19974 Jan 2012 - Medical Express - 'Silver bullet' supplement could slow brain agingProfessor David Rollo and a group of researchers at McMaster may have found a "silver bullet" when it comes to slowing the aging of the brain.Professor David Rollo and a group of researchers at McMaster University (Ontario, Canada) may have found a 04/01/2012By Andrew Baulcomb
The team's latest paper documents a new dietary supplement that completely maintains learning ability in older mice.
"These findings are not just significant, they're remarkable," says Rollo.
The tests were conducted by Vadim Aksenov, a PhD candidate in the Rollo laboratory in McMaster's Department of Biology.
A complex nutritional supplement containing 30 ingredients, including vitamins such as B1, C, D and E, along with beta-carotene, ginseng, green tea extract, cod liver oil and other acids and minerals, was used in the test. It was designed to offset five mechanisms associated with aging.
For mice aged 20-31 months (roughly equivalent to a 70-80-year-old human), those without the mixture in their diet showed no ability to learn new information. However, those who had taken the supplement displayed learning abilities equivalent to young mice, and more effectively completed the task.
The trials focused on a region of the brain associated with Alzheimer's disease.
Other findings revealed that brain mass was increased by up to 10 per cent as a result of taking the supplement. The function of the cellular furnaces that provide brain energy (mitochondria) was also increased.
But what does it all mean for humans?
"This diet was our first try, so the door is just opening up," says Rollo. "Whether these results will translate to humans remains to be seen."
A major goal in anti-aging research involves the reduction of poisonous "free radicals" and their associated damage, while also maintaining mitochondrial function and energy supply later in life. The new supplement does both.
Unlike stand-alone vitamins, pills or anti-aging products, the combination of ingredients is far more effective in maintaining brain function.
While human testing has yet to begin, Rollo is hopeful that the supplement may one day slow the progression of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases in older adults.
If human trials prove safe and successful, most of the aging population could access the ingredients at local health food stores.
Jiangang Long, Jiankang Liu, Henry Szechtman, Parul Khanna and Sarthak Matravadia were also involved in the study.
199229 Dec 2011 - BBC News - Alzheimer's: Diet 'can stop brain shrinking'Alzheimer's: Diet 'can stop brain shrinking'A diet rich in vitamins and fish may protect the brain from ageing while junk food has the opposite effect, research suggests.29/12/2011By Helen Briggs, Health Editor, BBC News
Elderly people with high blood levels of vitamins and omega 3 fatty acids had less brain shrinkage and better mental performance, a neurology study found.
Trans fats found in fast foods were linked to lower scores in tests and more shrinkage typical of Alzheimer's.
A UK medical charity has called for more work into diet and dementia risk.
The best current advice is to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, not smoke, take regular exercise and keep blood pressure and cholesterol in check, said Alzheimer's Research UK.
The research looked at nutrients in blood, rather than relying on questionnaires to assess a person's diet.
US experts analysed blood samples from 104 healthy people with an average age of 87 who had few known risk factors for Alzheimer's.
They found those who had more vitamin B, C, D and E in their blood performed better in tests of memory and thinking skills. People with high levels of omega 3 fatty acids - found mainly in fish - also had high scores. The poorest scores were found in people who had more trans fats in their blood.
Trans fats are common in processed foods, including cakes, biscuits and fried foods.
The researchers, from Oregon Health and Science University, Portland; Portland VA Medical Center; and Oregon State University, Corvallis, then carried out brain scans on 42 of the participants.
They found individuals with high levels of vitamins and omega 3 in their blood were more likely to have a large brain volume; while those with high levels of trans fat had a smaller total brain volume.
Despite the news headline, this study did not actually involve patients with Alzheimer's disease, but 104 elderly healthy volunteers.
Nonetheless, the significant associations found between mental performance, blood nutrient profiles and brain volume deserve further investigation.
The findings also support other evidence that a healthy diet (rich in vitamins and omega-3 fats) is an important factor in preventing age-related cognitive decline and dementia; and conversely, that diets low in essential nutrients and high in trans fats are likely to increase the risk of dementia.
1993Bowman et al 2011 Nutrient biomarker patterns, cognitive function, and MRI measures of brain aging Nutrient biomarker patterns, cognitive function, and MRI measures of brain aging Nutrient biomarker patterns, cognitive function, and MRI measures of brain aging G.L. Bowman, L.C. Silbert, D. Howieson, H.H. Dodge, M.G. Traber, B. Frei, J.A. Kaye, J. Shannon, and J.F. Quinn28/12/2011Neurology78(4)241-9. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e3182436598. Epub 2011 Dec 28.
Objective: To examine the cross-sectional relationship between nutrient status and psychometric and imaging indices of brain health in dementia-free elders.
Methods: Thirty plasma biomarkers of diet were assayed in the Oregon Brain Aging Study cohort (n = 104). Principal component analysis constructed nutrient biomarker patterns (NBPs) and regression models assessed the relationship of these with cognitive and MRI outcomes.
Results: Mean age was 87 ± 10 years and 62% of subjects were female. Two NBPs associated with more favorable cognitive and MRI measures: one high in plasma vitamins B (B1, B2, B6, folate, and B12), C, D, and E, and another high in plasma marine ω-3 fatty acids. A third pattern characterized by high trans fat was associated with less favorable cognitive function and less total cerebral brain volume. Depression attenuated the relationship between the marine ω-3 pattern and white matter hyperintensity volume.
Conclusion: Distinct nutrient biomarker patterns detected in plasma are interpretable and account for a significant degree of variance in both cognitive function and brain volume. Objective and multivariate approaches to the study of nutrition in brain health warrant further study. These findings should be confirmed in a separate population.
dementia, cognition, cognitive decline, ARCD, ageing, brain imaging, diet, micronutrients, vitamins, minerals, human study, observational study, experimental study, Vit_B12, folate, Vit_B, omega-3http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22205763View this and related abstracts via PubMed here. Free full text of this article is available online.
2013Steer et al 2011 - Polyunsaturated fatty acid levels in blood during pregnancy, at birth and at 7 years: their associations with two common FADS2 polymorphismsPolyunsaturated fatty acid levels in blood during pregnancy, at birth and at 7 years: their associations with two common FADS2 polymorphismsPolyunsaturated fatty acid levels in blood during pregnancy, at birth and at 7 years: their associations with two common FADS2 polymorphismsSteer CD, Hibbeln JR, Golding J, Smith GD21/12/2011Hum Mol Genet. 2011 Dec 21.
Minor alleles of polymorphisms in the FADS gene cluster have been associated with reduced desaturation of the precursor polyunsaturated fatty acids in small studies. The effects of these polymorphisms during progressive developmental stages have not been previously reported. Data from blood samples for 4342 pregnant women, 3343 umbilical cords reflecting the newborn's blood supply and 5240 children aged 7 years were analysed to investigate the associations of polyunsaturated fatty acids with rs1535 and rs174575 - two polymorphisms in the FADS2 gene. Strong positive associations were observed between the minor G allele for these two markers, especially rs1535, and the substrates linoleic (18:2n-6) and α-linolenic (18:3n-3) acid. Negative associations were observed for the more highly unsaturated fatty acids such as arachidonic acid (AA, 20:4n-6), timnodonic acid (EPA, 20:5n-3) and cervonic acid (DHA, 22:6n-3). Bivariable genetic associations using the mother and child genotypes suggested that the newborn metabolism had a greater capacity to synthesise the more highly unsaturated omega-6 than the more highly unsaturated omega-3 fatty acids. Nevertheless, despite the immaturity of the neonate, there was evidence that synthesis of DHA was occurring. However, by 7 years, no associations were observed with the maternal genotype. This suggested that the children's fatty acid levels were only related to their own metabolism with no apparent lasting influences of the in utero environment.
FADS2 polymorphismshttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22194195View this and related abstracts via PubMed here.
1990Allergies Explained Allergy; Allergies; Allergies explainedThis website provides much in-depth, helpful information for the many millions of allergy sufferers in Great Britain, where allergy specialists are very difficult to find. 08/12/2011
This website is dedicated to the millions of British allergy sufferers who have great difficulty in obtaining expert advice regarding their problems. One reason is that the subject has been so rarely taught in British medical schools that most doctors know very little about allergies.
Two hundred years ago allergies were very uncommon, but have become more and more prevalent in developed countries, especially in the last fifty years. In 1997 a European White Paper was published, which declared Allergic Diseases to be a Public Health Problem in Europe which is so large that it should be called the First Epidemic of the 21st Century, but Britain took little or no notice. It is undoubtedly true that Allergies of all kinds have increased to the extent that over a quarter of the population in all developed nations is now predisposed to develop allergic problems. This increase in allergies has coincided with global changes, such as the industrial revolution, increased pollution of air and water, and huge changes in the diet and environment with the adoption of western life-styles.
http://www.allergiesexplained.com/index.htmVisit this excellent resource for more informationAE_logo.jpgAE logo
2075Bhatia et al 2011 - Omega-3 fatty acid deficiency during brain maturation reduces neuronal and behavioral plasticity in adulthoodOmega-3 fatty acid deficiency during brain maturation reduces neuronal and behavioral plasticity in adulthoodOmega-3 fatty acid deficiency during brain maturation reduces neuronal and behavioral plasticity in adulthoodBhatia HS, Agrawal R, Sharma S, Huo YX, Ying Z, Gomez-Pinilla F07/12/2011PLoS One. 2011;6(12):e28451
Omega-3-fatty acid DHA is a structural component of brain plasma membranes, thereby crucial for neuronal signaling; however, the brain is inefficient at synthesizing DHA. We have asked how levels of dietary n-3 fatty acids during brain growth would affect brain function and plasticity during adult life. Pregnant rats and their male offspring were fed an n-3 adequate diet or n-3 deficient diets for 15 weeks. Results showed that the n-3 deficiency increased parameters of anxiety-like behavior using open field and elevated plus maze tests in the male offspring. Behavioral changes were accompanied by a level reduction in the anxiolytic-related neuropeptide Y-1 receptor, and an increase in the anxiogenic-related glucocorticoid receptor in the cognitive related frontal cortex, hypothalamus and hippocampus. The n-3 deficiency reduced brain levels of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and increased the ratio n-6/n-3 assessed by gas chromatography. The n-3 deficiency reduced the levels of BDNF and signaling through the BDNF receptor TrkB, in proportion to brain DHA levels, and reduced the activation of the BDNF-related signaling molecule CREB in selected brain regions. The n-3 deficiency also disrupted the insulin signaling pathways as evidenced by changes in insulin receptor (IR) and insulin receptor substrate (IRS). DHA deficiency during brain maturation reduces plasticity and compromises brain function in adulthood. Adequate levels of dietary DHA seem crucial for building long-term neuronal resilience for optimal brain performance and aiding in the battle against neurological disorders.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22163304View this and related abstracts on PubMed here. Free full text available online.
1999Aksenov et al 2011 - A complex dietary supplement augments spatial learning, brain mass, and mitochondrial electron transport chain activity in aging miceA complex dietary supplement augments spatial learning, brain mass, and mitochondrial electron transport chain activity in aging miceA complex dietary supplement augments spatial learning, brain mass, and mitochondrial electron transport chain activity in aging miceAksenov V, Long J, Liu J, Szechtman H, Khanna P, Matravadia S, Rollo CD27/11/2011Age (Dordr). 2011 Nov 27. [Epub ahead of print]
We developed a complex dietary supplement designed to offset five key mechanisms of aging and tested its effectiveness in ameliorating age-related cognitive decline using a visually cued Morris water maze test. All younger mice (<1 year old) learned the task well. However, older untreated mice (>1 year) were unable to learn the maze even after 5 days, indicative of strong cognitive decline at older ages. In contrast, no cognitive decline was evident in older supplemented mice, even when ∼2 years old. Supplemented older mice were nearly 50% better at locating the platform than age-matched controls. Brain weights of supplemented mice were significantly greater than controls, even at younger ages. Reversal of cognitive decline in activity of complexes III and IV by supplementation was significantly associated with cognitive improvement, implicating energy supply as one possible mechanism. These results represent proof of principle that complex dietary supplements can provide powerful benefits for cognitive function and brain aging.
198625 Nov 2011 - BBC News - Jamie Oliver says healthy school food standards 'eroded'Jamie Oliver; healthy school foodThe TV chef Jamie Oliver has accused the Education Secretary Michael Gove of eroding healthy school food standards.25/11/2011by Angela Harrison
A campaign by the chef led to tough new legal standards for meals in England's schools.
But now caterers are saying that some of England's new academy schools - which do not have to abide by the regulations - are asking for "unhealthy food".
The government says it trusts schools to act in their pupils' best interest.
And it says it has no reason to believe that academies will not provide healthy, balanced meals that meet the current nutritional standards
Jamie Oliver told BBC Breakfast News: "The bit of work that we did which is law was a good bit of work for any government.
"So to erode it, which is essentially what Mr Gove is doing - his view is we let schools do what they want."
Several years ago, British chef Jamie Oliver, campaigned to ban junk food and get fresh, tasty and nutritious food back on the school dinners menu. Research undertaken since, has shown that banning unhealthy options from school canteens and introducing more fruit and vegetables has improved educational achievement.
But, like Jamie Oliver, we should all be worried - it would seem we still have far to go to stem the tide of obesity:
a quarter of all children under the age of 10 are obese
a third of all children over the age of 11 are obese
we are the most unhealthy nation in Europe
the cost of obesity alone is £4 billion per year
the cost of diabetes is £10 billion a year
and it is predicted that these figures will double in the next 15 to 20 years.
To allow junk food back on the school menu, and the re-introduction of vending machines filled with sugary and salty snacks and fizzy drinks, would be a backward step that we simply can't afford in terms of the future health of our children and the staggering cost to our National Health Service.
Getting the 'healthy eating in schools' message across has been an unstinting and monumental task, with very good results, but a greater challenge lies in convincing the wider population, beyond their school years, of the need to cut out the junk and eat a healthier and more balanced diet. Getting this message into every home is the next step.
The School Food Trust is urging anyone with concerns about food in academy schools to share their evidence - to help the Trust ensure all pupils are getting the healthy lunchtime they need ... Read more here.
198525 Nov 2011 - BBC News - Unhealthy food 'returning to school' warn caterersunhealthy school meals; school caterers; unhealthy school food;Unhealthy snacks could be returning to schools in England, caterers are warning.25/11/2011
Six years after the Jamie Oliver campaign and the introduction of strict nutritional guidelines, caterers say they are getting requests for fatty foods and sweets.
They say the requests are from some of England's new academy schools, which do not have to follow the guidelines.
The government says it trusts schools to act in their pupils' best interest.
And it says it has no reason to believe that academies will not provide healthy, balanced meals that meet the current nutritional standards
The Local Authority Catering Association, which has 700 members across the UK, said it was concerned that there could be a return to unhealthy eating in schools.
Linda Mitchell, from the association, said: "Our members are telling us that they have been approached by academies to relax the rules and as providers to hundreds of thousands of schools we are concerned.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-15875019Read the full BBC News report here7573961.jpgBurger and chips
1984Alcohol, mental health and wellbeingAlcohol, mental health and wellbeingalcohol and mental health, alcohol and wellbeing25/11/2011
Drinking alcohol is linked to both anxiety and depression. A recent British survey found that people suffering from anxiety or depression were twice as likely to be heavy or problem drinkers. Alcohol has also been linked to self-harm, suicide and psychosis.
Apart from having a negative effect on your mental health, consuming alcohol also affects your memory and brain function. Brain processes slow down soon after drinking alcohol. For example, the effect on men's driving skills is measureable after consuming three to four units. At this level of consumption, alcohol is in the bloodstream at around 50mg per 100ml. Women can reach this same concentration by drinking just two or three units.
After a session of heavy drinking, people often feel 'hungover', and experience impaired memory and thinking. Some people, even when they no longer have alcohol in the bloodstream are probably slightly 'slowed' mentally the next day.
The Drink Aware Trust at www.drinkaware.co.uk is an up-to-date, excellent resource where you can find out more about how alcohol affects your short and long-term health, your work and study, social life, relationships and family life.
You can also find out how, as either a professional or a parent, to start a dialogue with the under 18s about alcohol consumption and the consequences of drinking heavily at a young age. Teachers can register for free lesson plans for primary and secondary pupils.
The Trust have produced an excellent set of FREE downloadable factsheets including:
Alcohol, Mental Health and Wellbeing
Alcohol and Accidents
Alcohol and Cancer
Alcohol and Diabetes
Alcohol and Dependence
Alcohol and Heart Disease
Alcohol and Men
Alcohol and Women
Alcohol and Pancreatitis
Alcohol and Pregnancy
Alcohol and Reproduction
Alcohol and Risk-taking
Alcohol and Unprotected Sex
Alcohol and Young People
Alcohol and Your Emotions
Alcohol and Your Health
Alcohol and Your Liver
Alcohol Through The Body
Acute Alcohol Poisoning
http://www.drinkaware.co.uk/Visit The Drink Aware Trust website hereMP900400578.jpgAlcohol
1977Nutrition and Addiction - a handbookNutrition and Addiction - a handbookNutrition and addictionEdited by Martina Watts, MSc Nut Med BA (Hons) DipION15/11/2011
In stock - Price includes p&p. UK ONLY. PLEASE NOTE WE DO NOT SHIP OUTSIDE THE UK.
(Price to FAB Associate Members £18.00 inc P&P. Please sign in to purchase).
Nutrition and Addiction - a handbook
Supporting Recovery From Food And Substance Misuse With Nutritional And Lifestyle Interventions
Addiction treatment centres in the UK combine medication, councelling and behaviour modification to tackle cravings and aid recovery, yet relapse rates remain alarmingly high. This practical, in-depth handbook examines newly emerging concepts in the management of addiction. Leading researchers and experienced nutrition practitioners including:
Michael Ash, BSc (Hons) DO, ND, F DipION
Oscar Umahro Cadogan
Antony J Haynes, BA (Hons) DipION BANT NTCC
Capt Joseph Hibbeln, MD
Yvonne Luna, MA
Jane Nodder, MSc Nut Med BA (Hons) DipION NTCC
Dr Alexandra Richardson, DPhil (Oxon) PGCE
Dr Marcus Roberts
Helen Sandwell, MSc Nut Med BSc (Hons) ANutr
Martina Watts, MSc Nut Med BA (Hons) DipION
explore the underlying nutritional and biochemical factors involved in addictive behaviour, and the importance of nutrition in the prevention and management of addiction and its role in sustainable recovery.
Nutrition and Addiction is an up-to-date, fully referenced resource with a glossary and guide to drug terms. It is a useful guide for those with a basic understanding of nutrition, as well as for more experienced practitioners and health care professionals.
Current developments in the treatment of drug and alcohol dependence in the UK
The influence of genetic and environmental factors on craving and reward systems in the brain
Why diet and eating patterns may encourage addictive behaviour
The role of food addictions, eating disorders and food intolerances
How to develop safe, cost-effective and evidence-based nutritional interventions alongside traditional care options
Essential reading for: carers, clinicians, practitioners and therapists working in addiction and mental health within the public, private and voluntary sectors, nutritionists and dietitians, students on nutrition-related courses.
This book shows how nutrition can be fundamental to health and well-being, as well as explaining the science behind nutrition and its impact on all aspects of addictions. This will be an extremely useful and important 'tool' for nutritional therapists to use in their clinic work.
addiction; adhd; anorexia; eating disorders; addictive behavour435.jpgNutrition and Addiction23.0018.00
19723 Nov 2011 - The Telegraph - Could zinc help prevent autism?could zinc help prevent autism?03/11/2011by Stephen Adams, Medical Correspondent
Japanese researchers who took hair samples from nearly 2,000 diagnosed autistic children, aged from birth to three, found almost half of them had a zinc deficiency.
The team, from the La Belle Vie Research Laboratory in Tokyo, concluded that zinc deficiency could lead to autism.
They wrote in the journal Scientific Reports: "These findings suggest that infantile zinc deficiency may epigenetically contribute to the pathogenesis of autism and nutritional approach may yield a novel hope for its treatment and prevention."
198231 Oct 2011 - BBC Radio 4 - The Food Programme - Palm OilPalm oil, vegetable oil, hydrogenation, trans fatty acids, trans fats, partially-hydrogenated31/10/2011Produced by Dan Saladino and Rich Ward
Used increasingly by the food industry in a wide array of products from chocolate, crisps, ready meals to sweets, palm oil is both a controversial ingredient and, for many, an unknown one.
Used for centuries as a cooking oil in West Africa, palm oil has properties that make it a highly desirable and affordable component in food production. It is also used widely in animal feed, and in ever-larger quantities in South-East Asia as a cooking oil.
The target of several high-profile campaigns highlighting environmental damage caused by the rapid unchecked spread of palm plantations, it currently does not have to be labelled as palm oil, only 'vegetable fat' or 'vegetable oil'.
Dan Saladino goes on a journey to find out why the global use of this oil is growing so fast, and speaks to some of the key players in the palm oil world.
Tim Hayward meets Lloyd Mensah from Ghanaian street-food caterers Jollof Pot to discover palm oil's use in traditional West-Africa cuisine.
Dan follows the trail of this infamous and ubiquitous substance, ending at the Liverpool refinery of New Britain Palm Oil. Despite all the difficulties that the industry faces he asks if palm oil - actually an incredibly efficient, high-yielding crop - is the future for food?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b016kgv1Listen to this programme on the BBC iPlayer here
198323 Oct 2011 - BBC Radio 4 - The Food Programme - The Caloriethe calorieSheila Dillon asks if the calorie is an outdated way of controlling diet and reducing obesity.23/10/2011
The ‘calorie’ took political centre stage recently. Chief Medical Officer Sally Davies, appeared before the cameras to tell us that to turn the obesity tide, we must, as a nation, slash our eating by 5 billion calories a day.
“At least 60% of the population are over-eating and that’s aided by high-calorie or calorie-dense foods, which are heavy in fat, so what we need to do is help people understand what they’re doing, get them to be honest about what they’re doing and reduce what they’re eating and change their diets for the better.”
This announcement came not long after the government’s scientific advisory committee on nutrition published figures showing that all of us who aren’t fat can actually eat more calories than previously thought. Confusing! Now, according to the Department of Health, we just need to be more conscious of what we eat, move more, and cut those calories with a little help from the food industry, and obesity will be on the way out. Easy peasy!
But what is a calorie and will eating fewer really make us a leaner nation?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0167vjtListen to the programme on the BBC iPlayer here
196714 Oct 2011 - Nutraingredients - New review backs nutrient modification for Alzheimer's preventionAlzheimers; alzheimers and omega-318/10/2011Nathan Gray
A diet with an appropriate ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, rich in healthy oils and antioxidants, but low in cholesterol-containing foods, may be a beneficial component in the prevention of Alzheimer's disease, according to a new review.
Read the full news item on the Nutraingredients website here:
196511 Oct 2011 - Reuters - Folic acid in pregnancy tied to better toddler talkfolic acid in early pregnancy and language delay in children17/10/2011By Genevra Pittman, Reuters Health
Women who took folic acid supplements in the first two months of pregnancy were less likely to have kids with severe language delays in a new study from Norway
Folic acid is already known to reduce the risk of certain types of birth defects, and both the U.S. and Canada fortify grain products with folic acid to make sure pregnant women get enough of it. But that's not the case in some other countries, including Norway, and doctors still worry about pregnant women getting enough of the B vitamin -- especially in the developing world.
"We don't think people should change their behavior based on these findings," said Dr. Ezra Susser from Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health in New York, who worked on the study.
"But it does add weight to the public health recommendation to take folic acid early in pregnancy," he told Reuters Health.
And, he added, it shows that "what you do during pregnancy... is not only important for birth but also for subsequent development."
The researchers gave surveys to close to 40,000 Norwegian women a few months into their pregnancies. Those included questions on what supplements women were taking in the four weeks before they got pregnant through eight weeks after conception.
Then, when their kids were three years old, Susser and his colleagues asked the same women about kids' language skills, including how many words they could string together in a phrase.
Toddlers who could only say one word at a time or who had "unintelligible utterances" were considered to have severe language delay. In total, about one in 200 kids fit into that category.
Four out of 1,000 kids born to women who took folic acid alone or combined with other vitamins had severe language delays. That compared to nine out of 1,000 kids whose moms didn't take folic acid before and early in pregnancy.
The pattern remained after Susser's team took into account other factors that were linked to both folic acid supplementation and language skills, such as a mom's weight and education, and whether or not she was married.
The researchers didn't find any link between folic acid during pregnancy and kids' motor skills, measured by how well toddlers could kick or catch a ball.
The study can't prove that folic acid, itself, prevents language delay, they wrote in the Journal of the American Medical Association. But Susser said the vitamin is known to affect the growth of neurons and could influence how proteins are made from certain genes.
"Clearly it plays a role in development that starts very early in pregnancy," said Usha Ramakrishnan, a maternal and child nutrition researcher from Emory University in Atlanta who wasn't involved in the new study.
However, she added, it's hard to separate out exactly when during pregnancy folic acid supplements would have an effect on later language development -- since women who are taking supplements early are more likely to take them throughout pregnancy.
Susser said the results likely apply in the U.S. and other countries where grains are fortified with folic acid, also called folate, because extra supplements are still recommended during pregnancy. But he added that more research is needed to support the new study.
"The recommendation worldwide is that women should be on folate supplements through all their reproductive years," Susser said. Because of that, "we really need to know what the impact is on children, both benefits and risks."
"I think this adds to what's already known about the benefits of folic acid," Ramakrishnan told Reuters Health. "It gives one more positive message of potential benefit."
This was a purely observational study, and so it cannot provide evidence of causal effects, as the authors rightly emphasise.
Nonetheless, the association of folic acid supplementation in early pregnancy with a reduced risk of severe language delay in the resulting children is consistent with what is already known about the importance of this B vitamin for brain development.
These findings clearly merit further investigation, but meanwhile they add further weight to existing public health recommendations about the importance of folic acid supplementation for the prevention of neural tube defects.
194017 Oct 2011 - Cornwall - A Natural Approach to Better Mental HealthA one day Conference in support of a Natural Approach to Better Mental HealthOrganised by: The Chy-Sawel Project - A Registered Charity17/10/201117/10/2011
The Chy-Sawel Project
Chy-Sawel is a charity dedicated to showing that an holistic and nutritional approach to treating mental illness is an option that can no longer be ignored. Their brief is to embrace and collate current research and promote the findings in a simple and logical way. The ultimate aim of the project is to open a Centre, which will provide treatment as well as running eduction and training programmes.
About the Conference
This conference will highlight the research into the effects that diet and other external influences have on the mental and emotional health of people of all ages. Depression and mental illness have increased many-fold in the last 50 years, fulfilling the prediction that it will be our No 1 disease by the year 2020. Our speakers will explain how an holistic and more modern approach can make an important contribution in the battle against this problem.
09.00 to 09.30 Refreshments and Registration
09.35 to 09.50 Welcome and Introduction including Chy-Sawel Update by Steve Angove, David Chaisty (Combined Universities of Cornwall)
09.50 to 10.00 A brief outline behind the Chy-Sawel story
10.00 to 11.00 Reflections on Modern Psychiatry by Robert Whitaker (Award-winning investigative journalist and author, 'Mad in America' and 'Anatomy of an Epidemic'
11.00 to 11.15 Refreshment Break
11.15 to 12.00 NHS Speaker (tbc)
12.00 to 13.30 The Brain Basics of Neurodevelopment Disorders by Professor John Stein, (Professor of Neurophysiology, University of Oxford, Chair of Dyslexia Research Trust)
Questions and Answers
13.30 to 14.30 Lunch
14.30 to 15.00 Acupuncture for Mental Recovery & Survival by Dr Mike Smith (MD, DAs, Psychiatrist, Founder & Previous Chair of NADA)
15.00 to 15.40 Human Givens - A Common Sense Approach to Mental Health by Hilary Farmer (Givens Psychotherapist)
15.40 to 16.10 Not Taking Medication & Paying Income Tax by Dr David Orton, (Former Consultant Psychiatrist, Newton Abbot Hospital)
16.10 to 16.30 Service User Perspective by Ray Hancock (Member SURG)
Each presentation will be followed by Questions and Answers
One dayCornwallThe Pavilion Centre, Royal Cornwall ShowgroundSandra Breakspeare01736 795748http://www.chy-sawel-project.co.uk/index.htmlVisit the Chy-Sawel website hereConference flyer and booking form - Chy-Sawel.pdfDownload schedule and booking form hereChysawel_logo_small.jpg
19573 Oct 2011 - BBC News - Children's packed lunches 'lack fruit and veg'packed lunchesParents are failing to put enough fruit and veg into their children's packed lunches, health experts have warned.03/10/2011
The School Food Trust, which examined 3,500 packed lunches in England in 2009, says about 40% of lunchboxes do not contain any fruit or vegetables, compared with 10% of school dinners.
It said parents should consider switching to school meals.
Meanwhile, the World Cancer Research Fund has set up a website to give parents advice on healthier lunchboxes.
It says the same sort of changes as those made when TV chef Jamie Oliver championed school dinners are now needed.
It wants parents to ensure their children's packed lunches always contain at least two portions of fruits and vegetables.
WCRF head of education Kate Mendoza said: "There is no doubt Jamie Oliver helped achieve great things for the food served in school canteens. But as the nutritional content of school canteen meals has improved, the healthiness of the content of lunchboxes has been left behind.
"It is disappointing that children are going to school with lunchboxes that are not playing their part in helping to encourage the kind of healthy diet that is so important for their future.
"This is why we want to get across the message to parents that including a piece of fruit or using a portion of salad as a filling for a sandwich are positive things they can do for their children's health.
"It can sometimes be difficult for parents to control what their children eat, particularly if they are passing shops on the way home from school or visiting their friends. But parents can influence what is in their packed lunches and the fact that not all of them are doing so is a missed opportunity."
She said they were aiming to advise parents about healthy options - rather than telling them what not to put in as has happened in the past.
"Packed lunches aren't as nutritious as school meals - they are typically higher in saturated fat, sugar and salt, and often contain foods that can't be provided in schools, such as sweets and salted snacks.
"Making healthy packed lunches that give children the variety they need in their diet takes a lot of time and effort.
"We have previously estimated that parents could spend almost eight days a year making packed lunches that meet the national standards for school food.
"And when you look at how the prices compare, it gives parents wanting to give their children good food, and save time and money, something to think about."
The trust's 2009 Primary School Food Survey, included an in-depth look at the contents of almost 3,500 packed lunches across 135 schools in England.
It found 58% of those with packed lunches had items that could count towards their "five a day" fruit and vegetable target, compared with over 90% of those eating school meals.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15123065View this news item and related links on the BBC News website hereLunch box from greatgrubclub.com.jpgYellow lunch box
197130 Sept 2011 - British Nutrition Foundation - Weichselbaum & Buttriss 2011 - Nutrition, health and schoolchildrenNutrition, health and schoolchildrennutrition, health and schoolchildrenWeichselbaum E, Buttriss J30/09/2011British Nutrition Foundation - Nutrition Bulletin36, Issue 3295-355
Healthy eating and being physically active are particularly important for children and adolescents. This is because their nutrition and lifestyle influence their wellbeing, growth and development. The nutritional requirements of children and adolescents are high in relation to their size because of the demands for growth, in addition to requirements for body maintenance and physical activity. Data from the National Diet and Nutrition Surveys (NDNS) show that the contribution of protein to food energy intake has increased between 1997 and 2008/2009 in both boys and girls aged 4-to-18-years. The contribution of fat to food energy intake has decreased in boys and girls aged 4-to-10-years, and in boys aged 11-to-18-years; saturated fatty acid intakes have decreased in boys and girls of both age groups. A decrease in the contribution of non-milk extrinsic sugars to food energy has been found in the younger age group, whereas it has hardly changed in the older age group. The most recent NDNS data (Year 1 of the NDNS Rolling Programme) on micronutrient intake showed that low intakes of almost all minerals and vitamin A in boys and girls in the older age group, and also of riboflavin and folate in girls in the older age group were evident. In the younger age group, low intake of zinc was evident in boys and girls. Data on micronutrient status is as yet only available from the 1997 NDNS. There was some evidence of poor status of riboflavin, thiamin, vitamin C, folate, vitamin D and iron. A comparison of data from the Low Income Diet and Nutrition Survey (2003–2005) and the 1997 NDNS showed that children from low-income families tended to have higher intakes of whole milk; fat spreads; meat and processed meats; and non-diet soft drinks compared with children from the general population. Intakes of wholemeal bread; buns, cakes and pastries; semi-skimmed and skimmed milk; vegetables; fruit and fruit juices; and diet soft drinks were lower in children from low-income families.
nutritional requirements, overweight and obesity, physical activity, schoolchildren, school food standardhttp://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-3010.2011.01910.x/abstractView this briefing paper at the Wiley Online Library here
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