Non-alcoholic Fatty liver disease: the new epidemic and the need for novel nutritional approaches.

Non-alcoholic Fatty liver disease: the new epidemic and the need for novel nutritional approaches.

J Med Food, Vol. 10, No. 4. (December 2007), pp. 563-565.

The epidemic of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in the United States is staggering, and there is an enormous void in our understanding of the clinical epidemiology other than the common themes of obesity and insulin resistance. There is also a public health need to better define effective treatments of NAFLD, including dietary interventions and appropriate nutritional supplements. There is, however, a wealth of basic science that helps to set the stage for defining the mechanisms leading to liver pathology. In this article we will attempt to put these concepts in perspective to highlight the need for future research including the use of medicinal food.
C Selmi, CL Bowlus, CL Keen, ME Gershwin

Here’s the article…

Weight-Loss Potions Have Hidden Surprises – Heart to Heart (

Weight-Loss Potions Have Hidden Surprises – Heart to Heart (

Weight-Loss Potions Have Hidden Surprises
December 23, 2008 04:44 PM ET | Bernadine Healy M.D. | Permanent Link | Print

The Food and Drug Administration is not the Grinch who stole Christmas for warning just before the holiday that a passel of weight loss drugs—28 to be exact, all currently available over the counter or on the Internet—can be dangerous to people’s health. In fact, the agency may be a health savior for lots of people who have been lulled into taking diet potions that might work but bear surprise ingredients, two of which are particularly concerning.

Here’s the article…

Body Shape and Heart Disease Risk: Apple Or Pear Shape Is Not Main Culprit To Heart Woes — It’s Liver Fat

Body Shape and Heart Disease Risk:

Apple Or Pear Shape Is Not Main Culprit To Heart Woes — It’s Liver Fat

ScienceDaily (Dec. 8, 2008) — For years, pear-shaped people who carry weight in the thighs and backside have been told they are at lower risk for high blood pressure and heart disease than apple-shaped people who carry fat in the abdomen. But new findings from nutrition researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis suggest body-shape comparisons don’t completely explain risk.

In two studies, they report excess liver fat appears to be the real key to insulin resistance, cholesterol abnormalities and other problems that contribute to diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Having too much fat stored in the liver is known as nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Here’s the article…

Myths vs Reality in the Fight Against Belly Fat

Six Facts About Belly Fat
Do those flat-abs diets work? We sort through the myths and realities of fighting waistline weight gain.

By Karen Springen | NEWSWEEK

Published Nov 7, 2008

There’s an abs diet, a flat-belly diet and a host of other plans out there for getting rid of a paunch. But is there really a specific exercise formula or particular food that can give you Michael Phelps-like abs without swimming eight hours a day?

Here’s the article…

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How to Wake Up Your Brain and Metabolism

Research tell us that for the most part, people with CO tend to skip breakfast or like to eat it later in the morning. If you are one of those people that would rather not confront food as soon as you wake up, here’s a very quick tip that will give you big rewards.

TIP:  First thing, as soon as you wake up… while you make your coffee or before you do anything else. Drink an 8oz protein powder drink. There are lots of protein powder choices out there. I find that whey tends to dissolve better. 

If you are open to more activity and/or food turn it into a protein shake by mixing it in the blender with some fruit, preferably organic.

By having protein as soon as you get out of bed, you not only rev up you metabolism but you are also sending your brain a macro-nutrient for which its in desperate need.

Caveat: Without any fruit, it may not taste great, but you can get flavored powders that taste OK.  Besides, you’re still basically asleep so its easy to ignore the taste. 

Weight loss associated with a daily intake of thre…[Nutrition. 2003] – PubMed Result

Weight loss associated with a daily intake of thre…[Nutrition. 2003] – PubMed Result

: “Weight loss associated with a daily intake of three apples or three pears among overweight women.

Conceição de Oliveira M, Sichieri R, Sanchez Moura A.
Instituto de Medicina Social, State University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
OBJECTIVE: We investigated the effect of fruit intake on body weight change. METHODS: Hypercholesterolemic, overweight (body mass index > 25 kg/m2), and non-smoking women, 30 to 50 y of age, were randomized to receive, free of charge, one of three dietary supplements: apples, pears, or oat cookies. Women were instructed to eat one supplement three times a day in a total of six meals a day. Participants (411 women) were recruited at a primary care center of the State University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Fifty-one women had fasting blood cholesterol levels greater than 6.2 mM/L (240 mg/dL) and 49 were randomized. Subjects were instructed by a dietitian to eat a diet (55% of energy from carbohydrate, 15% from protein, and 30% from fat) to encourage weight reduction at the rate of 1 kg/mo. RESULTS: After 12 wk of follow-up, the fruit group lost 1.22 kg (95% confidence interval = 0.44-1.85), whereas the oat group had a non-significant weight loss of 0.88 kg (0.37-2.13). The difference between the two groups was statistically significant (P = 0.004). To explore further the body weight loss associated with fruit intake, we measured the ratio of glucose to insulin. A significantly greater decrease of blood glucose was observed among those who had eaten fruits compared with those who had eaten oat cookies, but the glucose:insulin ratio was not statistically different from baseline to follow-up. Adherence to the diet was high, as indicated by changes in serum triacylglycerols, total cholesterol, and reported fruit intake. Fruit intake in the oat group throughout treatment was minimal. CONCLUSIONS: Intake of fruits may contribute to weight loss.”

More on this…

Brain Inflammation Pathway Linked to Murine Obesity

Medical News: Brain Inflammation Pathway Linked to Murine Obesity – in Neurology, General Neurology from MedPage Today:

By Michael Smith, North American Correspondent,
MedPage Today

Published: October 02, 2008

Reviewed by Zalman S. Agus, MD; Emeritus Professor
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

MADISON, Wis., Oct. 2 — Blocking an inflammatory pathway in the hypothalamus can prevent obesity, at least in mice, researchers here said.

The pathway involves a mediator of metabolic inflammation — dubbed IKKß/NF-kB — that is normally inactive in the hypothalamus, even though it is enriched in hypothalamic neurons, according to Dongsheng Cai, M.D., Ph.D., of the University of Wisconsin, and colleagues.

A series of animal and in vitro experiments showed that IKKß/NF-kB can be activated by either an acute or chronic oversupply of nutrients, Dr. Cai and colleagues reported in the Oct. 3 issue of Cell.

The ‘discoveries offer potential for treating these serious diseases’ caused by overnutrition, such as type 2 diabetes, the researchers said.” More on this…

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Central Obesity & Dementia; Diet, Vitamin D, Calcium, & Colon Cancer

Central Obesity & Dementia; Diet, Vitamin D, Calcium, & Colon Cancer | MND: Your Daily Dose of Counter-Theory:

Robert A. Wascher, MD, FACS

Central Obesity & Dementia; Diet, Vitamin D, Calcium, & Colon Cancer

2008-10-05 at 5:09 pm ·

The information in this column is intended for informational purposes only, and does not constitute medical advice or recommendations by the author. Please consult with your physician before making any lifestyle or medication changes, or if you have any other concerns regarding your health.


We are, quite plainly, the heaviest society in the recorded history of mankind. More than 60% of adult Americans are overweight, and one-fourth of the U.S. population is frankly obese.

There is ample clinical evidence showing that obesity is associated with an increased risk of high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, heart disease, stroke, arthritis and premature death. Some cancers also appear to be more common among obese patents, including cancers of the breast, pancreas, esophagus, stomach, colon, rectum, uterus and kidney.

Although generalized obesity is a risk factor for all of the life-threatening diseases that I have described, the accumulation of excess body fat within and around the abdomen (central obesity) appears to be linked with an especially high risk of obesity-associated illnesses. Now, a new research study, just published in the journal Neurology, suggests that dementia may also be more common among patients with central obesity. ” More on this…

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Drink Lots of Cold Water

First of all, if you don’t, you should develop the habit of always drinking water.

If you drink you water chilled you will burn 27 calories more every day.

That may not sound like many calories, but look at the math:

1 lb = 3500 calories

3500 calories / 27 calories = 130 days

This simple tip has the potential of helping you loose (or not gain) 1 pound every 130 days.

Food Restriction Increases Dopamine Receptor Levels in Obese Rats

Food Restriction Increases Dopamine Receptor Levels in Obese Rats:

“Food Restriction Increases Dopamine Receptor Levels in Obese Rats Evidence for interplay of brain’s ‘reward’ chemical with availability of food in obesity October 25, 2007 Photo of Thanos Peter Thanos

UPTON, NY – A brain-imaging study of genetically obese rats conducted at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory provides more evidence that dopamine – a brain chemical associated with reward, pleasure, movement, and motivation – plays a role in obesity. The scientists found that genetically obese rats had lower levels of dopamine D2 receptors than lean rats. They also demonstrated that restricting food intake can increase the number of D2 receptors, partially attenuating a normal decline associated with aging.

‘This research corroborates brain-imaging studies conducted at Brookhaven that found decreased levels of dopamine D2 receptors in obese people compared with normal-weight people,’ said Brookhaven neuroscientist Panayotis (Peter) Thanos, lead author of the current study, which will be published online in the journal Synapse on Thursday, October 25, 2007.

It’s not clear whether reduced receptor levels are a cause or consequence of obesity: Overeating may chronically reduce receptor levels, which, over the long term, could eventually contribute to obesity. But having genetically low receptor levels may also lead to obesity by predisposing the individual to overeating in an attempt to stimulate a ‘blunted’ reward system. Either way, revving up receptor levels by restricting food intake could enhance the impact of this common strategy for combating obesity.

‘Consuming fewer calories is obviously important for people trying to lose weight, plus improving the brain’s ability to respond to rewards other than food may help prevent overeating,‘ Thanos said. Because food intake can have such a dramatic effect on dopamine receptor levels, ‘this study also provides further evidence for the interplay of genetic factors with the environment in the development of obesity in our society,’ he said.

The finding that food restriction can attenuate the effects of aging on the brain’s ability to respond to dopamine may also help explain why food restriction slows down other changes associated with aging, such as declines in locomotor activity and sensitivity to reward. “

(Via Food Restriction Increases Dopamine Receptor Levels in Obese Rats.)

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