Research Roundup: October 2010

  • Farm and food service workers at greater health risk. Researchers found that among a sample of U.S. adults, farm and food service workers had the highest rates of metabolic syndrome (a cluster of factors that increase the risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes)? about 30 percent. The overall U.S. risk is about 22 percent.

    Diabetes Care, June 2010

  • Vitamin E linked to decreased dementia risk. Researchers investigated dietary antioxidants in relation to long-term risk of dementia in the Rotterdam study, which followed 5,400 dementia-free participants aged 55 years and older for nearly 10 years. Those consuming the highest dietary intake of vitamin E were 25 percent less likely to develop dementia, suggesting that high intake of vitamin E-rich foods may reduce long-term risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

    Archives of Neurology, July 2010

  • Virgin olive oil and the Mediterranean diet change gene function to protect heart. Scientists compared three groups of healthy volunteers: the first consumed a Mediterranean diet with virgin olive oil rich in antioxidants called polyphenols, the second consumed a Mediterranean diet with olive oil low in polyphenols (special washed virgin olive oil), and the third consumed their normal diet. After three months, the first group experienced beneficial changes in genetic expression influencing heart disease risk, as well as reduced levels of markers of inflammation and oxidative stress.

    FASEB Journal, July 2010

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