Author Interviews, CDC, Nutrition / 01.12.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_38658" align="alignleft" width="133"]Seung Hee Lee-Kwan, PhD Epidemiologist, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Dr. Seung Hee Lee-Kwan[/caption] Seung Hee Lee-Kwan, PhD Epidemiologist, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Seung Hee Lee-Kwan has a PhD in International Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Her previous work focused community-based interventions that aimed to promote healthy eating. Dr. Lee-Kwan’s current work at CDC is on fruits and vegetable surveillance, and research of health behaviors and environmental factors associated with obesity.   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The purpose of the study was to update a 2013 report that estimated how many people in each state are meeting fruit and vegetable intake recommendations with the latest data from 2015. These estimates looked at the percent of adults meeting the intake recommendations by age, sex, race/ethnicity, and income-to-poverty ratio for the 50 states and District of Columbia (DC).
Author Interviews, NIH, Nutrition, Weight Research / 30.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Herring in high fructose corn syrup” by Ray Sawhill is licensed under CC BY 2.0Paolo Piaggi PhD and Marie Thearle MD Phoenix Epidemiology and Clinical Research Branch National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases National Institutes of Health, Phoenix, Arizona  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Changes in food preparation have occurred over the recent decades including wide-spread availability of convenience foods and use of fructose as a sweetener. In addition, there is a growing trend to label certain foods as “healthy”. As the ingestion of added sugars and the prevalence of obesity have steadily increased over time, it has been suggested that the increased consumption of simple sugars may have contributed to the recent obesity epidemic. We were interested in understanding whether the body responded to overeating foods with a high carbohydrate content differently if the source of the carbohydrate differed. For example, does it matter if we overeat foods containing whole wheat instead of high-fructose corn syrup? To answer this question, we conducted a study investigating changes in metabolism, circulating hormones, and appetite ratings in humans who were overfed a diet containing 75% carbohydrates for 24 hours. The subjects in the study were overfed with a high carbohydrate diet twice – once with a diet where the source of carbohydrates was whole wheat and once with a diet that contained simple sugars, primarily high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Note that the diets were given in random order with at least three days of recovery in between the overfeeding periods. There was no difference in people’s metabolic rate over 24 hours between the whole-wheat versus high-fructose corn syrup diets; however, the diet containing HFCS resulted in increased hunger scores the next morning even though people had overeaten the day prior. These increased hunger scores were comparable to the hunger scores reported after a day of fasting. Also, 24-hour urinary free cortisol concentrations were higher the day after the diet containing high-fructose corn syrup. Cortisol is a hormone released by the adrenal glands in response to physiologic stress.
Author Interviews, BMJ, Nutrition / 26.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Coffee” by Treacle Tart is licensed under CC BY 2.0Robin Poole Specialty registrar in public health Academic Unit of Primary Care and Population Sciences Faculty of Medicine University of Southampton MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Worldwide, over two billion cups of coffee are consumed every day. Since such a lot of coffee is consumed it is important to understand whether this is beneficial or harmful to our health. Evidence to date has been mixed and this tends to vary between different outcomes. Coffee is a complex mixture of many bioactive compounds including caffeine, chlorogenic acids, and diterpenes. Laboratory experiments have previously highlighted the potential for coffee to have anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-fibrotic and anti-cancer effects. Our research group is interested in liver conditions and we were aware of studies suggesting beneficial associations between drinking coffee and liver disease. We went on to conduct two meta-analyses and concluded that coffee drinking was beneficially associated with both liver cirrhosis and liver cancer.
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Heart Disease, JACC, Nutrition / 20.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Nuts” by fdecomite is licensed under CC BY 2.0Marta Guasch-Ferre, PhD Research Fellow Department of Nutrition. Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health 655 Huntington Ave, Building 2 Boston, Ma, 02115  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Although previous evidence has shown that frequent nut consumption is associated with reduced cardiovascular risk factors including dyslipidaemia, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome; as well as with lower risk of coronary heart disease (CHD); most of the previous prospective studies have focused on total nut consumption in relation to the risk of CVD. However, the associations between peanut butter and specific types of nuts, such as peanuts and walnuts, with major cardiovascular events, and specifically the relation with stroke were unclear. Of note, because the nutritional composition of peanuts and walnuts differs from other nuts, it was of particular interest to evaluate the health effects of specific types of nuts. Therefore, our main aim was to look at several types of nuts including total nut consumption, peanuts, walnuts, and tree nuts. Briefly, in three large prospective cohorts with up to 32 years of follow-up, people who regularly eat nuts, including peanuts, walnuts and tree nuts, have a lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease or coronary heart disease compared to people who never or almost never eat nuts. We found a consistent inverse association between total nut consumption and total cardiovascular disease (14% lower risk for those consuming nuts five or more times per week) and coronary heart disease (20% lower risk). Also, after looking at individual nut consumption, eating walnuts one or more times per week was associated with a 19 percent lower risk of cardiovascular disease and 21 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease. Participants who ate peanuts or tree nuts two or more times per week had a 15 percent and 23 percent, respectively, lower risk of coronary heart disease compared to those who never consumed nuts.
Author Interviews, Coffee, Heart Disease, Red Meat, Stroke / 15.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Coffee being poured Coffee pot pouring cup of coffee.  copyright American Heart AssociationLaura Stevens University of Colorado Aurora, CO MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: We started with asking ourselves how we could better predict cardiovascular and stroke outcomes.  In an ideal world, we would be able to predict cardiovascular disease (CVD) and stroke with 100% accuracy long before the occurrence of the event.  The challenge here is there are so many potential risk factors, and testing each one using traditional methods would be extremely time consuming, and possibly infeasible. Therefore, we used artificial intelligence to find potential risk factors that could be important for risk of CVD and stroke.  The results of this analysis pointed to consumption of coffee cups per day and the number of times red meat was consumed per week as being potentially important predictors of CVD. We then looked into these findings further using traditional statistical analyses to determine that increased coffee consumption and red meat consumption appeared to be associated with decreased risk of CVD.  The study initially used data from the Framingham Heart Study (FHS) original cohort. The findings from this data were then tested using data from 2 independent studies, the Cardiovascular Heart Study (CHS) and the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study (ARIC), which both supported the association of increased coffee consumption with decreased CVD risk.
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Nutrition / 14.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Fresh Food” by Sonny Side Up! is licensed under CC BY 2.0   Dr. Kyla M Lara Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai       MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: This was the first study to evaluate whether dietary patterns of black and white adults living in the United States were associated with developing heart failure. We’re hearing a lot in the news about specific diets like low-fat, high protein, low carb, and other diets that decrease cardiovascular risk. We would love it, as physicians, if we could prescribe a specific diet to limit cardiovascular risk in our patients. I’m really excited about our study because instead of examining patterns of what we already know are healthy, we looked at foods people were regularly consuming in the United States and developed dietary patterns from this. This study is similar to other work we have done with stroke and heart attack. We used data from the NIH funded REGARDS study, also known as the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke. More than 30,000 white and African-American adults were recruited from 2003-2007. From this group, we studied over 18,000 adults who successfully completed a dietary assessment called the Food Frequency Questionnaire. This was a really great group to study because people who live in this particular geographic area of the Southeastern United States, also known as the stroke belt, suffer from a higher risk of death from stroke. It’s extremely important for us to better understand the major risk factors that contribute to this and also cardiovascular disease. We used statistical techniques to derive 5 dietary patterns based on the types of foods participants tended to eat. • Convenience - Mexican and Chinese food, mixed dishes (both meat and bean) • Sweets - added fats, bread, chocolate, desserts, sweet breakfast foods • Southern - added fats, fried food, organ and processed meat, fatty milk • Alcohol/Salads - beer, wine, liquor, green leafy vegetables, salad dressings, nuts and seeds, coffee • Plant Based- fruit, vegetables, fruit juice, cereal, fish, poultry Each participant received a score for each pattern that reflected how closely their diet resembled that dietary pattern. This approach reflects the real world and how people eat. Over the 3135 days (8.6 years) of median follow up, 594 participants were hospitalized for incident HF. Greatest adherence to the plant-based dietary pattern during the study period was associated with a 28% risk reduction of developing heart failure.
Author Interviews, Blood Pressure - Hypertension, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Heart Disease, JACC, Nutrition, Salt-Sodium / 13.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_38145" align="alignleft" width="120"]Stephen P. Juraschek, MD, PhD Instructor of Medicine Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School Dr. Juraschek[/caption] Stephen P. Juraschek, MD, PhD Instructor of Medicine Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The DASH-Sodium trial demonstrated that both the DASH diet and sodium restriction, individually and combined, lowered blood pressure in adults with pre-hypertension or stage 1 hypertension. Whether these effects varied by level of blood pressure prior to starting these interventions was unknown. In a secondary analysis of the original DASH diet it had been observed that the effects from DASH were greater among adults with higher blood pressure (systolic greater than or equal to 140 mm Hg) at baseline with the appearance of even greater effects among people with baseline systolic blood pressures above 150 mm Hg. However, this has never been shown. Furthermore, it was unknown whether sodium reduction followed a similar linear trend of greater effects among adults with more severely uncontrolled systolic blood pressure. In our study, we found that effects were indeed greater in adults with a baseline systolic blood pressure of 150 mm Hg or greater. Furthermore, the combined systolic blood pressure-lowering effect from both interventions was as high was 20 mm Hg. This is a magnitude comparable if not greater than medications for lowering blood pressure.
Author Interviews, Coffee, Kidney Disease / 04.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Coffee Wikipedia imageMedicalResearch.com Interview with: Miguel Bigotte Vieira, MD Centro Hospitalar Lisboa Norte Lisboa, Portugal Response: An inverse relationship between coffee consumption and mortality has been reported in the general population. However, the association between caffeine consumption and mortality in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) remains unclear. We examined the association between varying levels of caffeine consumption and mortality among 2328 patients with CKD in a prospective nationwide cohort, using the continuous National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 1999-2010. A dose-dependent inverse association between caffeine and all-cause mortality was observed in patients with CKD. This association was independent of influential factors including age, gender, race, annual family income, education level, estimated GFR, albumin/creatinine ratio, hypertension, smoking status, dyslipidemia, body mass index, previous cardiovascular events and diet: consumption of alcohol, carbohydrates, polyunsaturated fatty acids and fibers. Comparing with 1st quartile of caffeine consumption, adjusted HR for death was 0.88 (95% CI, 0.68-1.44) for 2nd quartile, 0.78 (95% CI, 0.60-1.01) for 3rd quartile and 0.76 (95% CI, 0.59-0.97) for 4th quartile (p=0.027 for trend across quartiles)
Author Interviews, Coffee, Kidney Disease / 01.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_37801" align="alignleft" width="150"]Miguel Bigotte Vieira MD Centro Hospitalar Lisboa Norte Lisbon, Portugal Dr. Bigotte Vieira[/caption] Miguel Bigotte Vieira MD Centro Hospitalar Lisboa Norte Lisbon, Portugal  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response:  An inverse relationship between coffee consumption and mortality has been reported in the general population. However, the association between caffeine consumption and mortality in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) remains unclear. We examined the association between varying levels of caffeine consumption and mortality among 2328 patients with CKD in a prospective nationwide cohort, using the continuous National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 1999-2010. A dose-dependent inverse association between caffeine and all-cause mortality was observed in patients with CKD. This association was independent of influential factors including age, gender, race, annual family income, education level, estimated GFR, albumin/creatinine ratio, hypertension, smoking status, dyslipidemia, body mass index, previous cardiovascular events and diet: consumption of alcohol, carbohydrates, polyunsaturated fatty acids and fibers. Comparing with 1st quartile of caffeine consumption, adjusted HR for death was 0.88 (95% CI, 0.68-1.44) for 2nd quartile, 0.78 (95% CI, 0.60-1.01) for 3rd quartile and 0.76 (95% CI, 0.59-0.97) for 4th quartile (p=0.027 for trend across quartiles)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Chocolate, Pediatrics, Weight Research / 01.11.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_13134" align="alignleft" width="125"]Jorge E. Chavarro, M.D., Sc.D. Assistant Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Assistant Professor of Medicine Harvard Medical School Boston, MA 02113 Dr. Chavarro[/caption] Jorge E. Chavarro, MD, ScD Associate Professor Departments of Nutrition and Epidemiology Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health Channing Division of Network Medicine Department of Medicine Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School Boston, MA 02115 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: It is well known that sugared sweetened beverages (SSBs) promote excessive weight gain and obesity in children. The excess sugars in chocolate milk and other flavored milks puts them in a category that may be closer to sugared sweetened beverages than to plain milk. However, data on whether flavored milks promote weight gain is scarce. We followed a cohort of 5,321 children and adolescents over a four year period to evaluate whether intake of chocolate milks was related to weight gain. We found that children who increased their intake of flavored milk gained more weight than children whose intake of flavored milk remained stable over this period. Moreover, among those children who did not drink any chocolate milk at baseline, those who started drinking chocolate milk over the course of the study gained substantially more weight than children who remained non-consumers of chocolate milk.
Author Interviews, Salt-Sodium, University of Michigan / 23.10.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_37686" align="alignleft" width="101"]Julia Wolfson, PhD MPP Assistant Professor Department of Health Management and Policy Department of Nutritional Sciences University of Michigan School of Public Health Ann Arbor, MI 48109 Dr. Wolfson[/caption] Julia Wolfson, PhD MPP Assistant Professor Department of Health Management and Policy Department of Nutritional Sciences University of Michigan School of Public Health Ann Arbor, MI 48109 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Over the past several years, Large chain restaurants in the United States have made some progress in introducing new lower calorie items on their menus. Since 2012, calories of items consistently on restaurant menus in all years have not significantly change. In this study, we examined the sodium content of restaurant menu items among 66 of the 100 largest restaurants in the US. We examined sodium content among items on the menu in all years (2012-2016) and among newly introduced items in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 compared to items on the menu in 2012 only. We found that sodium content of menu items on the menu in all years did not change, but that restaurants were introducing new, lower sodium menu items. However, sodium content of restaurant menu items remains high. This is important because diets high in sodium are associated with serious adverse health outcomes including hypertension, stroke and cardiovascular disease.
Author Interviews, Gastrointestinal Disease, Kidney Disease, Microbiome, Supplements / 19.10.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_37590" align="alignleft" width="150"]Ron Walborn Jr. Prebiotin CEO Ron Walborn Jr.[/caption] Ron Walborn Jr. Prebiotin CEO  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The product Prebiotin™ Prebiotic Fiber was brought to market in 2007 by Dr. Frank Jackson, a gastroenterologist out of Harrisburg, PA. He found through 40 years of experience with his patients that a variety of digestive issues benefitted from daily supplementation with a soluble prebiotic fiber, specifically, oligofructose-enriched inulin (OEI) derived from chicory root. In the late summer of 2012, Prebiotin caught the attention of Dr. Dominic Raj at the Internal Medicine Department of George Washington University. Dr. Raj’s laboratory showed that patients with kidney disease may have a higher level of release of endotoxins like p-Cresol sulfate and indole from the bacteria in the gut, which can move into the bloodstream and promote inflammation. This early work was the basis of a successful grant application. Researchers were interested in investigating the therapeutic potential of altering the composition and/or function of the gut microbiome in this patient population, based on the understanding that by building up the levels of healthy bacteria in the gut, undesirable bacteria is eventually crowded out, thereby reducing the release of harmful endotoxins into the system.
Author Interviews, Autism, BMJ, Nutrition / 14.10.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Elizabeth DeVilbiss, PhD MPH Dornsife School of Public Health Drexel University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Unfortunately, not much is known about how diet during pregnancy affects autism risk.  There have been studies in recent years about varied aspects of diet during pregnancy and autism risk involving multivitamins, iron, folic acid, vitamin D, and more, but the evidence is still inconclusive. After adjusting for several potentially influencing factors in both mothers and children, we found that multivitamin use, with or without additional iron and/or folic acid, was associated with a lower likelihood of child autism spectrum disorder with intellectual disability relative to mothers who did not use folic acid, iron, and multivitamins.
Author Interviews, Coffee, Gastrointestinal Disease, Hepatitis - Liver Disease / 03.10.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_37320" align="alignleft" width="200"]Coffee Wikipedia image Coffee
Wikipedia image[/caption] Patrizia Carrieri PhD INSERM U912 - ORS PACA IHU - Faculté de Médecine Marseille, France MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: This study is based on the longitudinal data of the French  ANRS HEPAVIH cohort of patients with HIV and Hepatitis C co-infection. This cohort was set up thanks to a collaboration between INSERM (National Institute of health and medical research) UMR912 in Marseille, the ISPED (public health and epidemiology institute) in Bordeaux and several hospital/university sites. Our INSERM team in Marseille is specialized in the study of the impact of behaviors on HIV and HCV outcomes, including mortality. We could think that HCV cure was enough to reduce mortality in HIV-HCV patients as the mortality risk was 80% lower in those who were cured of (i.e. who “cleared”) Hepatitis C thanks to treatment. However, our study showed that, even after HCV cure, sociobehavioral factors still matter: drinking at least 3 cups of coffee a day was associated with a 50% reduction in mortality risk as well as not smoking which was also associated with a reduced mortality risk. This association between elevated coffee intake and reduced mortality risk is probably due to the properties of polyphenols contained in coffee which can protect the liver and also reduce inflammation.
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cost of Health Care, JAMA, Nutrition / 27.09.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_37208" align="alignleft" width="125"]Seth A. Berkowitz, MD, MPH Division of General Internal Medicine Diabetes Population Health Unit Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston Dr. Berkowitz[/caption] Seth A. Berkowitz, MD, MPH Division of General Internal Medicine Diabetes Population Health Unit Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: There is ever growing pressure to contain healthcare costs in the US. Increasingly, attention is turning to programs that address social determinants of health--that is, those factors which affect health but lie outside the realm of clinical medicine. Prior research has highlighted food insecurity as having a clear association with poor health and higher healthcare costs. SNAP is the nation's largest program to combat food insecurity. However, we did not know whether SNAP participation would be associated with any difference in healthcare costs, compared with eligible non-participants. This study found that participating in SNAP was associated with approximately $1400 lower healthcare expenditures per year in low-income adults.
Abuse and Neglect, Artificial Sweeteners, Diabetes / 14.09.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_36959" align="alignleft" width="100"]Dr. Richard L. Young PhD Associate Professor Adelaide Medical School The University of Adelaide Group Leader, Intestinal Nutrient Sensing Group Centre for Nutrition & Gastrointestinal Diseases South Australian Health & Medical Research Institute North Terrace, Adelaide | SA  Dr. Young[/caption] Dr. Richard L. Young PhD Associate Professor Adelaide Medical School The University of Adelaide Group Leader, Intestinal Nutrient Sensing Group Centre for Nutrition & Gastrointestinal Diseases South Australian Health & Medical Research Institute North Terrace, Adelaide | SA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: This study was a clinical trial in healthy subjects dosed a sweetener combination (sucralose and acesulfame-K) at a  dose to equal 1.5 L of artificial sweetened drink per day. This was given in capsules to dissolve in the proximal intestine (3 capsules per day, 2 weeks) and was a randomised, placebo-controlled double-blind study. Sweetener treatment increased glucose absorption (assessed by serum 3-O-methy glucose), increased glycemic responses to duodenal glucose infusion and decreased GLP-1 responses. These data show that intake of these sweeteners in healthy subjects may increase glycemic responses, and are the first to document an effect of these sweeteners to increase glucose absorption in humans.
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Nutrition / 02.09.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_36651" align="alignleft" width="129"]Dr. Mahshid Dehghan, PhD Investigator- Nutrition Epidemiology Program Population Health Research Institute Senior Research Associate – Department of Medicine McMaster University Dr. Dehghan[/caption] Dr. Mahshid Dehghan, PhD Investigator- Nutrition Epidemiology Program Population Health Research Institute Senior Research Associate – Department of Medicine McMaster University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: For decades, dietary guidelines have largely focused on reducing total fat and saturated fat intake based on the idea that reducing fat consumption should reduce the risk of CVD. But this did not take into account what nutrients replace saturated fats in the diet. Given that carbohydrates are relatively inexpensive, reducing fats (especially saturated fat) is often accompanied by increased carbohydrate consumption. This approach continues to influence health policy today. The guidelines were developed some 4 decades back mainly using data from some Western countries (such as Finland) where fat and saturated fat intakes were very high (eg total fat intake was >40% of caloric intake and saturated fats was >20% of caloric intake). It is not clear whether the harms seen at such high levels applies to current global intakes or countries outside North America and Europe where fat intakes are much lower. The PURE (Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology) study is a large international cohort study of more than 157,000 people aged 35 to 70 years from 18 low-income, middle-income, and high-income countries on 5 continents. In this study, 135,335 individuals with dietary information and without cardiovascular disease at baseline were included in the study. Standardized questionnaires were used to collect information about demographics, socio-economic factors, lifestyle behaviors, health history and medication use. Standardized case-report forms were used to record data on major cardiovascular events and mortality during follow-up, which were adjudicated centrally in each country by trained physicians using standard definitions. The participants were followed-up for 7.5 years, during which time 4784 major cardiovascular events and 5796 deaths were recorded.
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Lancet, Nutrition / 30.08.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ms Victoria Miller Population Health Research Institute DBCVS Research Institut McMaster University, Hamilton, ON Canada MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: PURE study is prospective urban rural epidemiology study that included aged 35 to 70 years from 26 low-income, middle-income, and high-income countries on 5 continents. Data were collected at the community, household, and individual levels. Standardized questionnaires were used to collect information about demographic factors, socio-economic status (education, income, and employment), lifestyle (smoking, physical activity, and alcohol intake), health history and medication use. Standardized case-report forms were used to record data on major cardiovascular events and mortality during follow-up, which were adjudicated centrally in each country by trained physicians using standard definitions. Participants’ habitual food intake was recorded using country-specific (or region specific in India) validated food frequency questionnaires (FFQs) at baseline. The median follow up is 7.4 years and we are aiming for follow up people at least for 15 years. During 7.4 years of follow up more than 6000 CVD and 7000 mortality recorded. Higher fruit, vegetable and legume intake is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular, non-cardiovascular and total mortality. Our findings show the lowest risk of death in those who consume three to four servings (equivalent to 375-500 grams per day) of fruits, vegetables and legumes per day, with little additional benefit for intake beyond that range. When examined separately, fruit intake is associated with lower risk of cardiovascular, non-cardiovascular and total mortality, while legume intake is inversely associated with non-cardiovascular and total mortality. For vegetables, raw vegetable intake is more strongly associated with lower risk of total mortality compared to cooked vegetable intake.
Author Interviews, Coffee, Weight Research / 28.08.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_36667" align="alignleft" width="112"]MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Robin Dando, PhD Assistant Professor Director, Cornell Sensory Evaluation Facility Department of Food Science Cornell University Ithaca, NY 14853 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The study arose from a previous paper I authored in the Journal of Neuroscience, where we found Adenosine receptors in taste. We managed to prove that they were there to amplify sweet signals. This led us to wonder, what about the foods we consume, that would come into contact with these receptors in taste buds. It just happens that a lot of us habitually consume a powerful blocker of adenosine receptors every morning. Caffeine. So is our coffee impairing sweet signals? It turns out when we gave people sweetened coffee containing caffeine, they judged it as less sweet than the same coffee without the caffeine, sampled on a different day. Interestingly, this persisted, and sweet solutions they tested afterwards were still a little less sweet. Finally, just for kicks, we asked them to rate how much caffeine they thought was in either coffee, and how much more alert it made them feel. Turns out, there was no difference. They couldn’t tell which was deacf, and either coffee gave them just as much of an alertness boost. MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report? Response: Readers should consider that they may be altering how their food tastes when consuming coffee. And perhaps also, they could be drinking decaf, and getting just as good a jolt from it (as long as someone else was preparing it for them, so they didn’t know). MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study? Response: We’re interested in how many factors we encounter in our every day lives change our perception, from the foods we’re consuming themselves, to our own bodies. We’re currently looking into how obesity, pregnancy and sleep can change our sense of taste, and the foods we crave. If you’d like to hear more about what we do, you can follow our work on twitter @DandoLab. MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community. 1.Citation: Ezen Choo, Benjamin Picket, Robin Dando. Caffeine May Reduce Perceived Sweet Taste in Humans, Supporting Evidence That Adenosine Receptors Modulate Taste. Journal of Food Science, 2017; DOI: 10.1111/1750-3841.13836 Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions. [wysija_form id="5"] Dr. Dando[/caption]Robin Dando, PhD Assistant Professor Director, Cornell Sensory Evaluation Facility Department of Food Science Cornell University Ithaca, NY 14853  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The study arose from a previous paper I authored in the Journal of Neuroscience, where we found Adenosine receptors in taste.  We managed to prove that they were there to amplify sweet signals.  This led us to wonder, what about the foods we consume, that would come into contact with these receptors in taste buds. It just happens that a lot of us habitually consume a powerful blocker of adenosine receptors every morning.  Caffeine.  So is our coffee impairing sweet signals?  It turns out when we gave people sweetened coffee containing caffeine, they judged it as less sweet than the same coffee without the caffeine, sampled on a different day.  Interestingly, this persisted, and sweet solutions they tested afterwards were still a little less sweet. Finally, just for kicks, we asked them to rate how much caffeine they thought was in either coffee, and how much more alert it made them feel.  Turns out, there was no difference.  They couldn’t tell which was deacf, and either coffee gave them just as much of an alertness boost.
Author Interviews, Kidney Stones, Nutrition / 07.08.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_36321" align="alignleft" width="200"]Dr. Nigwekar and Dr. Paunescu Dr. Nigwekar and                 Dr. Paunescu[/caption] Teodor Paunescu, PhD and Sagar Nigwekar, MD Division of Nephrology Massachusetts General Hospital  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Over 25 million people in the U.S. have chronic kidney disease, and the number of deaths caused by this disease has doubled between 1990 and 2010. It is projected that by 2030 more than 1 in 3 adults over 65 years old will be diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. Many patients with kidney disease are also malnourished, which negatively impacts their quality of life, overall health, and even survival. However, no effective treatments are currently available to address malnutrition in these patients. The sense of smell plays an important role in determining food flavor. If a patient’s ability to smell is impaired, this could affect the taste of food, for example, foods that used to appeal to the patient may no longer do so. Given the relation between the sense of smell and appetite, we set out to investigate the loss of smell in patients with kidney disease, and to test an intervention aimed at alleviating their smell deficits. Our first goal was to determine if patients with various degrees of kidney disease suffer smell losses and whether smell issues might affect their nutritional status. We found that, while most kidney disease patients do not perceive a problem with their sense of smell, deficits in the ability to smell are actually common among these patients, and the severity of these deficits increases with the severity of their kidney disease. Moreover, our study found that reductions in several markers of nutrition (such as cholesterol and albumin levels) correlate with the impairment in these patients’ sense of smell.
Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Columbia, Nutrition / 24.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yian Gu, PhD Assistant Professor of Neuropsychology (in Neurology and Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer's Disease and the Aging Brain) Columbia University Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: We have previously shown that elderly individuals who consume healthier diet (certain foods, nutrients, and dietary patterns) have larger brain volume, better cognition, and lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. The current study aimed to examine the biological mechanisms for the relationship between diet and brain/cognitive health
Artificial Sweeteners, Author Interviews, CMAJ, Heart Disease, Weight Research / 17.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35870" align="alignleft" width="168"]Dr. Azad Dr. Azad[/caption] Meghan Azad PhD Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics & Child Health and Community Health Sciences, University of Manitoba; Associate Investigator, Canadian Healthy Infant Longitudinal Development (CHILD) Study Research Scientist, Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba; co-Lead, Population Health Pillar, Developmental Origins of Chronic Diseases in Children Network MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Consumption of artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, sucralose and stevia, is widespread and increasing.  Emerging data indicate that artificial, or non-nutritive, sweeteners may have negative effects on metabolism, gut bacteria and appetite, although the evidence is conflicting. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Response: We conducted a systematic review of 37 studies that collectively followed over 400,000 people for an average of 10 years. Only 7 of these studies were randomized clinical trials (the gold standard in clinical research), involving 1003 people followed for 6 months on average. The trials did not show a consistent effect of artificial sweeteners on weight loss, and the longer observational studies showed a link between consumption of artificial sweeteners and relatively higher risks of weight gain and obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and other health issues.
Author Interviews, Autism, Gastrointestinal Disease, Nutrition / 14.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35911" align="alignleft" width="200"]Bradley James Ferguson, PhD University of Missouri School of Medicine Dr. Ferguson[/caption] Bradley James Ferguson, PhD University of Missouri School of Medicine  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Many individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have gastrointestinal problems, such as constipation, irritable bowel syndrome and abdominal pain, but the cause of these GI issues is not currently known. Previous research from our laboratory showed a significant positive relationship between cortisol levels and GI problems, especially for constipation. However, it is possible that other factors such as diet may affect GI functioning, especially since many children have altered diets. This study examined 32 different nutrients in the children’s diets, as assessed by a food frequency questionnaire that assessed the participant’s diet over the past month, and how each nutrient was related to upper and lower GI tract symptom scores over the past month created from the Questionnaire on Pediatric Gastrointestinal Symptoms – Rome III. The results showed no significant relationships between any of the nutrients and GI symptoms, suggesting that diet was not associated with GI symptoms in this sample.
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Lifestyle & Health, NEJM, Nutrition / 13.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35810" align="alignleft" width="166"]Mercedes Sotos Prieto PhD Research Fellow Department of Nutrition Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health  Dr. Sotos-Prieto[/caption] Mercedes Sotos Prieto PhD Research Fellow Department of Nutrition Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Previous research have found that adherence to the 2010 Alternate Heathy Eating Index, the Mediterranean Diet pattern, and DASH pattern is associated with health benefits, but none of those studies have examined dynamic changes in diet quality over time and subsequent risk of mortality. This is the first study to demonstrate that improvement in these three diet scores over time is associated with reduced risk of total and cardiovascular mortality. In contrast, worsening diet quality over 12-years was associated with 6%-12% increased mortality. In addition, not only improvement in diet quality but maintaining a high adherence to any of the three dietary patterns over 12 years was significantly associated with 9%-14% lower total mortality.
Annals Internal Medicine, Author Interviews, Coffee / 11.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marc J. Gunter, PhD  From International Agency for Research on Cancer Lyon, France MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: U.S. and Japanese studies have previously found that drinking more coffee was related with a lower risk of death. However, in European populations, where coffee consumption and preparation methods are more varied, the relationship was less certain as relatively small studies had previously been conducted. Our analysis was undertaken in ~500,000 men and women from 10 European countries, the largest study to date investigating the coffee and mortality relationship.
Author Interviews, JAMA, Nutrition, Pediatrics / 10.07.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Anne-Louise M. Heath and Professor Rachael Taylor Co-Principal Investigators for the BLISS study. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Conventional approaches to complementary feeding generally advise parents to spoon-feed their infant pureed foods, gradually progressing to greater variety and texture so that by the time the infant is one year of age, they are eating more or less what the family does. Baby-led weaning (BLW) is an alternative approach where the infants feeds themselves right from the start of complementary feeding. Because children of this age cannot use utensils, this means hand-held foods are necessary. Advocates of BLW suggest that children have a lower risk of obesity because they remain in control of their own food intake, but research examining this issue directly is scarce. Health professionals have also expressed concern that BLW might put the infant at increased risk of iron deficiency (parents might avoid red meat for fear of the infant choking, and iron-fortified cereals are not easy for the infant to feed themselves), growth faltering (if only low energy foods are offered) and choking (from the infant feeding themselves ‘whole’ foods). Our study therefore examined a version of BLW that had been modified to address these issues (called BLISS - a Baby-Led Introduction to SolidS). Two hundred families took part in our 2-year intervention, with half following traditional feeding practices and half receiving guidance and support to follow our BLISS approach. We found that BLISS children were not less likely to be overweight than those following traditional feeding practices, nor was growth faltering an issue. BLISS child ate about the same amount of food as control children, and their ability to eat to appetite was not different either. However, it seems that children following a baby-led approach to complementary feeding are less fussy about food, and have a healthier attitude to food, which might make a difference to their health long term.
Author Interviews, Nutrition, OBGYNE, Pediatrics, Weight Research / 19.06.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35407" align="alignleft" width="142"]Cuilin Zhang MD, PhD Senior Investigator, Epidemiology Branch Division of Intramural Population Health Research NICHD/National Institutes of Health Bethesda, MD 20817  Dr. Zhang[/caption] Cuilin Zhang MD, PhD Senior Investigator, Epidemiology Branch Division of Intramural Population Health Research NICHD/National Institutes of Health Bethesda, MD 20817  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Refined grains with a high glycemic index and reduced fiber and nutrient content have been linked to increased adiposity and higher risk of metabolic syndrome among adults. Despite these differences and the growing body of literature on the link between maternal diet/nutrition during pregnancy and subsequent offspring health consequences throughout the lifespan, little is known about the intergenerational impact of refined-grain intake during pregnancy on long-term cardio-metabolic outcomes in the offspring.
Allergies, Author Interviews, Nutrition, Pediatrics / 19.06.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35390" align="alignleft" width="133"]Dr. Malcolm Sears, Professor  MB, ChB, FRACP, FRCPC, FAAAAI Co-director of the CHILD Study Division of Respirology, Department of Medicine, McMaster Universi Dr. Sears[/caption] Dr. Malcolm Sears, Professor MB, ChB, FRACP, FRCPC, FAAAAI Co-director of the CHILD Study Division of Respirology, Department of Medicine, McMaster University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The Canadian Healthy Infant Longitudinal Development (CHILD) Study is a longitudinal birth cohort study commenced in 2008 with 3,495 families across Canada.  We recruited the mothers during pregnancy and are following their children to age 5 with the intent of determining the underlying developmental causes of allergy and asthma. In the current analysis, we have looked at the relationship between the timing of first introduction of three “allergenic” foods (milk products, egg and peanut) and the likelihood of sensitization to these foods at age 1 year.  We found that earlier introduction was associated with a reduced risk of sensitization, which is consistent with some recent randomized controlled trials.  For instance, infants who avoided cow’s milk product in their first year of life were nearly four times as likely to be sensitized to cow’s milk compared with infants who did consume cow’s milk products before age 12 months.  Similarly, infants who avoided egg or peanut in the first year were nearly twice as likely to be sensitized to those foods compared to infants who consumed them before 12 months of age.
Author Interviews, Genetic Research, Nutrition, Omega-3 Fatty Acids / 16.06.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35363" align="alignleft" width="200"]Kaixiong (Calvin) Ye, PhD Post-doctoral Associate Dept. of Biological Statistics & Computational Biology Cornell University thaca, NY Dr. Kaixong Ye[/caption] Kaixiong (Calvin) Ye, PhD Post-doctoral Associate Dept. of Biological Statistics & Computational Biology Cornell University thaca, NY MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are critical for human brain development, cognitive function, immune response, and cardiovascular health. Physiologically active forms of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, such as AA, EPA, and DHA, are readily available in meat and seafood, but are absent in most plant-based foods (e.g. fruits and vegetables). Instead, plant-based foods contain two precursor fatty acids, LA and ALA, which could be metabolized in our body and converted into physiologically active forms. Fatty acid desaturase (FADS) genes encode key enzymes for this biosynthesis. We hypothesized that genetic variations in FADS genes that enhance the biosynthesis efficiency were adaptive to plant-based diets in traditional farming populations and thus became more frequent over time. Our study compiled a huge data set of genetic information (DNA) from both present-day and ancient individuals. For the first time, we examined the action of natural selection on humans for the past 30,000 years in Europe.
Author Interviews, JAMA, Nutrition, Stanford / 12.06.2017

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_35210" align="alignleft" width="140"]Bradley P. Turnwald Bradley Turnwald[/caption] Bradley P. Turnwald MS Stanford University, Department of Psychology Stanford, California MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This study tested an intervention to encourage people to consume healthier foods. Encouraging healthy eating is difficult because many people think that healthy foods do not taste good, and most people prioritize taste over health when choosing what to eat. In fact, lab studies suggest that people rate foods as less tasty, less enjoyable, and less filling when they are labeled as healthy compared to when the same foods are not labeled as healthy. A recent study from the Stanford Mind & Body Lab published last month in Health Psychology showed that healthy foods are even described with less tasty, exciting, and indulgent descriptions compared to standard items on the menus of top-selling chain restaurants in America. This led us to ask the question, what if healthy foods were described with the tasty and indulgent descriptions that are typically reserved for the more classic, unhealthy foods?