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Biomarkers of Whole-Grain and Cereal-Fiber Intake in Human Studies: A Systematic Review of the Available Evidence and Perspectives

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Focused research unit for Molecular Diagnostic and Clinical Research, IRS-Center Sonderjylland, Hospital of Southern Jutland, 6200 Aabenraa, Denmark
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Institute of Regional Health Research, University of Southern Denmark, 5230 Odense, Denmark
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Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Southern Denmark, 5230 Odense, Denmark
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Department of Surgery, Hospital of Southern Jutland, 6200 Aabenraa, Denmark
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Research Unit for Dietary Studies, the Parker Institute, Bispebjerg and Frederiksberg, 2000 Frederiksberg, Denmark
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Section for General Medicine, Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
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The Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise & Eating Disorders, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(12), 2994; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11122994
Received: 3 October 2019 / Revised: 15 November 2019 / Accepted: 29 November 2019 / Published: 6 December 2019
High whole-grain consumption is related to better health outcomes. The specific physiological effect of these compounds is still unrevealed, partly because the accurate estimation of the intake of whole grains from dietary assessments is difficult and prone to bias, due to the complexity of the estimation of the intake by the consumer. A biomarker of whole-grain intake and type of whole-grain intake would be useful for quantifying the exposure to whole-grain intake. In this review, we aim to review the evidence on the potential biomarkers for whole-grain intake in the literature. We conducted a systematic search in Medline, Embase, Web of Science, and the Cochrane database. In total, 39 papers met the inclusion criteria following the PRISMA guidelines and were included. The relative validity, responsiveness, and reproducibility of these markers were assessed for short-, medium-, and long-term exposure as important criteria for the potential use of these biomarkers from a clinical and research perspective. We found three major groups of biomarkers: (1) alkylresorcinol, as well as its homologs and metabolites, assessed in plasma, adipose tissue biopsies, erythrocyte membranes, and urine; (2) avenacosides, assessed in urine samples; and (3) benzoxazinoid-derived phenylacetamide sulfates, assessed in blood and urine samples. The reviewed biomarkers may be used for improved assessment of associations between whole-grain intake and health outcomes. View Full-Text
Keywords: whole grains; cereal fibers; rye; wheat; oat; barley; benzoxazinoid; avenacosides; biomarker; alkylresorcinol whole grains; cereal fibers; rye; wheat; oat; barley; benzoxazinoid; avenacosides; biomarker; alkylresorcinol
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Jawhara, M.; Sørensen, S.B.; Heitmann, B.L.; Andersen, V. Biomarkers of Whole-Grain and Cereal-Fiber Intake in Human Studies: A Systematic Review of the Available Evidence and Perspectives. Nutrients 2019, 11, 2994.

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