Author Archive: nhlaker1

100% orange juice consumption is associated with better diet quality, improved nutrient adequacy and decreased risk for obesity in adults.

Orange_juice1A study published in the Nutrition Journal has shown that consuming 100% orange juice is associated with better diet quality, improved nutrient adequacy and decreased risk for obesity in adults.  Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2003-2006 was used in this study which involved more than 8,800 adults aged 19 and older.  Adults who drank orange juice consumed around 210 ml daily and had higher levels of vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, magnesium, and potassium compared to non-consumers. Those who drank orange juice also had a 21% decreased risk of obesity.  What are your thoughts on this study?

For more information, please read the abstract in the Nutrition Journal.

“Image courtesy of [Naypong]/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

High intake of salt and sugar-sweetened beverages in children associated with increased risk of obesity

149372_of496-mA study published in Pediatrics has shown that a high intake of salt and sugar-sweetened beverages in children is associated with an increased risk of obesity.  Data from the 2007 Australian National Children’s Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey was used in this study which involved over 4,200 children aged 2-16.  Children who drank over 1 serving of sugar-sweetened beverages per day had a 26% increased risk of being overweight or obese. Kids who drank sugar-sweetened beverages also consumed around 6.5 g of salt daily whereas those who did not, consumed 5.8 g of salt daily.  What are your thoughts on this study?  How do you encourage your children to maintain a good diet?

For more information, please read the abstract in Pediatrics.

“Image courtesy of [Stuart Miles]/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Carotenoids may reduce the risk of breast cancer.

DSC_7628A study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute has shown that carotenoids may reduce the risk of breast cancer.  Carotenoids are micronutrients found in fruits and vegetables.  Data was pooled from 8 cohort studies that measured the level of carotenoids in the blood of over 3,000 women with breast cancer and nearly 4,000 women without breast cancer.  Women with the highest levels of carotenoids had a lower risk of breast cancer, especially estrogen receptor negative (ER-) breast cancer which usually has a poorer prognosis. What are your favorite dietary sources of carotenoids to recommend to the patients?

For more information, please read the abstract in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

“Image courtesy of [Suat Eman]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Heart-healthy diet may reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, or death in high risk individuals.

all_veg_fruits3_5A prospective cohort study published in Circulation has shown that a heart- healthy diet may reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, or death in high risk individuals receiving medication therapy.  This international study followed 31,546 people aged 55 years or older with a history of coronary, peripheral, or cerebrovascular disease, or diabetes with end-organ damage who were enrolled in 2 clinical trials.  Participants were followed for 5 years and completed food frequency questionnaires asking how often they consumed 20 food items in the past 12 months.  Those who ate a heart-healthy diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, and nuts were found to have a 35% lower risk of cardiovascular death, a 14% lower risk of MI, a 28% lower risk of heart failure, and a 19% lower risk of stroke. How will this research help you to promote already well accepted notions about healthy food with your patients?

For more information, please read the article in Circulation.

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Meditation and Art Therapy may reduce stress and anxiety in breast cancer patients.

_MG_1342A study published in the journal Stress and Health has shown that meditation and art therapy may reduce stress and anxiety in breast cancer patients.  Eighteen participants were assigned to an education course or Mindfulness-based Art Therapy (MBAT) consisting of mindful yoga, awareness of breathing, awareness of emotion, and expressive art for 8 weeks.  The patients enrolled in this study had been diagnosed with breast cancer 6 months- 3 years before the study and were not in active treatment.  Participants completed a 90 item symptom checklist at the beginning and end of the study and underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine changes in cerebral blood flow.  Patients in the MBAT group had cerebral blood flow changes in the left insula, amygdala, and hippocampus which deal with emotions and stress and experienced less stress and anxiety. How often do you recommend Mindfulness-based Art Therapy? What other recommendations do you make to your patients to decrease stress?

For more information, please read the article in Stress and Health.

“Image courtesy of [marin]/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Dichlorophenol-containing pesticides are associated with an increased risk of food allergies.

46600026A study published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, has shown that dichlorophenol exposure is associated with an increased risk of food allergies. Dichorophenol is found in pesticides and is used to chlorinate water. Data from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005-2006 was used in this study. Dichlorophenol levels were measured in the urine of 2,211 participants and about 400 participants were found to have a food allergy and around 1,000 participants had an environmental allergy. Individuals with the highest dichlorophenol levels were more likely to have an allergy compared to those with lower levels. What measures do you take to reduce exposure to pesticides in your life?

For more information, please read the abstract in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.

“Image courtesy of [Toa55]/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Extended sleep is associated with decreased pain sensitivity

PortraitA study published in the journal Sleep, has shown that increased sleep may reduce pain sensitivity.  Eighteen healthy, pain free adults, aged 21-35, took part in this 4 night study.  Nine of the participants maintained their normal sleep habits and the other participants stayed in bed for 10 hours.  Pain sensitivity was measured by the amount of time participants could keep their finger on a heat source.  Those in the extended sleep group slept around 2 hours more per night and had decreased pain sensitivity indicated by a 25% increase in the length of time to touch the heat source. What other benefits are associated with increased sleep?

For more information, please read the abstract in Sleep.

“Image courtesy of [David Castillo Dominici]/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Probiotics may prevent Clostridium difficile–associated diarrhea

A meta-analysis published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, reports that probiotics may prevent Clostridium difficile–associated diarrhea (CDAD) in patients taking antibiotics.  Data was pooled from 20 randomized controlled clinical trials evaluating probiotics compared to placebo or no treatment and the occurrence of CDAD.  The results indicated that the occurrence of CDAD was decreased by 66% in those taking probiotics.  What questions have you received from patients about the use of probiotics? What other indications do you recommend probiotics for?

For more information, please read the article in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Postpartum depression may be associated with low levels of omega 3

A review published in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry reports that postpartum depression may be associated with low levels of omega 3.  Many women of childbearing age do not intake enough omega 3 and during pregnancy omega 3 levels are decreased even more as they are passed from the mother to the growing fetus.  Levels of omega 3 remain low for more than 6 weeks after the birth of a baby.  What dietary recommendations do you provide to your pregnant patients?

For more information, please read the article in Medical News Today.  “Image courtesy of [adamr]/Freedigitalphotos.net”

New Study Finds Leisure Time Physical Activity is Associated with Increased Life Expectancy

A new study conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and the National Cancer Institute found that leisure time physical activity is associated with increased life expectancy. Data from almost 650,000 people over age 40 was evaluated in this study.  Brisk walking for 75 minutes/150 minutes per week was associated with an increase in life expectancy of 1.8 years/3.4-4.5 years accordingly.  What physical activity do you encourage your patients incorporate in their daily routines?

For more information please read the article published in PLOS Medicine.