Food Poisoning, Infections, Nutrition / 06.06.2024

stomach-pain-pixbyFoodborne illness, or food poisoning as many call it, is a widespread and potentially life-threatening health issue. Therefore, understanding the causes and prevention of foodborne illness is crucial for everyone, from home cooks to professional chefs, food industry workers, and consumers. This article explores the causes of foodborne illness, identifies high-risk foods, and provides essential strategies for preventing this health issue.

Common Causes of Foodborne Illness

Symptoms of foodborne illness can show up quickly, sometimes within hours after you eat or drink a contaminated meal, or they might take a few days to appear. The following is an in-depth look at the common causes: (more…)
Nutrition, Technology / 30.05.2024

Nutrition label makers have become popular in food production circles. But they are more than just a fad. You need them to run a food business that meets regulatory standards. Let's explore food labeling software and the features that make it a star in the food production industry.

The Science Behind Food Labels

Nutrition Label Making SoftwareThe nutrition label maker relies on food reference materials to produce accurate and up-to-date nutrition information. The reference materials are compilations of nutritional data detailing the nutrients in diverse foods and beverages. Most food manufacturers prefer government-backed standard reference materials—such as those from the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) and NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology)—as they meet accuracy, trustworthiness, and reliability standards. Manufacturers can also use scientifically developed food databases that are not affiliated with government agencies as their nutrition data source. Indeed, many players in the food production space rely on more than one database to process their products' nutrient data. The more data a nutrition label maker has to comb through, the more extensive the nutrient information it can compile for every food ingredient. This is important for two main reasons:
  • It provides the consumer with comprehensive nutritional details about the food product
  • It ensures that the manufacturer is FDA-compliant
(more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Nutrition, Sugar / 12.01.2024

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Scott Kaplan PhD Assistant Professor of Economics United States Naval Academy Annapolis, MD 21402 Scott Kaplan PhD Assistant Professor of Economics United States Naval Academy Annapolis, MD 21402   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Sugar-sweetened beverages (colloquially known as SSBs), which include sodas, fruit drinks, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened coffee drinks, are the leading source of added sugars in the American diet, according to the CDC. They are associated with serious negative health outcomes, including type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease, kidney disease, non-alcoholic liver disease, gum disease, tooth decay, and other conditions. As a result, several cities across the US have implemented sugar-sweetened beverage excise (per ounce) taxes, generally ranging from 1-2 cents per ounce. Most existing studies evaluating the impact of SSB taxes on SSB volume purchased and prices focus on a single city; this study is among the first to provide a composite estimate of the impact of local SSB taxes on purchases and prices of SSBs using retail scanner data from five cities across the US that implemented SSB taxes between January 1, 2017 and January 1, 2018. The five taxed cities we examine are Philadelphia, San Francisco, Oakland, Boulder, and Seattle.  (more…)
Dental Research, Nutrition / 25.11.2023

If you're setting your sights on giving your gums the royal treatment, you're on the right track. You want to buddy up with foods that are friends with your gums. Crunchy greens, like celery and spinach, are packed with gum-loving vitamins and minerals. Noshing on cheese and yogurt isn't just good for your bones; it also helps buffer the acids in your mouth, keeping your gums happy. Why's this a big deal? Well, your gums are the unsung heroes holding your teeth in place, and keeping them healthy is key to making sure your smile stays put for the long run.

Foods to Give a Wide Berth

Now, on to the munchies that your gums wish they could ghost. Sugary snacks and acidic eats like citrus and tomatoes might taste the bomb, but they're no pals to your gums. They invite bacteria to the party, and not the good kind. These guys get down to business, breaking down your gum tissue and causing inflammation. If you're fond of a smoke or a cheeky glass of wine, you might want to rethink that too. Anything that dries out your mouth is basically giving your gums a hard time. Skipping these is critical because, once gum disease checks in, it can be a hassle to show it the door.
(more…)
Author Interviews, Mediterranean Diet, Nutrition / 01.11.2023

pexels.com/photo/fried-fish-in-vegetables-18750045US News & World Report announced  that the Mediterranean style of eating is the best overall diet for 2023.  Only 24 diets were ranked instead of 40 that were analyzed in the past years. Vegan, vegetarian, Nordic, traditional Asian and the glycemic index were integrated into the Mediterranean because of the ‘underlying plant-based principles.’ According to managing editor Gretel Schueller who oversees the annual diet ranking, they are always looking for more health conditions that they can address, but the lack of scientific data for examining other types of diets is a constraint.
Why Aim for Healthy Eating?
The specific recommendations for a healthy diet may differ, but the common approaches include consumption of a variety of fruits and veggies, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. Added sugars, salt, and saturated fats must be limited. For example, a healthy mouth is part of overall health. Research has demonstrated the link between gum disease and chronic health conditions such as heart disease, and diabetes, among others. Thus, it is vital to consume healthy foods that promote good gum health which are the foundation of solid teeth.
(more…)
Aging, Alzheimer's - Dementia, Author Interviews, Supplements / 01.03.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Christopher R. Martens PhD Assistant Professor Director, Delaware Center for Cognitive Aging Research Department of Kinesiology & Applied Physiology University of Delaware Newark, DE MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: One of the main issues with Alzheimer's disease is an impaired ability to make energy in the brain. NAD+ is critically involved in the creation of energy within cells and there is strong evidence that nicotinamide riboside (NR), a precursor to NAD+, can restore brain function in mice that exhibit similar characteristics as people with Alzheimer's disease. We had previously studied the effects of NR in healthy older adults and wanted to see whether it is even capable of getting into brain tissue. We used remaining blood samples from our original study and measured the amount of NAD+ within tiny "vesicles" in the blood that we are quite confident originated from the brain and other neural tissue (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, JACC, Supplements / 06.12.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Simin Liu MD MPH ScD Professor of Epidemiology at the School of Public Health, Professor of Medicine (Endocrinology) and Professor of Surgery at the Alpert School of Medicine Brown University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Our research team has been researching the roles of environmental and genetic determinants of chronic diseases for nearly three decades, with special emphasis on evaluating micronutrients, minerals, and trace elements in relation to cardiometabolic outcomes, and findings of which have contributed to the design of several large, randomized trials of dietary supplements in the US (Liu JAMA 1999; 2011; Diabetes Care 2005a,b; Diabetes 2006).  Several large intervention trials have consistently shown beneficial effects on clinical cardiometabolic outcomes of a diet pattern rich in micronutrients, although research on micronutrient supplementation has mainly focused on the health effects of a single or a few vitamins and minerals. We decided to take a comprehensive and systematic approach to evaluate all the publicly available/accessible studies reporting all micronutrients including phytochemicals and antioxidant supplements and their effects on cardiovascular risk factors as well as multiple CVDs. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, JAMA, Nutrition, Occupational Health, Sleep Disorders / 09.11.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Zhilei Shan, MD, PhD Postdoctoral fellow on Nutritional Epidemiology Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Unhealthy sleep behaviors and sleep disturbances are associated with higher risk of multiple diseases and mortality. The current profiles of sleep habits and disturbances, particularly the differences between workdays and free days, are unknown in the contemporary US. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? Response: In this nationally representative cross-sectional analysis with 9004 adults aged 20 years or older, differences in sleep patterns between workdays and free days were observed. The mean sleep duration was 7.59 hours on workdays and 8.24 hours on free days (difference, 0.65 hour). The mean sleep and wake times were at 11:02 PM and 6:41 AM, respectively, on workdays and 11:25 PM and 7:41 AM, respectively, on free days (differences, 0.23 hour for sleep time and 1.00 hour for wake time). With regard to sleep disturbances, 30.5% of adults experienced 1 hour or more of sleep debt,46.5% experienced 1 hour or more of social jet lag, 29.8% had trouble sleeping, and 27.2% experienced daytime sleepiness. (more…)
Author Interviews, Duke, Gastrointestinal Disease, Nature, Sugar / 17.01.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Laura Rupprecht, PhD Postdoctoral Fellow Kelly L Buchanan The Laboratory of Gut Brain Neurobiology Duke Medicine – GI Diego V. Bohórquez PhD Associate Professor in Medicine Duke Institute for Brain Sciences Durham, NC MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  What are the main findings? Response: In 2018, my laboratory discovered that a cell type in the gut epithelium synapses with the vagus nerve, the nerve which connects the gut and the brain. These gut cells are called neuropod cells. Neuropod cells transduce sugar within milliseconds using the neurotransmitter glutamate. Since then, we have been interested in defining how this rapid communication between neuropod cells and the brain regulates behavior. – Diego Bohórquez Over a decade ago, it was shown that the gut is the key site for discerning sugar and non-caloric sweetener. But the specific cell in the gut that underlies this effect was unknown. – Kelly Buchanan   (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Chocolate, Weight Research / 24.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Frank A. J. L. Scheer, PhD, MSc, Neuroscientist and Marta Garaulet, PhD, Visiting Scientist Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders Departments of Medicine and Neurology, Brigham and Women's Hospital. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We and others have shown that not only “what” but also “when” we eat relates to obesity and weight loss
  • Meal timing can influence circadian rhythms and eating a high energy and high sugar food, such as chocolate, either at night or in the morning may have a different effect on the circadian system, and consequently on body weight and metabolism.
  • Milk chocolate has a name for contributing to weight gain due to its high fat, sugar and caloric content. Chocolate eating habit has been associated with long-term weight gain especially in postmenopausal females who are particularly vulnerable to weight gain.
(more…)
Author Interviews, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Johns Hopkins, Nutrition / 04.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Hyunju Kim Ph.D. Johns Hopkins School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In the past few months, we have learnt that individuals with comorbidities (obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension) are at higher risk of Covid-19. The etiology of these conditions is largely driven by poor nutrition and unfavorable lifestyle choices, yet no study examined whether dietary habits play a role in Covid-19 infection, severity of symptoms, and duration of illness. (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Nutrition / 01.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Professor Elina Hypponen Professor in Nutritional and Genetic Epidemiology Director: Australian Centre for Precision Health University of South Australia MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Diet is an important determinant of cardiovascular disease, and several studies have shown an association between high dairy and milk consumption with cardio-metabolic risk factors. Especially high fat dairy products can increase the risk of high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease by increasing the intakes of saturated fat and dietary cholesterol. However, milk is also a rich source of calcium and other nutrients, and evidence from randomized controlled trials has been inconsistent with respect to the role milk may have in cardiovascular health  (more…)
Author Interviews, Nature, Nutrition, Orthopedics, Pediatrics / 20.04.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Efrat Monsonego Ornan, Ph.D  Head of School of Nutritional Sciences Institute of Biochemistry and Nutrition The Robert H. Smith Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environment The Hebrew University of Jerusalem MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Food supplies in recent decades have been dominated by heavily processed, ready-to-eat products. Essentially, 75% of all world food sales are of processed foods. Over the past 30 years, children’s ultra-processed food intake has increased markedly, with 50% of the children in the US consuming these foods. Only in the US does UPF comprise 58% of energy intake, of which 90% is derived from added sugars. This reflects children’s excessive consumption of food and drink that are high in fat and refined sugars but do not provide appropriate levels of the proteins, vitamins and minerals required for growth. The negative health outcomes of excessive consumption of Ultra-processed food are well known, include obesity, metabolic syndrome and diabetes, and considered as the current world epidemic; the fact that children, during their postnatal development period (birth to adolescent), are the target of the Ultra-processed food industry is very disturbing in terms of public health. Bone development and growth are the characteristic phenomena of the childhood period. Yet, in spite of the huge importance of nutrition to bone development, the impact of Ultra-processed food consumption on skeleton development during childhood has never been studied directly, and this was the purpose of our study. To this end, we used young rats which are an excellent pre-clinical model for growth and fed them with either the recommended diet for their age or  a diet comprised of a typical Ultra-processed meal (a roll, hamburger, tomatoes, lettuce, ketchup and French fries) and a caloric soft drink.   (more…)
Author Interviews, Heart Disease, Red Meat / 15.04.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Zahra Raisi-Estabragh, PhD fellow Cardiologist Trainee at Queen Mary University of London and Barts Health NHS Trust MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Previous studies have linked greater consumption of red and processed meat to poorer clinical cardiovascular outcomes, for example, higher risk of having a heart attack or of dying from heart disease. However, the biological mechanisms underlying these relationships are not well understood. Furthermore, the impact of meat intake on more direct measures of heart health, such as, structure and function of the heart and blood vessels, has not been previously studied in large cohorts. Examining how meat intake may influence different aspects of cardiovascular health can help us better understand its health effects.  (more…)