Breaking Nutrition and Diet News from Nutrition 2019

Nutrition 2019, the annual meeting of the American Society for Nutrition, took place from June 8-11 in Baltimore. Top thought leaders discussed the latest research pertaining to themes centered around cellular and physiological nutrition/metabolism, clinical and translational nutrition, global and public health nutrition, population science, and food and science systems. Here, DocWire News shares highlights from some of the research presented.

Researchers Find Link Between Poor Nutrition and Poor Sleep

Recent research suggests that those who do not consume the recommended amounts of vitamins and minerals may be more likely to have issues sleeping. Specifically, those who consumed lower amounts of vitamins A, D, and B1 as well as magnesium, niacin, calcium, zinc and phosphorus were more likely to get less than the recommended amount of sleep each night. The findings of this study were presented at Nutrition 2019, the American Society for Nutrition’s annual meeting held in the Baltimore Convention Center from June 8-11.

The researchers found that those who got less than seven hours of sleep per night (the amount recommended for adults by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) were more likely to have consumed lower amounts of the vitamins and minerals mentioned above than those who got over seven hours of sleep per night.

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How Could New Nutrition Policies Decrease Cancer Risks?

Recent research has found that new policies designed to improve nutrition could have strong implications in preventing cancer. These policies, utilizing taxes or warning labels, would significantly decrease medical costs by lowering the number of cancer cases physicians must treat each year. These findings were presented at Nutrition 2019, held in the Baltimore Convention Center from June 8-11.

One study estimated that including added sugars on all Nutrition Facts labels (mandated by the FDA in 2016) could prevent 35,500 new cancer cases linked to obesity, as well as 16,700 cancer deaths in a lifetime in the US. This policy is also estimated to gain 113,000 life-years and save roughly $1.4 billion in medical costs. When considering the additional savings in patient time, productivity loss, and implementation costs from the industry and government, this added sugar policy would also save about $500 million in total costs. This model indicates that labeling for added sugars could significantly decrease the number of cancer cases and deaths, associated medical costs, and that the industry’s response could cause similar or larger benefits than consumer responses.

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Could a Plant-based Diet Reduce Diabetes Risk?

Several recent studies have evaluated how diet may affect a person’s risk of developing diabetes—particularly, how a diet more focused on plants and less on animal products may be beneficial. The research was presented during Nutrition 2019, the annual meeting of the American Society for Nutrition, at the Baltimore Convention Center.

One study, presented on June 11, found that shifting to a more plant-based diet could be beneficial in minimizing the risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D). For the study, researchers evaluated patients from the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) cohort. CARDIA is a multi-center, community-based, prospective cohort study with 30 years of follow-up. A total of 2,717 patients were recruited from the study, all of whom did not have T2D through year 20. They were followed through year 30 for T2D diagnosis. Dietary intake information for the first 20 years of the study was collected through an interview pertaining to diet history. Quality of diet was evaluated using the A Priori Diet Quality Score (APDQS); scores ranged from 0—132, with scores increasing with the addition of nutritionally rich plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and plant-derived fats (such as seeds, nuts, and vegetable oils) and proteins (such as avocado, legumes, and soy). Researchers calculated patients’ change in diet quality over the study period.

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Lack of Fruit and Vegetable Consumption Responsible for Millions of Cardiovascular Deaths

Could an apple a day keep cardiovascular diseases (CVD) away?

According to the findings of a recent study, many preventable cardiovascular deaths take place each year due to an inadequate consumption of fruits and vegetables. The findings of the study were presented at Nutrition 2019, the American Society for Nutrition annual meeting, in Baltimore.

The research suggested that about 1 in 7 cardiovascular deaths are due to not eating enough fruit—resulting in about 1.8 million deaths—while 1 in 12 can be attributed to not eating enough vegetables—about 1 million deaths.

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