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June 2010 - Volume 4, Issue 06


In this issue...

- Obesity lowers vitamin K status

- Omega 3 fatty acids help severe depression

- Folic acid may boost vascular function for female runners

- EPA supplements improve symptoms of ADHD

- Omega 3 fatty acids enhance absorption of fat soluble vitamins

- Zinc deficiency associated with inflammation

- Do our bodies compensate for too much beta-carotene?







CLINICAL UPDATE - Obesity lowers vitamin K status

Researchers measured vitamin K levels stored in adipose (fat) tissue of 16 gastric bypass patients as well as circulating vitamin K in over 400 people.  They found that fat tissue stored more vitamin K than other organs. They also found that a higher percentage of body fat was associated with poorer vitamin K status, suggesting that , like other fat soluble nutrients such as vitamin D, obesity makes vitamin K less bioavailable to tissues throughout the body that need it.

(Journal of Nutrition, May 2010)

LINK to ABSTRACT Adulthood obesity is positively associated with adipose tissue concentrations of vitamin K and inversely associated with circulating indicators of vitamin K status in men and women.





CLINICAL UPDATE - Omega 3 fatty acids help severe depression

In a review of 35 randomized controlled trials on omega 3 fatty acids and depression, researchers found that the more intense the depressive symptoms, the more benefit omega 3 fatty acids will have.  In a similar meta-analysis, researchers found that supplementing with EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) is more effective at treating depression than DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).

(American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, March 2010)

(Journal of the American College of Nutrition, October 2009)

 LINK to ABSTRACT Updated systematic review and meta-analysis of the effects of n-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids on depressed mood.

LINK to ABSTRACT EPA but not DHA appears to be responsible for the efficacy of omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acid supplementation in depression: evidence from a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.





CLINICAL UPDATE - Folic acid may boost vascular function for female runners

Supplements of folic acid may boost heart function and improve athletic performance in young female runners, says a new study from the US.

(Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine, May 2010)


LINK to ABSTRACT Folic acid supplementation improves vascular function in amenorrheic runners.





CLINICAL UPDATE - epa supplements improve symptoms of adhd

In a randomized controlled trial, 92 children with ADHD were supplemented with EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) while levels of specific fatty acids and fatty acid ratios in their red blood cells were measured.  After 15 weeks, symptoms of opposition, hyperactivity and impulsiveness improved, especially in children with lower starting EPA levels. 

(Acta Paediatrics, May 2010)

LINK to ABSTRACT EPA supplementation improves teacher rated behaviour and oppositional symptoms in children with ADHD.





CLINICAL UPDATE - omega 3 fatty acids enhance absorption of fat soluble vitamins

A randomized, double-blind, controlled trial was conducted on 48 patients with malabsorption due to gastrointestinal disease where they were given vitamins A, D, E and K with and without omega 3 fatty acids for 12 weeks.  Researchers found that levels of oxidative stress in patients supplemented with both vitamins and fatty acids (vs vitamins alone) was significantly lower. 

(European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, April 2010)

 LINK to ABSTRACT Change in the fatty acid pattern of erythrocyte membrane phospholipids after oral supplementation of specific fatty acids in patients with gastrointestinal diseases.





CLINICAL UPDATE - zinc deficiency associated with inflammation

A close relationship between zinc status and inflammatory markers exists, particularly in obese people, according to a recent analysis on overweight adults and their dietary zinc intakes.

            (Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, May 2010)

LINK to ABSTRACT Distinctive modulation of inflammatory and metabolic parameters in relation to zinc nutritional status in adult overweight/obese subjects.





CLINICAL UPDATE - do our bodies compensate for too much beta-carotene?

Seven human volunteers consumed beta-carotene that was chemically labeled so its conversion to vitamin A could be tracked after consumption.  As the dietary dose of beta-carotene increased, its conversion to retinol decreased, suggesting that high doses of beta-carotene limit its conversion to vitamin A.

            (Journal of Nutrition, May 2010)

 LINK to ABSTRACT Beta-carotene conversion to vitamin A decreases as the dietary dose increases in humans.