This week 14 November was World Diabetes Day. The number of people living with diabetes worldwide is rapidly rising, with an estimated 422 million adults affected in 2014 compared with 108 million in 1980. As the issue becomes more pressing, research is increasingly focusing on the condition and the factors that may influence the risk of it developing. A recent study, in particular, has found a strong link between a higher intake of vitamin D in childhood and a decreased risk of type 1 diabetes.
In the next installment of our brain health blog series, we will be reviewing the new research presented at the International Carotenoids Society‘s (ICS) symposium. The 18th ICS Symposium was a five day long event in Switzerland, hosting over 80 talks to almost 300 attendees. One topic of particular interest was the role of macular carotenoids, particularly lutein, in the brain. The benefits of lutein for the eyes are well documented, but emerging science is highlighting uses for cognitive health too. A variety of new studies on the subject were presented at the symposium by various speakers.
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia, and is expected to affect 131.5 million people by 2050. With this in mind, it’s clear to see why so much research is being carried out to help prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer’s disease.
Vitamin C has long been associated with immunity and, when faced with the common cold, a glass of orange juice is often the first thing people turn to for a boost. However, mounting evidence suggests that the health benefits of vitamin C may reach further than previously thought, particularly in supporting cardiovascular health. Notably, a study recently published in Nutrients has highlighted that an increased intake of the vitamin may significantly reduce the risk of cardiovascular mortality (CVM) and, in some models, the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), including myocardial infarction and stroke. Following World Heart Day 2017, read on to discover the role of vitamin C in cardiovascular health.
Lutein and zeaxanthin supplementation may slow progression of age-related macular degeneration and save EU billions in healthcare costs
Eye health is a leading health concern worldwide and, with 17.1 million people across the European Union (EU) alone suffering from age-related macular degeneration (AMD), it is clear to see why.1 AMD is a progressive degenerative eye disease and one of the main causes of vision loss.2 It affects the central vision, leaving those affected unable to see well directly ahead of them and potentially leading to a loss of independence and an inability to perform daily tasks. However, a new study by Frost & Sullivan has found that a daily consumption of 10mg of lutein and 2mg of zeaxanthin may help to slow the progression of AMD – increasing the health of the population and offering significant savings in public spending.
One of the reasons why I chose to study nutrition science was so that I could understand a subject that would have a direct impact on my own life. Having a healthy diet is important to me, and it has been fascinating to learn about what goes into a healthy diet and the reasoning behind the dietary recommendations. An important lesson for me has been that there are many dietary patterns associated with good health. Even so, it seems like everyone has an opinion about nutrition.
The focal point of discussions at this year’s Food Vision Asia, a three-day leadership forum for Asia’s food and nutrition industry, centered around how the region is tackling the growing diabetes epidemic it is facing.
June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month and in a new blog series, we will be taking a closer look at the latest science on the influence of diet on brain health and mental function. In the first of our new series, a study1 has confirmed there is a direct link between air pollution and Alzheimer’s disease, concluding that people living near a main road may be more at risk of developing dementia. This supports the observations of a wide range of previous studies that also highlighted the negative impact of air pollution on brain health.23
The World Health Organization (WHO) rates hypertension as one of the most important causes of premature death worldwide, with an estimated 1.56 billion adults predicted to have high blood pressure by 2025. World Hypertension Day on May 17 aims to raise awareness of the condition, and how it can be prevented and controlled. Among other approaches, such as exercise, research has shown that nutrients, including omega-3s eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), vitamin C, vitamin D and Fruitflow® can positively affect blood pressure.
A DSM- and Sight and Life Foundation-led editorial board has launched a new book, Good Nutrition: Perspectives for the 21st Century, to provide the latest insights on the nutrition challenges that are now common to all societies worldwide. The first three sections of the book set the scene for nutrition across the globe and consider the economic drivers of malnutrition, outlining the different ways in which the world’s food systems can be made more sustainable. Chapter four focuses on the methods that can help ensure nutritional wellbeing is at its best and address malnutrition. The fifth and final section of the book introduces a range of proven solutions that have the power to generate positive change.
Congratulations to Erika L Garcia-Villatora for being selected as the 2017 recipient of the ASN Grand Prize for Young Minority Investigators, sponsored by DSM Nutritional Products. Erika’s presentation was entitled ‘The aryl hydrocarbon receptor is a repressor of colorectal cancer development induced by a high-fat diet in mice’. Ms Garcia-Villatora is advised by Dr Clinton Allred, Texas A&M University.
Earth Day 2017 brings a range of issues into consideration, from endangered animals and food waste to the quality of the very air we breathe. Air pollution can cause a wide range of cardiovascular health issues, from hardened arteries and irregular heartbeats to increased risk of heart attack and blood clots. Research has shown that an increased intake of micronutrients, including EPA and DHA and vitamin C, can help to counteract the negative impact of air pollution.
Experimental Biology, EB17, is just around the corner. This multidisciplinary, scientific meeting attracts over 14,000 scientists and exhibitors with interest in anatomy, biochemistry and molecular biology, investigative pathology, nutrition, pharmacology and physiology. The meeting will be held concurrently with the March for Science on Earth Day (April 22), a global movement to defend the vital role science plays in our health, safety, economies, and governments.
The number of people suffering from diabetes is on the rise. Dietary means to lower postprandial glycemic responses are urgently needed for the prevention of type 2 Diabetes mellitus. Viscous dietary ﬁbers, including high molecular weight (HMW) oat beta-glucan, are one of the most effective classes of functional food ingredients for reducing postprandial glucose and so a potential solution. The mechanism of action is understood to be via an increase in viscosity of the stomach contents that delays gastric emptying and reduces the mixing of food with digestive enzymes. This, in turn, inhibits glucose absorption.
Setting the record straight for the crucial role of nutrition in the fight against cardiovascular disease
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains one of the biggest threats to human health and is a significant concern for medical and scientific communities globally. Currently, CVDs such as coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke represent 31% of all global deaths, with an estimated 17.5 million people dying each year from the disease. It is the leading cause of death among both men and women in the US, and it is estimated that one in five adults in China has CVD, with the country having one of the highest CVD death rates in the world.
Today’s consumer is increasingly knowledgeable about their health, which has led to a rising interest in the influence of the ingredients in their diet. A recent consumer survey revealed that protection against diseases later in life – particularly cardiovascular conditions – is the leading health concern for adults of working age.
There are over 30,000 published scientific papers on omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, making them the most researched micronutrient in the world. Omega-3s are an essential part of daily nutrition, playing a critical role in supporting human health across different life stages. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) provides important brain and eye health benefits, while EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA together promote cardiovascular health.
At the heart of the matter: most comprehensive quantitative analysis of the effect of EPA and DHA on coronary heart disease
According to the World Health Organization, by 2030 almost 23.6 million people will die from cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) - mainly from coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke, which are projected to remain the single leading causes of death. CHD is caused by a build-up of fatty deposits on the walls of the coronary arteries. A new comprehensive meta-analysis has been conducted to assess the effect of EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) on CHD. The research also aims to estimate the association between EPA and DHA intake and CHD risk.