Open AccessReview
The Association between the Mediterranean Dietary Pattern and Cognitive Health: A Systematic Review
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 674; doi:10.3390/nu9070674 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
The ageing population is accompanied by increased rates of cognitive decline and dementia. Not only does cognitive decline have a profound impact on an individual’s health and quality of life, but also on that of their caregivers. The Mediterranean diet (MD) has been
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The ageing population is accompanied by increased rates of cognitive decline and dementia. Not only does cognitive decline have a profound impact on an individual’s health and quality of life, but also on that of their caregivers. The Mediterranean diet (MD) has been known to aid in reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes. It has been recently linked to better cognitive function in the elderly population. The purpose of this review was to compile evidence based data that examined the effect of adherence to the MD on cognitive function and the risk of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. This review followed PRISMA guidelines and was conducted using four databases and resulted in 31 articles of interest. Cross-sectional studies and cohort studies in the non-Mediterranean region showed mixed results. However, cohort studies in the Mediterranean region and randomized controlled trials showed more cohesive outcomes of the beneficial effect of the MD on cognitive function. Although more standardized and in-depth studies are needed to strengthen the existing body of evidence, results from this review indicate that the Mediterranean diet could play a major role in cognitive health and risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Diuretic Action of Weak and Strong Alcoholic Beverages in Elderly Men: A Randomized Diet-Controlled Crossover Trial
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 660; doi:10.3390/nu9070660 -
Abstract
With ageing, there is a greater risk of dehydration. This study investigated the diuretic effect of alcoholic beverages varying in alcohol concentration in elderly men. Three alcoholic beverages (beer (AB), wine (AW), and spirits (S)) and their non-alcoholic counterparts (non-alcoholic beer (NAB), non-alcoholic
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With ageing, there is a greater risk of dehydration. This study investigated the diuretic effect of alcoholic beverages varying in alcohol concentration in elderly men. Three alcoholic beverages (beer (AB), wine (AW), and spirits (S)) and their non-alcoholic counterparts (non-alcoholic beer (NAB), non-alcoholic wine (NAW), and water (W)) were tested in a diet-controlled randomized crossover trial. For the alcoholic beverages, alcohol intake equaled a moderate amount of 30 g. An equal volume of beverage was given for the non-alcoholic counterpart. After consumption, the urine output was collected every hour for 4 h and the total 24 h urine output was measured. AW and S resulted in a higher cumulative urine output compared to NAW and W during the first 4 h (effect size: 0.25 mL p < 0.003, effect size: 0.18 mL, p < 0.001, respectively), but not after the 24h urine collection (p > 0.40, p > 0.10). AB and NAB did not differ at any time point (effect size: −0.02 mL p > 0.70). For urine osmolality, and the sodium and potassium concentration, the findings were in line. In conclusion, only moderate amounts of stronger alcoholic beverages, such as wine and spirits, resulted in a short and small diuretic effect in elderly men. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Fruit Fiber Consumption Specifically Improves Liver Health Status in Obese Subjects under Energy Restriction
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 667; doi:10.3390/nu9070667 -
Abstract
The prevalence of non-alcoholic-fatty-liver-disease (NAFLD) is associated with obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome (MS). This study aimed to evaluate the influence of two energy-restricted diets on non-invasive markers and scores of liver damage in obese individuals with features of MS after six months
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The prevalence of non-alcoholic-fatty-liver-disease (NAFLD) is associated with obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome (MS). This study aimed to evaluate the influence of two energy-restricted diets on non-invasive markers and scores of liver damage in obese individuals with features of MS after six months of follow-up and to assess the role of fiber content in metabolic outcomes. Seventy obese individuals from the RESMENA (Reduction of Metabolic Syndrome in Navarra) study were evaluated at baseline and after six months of energy-restricted nutritional intervention (American Heart Association (AHA) and RESMENA dietary groups). Dietary records, anthropometrical data, body composition by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA), and routine laboratory measurements were analyzed by standardized methods. Regarding liver status, cytokeratin-18 fragments and several non-invasive scores of fatty liver were also assessed. The RESMENA strategy was a good and complementary alternative to AHA for the treatment of obesity-related comorbidities. Participants with higher insoluble fiber consumption (≥7.5 g/day) showed improvements in fatty liver index (FLI), hepatic steatosis index (HIS), and NAFLD liver fat score (NAFLD_LFS), while gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT) and transaminases evidenced significant improvements as a result of fruit fiber consumption (≥8.8 g/day). Remarkably, a regression model evidenced a relationship between liver status and fiber from fruits. These results support the design of dietary patterns based on the consumption of insoluble fiber and fiber from fruits in the context of energy restriction for the management of obese patients suffering fatty liver disease. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Gut Microbiota as a Target for Preventive and Therapeutic Intervention against Food Allergy
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 672; doi:10.3390/nu9070672 -
Abstract
The gut microbiota plays a pivotal role in immune system development and function. Modification in the gut microbiota composition (dysbiosis) early in life is a critical factor affecting the development of food allergy. Many environmental factors including caesarean delivery, lack of breast milk,
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The gut microbiota plays a pivotal role in immune system development and function. Modification in the gut microbiota composition (dysbiosis) early in life is a critical factor affecting the development of food allergy. Many environmental factors including caesarean delivery, lack of breast milk, drugs, antiseptic agents, and a low-fiber/high-fat diet can induce gut microbiota dysbiosis, and have been associated with the occurrence of food allergy. New technologies and experimental tools have provided information regarding the importance of select bacteria on immune tolerance mechanisms. Short-chain fatty acids are crucial metabolic products of gut microbiota responsible for many protective effects against food allergy. These compounds are involved in epigenetic regulation of the immune system. These evidences provide a foundation for developing innovative strategies to prevent and treat food allergy. Here, we present an overview on the potential role of gut microbiota as the target of intervention against food allergy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Margarines and Fast-Food French Fries: Low Content of trans Fatty Acids
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 662; doi:10.3390/nu9070662 -
Abstract
The lipid fraction of margarines and fast food French fries, two types of foods traditionally high in trans fatty acids (TFA), is assessed. TFA data reported worldwide during the last 20 years have been gathered and show that some countries still report high
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The lipid fraction of margarines and fast food French fries, two types of foods traditionally high in trans fatty acids (TFA), is assessed. TFA data reported worldwide during the last 20 years have been gathered and show that some countries still report high TFA amounts in these products. The content of TFA was analysed in margarines (two store and four premium brands) and French-fries from fast-food restaurants (five chains). All samples were collected in Pamplona (Navarra, Spain). The margarines showed mean values of 0.68% and 0.43% (g TFA/100 g fat) for the store and premium brands, respectively. The French fries’ values ranged from 0.49% to 0.89%. All samples were lower than the 2% set by some European countries as the maximum legal content of TFA in fats, and contained less than 0.5 g/serving, so they could also be considered “trans free products”. This work confirmed that the presence of TFA is not significant in the two analysed products and contributes updated food composition tables, key tools for epidemiological and nutrition studies. Full article
Open AccessReview
Nuts and Dried Fruits: An Update of Their Beneficial Effects on Type 2 Diabetes
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 673; doi:10.3390/nu9070673 -
Abstract
Nuts and dried fruit are essential foods in the Mediterranean diet. Their frequent consumption has been associated with the prevention and/or the management of such metabolic conditions as type 2 diabetes (T2D), metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular diseases. Several previous reviews of epidemiological studies
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Nuts and dried fruit are essential foods in the Mediterranean diet. Their frequent consumption has been associated with the prevention and/or the management of such metabolic conditions as type 2 diabetes (T2D), metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular diseases. Several previous reviews of epidemiological studies and clinical trials have evaluated the associations of nuts and/or dried fruit with various metabolic disorders. However, no reviews have focused on the mechanisms underlying the role of nuts and/or dried fruit in insulin resistance and T2D. This review aims to report nut and dried-fruit nutritional interventions in animals and humans, and to focus on mechanisms that could play a significant role in the prevention and treatment of insulin resistance and T2D. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Antioxidants Mediate Both Iron Homeostasis and Oxidative Stress
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 671; doi:10.3390/nu9070671 -
Abstract
Oxidative stress is a common denominator in the pathogenesis of many chronic diseases. Therefore, antioxidants are often used to protect cells and tissues and reverse oxidative damage. It is well known that iron metabolism underlies the dynamic interplay between oxidative stress and antioxidants
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Oxidative stress is a common denominator in the pathogenesis of many chronic diseases. Therefore, antioxidants are often used to protect cells and tissues and reverse oxidative damage. It is well known that iron metabolism underlies the dynamic interplay between oxidative stress and antioxidants in many pathophysiological processes. Both iron deficiency and iron overload can affect redox state, and these conditions can be restored to physiological conditions using iron supplementation and iron chelation, respectively. Similarly, the addition of antioxidants to these treatment regimens has been suggested as a viable therapeutic approach for attenuating tissue damage induced by oxidative stress. Notably, many bioactive plant-derived compounds have been shown to regulate both iron metabolism and redox state, possibly through interactive mechanisms. This review summarizes our current understanding of these mechanisms and discusses compelling preclinical evidence that bioactive plant-derived compounds can be both safe and effective for managing both iron deficiency and iron overload conditions. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
NutriNet: A Deep Learning Food and Drink Image Recognition System for Dietary Assessment
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 657; doi:10.3390/nu9070657 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Automatic food image recognition systems are alleviating the process of food-intake estimation and dietary assessment. However, due to the nature of food images, their recognition is a particularly challenging task, which is why traditional approaches in the field have achieved a low classification
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Automatic food image recognition systems are alleviating the process of food-intake estimation and dietary assessment. However, due to the nature of food images, their recognition is a particularly challenging task, which is why traditional approaches in the field have achieved a low classification accuracy. Deep neural networks have outperformed such solutions, and we present a novel approach to the problem of food and drink image detection and recognition that uses a newly-defined deep convolutional neural network architecture, called NutriNet. This architecture was tuned on a recognition dataset containing 225,953 512 × 512 pixel images of 520 different food and drink items from a broad spectrum of food groups, on which we achieved a classification accuracy of 86.72%, along with an accuracy of 94.47% on a detection dataset containing 130,517 images. We also performed a real-world test on a dataset of self-acquired images, combined with images from Parkinson’s disease patients, all taken using a smartphone camera, achieving a top-five accuracy of 55%, which is an encouraging result for real-world images. Additionally, we tested NutriNet on the University of Milano-Bicocca 2016 (UNIMIB2016) food image dataset, on which we improved upon the provided baseline recognition result. An online training component was implemented to continually fine-tune the food and drink recognition model on new images. The model is being used in practice as part of a mobile app for the dietary assessment of Parkinson’s disease patients. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Clinical Identification of Geriatric Patients with Hypovitaminosis D: The ‘Vitamin D Status Predictor for Geriatrics’ Study
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 658; doi:10.3390/nu9070658 -
Abstract
The 16-item Vitamin D Status Predictor (VDSP) tool identifies healthy older community-dwellers at risk of hypovitaminosis D and may guide the use of blood tests in this population. The objective of the present hospital-based study was to test the efficacy of the VDSP
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The 16-item Vitamin D Status Predictor (VDSP) tool identifies healthy older community-dwellers at risk of hypovitaminosis D and may guide the use of blood tests in this population. The objective of the present hospital-based study was to test the efficacy of the VDSP to identify geriatric patients with hypovitaminosis D. The study included 199 nonsupplemented geriatric in- and outpatients consecutively admitted to Angers University Hospital, France (mean ± SD, 82.0 ± 7.8 years; 53.3% female). Serum 25-hydroxyvitaminD (25(OH)D) was measured at the time of the physician-administered VDSP. Hypovitaminosis D was defined as serum 25(OH)D concentration ≤ 75 nmol/L for vitamin D insufficiency, 25(OH)D ≤ 50 nmol/L for vitamin D deficiency, and 25(OH)D ≤ 25 nmol/L for severe vitamin D deficiency. We found that 184 participants (92.4%) had vitamin D insufficiency, 136 (68.3%) had vitamin D deficiency, and 67 (33.7%) had severe vitamin D deficiency. The VDSP identified severe vitamin D deficiency with an area under curve (AUC) = 0.83 and OR = 24.0. The VDSP was able to identify vitamin D deficiency and vitamin D insufficiency with less accuracy (AUC = 0.71 and AUC = 0.73, respectively). In conclusion, the 16-item VDSP is a short questionnaire that accurately identifies geriatric patients with severe vitamin D deficiency. This tool may guide the use of blood collection for determining geriatric patients’ vitamin D status. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Does Vitamin C Influence Neurodegenerative Diseases and Psychiatric Disorders?
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 659; doi:10.3390/nu9070659 -
Abstract
Vitamin C (Vit C) is considered to be a vital antioxidant molecule in the brain. Intracellular Vit C helps maintain integrity and function of several processes in the central nervous system (CNS), including neuronal maturation and differentiation, myelin formation, synthesis of catecholamine, modulation
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Vitamin C (Vit C) is considered to be a vital antioxidant molecule in the brain. Intracellular Vit C helps maintain integrity and function of several processes in the central nervous system (CNS), including neuronal maturation and differentiation, myelin formation, synthesis of catecholamine, modulation of neurotransmission and antioxidant protection. The importance of Vit C for CNS function has been proven by the fact that targeted deletion of the sodium-vitamin C co-transporter in mice results in widespread cerebral hemorrhage and death on post-natal day one. Since neurological diseases are characterized by increased free radical generation and the highest concentrations of Vit C in the body are found in the brain and neuroendocrine tissues, it is suggested that Vit C may change the course of neurological diseases and display potential therapeutic roles. The aim of this review is to update the current state of knowledge of the role of vitamin C on neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, multiple sclerosis and amyotrophic sclerosis, as well as psychiatric disorders including depression, anxiety and schizophrenia. The particular attention is attributed to understanding of the mechanisms underlying possible therapeutic properties of ascorbic acid in the presented disorders. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Preventive Effect of Cow’s Milk Fermented with Lactobacillus paracasei CBA L74 on Common Infectious Diseases in Children: A Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 669; doi:10.3390/nu9070669 -
Abstract
Background: Fermented foods have been proposed to prevent common infectious diseases (CIDs) in children attending day care or preschool. Objectives: To investigate the efficacy of dietary supplementation with cow’s skim milk fermented with the probiotic Lactobacillus paracasei CBA L74 in reducing CIDs in
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Background: Fermented foods have been proposed to prevent common infectious diseases (CIDs) in children attending day care or preschool. Objectives: To investigate the efficacy of dietary supplementation with cow’s skim milk fermented with the probiotic Lactobacillus paracasei CBA L74 in reducing CIDs in children attending day care or preschool. Methods: Multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial on healthy children (aged 12–48 months) consuming daily 7 grams of cow’s skim milk fermented with L. paracasei CBA L74 (group A), or placebo (maltodextrins group B) attending day care or preschool during the winter season. The main outcome was the proportion of children who experienced ≥1 episode of CID during a 3-month follow-up. Fecal biomarkers of innate (α- and β-defensins, cathelicidin) and acquired immunity (secretory IgA) were also monitored. Results: A total of 126 children (71 males, 56%) with a mean (SD) age of 33 (9) months completed the study, 66 in group A and 60 in group B. At intention to treat analysis, the proportion of children presenting ≥1 CID was 60% in group A vs. 83% in group B, corresponding to an absolute risk difference (ARD) of −23% (95% CI: −37% to −9%, p < 0.01). At per-protocol-analysis (PPA), the proportion of children presenting ≥1 CID was 18% in group A vs. 40% in group B, corresponding to an absolute risk difference (ARD) of −22% (95% CI: −37% to −6%, p < 0.01). PPA showed that the proportion of children presenting ≥1 acute gastroenteritis (AGE) was significantly lower in group A (18% vs. 40%, p < 0.05). The ARD for the occurrence of ≥1 AGE was −22% (95% CI: −37% to −6%, p < 0.01) in group A. Similar findings were obtained at PPA regarding the proportion of children presenting ≥1 upper respiratory tract infection (URTI), which was significantly lower in group A (51% vs. 74%, p < 0.05), corresponding to an ARD of −23% (95% CI: −40% to −7%, p < 0.01). Significant changes in innate and acquired immunity biomarkers were observed only in subjects in group A. Conclusions: Dietary supplementation with cow’s skim milk fermented with L. paracasei CBA L74 is an efficient strategy in preventing CIDs in children. Full article
Open AccessReview
Vitamin C, Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 670; doi:10.3390/nu9070670 -
Abstract
Accumulating evidence in mice models of accelerated senescence indicates a rescuing role of ascorbic acid in premature aging. Supplementation of ascorbic acid appeared to halt cell growth, oxidative stress, telomere attrition, disorganization of chromatin, and excessive secretion of inflammatory factors, and extend lifespan.
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Accumulating evidence in mice models of accelerated senescence indicates a rescuing role of ascorbic acid in premature aging. Supplementation of ascorbic acid appeared to halt cell growth, oxidative stress, telomere attrition, disorganization of chromatin, and excessive secretion of inflammatory factors, and extend lifespan. Interestingly, ascorbic acid (AA) was also found to positively modulate inflamm-aging and immunosenescence, two hallmarks of biological aging. Moreover, ascorbic acid has been shown to epigenetically regulate genome integrity and stability, indicating a key role of targeted nutrition in healthy aging. Growing in vivo evidence supports the role of ascorbic acid in ameliorating factors linked to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathogenesis, although evidence in humans yielded equivocal results. The neuroprotective role of ascorbic acid not only relies on the general free radical trapping, but also on the suppression of pro-inflammatory genes, mitigating neuroinflammation, on the chelation of iron, copper, and zinc, and on the suppression of amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ) fibrillogenesis. Epidemiological evidence linking diet, one of the most important modifiable lifestyle factors, and risk of Alzheimer's disease is rapidly increasing. Thus, dietary interventions, as a way to epigenetically modulate the human genome, may play a role in the prevention of AD. The present review is aimed at providing an up to date overview of the main biological mechanisms that are associated with ascorbic acid supplementation/bioavailability in the process of aging and Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, we will address new fields of research and future directions. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice (KAP) of Dairy Products in Chinese Urban Population and the Effects on Dairy Intake Quality
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 668; doi:10.3390/nu9070668 -
Abstract
Insufficient intake of dairy products is a nutritional problem of concern in China. However, the knowledge, attitude, and practice of consuming dairy products in the Chinese population remain unknown. A total of 1739 subjects from eight cities in China participated in this study.
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Insufficient intake of dairy products is a nutritional problem of concern in China. However, the knowledge, attitude, and practice of consuming dairy products in the Chinese population remain unknown. A total of 1739 subjects from eight cities in China participated in this study. A questionnaire was used to measure knowledge of and attitude toward dairy. A semi-food intake frequency questionnaire was used to obtain the frequencies and amount of different kinds of dairy product intake. Calcium and protein intake were investigated within one 24-hour period of dietary recall. The results showed that questions related to lactose intolerance had the highest unknown rate and the lowest accuracy. Males, subjects with a lower education level, lower monthly family income (<3000 yuan), lower monthly family food expenditure (<1000 yuan), and lower personal monthly expenditure on dairy products (<10 yuan) had a significantly lower knowledge score. For attitude, 42.7 percent of subjects had self-perceived insufficient intake of dairy. While 15.2 percent of subjects reported experiencing lactose intolerance symptoms, 29.5 percent did not know the reasons. In practice, the median (25th, 75th) intake of dairy products was 71.4 (0.0, 200.0) g/day. A significantly lower intake of dairy and low-fat or fat-free dairy products was shown in subjects with poor dairy knowledge. For the perception of lactose intolerance, the lowest intake was shown in the “unsure” group. In conclusion, knowledge gaps and self-perception bias regarding dairy products exist in Chinese urban adults and these are associated with the quantity and quality of dairy intake. Full article
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Open AccessErratum
Erratum: Association between Alcohol Consumption, Folate Intake, and Risk of Pancreatic Cancer: A Case-Control Study; Nutrients 2017, 9, 448
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 656; doi:10.3390/nu9070656 -
Open AccessReview
Vitamin D and Infectious Diseases: Simple Bystander or Contributing Factor?
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 651; doi:10.3390/nu9070651 -
Abstract
Vitamin D (VD) is a fat-soluble steroid essential for life in higher animals. It is technically a pro-hormone present in few food types and produced endogenously in the skin by a photochemical reaction. In recent decades, several studies have suggested that VD contributes
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Vitamin D (VD) is a fat-soluble steroid essential for life in higher animals. It is technically a pro-hormone present in few food types and produced endogenously in the skin by a photochemical reaction. In recent decades, several studies have suggested that VD contributes to diverse processes extending far beyond mineral homeostasis. The machinery for VD production and its receptor have been reported in multiple tissues, where they have a pivotal role in modulating the immune system. Similarly, vitamin D deficiency (VDD) has been in the spotlight as a major global public healthcare burden. VDD is highly prevalent throughout different regions of the world, including tropical and subtropical countries. Moreover, VDD may affect host immunity leading to an increased incidence and severity of several infectious diseases. In this review, we discuss new insights on VD physiology as well as the relationship between VD status and various infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, respiratory tract infections, human immunodeficiency virus, fungal infections and sepsis. Finally, we critically review the latest evidence on VD monitoring and supplementation in the setting of infectious diseases. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
N-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Decrease the Protein Expression of Soluble Epoxide Hydrolase via Oxidative Stress-Induced P38 Kinase in Rat Endothelial Cells
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 654; doi:10.3390/nu9070654 -
Abstract
N-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) improve endothelial function. The arachidonic acid-derived metabolites (epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs)) are part of the endothelial hyperpolarization factor and are vasodilators independent of nitric oxide. However, little is known regarding the regulation of EET concentration by docosahexaenoic acid
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N-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) improve endothelial function. The arachidonic acid-derived metabolites (epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs)) are part of the endothelial hyperpolarization factor and are vasodilators independent of nitric oxide. However, little is known regarding the regulation of EET concentration by docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) in blood vessels. Sprague-Dawley rats were fed either a control or fish oil diet for 3 weeks. Compared with the control, the fish oil diet improved acetylcholine-induced vasodilation and reduced the protein expression of soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH), a key EET metabolic enzyme, in aortic strips. Both DHA and EPA suppressed sEH protein expression in rat aorta endothelial cells (RAECs). Furthermore, the concentration of 4-hydroxy hexenal (4-HHE), a lipid peroxidation product of n-3 PUFAs, increased in n-3 PUFA-treated RAECs. In addition, 4-HHE treatment suppressed sEH expression in RAECs, suggesting that 4-HHE (derived from n-3 PUFAs) is involved in this phenomenon. The suppression of sEH was attenuated by the p38 kinase inhibitor (SB203580) and by treatment with the antioxidant N-acetyl-L-cysteine. In conclusion, sEH expression decreased after n-3 PUFAs treatment, potentially through oxidative stress and p38 kinase. Mild oxidative stress induced by n-3 PUFAs may contribute to their cardio-protective effect. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Sugars, Sweet Taste Receptors, and Brain Responses
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 653; doi:10.3390/nu9070653 -
Abstract
Sweet taste receptors are composed of a heterodimer of taste 1 receptor member 2 (T1R2) and taste 1 receptor member 3 (T1R3). Accumulating evidence shows that sweet taste receptors are ubiquitous throughout the body, including in the gastrointestinal tract as well as the
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Sweet taste receptors are composed of a heterodimer of taste 1 receptor member 2 (T1R2) and taste 1 receptor member 3 (T1R3). Accumulating evidence shows that sweet taste receptors are ubiquitous throughout the body, including in the gastrointestinal tract as well as the hypothalamus. These sweet taste receptors are heavily involved in nutrient sensing, monitoring changes in energy stores, and triggering metabolic and behavioral responses to maintain energy balance. Not surprisingly, these pathways are heavily regulated by external and internal factors. Dysfunction in one or more of these pathways may be important in the pathogenesis of common diseases, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Risk of Deficiency in Multiple Concurrent Micronutrients in Children and Adults in the United States
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 655; doi:10.3390/nu9070655 -
Abstract
Certain population sub-groups in the United States are vulnerable to micronutrient malnutrition. Nationally representative data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) describing the biochemical status of vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, folate, and anemia, were aggregated to determine
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Certain population sub-groups in the United States are vulnerable to micronutrient malnutrition. Nationally representative data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) describing the biochemical status of vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, folate, and anemia, were aggregated to determine the overall risk of multiple concurrent deficiencies in U.S. children and adults (n = 15,030) aged >9 years. The prevalence of deficiency risk according to socio-demographic, life-stage, dietary supplement use, and dietary adequacy categories was investigated. Thirty-one percent of the U.S. population was at risk of at least one vitamin deficiency or anemia, with 23%, 6.3%, and 1.7% of the U.S. population at risk of deficiency in 1, 2, or 3–5 vitamins or anemia, respectively. A significantly higher deficiency risk was seen in women (37%), non-Hispanic blacks (55%), individuals from low income households (40%), or without a high school diploma (42%), and underweight (42%) or obese individuals (39%). A deficiency risk was most common in women 19–50 years (41%), and pregnant or breastfeeding women (47%). Dietary supplement non-users had the highest risk of any deficiency (40%), compared to users of full-spectrum multivitamin-multimineral supplements (14%) and other dietary supplement users (28%). Individuals consuming an adequate diet based on the Estimated Average Requirement had a lower risk of any deficiency (16%) than those with an inadequate diet (57%). Nearly one-third of the U.S. population is at risk of deficiency in at least one vitamin, or has anemia. Full article
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Open AccessDiscussion
Vitamin D: Daily vs. Monthly Use in Children and Elderly—What Is Going On?
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 652; doi:10.3390/nu9070652 -
Abstract
Vitamin D deficiency is highly prevalent among children and adults worldwide. Agreement exists that vitamin D deficiency should be corrected. However, the definitions of vitamin deficiency and effective vitamin D replacement therapy are inconsistent in the literature. Not only is the dosing regimen
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Vitamin D deficiency is highly prevalent among children and adults worldwide. Agreement exists that vitamin D deficiency should be corrected. However, the definitions of vitamin deficiency and effective vitamin D replacement therapy are inconsistent in the literature. Not only is the dosing regimen still under debate, but also the time and period of administration (i.e., daily vs. monthly dose). In pediatric as well as elderly subjects, dosing regimens with high vitamin D doses at less frequent intervals were proposed to help increase compliance to treatment: these became widespread in clinical practice, despite mounting evidence that such therapies are not only ineffective but potentially harmful, particularly in elderly subjects. Moreover, in the elderly, high doses of vitamin D seem to increase the risk of functional decline and are associated with a higher risk of falls and fractures. Achieving good adherence to recommended prophylactic regimens is definitely one of the obstacles currently being faced in view of the wide segment of the population liable to the treatment and the very long duration of prophylaxis. The daily intake for extended periods is in fact one of the frequent causes of therapeutic drop-outs, while monthly doses of vitamin D may effectively and safely improve patient compliance to the therapy. The aim of our paper is a quasi-literature review on dosing regimens among children and elderly. These two populations showed a particularly significant beneficial effect on bone metabolism, and there could be different outcomes with different dosing regimens. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Quercetin Protects Obesity-Induced Hypothalamic Inflammation by Reducing Microglia-Mediated Inflammatory Responses via HO-1 Induction
Nutrients 2017, 9(7), 650; doi:10.3390/nu9070650 -
Abstract
Obesity-induced hypothalamic inflammation is characterized by activation of microglia, which are resident macrophages of the central nervous system, and is implicated in the derangement of energy homeostasis, metabolic complications, and neurodegenerative diseases. Quercetin, a naturally occurring flavonoid, is known to protect against oxidative
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Obesity-induced hypothalamic inflammation is characterized by activation of microglia, which are resident macrophages of the central nervous system, and is implicated in the derangement of energy homeostasis, metabolic complications, and neurodegenerative diseases. Quercetin, a naturally occurring flavonoid, is known to protect against oxidative stress and inflammation-related metabolic complications. Here, we demonstrate that quercetin reduces obesity-induced hypothalamic inflammation by inhibiting microglia-mediated inflammatory responses, and the beneficial action of quercetin is associated with heme oxygenase (HO-1) induction. Quercetin markedly reduced the production of inflammatory mediators (monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, interleukin (IL-6), IL-1β, nitric oxide) by microglia stimulated with saturated fatty acid palmitate and/or lipid-laden microglia-conditioned medium. Quercetin also upregulated the expression of HO-1 in palmitate-treated lipid-laden microglia, and the actions of quercetin against microglia activation accompanied by IκBα degradation were abolished by a HO-1 inhibitor. Moreover, quercetin supplementation reduced the levels of inflammatory cytokines and microglia activation markers in the hypothalamus of high fat diet (HFD)-fed obese mice, which was accompanied by upregulation of HO-1. These findings indicate that quercetin suppresses microglia-mediated inflammatory responses via the induction of HO-1, and hence protects against obesity-induced hypothalamic inflammation. Full article
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