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SUBJECT: J Nutrition Jan, 2015

Symposium: The Controversial Role of Macronutrient Composition in Diabetes and Related Disorders
Refined sugars and grains contribute to diabetes risk - Although it is increasingly recognized that lifestyle interventions aimed at encouraging physical activity and reducing body weight can improve insulin sensitivity, nutritional contributions to T2D risk reduction are less clear. To date, the collective evidence suggests that diets rich in low-GI carbohydrates, cereal fiber, resistant starch, fat from vegetable sources (unsaturated fat), and lean sources of protein should be emphasized, whereas refined sugars and grains (high-GI carbohydrates) are to be avoided in order to lower risk of T2D and its related risk factors and comorbidities.

Protein reduces diabetes risk - Two common misconceptions about dietary protein in diabetes management are that a certain amount of the protein consumed is converted into blood glucose and that consuming too much protein can lead to diabetic kidney disease. These misconceptions have been disproven. Health care providers should discuss the role of dietary protein with their patients, reinforce sources of protein in the diet, and use simple but effective teaching tools, such as the plate method, to convey important nutrition messages.

Low carb, higher fat diet reduces diabetes risk - As previously reported, among overweight/obese adults, after the eucaloric phase, participants who consumed the lower-carbohydrate vs. the lower-fat diet lost more intra-abdominal adipose tissue (11 ± 3% vs. 1 ± 3%). After weight loss, participants who consumed the lower-carbohydrate diet had 4.4% less total fat mass. Original to this report, across the entire 16-wk study, African Americans lost more fat mass with a lower-carbohydrate diet. Conclusion: A modest reduction in dietary carbohydrate has beneficial effects on body composition, fat distribution, and glucose metabolism.

Vegetables (PUFAs) provide bigger and stronger muscles; Arachidonic acid makes them smaller - Muscle mass, intermuscular adipose tissue, and strength are important indicators of physical function. Higher concentrations of total PUFAs were cross-sectionally associated with larger muscle size and with greater knee extension strength. Higher concentrations of arachidonic acid were associated with smaller muscle size.

Women over 65 need about 1g protein/kg body weight/day. The mean estimated average requirement (EAR) and upper 95% CI (approximating the RDA) protein requirement of women >65 y were 0.96 and 1.29 g · kg−1 · d−1, respectively.

Dietary fiber in young children improves cognitive control - Converging evidence now indicates that aerobic fitness and adiposity are key correlates of childhood cognitive function and brain health.  These results demonstrate that children’s diet quality, specifically dietary fiber, is an important correlate of performance on a cognitive task requiring variable amounts of cognitive control.

Low and high selenium levels may contribute to depression - There is evidence that low, and possibly high, selenium status is associated with depressed mood.  In young adults, an optimal range of serum selenium between ∼82 and 85 μg/L was associated with reduced risk of depressive symptomatology. This range approximates the values at which glutathione peroxidase is maximal.

- Roc, Nutrition Investigator
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This is the true joy in life:  being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; being a force of nature instead of a feverish clod --- George Bernard, 1907

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