Newsletter #003: Health Benefits of Dietary Interventions 🥗
Welcome to the third edition of the humanOS.me newsletter! We had a pretty full week. Greg Potter, our Content Director, got back from the Biohacker Summit in Sweden and reported an excellent first-time experience, through and through. Dan, our CEO, was in DC giving a presentation to a large group of people in the financial services industry. He’ll be traveling frequently for the remainder of the year, so we’ll see if we can get some photos from him on his travels for future editions of the newsletter.
This Week’s Research Highlights
Omega-3 supplementation in pregnancy may be a strategy to prevent infant and childhood allergic diseases.
Increased intake of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) has been linked to a higher risk of allergic disease due to eicosanoid mediators produced from the n-6 PUFA arachidonic acid. However, long-chain omega-3 PUFAs found in fish and fish oils can counteract the effects of n-6 PUFAs and protect against allergic sensitization and allergic manifestations. Studies show that pregnant women who consume fish or fish oil have lower risks of food allergies and atopic eczema in their infants. There is even evidence that fish oil consumption during pregnancy can reduce persistent wheezing and asthma in children aged 3 to 5 years. So, it seems that eating fish or taking fish oil supplements during pregnancy can help prevent allergic disease in infants and children.
The study found that people who ate less than one egg per day had a lower risk of CVD compared to those who did not eat eggs. In particular, daily egg consumers had a significantly lower risk of CVD death and hemorrhagic stroke death, compared to non-consumers. The study suggests that moderate egg consumption may have a protective effect against CVD. However, it is important to note that this study shows an association and not a causal relationship between egg consumption and CVD risk. Further research is needed to establish whether eggs are actually protective against CVD or if other factors may be involved.
The research review conducted by nutrition experts at Purdue University analyzed 34 studies with 59 intervention groups to investigate the effects of protein supplements on body weight management. The review found that people who consume protein supplements during a meal are more likely to maintain their body weight while decreasing fat mass, while those who consume protein supplements between meals may experience weight gain.
Protein supplements are readily available in various forms such as ready-to-drink, powdered, and solid, and often contain whey, casein, or soy proteins. The effectiveness of these supplements in weight gain, weight loss, or weight management may just depend on how they are incorporated into an eating plan and taken with meals or as snacks.
This review highlighted that the issue of timing when supplements are consumed in relation to meals has not been adequately studied before. However, this study provides some evidence that timing can make a difference. A person may tend to adjust their calories at mealtime to include the protein supplement, and such dietary compensation is likely missing when protein supplements are consumed as snacks. Calories at meal times may not be adjusted to offset the supplement's calories, thus leading to a higher calorie intake for that day.
The review concludes that people looking to manage their weight with strength-training and protein supplements should consume their supplements during a meal.
Podcasts We Loved This Week
- Jed Fahey, Ph.D - Sulforaphane (the awesome cancer-fighting compound in broccoli). Via Jesse Lawler of Smart Drug Smarts.
- Christopher Gardner, Ph.D - DIETFITS Trial 2018: Low-Fat vs Low-Carb Weight Loss Diets and Effect of Genotype and Insulin Secretion. Via Danny Lennon of Sigma Nutrition.
- Julian Treasure - The four ways sound affects us. Via TED (so, technically not a podcast, but hey you can still listen to it).
Products We Are Enjoying
Useful and affordable tool for cutting up veggies into clean easy-to-eat pieces, which is particularly crucial if you are a fan of cruciferous vegetables like me - Ginny Robards