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AJCN January, 2010 - SUMMARY - See this, longer synopses, and links to published articles further down this page at my new website. Your comments and suggestions about the new website are welcome.

EVERYONE
1. Dairy reduces oxidative and inflammatory stress - An increase in dairy food intake produces significant and substantial suppression of the oxidative and inflammatory stress associated with overweight and obesity.
2. Fiber at dinner is beneficial - In healthy subjects, factors related to colonic fermentation of nondigestible carbohydrates increase peripheral insulin sensitivity and moderate glucose-associated inflammation.
3. The tolerable upper intake level (UL) for folate is 1000 µg/d - Avoid too much or too little folate. 400 mcg/d in most multivitamins is okay, but avoid more. Who is at risk? Conclusions: Improved total folate intake is warranted in targeted subgroups, which include women of childbearing age and non-Hispanic black women, whereas other population groups are at risk of excessive intake. FDA did well with folic acid fortification plan - Nearly everyone gets enough.
4. 2 grams per day of plant sterols reduce LDL cholesterol levels - Phytosterol supplementation of 2 g/d is recommended by the National Cholesterol Education Program to reduce LDL cholesterol. [Corn, wheat germ, rice bran oils have lots]
5. Stearic acid, from soybean oil, may be the safest saturated fat - High stearic acid (STA) soybean oil is a trans-free, oxidatively stable, non-LDL-cholesterol-raising oil that can be used to replace trans fatty acids.
6. Health-supporting genes stiumulated by a polyunsaturated diet, but inhibited by saturated fats

PREGNANCY AND CHILDREN
7. Mulitvitamin improves children's cognitive performance
8. linoleic acid (omega-6 fat especially in seed oils) is especially hazardous when pregnant - higher intakes of fish oils are associated with a decreased risk of poor infant and child neurodevelopment, aging-related cognitive decline, and some neurologic disorders, and omega-6 competes to block omega-3 absorption.

WEIGHT CONTROL
9. Physical activity is necessary for adolescent females to control weight, dieting alone has no benefit - None of the dietary approaches to weight control predicted less weight change; however, females who exercised 5 d/wk gained significantly less weight than did their peers.Best was exercise and portion control.
10. More than one serving whole grains daily controls weight - The replacement of refined grains in the diet with whole grains may help prevent chronic disease and excess weight gain
11. Green tea aids weight reduction
12. Especially white men must avoid a fat belly - It increases Caucasian risk more.
13. Analysis of genes causing obesity is progressing - Obesogenic environment and behavior are fueling the rise in the prevalence of overweight and obesity.

AJCN January, 2010 -DETAILS

EVERYONE 1. Dairy reduces oxidative and inflammatory stress - Background: We recently showed that calcitriol increases oxidative and inflammatory stress; moreover, inhibition of calcitriol with high-calcium diets decreased both adipose tissue and systemic oxidative and inflammatory stress in obese mice, whereas dairy exerted a greater effect. However, these findings may be confounded by concomitant changes in adiposity. Conclusion: An increase in dairy food intake produces significant and substantial suppression of the oxidative and inflammatory stress associated with overweight and obesity.

2. Fiber at dinner is beneficial - Evening meals that are rich in nondigestible carbohydrates have been shown to lower postprandial glucose concentrations after ingestion of high-glycemic-index breakfasts. This phenomenon is linked to colonic fermentation of nondigestible carbohydrates. Conclusion: In healthy subjects, factors related to colonic fermentation of nondigestible carbohydrates increase peripheral insulin sensitivity and moderate glucose-associated inflammation.

3. The tolerable upper intake level (UL) for folate is 1000 µg/d - Avoid too much or too little folate. 400 mcg/d in most multivitamins is okay, but avoid more. Who is at risk? Conclusions: Improved total folate intake is warranted in targeted subgroups, which include women of childbearing age and non-Hispanic black women, whereas other population groups are at risk of excessive intake. FDA did well with folic acid fortification plan - The 1996 mandate that enriched flour be fortified with 140 µg folic acid per 100 g flour to prevent neural tube defect births, got the folic acid dose right. It is a resounding argument for the benefit of such national health and dietary surveys such as NHANES on which the models and their validation is based.

4. 2 grams per day of plant sterols reduce LDL cholesterol levels - Phytosterol supplementation of 2 g/d is recommended by the National Cholesterol Education Program to reduce LDL cholesterol. Conclusions: Dietary phytosterols in moderate and high doses favorably alter whole-body cholesterol metabolism in a dose-dependent manner. A moderate phytosterol intake (459 mg/d) can be obtained in a healthy diet without supplementation. [Corn, wheat germ, rice bran oils have lots]

5. Stearic acid, from soybean oil, may be the safest saturated fat - High stearic acid (STA) soybean oil is a trans-free, oxidatively stable, non-LDL-cholesterol-raising oil that can be used to replace trans fatty acids (TFAs) in solid fat applications.Conclusions: TFA intake should be reduced as much as possible because of its adverse effects on lipids and lipoproteins. The replacement of TFA with STA compared with other saturated fatty acids in foods that require solid fats beneficially affects LDL cholesterol, the primary target for CVD risk reduction; unsaturated fats are preferred for liquid fat applications.

6. Health-supporting genes stiumulated by a polyunsaturated diet, but inhibited by saturated fats - Background: Dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have a variety of beneficial effects, and immune cells play an important role in these effects. Conclusion: This study showed that peripheral blood mononuclear cells can reveal fatty acid–specific gene expression profiles in young healthy men after the consumption of different fatty acids, as evidenced by the opposite effects of PUFA and saturated fatty acid intakes on the expression of genes involved in liver X receptor signaling.

PREGNANCY AND CHILDREN 7. Mulitvitamin improves children's cognitive performance - Conclusions: Multiple micronutrient supplementation may be associated with a marginal increase in fluid intelligence and academic performance in healthy schoolchildren.

8. linoleic acid (omega-6 fat especially in seed oils) is especially hazardous when pregnant - Linoleic acid competes with omega-3 fats for absorption from the intestine. Current epidemiologic evidence suggests that higher intakes of fish and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6n–3) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 20:5n–3), for which fish is the major dietary source, are associated with a decreased risk of poor infant and child neurodevelopment, aging-related cognitive decline, and some neurologic disorders. DHA is the major n–3 fatty acid in brain ethanolamine phosphoglycerides (EPGs), and, although concentrations of EPA in the brain are low, possible beneficial roles of EPA involving inflammatory or vasculature mechanisms have been suggested. Experimental work in several species has shown that feeding diets limiting in n–3 fatty acids reduces DHA and increases the n–6 fatty acids docosatetraenoic acid (DTA, 22:4n–6) and docosapentaenoic acid (DPA, 22:5n–6) in the brain, with alterations in several learning behaviors. Intervention studies conducted to show that supplementation of some pregnant women with DHA results in higher visual and neurocognitive test scores in their infants and children suggest that DHA concentrations are sufficiently low in some women such that the needs for DHA are not fully met.

WEIGHT CONTROL 9. Physical activity is necessary for adolescent females to control weight, dieting alone has no benefit - This was a prospective study of 4456 female adolescents and young adults aged 14–22 y. During 4 y of follow-up, participants gained an average of 3.3 kg. None of the dietary approaches to weight control predicted less weight change; however, females who exercised 5 d/wk gained significantly less weight than did their peers.Best was exercise and portion control.

10. More than one serving whole grains daily controls weight - The replacement of refined grains in the diet with whole grains may help prevent chronic disease and excess weight gain, but intakes in adolescents are often lower than recommended. In 1999, 11% of adolescent males and 13% of adolescent females reported that they consumed more than one daily serving of whole grains. Whole-grain intake was lowest among youth of the Native American and white races and among youth of high socioeconomic status.

11. Green tea aids weight reduction - Conclusions: The administration of GTCs with caffeine is associated with statistically significant reductions in BMI, body weight, and WC; however, the clinical significance of these reductions is modest at best.

12. Especially white men must avoid a fat belly - Ectopic fat deposition—that is, adipose tissue accumulation in anatomic regions outside the subcutaneous depot (eg, the visceral cavity, intramuscular compartments, and the pericardial region)—increases cardiometabolic risk factor levels and the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease events, whereas elevated abdominal and peripheral subcutaneous adipose tissue may have protective effects. A number of deleterious behaviors, including cigarette smoking, physical inactivity, and low dietary fiber intake, while also affecting total adiposity, are more strongly associated with increases in visceral adipose tissue. Prenatal growth restriction, rapid infant weight gain, and chronic hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal arousal, as observed in depression and psychosocial stress, are further contributors. However, compared with nonmodifiable susceptibility factors (eg, sex and age), which together account for 45% of the variation in visceral fat (1), these elements individually contribute substantially less to adipose tissue variation.

13. Analysis of genes causing obesity is progressing - Obesogenic environment and behavior are fueling the rise in the prevalence of overweight and obesity. However, one should not omit biology from the discussion. Several lines of evidence support the contention that there are individual differences in the predisposition to gain weight and that genetic variation has much to do with the risk of becoming obese, particularly the risk of severe obesity. However, a meta-analysis of 37 genome scan studies with data on 31,000 individuals from >10,000 families could not implicate unequivocally a single genetic locus for obesity or body mass index (BMI).

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