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Fat, Dietary

Wayne State cholesterol study shows algal extracts may counter effects of high fat diets

Dieting • • Fat, DietaryDec 21 13

Wayne State cholesterol study shows algal extracts may counter effects of high fat diets

Health Enhancement Products, Inc. (OTC.BB:HEPI.OB – News), in conjunction with Wayne State University’s Department of Nutrition and Food Science in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, announces the publication of a scientific article in the Journal of Nutrition & Metabolism, “ProAlgaZyme sub-fraction improves the lipoprotein profile of hypercholesterolemic hamsters, while inhibiting production of betaine, carnitine, and choline metabolites.”

The paper describes the beneficial effects of the Company’s proprietary algal culture in supporting healthy cholesterol balance. The fractions and isolates derived from the Company’s proprietary algae culture “PAZ” (formerly referred to as “ProAlgaZyme”) were shown to be a viable candidate for supporting healthy cholesterol balance, in sharp contrast to the control group. The project, led by Smiti Gupta, Ph.D., associate professor of nutrition and food science at Wayne State University, involved monitoring lipid metabolism in a widely accepted animal model for investigating human lipid metabolism. The scientific paper describes a follow-up study to the original research conducted by Gupta. In the previous study, published in 2012, the test group consumed algal-infused water while simultaneously consuming a high fat diet. The algal fractions and isolates were shown to have a preventative beneficial effect against the negative effects of the high-fat diet on the animal’s plasma cholesterol levels. Specifically, the extracts significantly increased high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C, aka “good” cholesterol), and reduced non-HDL cholesterol (“bad” cholesterol) and the ratio of total cholesterol/HDL-C, despite the ongoing consumption of high fat food.

The test subjects in the recent study consumed a high fat diet for four weeks, at which point they became hypercholesterolemic (i.e. they had high plasma cholesterol levels.). Subsequently, the animals were given the extracts for 0 (untreated), 3, 7, 10, 14, and 21 days while still on the high fat diet. The results indicated that the PAZ extracts may be a useful option for improving the plasma cholesterol profile despite the hypercholesterolemic state induced by a high fat diet.

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Gorging study shows with fat, location matters

Fat, DietaryOct 05 10

Researchers who persuaded slender volunteers to gorge themselves on sweets to gain weight said on Monday they have overturned the common wisdom that adults cannot grow new fat cells.

As they gained weight, the volunteers added new fat cells on their thighs, while fat cells on their bellies expanded, Michael Jensen of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota and colleagues found.

“It sort of inverts the old dogma that we don’t make new fat cells when we are adults,” Jensen said in a telephone interview.

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New evidence that chili pepper ingredient fights fat

Fat, Dietary • • ObesityJun 02 10

Scientists are reporting new evidence that capsaicin, the stuff that gives chili peppers their kick, may cause weight loss and fight fat buildup by triggering certain beneficial protein changes in the body. Their study, which could lead to new treatments for obesity, appears in ACS’ monthly Journal of Proteome Research.

Jong Won Yun and colleagues point out that obesity is a major public health threat worldwide, linked to diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and other health problems. Laboratory studies have hinted that capsaicin may help fight obesity by decreasing calorie intake, shrinking fat tissue, and lowering fat levels in the blood. Nobody, however, knows exactly how capsaicin might trigger such beneficial effects.

In an effort to find out, the scientists fed high-fat diets with or without capsaicin to lab rats used to study obesity.

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Pepsi to cut salt, sugar and saturated fats

Dieting • • Fat, DietaryMar 22 10

PepsiCo Inc said on Sunday it would cut the levels of salt, sugar and saturated fats in its top-selling products.

The company, which owns the Pepsi, Frito-Lay and Quaker brands, said it plans a reduction of 25 per cent the average sodium per serving in major global food brands in key markets by 2015.

It also would reduce the average saturated fat per serving by 15 percent by 2020, and cut the average added sugar per serving in key global beverage brands by 25 percent by 2020.

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Listing calories on fast-food menus cuts kids’ intake

Dieting • • Fat, DietaryJan 29 10

When nutritional information is available on fast-food restaurant menus, parents are more apt to pick lower-calorie foods for their kids, new research finds.

Often spurred on by legislation, many U.S. restaurant chains are now posting nutrition information about their menu items. But whether this information would translate to healthier eating was unclear.

The new study, conducted with McDonald’s menus, suggests that it does.

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New Laws 2010: California bans trans fat in restaurants

Dieting • • Fat, DietaryJan 25 10

Starting on Jan 1, 2010, California prohibits restaurants from using oils, margarines and shortening with more than half a gram of trans fat per serving, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

The new law was actually passed by the California Legislature in 2008, but the state gave the restaurants time to change their recipes and menu to avoid introduction of trans fat into restaurants-prepared meals.

Trans fat has been linked to a number of health problems like diabetes and heart disease. It’s probably also linked to other cardiovascular diseases among other things.

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Nonagenarian researcher petitions FDA to ban trans fats

Dieting • • Fat, DietarySep 03 09

“I request to ban trans fats from the American diet.”

Thus begins a 3,000-word petition to the Food and Drug Administration, the work of a man on a dogged, decades-old crusade to eradicate trans fats from food.

Fred Kummerow, a 94-year-old University of Illinois veterinary biosciences professor emeritus who still conducts research on the health effects of trans fats in the diet, filed the petition with the FDA last month. The petition is now posted on the FDA Web site, and public comments are invited. (See below for information on viewing the petition and making a comment.)

“Everybody should read my petition because it will scare the hell out of them,” Kummerow said.

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New culprit behind obesity’s ill metabolic consequences

Fat, Dietary • • ObesityJul 07 09

Obesity very often leads to insulin resistance, and now researchers reporting in the July 8 issue of Cell Metabolism, a Cell Press publication, have uncovered another factor behind that ill consequence. The newly discovered culprit—a protein known as pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF for short)—is secreted by fat cells. They also report evidence to suggest that specifically blocking that protein’s action may reverse some of the health complications that come with obesity.

“With obesity, PEDF release is increased from fat, leading to higher levels of PEDF in the bloodstream,” said Matthew Watt of Monash University in Australia. “PEDF sends a signal to other body tissues, causing insulin resistance in muscle and liver, a major defect that leads to the development of type 2 diabetes.”

Elevated PEDF is also associated with increased release of fatty acids from fat stores, which causes blood lipid levels to rise. That “dyslipidemia” may be associated with other complications including cardiovascular disease.

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Depression tied to build-up of hidden belly fat

Depression • • Fat, DietaryMay 25 09

A new study links depression to an accumulation of visceral fat—deep hidden fat deposits around the abdominal organs—which confers a greater risk of heart disease and diabetes than the more obvious subcutaneous fat that collects just under the skin.

Depression is known to increase the risk of heart disease, but just how they are connected has been unclear.

“Our results suggest that central adiposity, which is commonly called belly fat, is an important pathway by which depression contributes to the risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes,” principal investigator Dr. Lynda H. Powell of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago said in a prepared statement.

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How and Where Fat Is Stored Predicts Disease Risk Better than Weight

Diabetes • • Fat, Dietary • • ObesityFeb 14 09

A study in mice indicates that overeating, rather than the obesity it causes, is the trigger for developing metabolic syndrome, a collection of heath risk factors that increases an individual’s chances of developing insulin resistance, fatty liver, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

How and where the body stores excess, unused calories appears to matter most when determining a person’s risk of developing metabolic syndrome, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center suggest.

“Most people today think that obesity itself causes metabolic syndrome,” said Dr. Roger Unger, professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern and senior author of the study. “We’re ingrained to think obesity is the cause of all health problems, when in fact it is the spillover of fat into organs other than fat cells that damages these organs, such as the heart and the liver. Depositing fatty molecules in fat cells where they belong actually delays that harmful spillover.”

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Low vitamin D tied to higher body fat in women

Fat, DietaryFeb 13 09

Overweight? Part of the problem may be low vitamin D levels, a new study hints.

Among a group of 90 young women living in sunny southern California, those with insufficient levels of vitamin D were significantly heavier and had greater body mass than their counterparts with sufficient levels of vitamin D, Dr. Vicente Gilsanz, of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and colleagues found.

These findings suggest “obesity is related to vitamin D insufficiency,” Gilsanz told Reuters Health.

Vitamin D, which regulates bone metabolism, is mostly obtained through exposure of the skin to direct sunlight. Insufficient vitamin D is thought to impact bone health, and may play a role in obesity.

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How natural oils can be hydrogenated without making unhealthy trans fats

Fat, DietaryJan 23 09

To prolong the shelf life of foods, manufacturers often add hydrogen to natural oils, a process called hydrogenation. But hydrogenation also results in the production of trans fats, which have adverse health effects such as raising bad cholesterol and increasing the risk for coronary heart disorders.

Trans fats are found in vegetable shortenings, some margarines, crackers, cookies and snacks. Health authorities worldwide recommend that people reduce their consumption of trans fats.

Now UC Riverside chemists have designed a catalyst – a substance that accelerates a chemical reaction – that allows hydrogenated oils to be made while minimizing the production of trans fats.

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Say ‘goodbye’ to back fat rolls

Cosmetics • • Fat, Dietary • • SurgerySep 12 08

Even as many of us yearn to wear the sheer, body-hugging fashions available today, we are stopped by our rear reflection and the sight of dreaded back fat rolls and lumps. A study published in the October issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), reveals a new back lift procedure that removes these unsightly bumps and bulges while hiding the scar under the bra line.

“For many patients—even the very fit ones, such as an aerobics instructor—the upper to mid-line back where the rolls and bulges form was very frustrating,” said senior author Joseph Hunstad, MD and ASPS Member Surgeon. “This redundancy of skin occurs generally from aging and cannot be exercised away. For those who desire to wear form-fitting outfits, this procedure eliminates the problem.”

The study reviewed seven female patients who had the bra-line back lift between 2001 and 2007 with an average follow-up of 22 months. Pre-operative marks were placed to outline the patient’s brassiere, as well as delineate the excess back tissue to be removed. The procedure removed the redundant skin, sometimes up to 8 or 10 inches wide, and connected the remaining tissue together. According to the study, the procedure takes about an hour from start to finish. The authors have completed the bra-line back lift on 20 patients to date.

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“Good” fat may be new weapon in obesity fight

Fat, Dietary • • ObesityAug 21 08

A new understanding of the origins of brown fat cells—the “good” kind of fat that burns energy and keeps us warm—may lead to new treatments for obesity, two research teams reported on Wednesday.

Researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston said they used a single molecular switch to turn immature muscle cells into brown fat cells in the lab, suggesting that brown fat may be more akin to muscle cells than conventional white fat cells.

A second team from the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, found a protein important for bone growth helped promote the development of brown fat tissue in mice.

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Low-fat diet as heart-healthy as Mediterranean

Dieting • • Fat, DietaryJun 26 08

After a heart attack, adopting either a low-fat or Mediterranean-style diet similarly and significantly benefits overall and cardiovascular health, research suggests.

The diets provide similar amounts of protein, carbohydrates, cholesterol, and unhealthy saturated fats, but a Mediterranean diet has higher amounts of “healthy” monounsaturated fats, particularly omega-3 fatty acids found in fish.

Either diet, when applied with equal intensity, can be an effective component of post-heart attack lifestyle changes, researchers say. Post-heart attack patients who followed these diets for 4 years significantly reduced their risk for subsequent cardiovascular events, Dr. Katherine R. Tuttle and colleagues found.

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