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Short-term weight loss and hepatic triglyceride reduction: evidence of a metabolic advantage with dietary carbohydrate restriction

URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21367948

Journal: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Publication Date: 05/2011

Summary: Individuals with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) have excess intrahepatic triglycerides. This is due, in part, to increased hepatic synthesis of fat from carbohydrates via lipo- genesis. Although weight loss is currently recommended to treat NAFLD, little attention has been given to dietary carbohydrate restriction. The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of 2 wk of dietary carbohydrate and calorie restriction at reducing hepatic triglycerides in subjects with NAFLD. Eighteen NAFLD subjects (n = 5 men and 13 women) with a mean (±SD) age of 45±12 y and a body mass index (in kg/m2) of 35±7 consumed a carbohydrate-restricted (≤20 g/d) or calorie- restricted (1200–1500 kcal/d) diet for 2 wk. Hepatic triglycerides were measured before and after intervention by magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Mean (±SD) weight loss was similar between the groups (24.0±1.5 kg in the calorie-restricted group and 24.6±1.5 kg in the carbohydrate-restricted group; P = 0.363). Liver triglycerides decreased significantly with weight loss (P < 0.001) but decreased significantly more (P = 0.008) in carbohydrate-restricted subjects (255±14%) than in calorie-restricted subjects (228±23%). Dietary fat (r = 0.643, P = 0.004), carbohydrate (r = 20.606, P = 0.008), posttreatment plasma ketones (r = 0.755, P = 0.006), and respiratory quotient (r = 20.797, P < 0.001) were related to a reduction in liver triglycerides. Plasma aspartate, but not alanine, aminotransferase decreased significantly with weight loss (P < 0.001). Two weeks of dietary intervention (≈4.3% weight loss) reduced hepatic triglycerides by ≈42% in subjects with NAFLD; however, reductions were significantly greater with dietary carbohydrate restriction than with calorie restriction. This may have been due, in part, to enhanced hepatic and whole-body oxidation

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Important roles of dietary taurine, creatine, carnosine, anserine and 4-hydroxyproline in human nutrition and health

URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00726-020-02823-6

Journal: Amino Acids

Publication Date: 2/2020

Summary: Taurine (a sulfur-containing β-amino acid), creatine (a metabolite of arginine, glycine and methionine), carnosine (a dipeptide; β-alanyl-L-histidine), and 4-hydroxyproline (an imino acid; also often referred to as an amino acid) were discovered in cattle, and the discovery of anserine (a methylated product of carnosine; β-alanyl-1-methyl-L-histidine) also originated with cattle. These five nutrients are highly abundant in beef, and have important physiological roles in anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory reactions, as well as neurological, muscular, retinal, immunological and cardiovascular function. Of particular note, taurine, carnosine, anserine, and creatine are absent from plants, and hydroxyproline is negligible in many plant-source foods. Consumption of 30 g dry beef can fully meet daily physiological needs of the healthy 70-kg adult human for taurine and carnosine, and can also provide large amounts of creatine, anserine and 4-hydroxyproline to improve human nutrition and health, including metabolic, retinal, immunological, muscular, cartilage, neurological, and cardiovascular health. The present review provides the public with the much-needed knowledge of nutritionally and physiologically significant amino acids, dipeptides and creatine in animal-source foods (including beef). Dietary taurine, creatine, carnosine, anserine and 4-hydroxyproline are beneficial for preventing and treating obesity, cardiovascular dysfunction, and ageing-related disorders, as well as inhibiting tumorigenesis, improving skin and bone health, ameliorating neurological abnormalities, and promoting well being in infants, children and adults. Furthermore, these nutrients may promote the immunological defense of humans against infections by bacteria, fungi, parasites, and viruses (including coronavirus) through enhancing the metabolism and functions of monocytes, macrophages, and other cells of the immune system. Red meat (including beef) is a functional food for optimizing human growth, development and health.

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Meat Supplementation Improves Growth, Cognitive, and Behavioral Outcomes in Kenyan Children

URL: https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/137/4/1119/4664672

Journal: The Journal of Nutrition

Publication Date: 4/2007

Summary: A randomized, controlled school feeding study was conducted in rural Embu District, Kenya to test for a causal link between animal-source food intake and changes in micronutrient nutrition and growth, cognitive, and behavioral outcomes. Twelve primary schools were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 groups. Children in Standard I classes received the local plant-based dish githeri as a midmorning school snack supplemented with meat, milk, or fat added to equalize energy content in all feedings. The Control children received no feedings but participated in data collection. Main outcome measures assessed at baseline and longitudinally were 24-h food intake recall, anthropometry, cognitive function, physical activity, and behaviors during school free play. For cognitive function, the Meat group showed the steepest rate of increase on Raven’s Progressive Matrices scores and in zone-wide school end-term total and arithmetic test scores. The Plain githeri and Meat groups performed better over time than the Milk and Control groups (<P < 0.02–0.03) on arithmetic tests. The Meat group showed the greatest increase in percentage time in high levels of physical activity and in initiative and leadership behaviors compared with all other groups. For growth, in the Milk group only younger and stunted children showed a greater rate of gain in height. The Meat group showed near doubling of upper midarm muscle area, and the Milk group a smaller degree of increase. This is the first randomized, controlled feeding study to examine the effect of meat- vs. milk- vs. plant-based snacks on functional outcomes in children.

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Diets with high-fat cheese, high-fat meat, or carbohydrate on cardiovascular risk markers in overweight postmenopausal women: a randomized crossover trial

URL: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/102/3/573/4564305

Journal: The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Publication Date: 09/2015

Summary: Heart associations recommend limited intake of sat- urated fat. However, effects of saturated fat on low-density lipopro- tein (LDL)-cholesterol concentrations and cardiovascular disease risk might depend on nutrients and specific saturated fatty acids (SFAs) in food.  We explored the effects of cheese and meat as sources of SFAs or isocaloric replacement with carbohydrates on blood lipids, lipoproteins, and fecal excretion of fat and bile acids. The study was a randomized, crossover, open-label in- tervention in 14 overweight postmenopausal women. Three full- diet periods of 2-wk duration were provided separated by 2-wk washout periods. The isocaloric diets were as follows: 1) a high- cheese (96–120-g) intervention [i.e., intervention containing cheese (CHEESE)], 2) a macronutrient-matched nondairy, high- meat control [i.e., nondairy control with a high content of high-fat processed and unprocessed meat in amounts matching the satu- rated fat content from cheese in the intervention containing cheese (MEAT)], and 3) a nondairy, low-fat, high-carbohydrate control (i.e., nondairy low-fat control in which the energy from cheese fat and protein was isocalorically replaced by carbohydrates and lean meat (CARB).  The CHEESE diet caused a 5% higher high-density lipo- protein (HDL)-cholesterol concentration (P = 0.012), an 8% higher apo A-I concentration (P , 0.001), and a 5% lower apoB:apo A-I ratio (P = 0.008) than did the CARB diet. Also, the MEAT diet caused an 8% higher HDL-cholesterol concentration (P , 0.001) and a 4% higher apo A-I concentration (P = 0.033) than did the CARB diet. Total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, apoB, and triacyl- glycerol were similar with the 3 diets. Fecal fat excretion was 1.8 and 0.9 g higher with the CHEESE diet than with CARB and MEAT diets (P , 0.001 and P = 0.004, respectively) and 0.9 g higher with the MEAT diet than with the CARB diet (P = 0.005). CHEESE and MEAT diets caused higher fecal bile acid excretion than did the CARB diet (P , 0.05 and P = 0.006, respectively). The dominant type of bile acids excreted differed between CHEESE and MEAT diets.
Diets with cheese and meat as primary sources of SFAs cause higher HDL cholesterol and apo A-I and, therefore, appear to be less atherogenic than is a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet. Also, our findings confirm that cheese increases fecal fat excretion.

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Food consumption and the actual statistics of cardiovascular diseases: an epidemiological comparison of 42 European countries

URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5040825/pdf/FNR-60-31694.pdf

Food and Nutrition Research

Publication Date: 09/2016

Summary:  The aim of this ecological study was to identify the main nutritional factors related to the prevalence of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) in Europe, based on a comparison of international statistics. The mean consumption of 62 food items from the FAOSTAT database (1993􏰀-2008) was compared with the actual statistics of five CVD indicators in 42 European countries. Several other exogenous factors (health expenditure, smoking, body mass index) and the historical stability of results were also examined. We found exceptionally strong relationships between some of the examined factors, the highest being a correlation between raised cholesterol in men and the combined consumption of animal fat and animal protein (r􏰁0.92, pB0.001). The most significant dietary correlate of low CVD risk was high total fat and animal protein consumption. Additional statistical analyses further highlighted citrus fruits, high-fat dairy (cheese) and tree nuts. Among other non-dietary factors, health expenditure showed by far the highest correlation coefficients. The major correlate of high CVD risk was the proportion of energy from carbohydrates and alcohol, or from potato and cereal carbohydrates. Similar patterns were observed between food consumption and CVD statistics from the period 1980-􏰀2000, which shows that these relationships are stable over time. However, we found striking discrepancies in men’s CVD statistics from 1980 and 1990, which can probably explain the origin of the ‘saturated fat hypothesis’ that influenced public health policies in the following decades. Our results do not support the association between CVDs and saturated fat, which is still contained in official dietary guidelines. Instead, they agree with data accumulated from recent studies that link CVD risk with the high glycaemic index/load of carbohydrate-based diets. In the absence of any scientific evidence connecting saturated fat with CVDs, these findings show that current dietary recommendations regarding CVDs should be seriously reconsidered.

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Effects of an omnivorous diet compared with a lactoovovegetarian diet on resistance-training-induced changes in body composition and skeletal muscle in older men

URL: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/70/6/1032/4729141

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Publication Date: 12/1999

Summary: Very limited data suggest that meat consumption by older people may promote skeletal muscle hypertrophy in response to resistance training (RT). The objective of this study was to assess whether the consumption of an omnivorous (meat-containing) diet would influence RT-induced changes in whole-body composition and skeletal muscle size in older men compared with a lactoovovegetarian (LOV) (meat-free) diet. Nineteen men aged 51–69 y participated in the study. During a 12-wk period of RT, 9 men consumed their habitual omnivorous diets, which provided ≈50% of total dietary protein from meat sources (beef, poultry, pork, and fish) (mixed-diet group). Another 10 men were counseled to self-select an LOV diet (LOV-diet group). Maximal strength of the upper- and lower-body muscle groups that were exercised during RT increased by 10–38% (P < 0.001), independent of diet. The RT-induced changes in whole-body composition and skeletal muscle size differed significantly between the mixed- and LOV-diet groups (time-by-group interactions, P < 0.05). With RT, whole-body density, fat-free mass, and whole-body muscle mass increased in the mixed diet group but decreased in the LOV- diet group. Type II muscle fiber area of the vastus lateralis muscle increased with RT for all men combined (P < 0.01), and the increase tended to be greater in the mixed-diet group (16.2 ± 4.4 %) than in the LOV diet group (7.3 ± 5.1%). Type I fiber area was unchanged with RT in both diet groups. Consumption of a meat-containing diet contributed to greater gains in fat-free mass and skeletal muscle mass with RT in older men than did an LOV diet.

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Dairy fat intake and risk of type 2 diabetes in 3 cohorts of US men and women

URL: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/110/5/1192/5550200

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Publication Date: 08/2019

Summary: Previous studies have examined dairy products with various fat contents in relation to type 2 diabetes (T2D) risk, although data regarding dairy fat intake per se are sparse. We aimed to evaluate the association between dairy fat intake and risk of T2D in 3 prospective cohorts. We also examined associations for isocalorically replacing dairy fat with other macronutrients. We prospectively followed 41,808 men in the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (HPFS; 1986–2012), 65,929 women in the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS; 1984–2012), and 89,565 women in the NHS II (1991–2013). Diet was assessed quadrennially using validated FFQs. Fat intake from dairy products and other relevant sources was expressed as percentage of total energy. Self-reported incident T2D cases were confirmed using validated supplementary questionnaires. Time-dependent Cox proportional hazards regression was used to estimate the HR for dairy fat intake and T2D risk. During 4,219,457 person-years of follow-up, we docu- mented 16,511 incident T2D cases. Dairy fat was not associated with risk of T2D when compared with calories from carbohydrates (HR for extreme quintiles: 0.98; 95% CI: 0.95, 1.02). Replacing 5% of calories from dairy fat with other sources of animal fat or carbohydrate from refined grains was associated with a 17% (HR: 1.17; 95% CI: 1.13, 1.21) and a 4% (HR: 1.04; 95% CI: 1.00, 1.08) higher risk of T2D, respectively. Conversely, a 5% calorie replacement with carbohydrate from whole grains was associated with a 7% lower risk of T2D (HR: 0.93; 95% CI: 0.88, 0.98). Dairy fat intake was not associated with T2D risk in these cohort studies of US men and women when compared with calories from carbohydrate. Replacing dairy fat with carbohydrates from whole grains was associated with lower risk of T2D. Replacement with other animal fats or refined carbohydrates was associated with higher risk. 

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The relationship between peripheral blood mononuclear cells telomere length and diet – unexpected effect of red meat

URL: https://nutritionj.biomedcentral.com/track/pdf/10.1186/s12937-016-0189-2

Nutrition Journal

Publication Date: 07/2016

Summary: Repeated nucleotide sequences combined with proteins called telomeres cover chromosome ends and dictate cells lifespan. Many factors can modify telomere length, among them are: nutrition and smoking habits, physical activities and socioeconomic status measured by education level.
The aim of the study was to determine the influence of above mentioned factors on peripheral blood mononuclear cells telomere length.  Study included 28 subjects (seven male and 21 female, age 18–65 years.), smokers and non-smokers without any serious health problems in past and present. Following a basic medical examination, patients completed the food frequency questionnaire with 17 foods and beverages most common groups and gave blood for testing. PBMC telomere length were measured with qualitative real-time Polymerase Chain Reaction (rtPCR) method and expressed as a T/S ratio.  Among nine food types (cereal, fruits, vegetables, diary, red meat, poultry, fish, sweets and salty snacks) and eight beverages (juices, coffee, tea, mineral water, alcoholic- and sweetened carbonated beverages) only intake of red meat was related to T/S ratio. Individuals with increased consumption of red meat have had higher T/S ratio and the strongest significant differences were observed between consumer groups: “never” and “1–2 daily” (p = 0.02). Smoking habits, physical activity, LDL and HDL concentrations, and education level were not related to telomere length, directly or as a covariates.  Unexpected correlation of telomere length with the frequency of consumption of red meat indicates the need for further in-depth research and may undermine some accepted concepts of adverse effects of this diet on the health status and life longevity.

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Cardiovascular disease in the masai

URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0368131964800417

Journal of Atherosclerosis Research

Publication Date: 07/1964

Summary: A field survey of 400 Masai men and additional women and children in Tanganyika indicates little or no clinical or chemical evidence for atherosclerosis. Despite a long continued diet of exclusively meat and milk the men have low levels of serum cholesterol and no evidence for arteriosclerotic heart disease. The reasons for this disagreement with the popular hypothesis relating animal fat intake to coronary disease are examined. The authors concede that some overriding protective mechanism such as freedom from emotional stress or abundance of physical exercise may be present. They favor the conclusion that diet fat is not responsible for coronary disease.