Providing perspectives on recent research into vitamins and nutritionals
    Strong African American man working out at the gym

    What do Maintaining Muscle, Being Strong and Healthy Aging Share? Vitamin D!

    Vitamin D is most commonly associated with bone metabolism. Did you know low vitamin D status also affects muscle?

    Liu and colleagues report that lower 25(OH)D concentrations are linked with greater muscle mass loss in middle-aged people. Using a subset of 3,289 community-dwelling residents from the Nutrition and Health of Aging Population in China Project living in Beijing and Shanghai, they report muscle mass 

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    Who Doubted Safety and Benefits of Calcium and Vitamin D Supplementation?

    Calcium and vitamin D are essential nutrients for bone health. Many people, especially women, do not consume recommended amounts of these two nutrients from their diet. With a few exceptions, i.e. dairy products, snack bars and ready-to-eat cereals, it has been difficult to fortify foods with calcium (a mineral) without negatively affecting taste (and consumer preference). Federal regulations restrict the types of foods which can be fortified with vitamin D. Dietary supplements become a primary option to fill calcium and vitamin D shortfalls.  

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    What is the Evidence Base for Vitamin D Supplementation in Pregnant Women?

    Many people are interested in how diet during pregnancy can affect health of both mother and infant. In fact, our fourth most popular blog post ever discusses how vitamin D supplementation influences gestational diabetes-related health measures. Recently, Harvey and co-workers published an exhaustive review on the effects of vitamin D supplements in pregnancy. Did these authors find a benefit to vitamin D supplementation?

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    Striving for a Nutritionally Sustainable World

    Today I searched Wikipedia for the word ‘sustainability’ and found,  “Achieving sustainability will enable the Earth to continue supporting human life”. With respect to food and nutrition, sustainability requires understanding the determinants and costs of producing, processing, and distributing foods globally to sustainably feed a growing population regardless of where they live.

    People in the US spend less on food than any other country, only 6.4% of their expenditures in 2012. Americans don’t necessarily spend less on food than others, they just tend to eat more, mostly prepared foods rather than cooking with staples, and leaving more uneaten (waste).  

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    Wanting to Get Out of the Kitchen? Some Free Advice

    Whether on vacation, traveling for business, or trying to avoid standing in front of a stove during the summer, a common choice is eating at a restaurant. When doing so, most people underestimate the calories in restaurant foods.  

    A CDC report finds that 57% of Americans use menu labels when making food choices. Women are more likely to read menus than men. 

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    Vitamins and Cancer: Is Nutrient Balance Important?

    Recently in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Wang and colleague published an article describing follow-up analyses of the high-dose vitamin E and C component of the Physicians Health Study II. This study was exceptional in that it recruited a large number of subjects that were well-nourished (male physicians), randomized them to various dietary supplements, and followed them to track key cardiovascular and cancer-related endpoints for a very long time: follow-up occurred over 14 years. However, some of the results were a little paradoxical. We explain further after the jump. 

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    The Rise and Rise of Yogurt: Using an Ancient Food to Meet Nutrient Needs

    Yogurt is a food known from ancient times. Around 77 AD, Pliny the Elder wrote “the barbarous nations…understand how to thicken milk and form therefrom an acrid kind of liquid with a pleasant flavor” in his famous encyclopedia of the ancient world. This is our first description of yogurt consumption, although it was likely to have developed at least 7000 years prior to its description by the Roman naturalist. Over the past millennia, societies that have bred animals for their milk have learned the art of fermentation with lactic acid bacteria to form delicious and nutritious yogurt. Even today, the last few decades have seen a steady increase in global yogurt consumption, according to a consumer survey from DSM that focuses on how and why people in emerging and established markets in the USA, Brazil, Turkey, Poland, France and China eat yogurt. What is driving this trend, and what does this mean for nutrition?

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    China air pollution

    The Alchemy of Nutrition and Environment to Age with Grace and Tranquility

    Getting  older is only better than the alternative. Everyone’s goal is to age, surrounded by family and friends, in the best of health until the last day. The chances of the ideal scenario depend upon genetics, environment, nutrition and sometimes luck. The 6 leading risk factors for non-communicable diseases  (NCD) globally are high blood pressure, tobacco smoking (including second-hand smoke), household air pollution, diet low in fruits, alcohol use, and high body-mass index.

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