal cord injury found that dietary supplements rich in omega-3 fatty acids and curcumin – a compound contained in the Indian curry spice turmeric – improved the animals’ ability to walk, compared to animals fed a standard Western diet.. According to the U.S. researchers, the supplements helped repair damaged nerve cells and maintain neurological function after degenerative damage to the neck. "[The omega-3 fatty acid] DHA and curcumin appear to invoke several molecular mechanisms that preserved neurological function in the rats," the authors wrote.
Holly LT et al., "Dietary therapy to promote neuroprotection in chronic spinal cord injury", Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine, June 27, 2012, © American Association of Neurological Surgeons
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Restaurants Hope To Meet Demand For Ethnic Flavors, Healthy And Gluten-Free Options

June 26, 2012: 06:22 PM EST
Top trends in the restaurant industry for 2012 – according to a National Restaurant Association report – include a determination to take advantage of the growing interest among Americans in health and nutrition by offering nutritious alternatives to foods like bread and dairy products. A major trend is the industry’s awareness of the need for gluten-free alternatives on restaurant menus. And lastly, the industry is looking to meet growing consumer cravings for ethnic cuisines and flavors, especially Mediterranean and Southeast Asian flavors.
Modern Baking staff , "Gluten-free products, food trucks top ’12 trends", Modern Baking , June 26, 2012, © Penton Media, Inc
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Calcium Supplements May Increase Risk Of Kidney Stones Over Time, Study Finds

June 27, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. researchers who studied 163 healthy, postmenopausal women (aged 57 to 85) taking various levels of vitamin D and calcium supplements daily for a year found that a significant number developed a condition associated with an increased risk of kidney stones. A third of the participants developed high urinary levels of calcium (hypercalciuria) at some time during the study. These participants had 88 episodes of high urinary calcium. Hypercalciuria has been linked to an increased risk of kidney stones in previous studies. However, no incidents of kidney stones were reported during the study.
J. Christopher Gallagher et al., "LongTerm Calcium and Vitamin D Supplement Use May Be Linked to Increased Risk of Kidney Stones", News release, presentation at The Endocrine Society annual meeting, June 27, 2012, © The Endocrine Society
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Low-Carb, High-Protein Diet Poses Cardiovascular Risk For Women

June 27, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A study of 44,000 Swedish women aged 30 to 49 who followed a high-protein, low-carb diet over 15 years found a slightly higher risk of cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke. Figures adjusted for various control factors showed an additional four to five cases of cardiovascular diseases per 10,000 women a  year compared with those who did not regularly eat a low carbohydrate, high protein diet. The researchers acknowledged that the differences were small, but nevertheless represented a 28 percent increase in the number of cases. They said the results are disturbing in young women who may be exposed to these dietary patterns and face the excess risk for many years.
Pagona Lagiou et al., "Low carbohydrate-high protein diet and incidence of cardiovascular diseases in Swedish women: prospective cohort study", British Medical Journal, June 27, 2012, © BMJ Publishing Group Ltd
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Babies Benefit When Mothers Are Taught Healthy Eating Habits

June 26, 2012: 01:37 AM EST
A four-year study involving 667 first-time Australian mothers and their infants has found that a series of eight home-based nutrition education “interventions” – essentially visits by specially trained nurses – reduced the average body mass index of children by age two. The study was undertaken to see if there are practical ways to reduce the rate of childhood obesity, which among Australian children aged 2-3 years has reached 20 percent. The interventions also improved children’s vegetable consumption, reduced the practice of giving food as reward and reduced TV viewing time. Participating mothers increased their vegetable consumption and physical activity.
Li Ming Wen et al., "Effectiveness of home based early intervention on children’s BMI at age 2: randomised controlled trial", British Medical Journal (BMJ), June 26, 2012, © Wen et al.
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Researchers Develop Tasty – And Gluten-Free – Baked Goods From Sorghum

June 25, 2012: 07:28 PM EST
Food scientists at Kansas State University – working closely with a student who suffers from celiac disease, a severe reaction to the protein gluten – have developed palatable, gluten-free  baked goods based on the grain sorghum. Products so far include tortillas, breads, Belgian waffles and waffle cones. They have also determined that a specific particle size of sorghum flour has a lower glycemic index rating than grains like wheat, corn and rice. The researchers believe the new uses for sorghum, which is mostly used as animal feed, will also benefit sorghum farmers.
"Grain of sense: Research with gluten alternatives shows promise for Kansas sorghum farmers and consumers", States News Service, June 25, 2012, © States News Service
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Dieting Plus Exercise Reduces Risk Of Pre-Diabetes In Older Adults

June 25, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Losing weight is an effective way for obese older people to prevent metabolic syndrome that leads to diabetes. But a weight loss program is even more beneficial when exercise is included, a U.S. study has found. Metabolic syndrome is a group of problems that raise the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease: symptoms include abdominal obesity, high blood pressure and high blood glucose. Researchers measured various metabolic markers for 93 study participants, finding that exercise alone did not lead to improvements. Dietary changes improved the measurements by 40 percent, while diet plus exercise improved markers by 70 percent.
Matthew Bouchonville et al., "Diet Exercise or Both What Obese Older Adults Need to Do to Reduce Cardiometabolic Risk", News release, presentation at The Endocrine Society annual meeting, June 25, 2012, © Endocrine Society
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Adding Dessert To A Low-Cal Breakfast Reduces Hunger Pangs, Keeps Off Weight

June 25, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Israeli researchers report that adding a small “dessert” to the breakfast of a restricted calorie diet reduces hunger pangs during the day and helps dieters keep off lost pounds. For the eight-month study, 200 obese adults in two groups were limited to 1,600 calories a day. One group ate a 304-calorie breakfast with 10 grams of carbs and 30 grams of protein. The other group ate a 600-calorie breakfast with 45 grams of protein and 60 grams of carbs, including a small dessert consisting of chocolate, a doughnut, etc. Participants in both groups lost about 33 pounds on average during the first four months, but the low-carb group regained 22 pounds; the desert group lost another 15 pounds.
Daniela Jakubowicz et al., "Meal timing and composition influence ghrelin levels, appetite scores and weight loss maintenance in overweight and obese adults", Steroids, June 25, 2012, © Elsevier Inc.
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Exercise Reduces Breast Cancer Risk Before And After Menopause

June 25, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
An analysis of health data from 1,504 women with breast cancer and 1,555 women without has found that those who exercised regularly, during either their reproductive or postmenopausal years, had a reduced risk of developing breast cancer. Women who exercised 10 to 19 hours a week benefited the most: an approximate 30 percent reduction in risk. Risk reductions were observed at all levels of intensity, the U.S. researchers said, and it was particularly encouraging that breast cancer risk was reduced in postmenopausal women who exercised "given the late age of onset for breast cancer."
Lauren E. McCullough et al., "Fat or fit: The joint effects of physical activity, weight gain, and body size on breast cancer risk", Cancer, June 25, 2012, © American Cancer Society
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Measuring Two Appetite Hormones Before Dieting Predicts Whether Weight Will Be Regained

June 25, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Scientists in Spain have determined that measuring the levels of two hormones before a dieting program is begun can accurately predict whether dieters will regain lost weight. The two hormones – leptin and ghrelin – help regulate the appetite. The researchers found the pre-diet leptin/ghrelin ratio to be two times higher among study participants who later regained weight than among those who did not. They also identified cut-off points that predicted more than 60 percent of patients who would later regain 10 percent or more of the weight they initially lost. Calculating the leptin/ghrelin ratio might help in personalizing weight-loss programs for more effective control of obesity, the researchers said.
Ana B. Crujeiras, "Ratio of Appetite Regulating Hormones Marker of Successful Dieters", News release, presentation at The Endocrine Society annual meeting, June 25, 2012, © Endocrine Society
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Study Links Low Vitamin D Levels To Chronic Weight Gain

June 25, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A study of more than 4,600 women aged 65 or older has found that those with low levels of vitamin D in their blood gained an average of two pounds more over five years than women whose vitamin D levels were sufficient. According to the U.S. researchers, about 80 percent of the women in the study had insufficient levels of vitamin D, a primary source of which is sunlight. The researchers said the fact that fewer people spend time outdoors in the sun could partially explain vitamin D deficiencies and chronic weight gain. They declined to recommend vitamin D supplements, however, until further studies are conducted.
Erin S. LeBlanc et al., "Associations Between 25-Hydroxyvitamin D and Weight Gain in Elderly Women", Journal of Women's Health, June 25, 2012, © Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.
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Entrepreneur Launches “Unreal” Candies That Promise Real Nutrition

June 22, 2012: 10:50 PM EST
A Boston entrepreneur is on a mission to “unjunk” the confectionery world. His latest start-up – Michael Bronner also founded uPromise and Digitas – is called Unreal Brands and its product line features healthier alternatives to popular candies. The candies replace corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils and other dubious materials with vegetable dyes, pure cane sugar and other natural ingredients. They also contain more fiber and protein. The Boston Herald reports that CVS is beginning to stock its stores with Unreal candies. BJ's Wholesale Clubs, Target and other chains are expected to follow soon.
Jerry Kronenberg, "Sounds Unreal, but Boston company actually making healthier candy", Boston Herald , June 22, 2012, © Boston Herald and Herald Media.
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Resveratrol’s Health Benefits Mimic Those Of Extensive Endurance Exercise Training

June 22, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
High doses of the natural antioxidant compound resveratrol improved the physical performance, heart function and muscle strength in laboratory rats, similar to the way endurance exercise improves heart and muscle performance, Canadian researchers have found. Resveratrol, found in red wine, nuts and some fruits, could be used to help patients who want to exercise but are physically incapable, the researchers said. “Our findings provide evidence that the capacity for fatty acid oxidation is augmented by the addition of resveratrol to the diet during exercise training.”
V. W. Dolinsky et al., "Improvements in skeletal muscle strength and cardiac function induced by resveratrol during exercise training contribute to enhanced exercise performance in rats", The Journal of Physiology, June 22, 2012, © The Physiological Society
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Maintaining Healthy Dietary Patterns During Adolescence Prevents Obesity

June 22, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
Spanish researchers who studied health data and physical activity patterns from 1,978 adolescents found that some dietary habits – eating more than four scheduled meals a day, or not eating too fast – were associated with lower body fat levels, with or without free-time exercise. The researchers also noted that eating breakfast every day was especially beneficial for young men who do not exercise, because those who skipped breakfast showed higher body fat values.
Sonia Gómez-Martínez et al., "Eating Habits and Total and Abdominal Fat in Spanish Adolescents: Influence of Physical Activity", Journal of Adolescent Health, June 22, 2012, © Elsevier Inc.
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An Apple A Day – Keeps Obesity Away?

June 22, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A natural substance found in apple peels known as ursolic acid not only helps increase muscle mass and strength, it also seems to reduce obesity, pre-diabetes and fatty liver disease, new U.S. research in mice has found. The scientists believe the increased muscle mass from intake of ursolic acid may explain the reduction in obesity. But they also found that ursolic acid increased brown fat, an efficient calorie burner, in mice fed a high-fat diet. Their next step is to test the effect of ursolic acid in clinical trials.
Kunkel SD et al., "Ursolic Acid Increases Skeletal Muscle and Brown Fat and Decreases Diet-Induced Obesity, Glucose Intolerance and Fatty Liver Disease", PLoS ONE, June 22, 2012, © Kunkel et al.
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Omega-3 Supplements Reduce Inflammation Markers In Older, Overweight Individuals

June 22, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. researchers have found that overweight, but otherwise healthy, middle-aged and older adults who consumed omega-3 fatty acid supplements for four months had significantly lower levels of a protein in the blood that indicates the presence of inflammation associated with a variety of diseases and disorders. Omega-3 supplements lowered the protein level by ten percent and slightly lowered the level of another marker for inflammation. Participants in the study who consumed placebo oil capsules over four months, however, experienced average increases of 36 percent and 12 percent in those same markers.
Janice K. Kiecolt-Glaser et al., "Omega-3 supplementation lowers inflammation in healthy middle-aged and older adults: A randomized controlled trial", Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, June 22, 2012, © Elsevier Inc.
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Spinach Counteracts Effect Of Cooked Meat Carcinogen On microRNAs And Cancer Stem Cells

June 22, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. researchers who analyzed the impact of 679 micoRNAs, which were once considered “junk DNA,” found that when they go haywire they can cause abnormal gene expression that leads to cancer. For their study, the researchers traced the actions of a known carcinogen in cooked meat to its effects on microRNA and cancer stem cells, finding a direct link. On the bright side, however, they also found in animal experiments that eating spinach seems to partially offset the damaging effects of the carcinogen.
Mansi A. Parasramka et al., "MicroRNA profiling of carcinogen-induced rat colon tumors and the influence of dietary spinach", Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, June 22, 2012, © John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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