Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Consuming protein supplements with meals may work better for weight control


A new systematic review of available evidence appearing in Nutrition Reviews indicates that consuming protein supplements with meals may be more effective at promoting weight control than consuming supplements between meals in adults following a resistance training regimen.

It is well established that consuming dietary protein proximate to resistance-type exercise sessions promotes a positive net protein balance during post-exercise recovery. Protein supplements are available in ready-to-drink, powdered, and solid form and are marketed for different outcomes such as weight gain, weight loss, and weight management. However, for each outcome, the promoted timing of protein intake varies. Protein supplements designed to augment weight gain or support weight stability are promoted for consumption between meals. Protein supplements either with meals or as meal replacements are often recommended for ingestion to promote weight loss.

Consuming protein supplements between meals may decrease compensatory eating behaviors, thereby increasing energy intakes and body weight. Conversely, adults undergoing a resistance training program and consuming protein supplements twice daily with meals may compensate for the protein supplement by decreasing their self-chosen diet. Consequently, the timing of protein supplementation may be of particular importance, depending on the desired body weight and body composition outcome.

The impact of timing the consumption of protein supplements relative to meals has not previously been evaluated systematically. In the newly published review of the literature, the researchers investigated whether the existing research studies support consuming protein supplements between meals, vs. with meals, to differentially change body composition in adults who initiate resistance training regimens.

Researchers here assessed 34 randomized controlled trials with 59 intervention groups. Of the intervention groups designated as consuming protein supplements with meals vs. between meals, 56% vs. 72% increased their body mass, 94% vs. 90% increased their lean mass, 87% vs. 59% reduced their fat mass, and 100% vs. 84% increased the ratio of lean to fat mass over time, respectively.

With-meal ingestion of protein was defined as consumption of a dietary protein-rich supplement immediately after a meal, with a meal, or as a high-protein meal replacement. Between-meal ingestion of protein was defined as consumption of a dietary protein supplement predominantly either very near a workout or during another non mealtime.

The results from this systematic review provide novel information for people who choose to consume protein supplements as part of their dietary pattern to promote body mass gain or improve body composition through fat mass reduction. However, consuming protein supplements with meals, rather than between meals, may be a more effective dietary strategy to improve resistance training-induced changes in body composition by reducing fat mass, which may be relevant for adults looking to improve their health status. Consuming protein supplements between meals may be more effective at increasing overall body mass.
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The systematic review "Effects of protein supplements consumed with meals, versus between meals, on resistance training-induced body composition changes in adults: a systematic review" is available at: https://doi.org/10.1093/nutrit/nuy012

Study links night exposure to blue light with breast and prostate cancer


Researchers used images taken by astronauts to evaluate outdoor lighting in Madrid and Barcelona
Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal)
A study performed by an international team led by the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), a centre supported by the "la Caixa" Foundation, reports a link between exposure to blue light at night and higher risk of developing breast and prostate cancer. Blue light is a range of the visible light spectrum emitted by most white LEDs and many tablet and phone screens. The results have been published in Environmental Health Perspectives.
"WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified night shift work as probably carcinogenic to humans. There is evidence pointing to an association between exposure to artificial light at night, disruption of the circadian rhythm, and breast and prostate cancers. With this study we sought to determine whether night exposure to light in cities can affect the development of these two types of cancer", explains Manolis Kogevinas, ISGlobal researcher and coordinator of the study. "We know that depending on its intensity and wave length, artificial light, particularly in the blue spectrum, can decrease melatonin production and secretion", says Martin Aubé, physics professor at CÉGEP in Sherbrooke, Canada and study co-author.
The study was conducted within the framework of the MCC-Spain project cofunded by the 'Consorcio de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Epidemiología y Salud Pública' (CIBERESP), and includes medical and epidemiological data of more than 4,000 people between 20 and 85 years of age in 11 Spanish regions. Indoor exposure to artificial light was determined through personal questionnaires, while outdoor levels of artificial light were evaluated for Madrid and Barcelona, based on nocturnal images taken by astronauts aboard the International Space Station.
Results obtained for both cities show that participants exposed to higher levels of blue light had a 1.5 and 2-fold higher risk of developing breast and prostate cancer, respectively, as compared to the less-exposed population.
Ariadna García, ISGlobal researcher and first author of the study, says: "Given the ubiquity of artificial light at night, determining whether it increases or not the risk of cancer is a public health issue". At this point, further studies should include more individual data using for instance light sensors that allow measuring indoor light levels. It would also be important to do this kind of research in young people that extensively use blue light emitting screens".
"Currently, the images taken by the astronauts on the Space Station are our only way of determining the colour of outdoor lighting at a large scale, and the spread of blue light-emitting white LEDs in our cities", comments Alejandro Sánchez de Miguel, scientist at the Astrophysics Institute in Andalucía-CSIC and Exeter University.

When do problems with memory and decision-making affect older adults' ability to drive?


For older adults, driving can mean living a more independent, satisfying life. Therefore, it's no surprise that about 86 percent of adults age 65 and older hold active driver's licenses, and many of us expect to drive for longer as we age.

Car crashes can be devastating or even deadly for anyone, including older adults and other road users. However, the fatal crash rate based on the distance someone travels in a vehicle begins to rise at age 65. At the same time, when older adults stop driving due to health issues or other concerns, they may experience isolation and depression. They also may be more likely to enter long-term care facilities earlier than they otherwise would.

Researchers have a history of studying driver safety in older adults after they've been diagnosed with dementia, a decline in memory and other mental abilities that make daily living difficult. However, we have limited knowledge about the effects on older drivers whose problems with mental abilities are less severe than those associated with dementia.

Recently, a team of researchers designed a study to learn more about cognitive health and older drivers' crash risks. The study was published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. In this study, the researchers focused on links between levels of cognitive function and crash risk among older drivers without dementia over a 14-year study period. They also assessed the link between changes in cognitive function over time and later risks of crashes.

The researchers used information from the Adult Changes in Thought (ACT) study, an ongoing study of adults aged 65 and older. The researchers linked ACT data from 2002 to 2015 to the Washington State crash database and to information from the Washington State Department of Licensing.

ACT participants were tested for their ability to think and make decisions. Researchers followed 2,615 participants for an average of 6.7 years or until they dropped out of ACT, died, were diagnosed with dementia, or failed to renew their license. The researchers then looked at motor vehicle crashes involving ACT participants. They included all crashes resulting in injury, death, or property damage totaling at least $1,000.

For older licensed drivers without dementia, lower levels of cognitive function were linked to a higher risk of motor vehicle crashes. Depression also was linked to a higher risk for crashes in older licensed drivers without dementia.

The researchers noted that, unfortunately, there is not yet a widely accepted specific clinical exam, procedure, or lab test that can evaluate driving and crash risk related to cognitive function. The researchers concluded that older drivers with lower levels of cognitive function were somewhat more likely to be involved in a crash. These older drivers, their family members, and their healthcare providers must balance the benefits of independence, mobility, and social engagement with the potential for car crashes as they make decisions about whether an older person should continue to drive.

Adults who eat breakfast gain less weight




Although studies have shown an association between eating breakfast and healthy body weight in children and teenagers, less research has focused on this relationship in adults. In an analysis involving 347 healthy adults, researchers from the Mayo Clinic found that study participants who skipped breakfast were more likely to be obese than those who ate it frequently, defined as five to seven times a week.

Participants who skipped breakfast also had larger waists than those who ate breakfast frequently or infrequently (one to four times a week). The link between skipping breakfast and weight gain remained even after the researchers took into account age, gender and body mass index. People who did not eat breakfast reported the most weight gain over the past year, and those who consumed breakfast on most days reported the lowest weight gain.

The researchers conclude that regularly consuming breakfast is important for maintaining a healthy weight at all ages.

Drinking water may help exercising seniors stay mentally sharp


Older people should drink more water to reap the full cognitive benefits of exercise, new research suggests. The study, to be presented today at the American Physiological Society (APS) annual meeting at Experimental Biology 2018 in San Diego, explores the association between hydration status before exercising and exercise-enhanced cognition in older adults.Dehydration has been shown to impair exercise performance and brain function in young people, but less is known about its impact on older populations.

"Middle-age and older adults often display a blunted thirst perception, which places them at risk for dehydration and subsequently may reduce the cognitive health-related benefits of exercise," a team of New England-based researchers wrote.

The researchers recruited recreational cyclists (average age 55) who participated in a large cycling event on a warm day (78-86 degrees F). The cyclists performed a "trail-making" executive function test--quickly and accurately connecting numbered dots using paper and pencil--before and after the event. Executive function includes the skills needed to plan, focus, remember and multitask. Exercise has been shown to improve intellectual health, including executive function.

The research team tested the volunteers' urine before they exercised and divided them into two groups--normal hydration and dehydrated--based on their hydration status. The normal hydration group showed noticeable improvement in the completion time of the trail-making test after cycling when compared to their pre-cycling test. The dehydration group also completed their post-cycling test more quickly, but the time reduction was not significant.

"This suggests that older adults should adopt adequate drinking behaviors to reduce cognitive fatigue and potentially enhance the cognitive benefits of regular exercise participation," the researchers wrote.

Even a single mindfulness meditation session can reduce anxiety


Mindfulness meditation programs have shown promise for the treatment of anxiety, one of the most common mental health disorders in the U.S. New research suggests people can begin to derive psychological and physiological benefits from the practice after a single introductory session.

"Our results show a clear reduction in anxiety in the first hour after the meditation session, and our preliminary results suggest that anxiety was significantly lower one week after the meditation session," said lead study author John J. Durocher, PhD, an assistant professor of physiology in the department of biological sciences at Michigan Technological University. "Participants also had reduced mechanical stress on their arteries an hour after the session. This could help to reduce stress on organs like the brain and kidneys and help prevent conditions such as high blood pressure."

Understanding the effects of mindfulness meditation on the body can help improve the design of anti-anxiety therapies, according to Durocher. He will present the research at the American Physiological Society annual meeting during the 2018 Experimental Biology meeting, held April 21-25 in San Diego.

Anxiety can be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Previous studies have indicated that arterial stiffness (a predictor of cardiovascular disease) can be increased by traumatic life events, job strain, depression, temporary anxiety and long-term proneness to anxiety. Cardiovascular changes associated with anxiety can also lead to high blood pressure and long-term damage to various organs.

Researchers recruited 14 participants who had normal blood pressure but high levels of anxiety. They measured factors related to cardiovascular functioning--including heart rate, blood pressure, aortic blood pressure (blood pressure in the aorta, specifically) and arterial stiffness--before and after a 60-minute guided introductory session of mindfulness meditation. This type of meditation emphasizes focusing on breathing and awareness of one's thoughts.

The results demonstrate that even a single, brief intervention can yield measurable improvements in people with anxiety. Researchers said most participants reported continuing to use mindfulness after the initial session and anxiety scores were reduced even further one week later.

"This study is different because we examined the effect of a single mindfulness meditation session on anxiety and cardiovascular outcomes, while other studies have examined the effect of several days or weeks of mindfulness meditation," Durocher said. "The results suggest that a single mindfulness meditation session may help to reduce cardiovascular risk in those with moderate anxiety."

Durocher and colleagues recently started a new study to assess the effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction in people with moderately elevated blood pressure.

Opioid use linked to increased risk of falls, death in older adults\


 Recent opioid use is associated with an increased risk of falls in older adults and an increased risk of death, found new research in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Falls are a leading cause of injury and death in older adults. However, evidence for a link between opioid use and falls is inconsistent.

The study included data on 67 929 patients aged 65 and older who were admitted for injury to one of 57 trauma centres in the province of Quebec. The mean age of patients was 81 years, and the majority -- 69% -- were women. Falls were the most common cause of injury (92% of patients), and more than half (59%) had surgery for their injuries, with lengthy hospital stays (median stay of 12 days).

Researchers looked at opioid prescriptions in the preceding 2 weeks before injury and found that the patients who had filled an opioid prescription during this period were 2.4 times more likely to have had a fall causing injury. Patients whose falls were linked to opioid use were also more likely to die during their hospital stay.

"This study confirms an association between recent opioid use and fall-related injury in a large trauma population of older adults," writes Dr. Raoul Daoust, Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur de Montréal and the Université de Montréal, Montreal, Quebec, with coauthors. "Physicians should be aware that prescribing opioids to older patients is not only associated with an increased risk of falls, but also, if these patients do fall, a higher in-hospital mortality rate," conclude the authors.

"Recent opioid use and fall-related injury among older patients with trauma" is published April 23, 2018.