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July 2017

Full Issue (PDF)

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Articles

Diet Causing 300,000+ Annual Cardiovascular & Diabetes Deaths

We're often told to eat better to ward off risk of disease and dying early. In that effort, knowing which eating habits to focus on could be helpful. Findings from a new study in JAMA show the large potential impact of 10 dietary factors on Americans' risk of dying from heart disease, stroke or type 2 diabetes. These three conditions encompass the term cardiometabolic disease.

Are Supplements Toxic to Liver? —Subscribers Only

Dietary supplements are often viewed as "natural," but they aren't risk-free. In a sampling of more than 800 cases of liver toxicity (harm) suspected from supplements and medications in the US, 20% of cases were ultimately attributed to herbal and other dietary supplements. The rest of the cases were due to medications (which excluded the pain reliever acetaminophen, for which the potential of liver toxicity is well-known).

Sweet Drinks: Bad for Your Brain? —Subscribers Only

Could a sugary-drink habit - or the diet beverages you may consume instead - harm your brain? One recent study showed that regularly drinking sugary beverages, like soda and fruit drinks, was associated with signs of brain aging and declining memory.

Dietary Strategies Against Gout —Subscribers Only

Gout is so painful that its sufferers say you can't really grasp how bad it is unless you've experienced it. A form of arthritis, gout is marked by attacks of severe joint pain, swelling, warmth and redness. Although medication is often used to help manage gout, dietary changes may help, too.

Ask Tufts Experts

Do Probiotics Help Gums and Teeth?

Any such potential benefits of probiotic supplements in the oral cavity would depend upon whether they are appropriate to the specific oral problem at hand. That means having the right bacterial composition, dosage level and vehicle for delivery, which may be either directly to oral tissues (for example, by injecting them under the gums or providing them in chewing gum or dissolvable lozenges) or indirectly via salivary or bloodstream effects of a swallowed supplement.

Does Decaffeinated Black Tea Have the Same Benefits?

The potential health benefits of regularly consuming black tea, such as lower risk of heart disease, certain cancers and osteoporosis, are likely due to the polyphenols it provides. Polyphenols may help protect our body in several ways, such as by helping prevent cell damage, supporting the immune system and fighting inflammation, among other mechanisms.

Why Are Calcium-Fortified Foods Better Than Calcium Supplements?

Calcium is better absorbed and utilized if consumed in smaller amounts spread out during the day. Calcium-fortified foods typically contain smaller amounts of calcium than dedicated supplements. And, although people tend to focus on calcium and vitamin D for bone health, many other nutrients, such as potassium, magnesium, zinc, vitamin C and vitamin K, also are important for bones.

NewsBites

Do Salty Diets Trigger Hunger?

You may find salt makes you thirsty, but over the long run excess salt could cause your body to conserve water, so you actually drink less, according to two new studies in The Journal of Clinical Investigation. The underlying processes may make you hungry and raise disease risk.

Seeking Sustainable Protein Sources

Getting protein from insects and soy-based imitation meat instead of livestock are efficient ways to reduce our agricultural land use and harmful emissions (such as greenhouse gases), says a recent analysis in Global Food Security.

Extra Pounds Probably Not Protective

Could carrying a little extra weight protect you from an early death - perhaps by giving you an energy reserve if you fall ill? Past studies have suggested this might be the case, but new research published in Annals of Internal Medicine challenges this thinking.

Physical Activity Is Anti-Inflammatory

Physical activity is good for your heart, but why? A big reason may be its role in lowering inflammation.

Menu Calories: Delayed Until May 2018

If you've been eagerly awaiting calorie counts on restaurant menus, you'll have to wait some more.

Special Reports

Anti-Aging Nutrition for Eyes —Subscribers Only

As people age, they're even more afraid of losing their vision than their memory, says a survey by the American Optometric Association. Risk of potentially sight-robbing eye diseases does increase as we get older. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataracts and glaucoma are three top concerns.