Do you prefer meat or dairy products wit

Do you prefer meat or dairy products with a ‘grass fed’, ‘pastured’, or ‘organic’ labels, then read Jenny Splitter article. It may challenge assumptions. Hilly and stony pastures can also lead to slips (muscle pulls) and hoof bruises

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Abstract indicates bioelectrical impedan

Abstract indicates bioelectrical impedance is as good as ‘gold standard methods’ to evaluate body composition & suggests statistical differences between equations may not be clinically significant. Would love to read full article nature #HatePayWalls

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Pregnancy, Vitamin B12, and Folic Acid (B9)

B vitamins are essential co-factors for energy metabolism and neurological function. Vitamin B12 deficiency is common and can cause anemia and neurological disorders [1]. Fortified foods and supplements are an important dietary source of vitamin B12 [2]. Vitamin B12 deficiencies can be corrected by oral means or intramuscular injections; both are effective with oral forms being cheaper [1] and less invasive. Damayanti et al [2] report lower serum vitamin B12 and holotranscobalamin concentrations in adults consuming lesser amounts of vitamin B12 and in men versus women.

Under current food regulations, a food or supplement must provide 1.2 µg per serving (Reference Amount Customarily Consumed, RACC) to be an ‘excellent’ source of Vitamin B12. Regulations coming into effect January, 2020 will allow an ‘excellent’ source claim on products with only 0.48 µg/RACC [3]. This 60% reduction in vitamin B12 content per RACC has the potential to substantially decrease B12 intake from fortified foods and dietary supplements.

Women who are vegetarian are at increased risk of vitamin B12 deficiency. If they breast-feed their baby, the child is at risk for severe developmental abnormalities. It is important to encourage women who wish or may become pregnant to supplement with vitamin B12 and folic acid. The Daily Recommended Intake (DRI) for pregnant women is 2.6 µg vitamin B12 and 600 µg folic acid daily.


  1. Wang H, Li L, Qin LL, Song Y, Vidal‐Alaball J, Liu TH. Oral vitamin B12 versus intramuscular vitamin B12 for vitamin B12 deficiency. The Cochrane Library. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd; 2018. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD004655.pub3
  2. Damayanti D, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Beeson W, Fraser G, Oda K, Haddad E. Foods and Supplements Associated with Vitamin B12 Biomarkers among Vegetarian and Non-Vegetarian Participants of the Adventist Health Study-2 (AHS-2) Calibration Study. Nutrients. 2018;10: 722. doi:10.3390/nu10060722
  3. McBurney MI, Hartunian-Sowa S, Matusheski NV. Implications of US Nutrition Facts Label Changes on Micronutrient Density of Fortified Foods and Supplements. The Journal of Nutrition. 2017;147: 1025–1030. doi:10.3945/jn.117.247585
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Precision Nutrition: A New Era

A research article recently published in PLoS Medicine examined the relationship between changes in women’s height and the distribution of women’s height across a population using data from over a million women living in 59 countries (Gausman et al, 2018).  The results were based on a final sample of 857,053 women. The authors found…

“a lack of consistent relationship between changes in mean women’s height and its SD (Standard Deviation), which challenges the assumption that the mean is a useful summary measure of a populations’ change in risk factors.

This suggests to me that a similar situation may occur when the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) is used to assess and track the proportion of a population with an inadequate nutritional intake.  I make this point in my comment to the PLoS Medicine article.

People tend to be creatures of habit. We travel familiar roads and paths. We favor certain establishments and brands. We prefer foods supplied by those we know and trust. We like comfort foods. In fact, we can inadvertently become ‘heavy users’ of a relatively limited number of foods. These habits can lead to under- or over-consumption of vitamins, minerals, EPA+DHA, lutein, zeaxanthin and other compounds.

In a era of precision nutrition, it will be possible for individuals to objectively assess and track their vitamin, iron and omega-3 fatty acid [eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)] status.

These technologies will give people peace of mind and change the face of nutrition and health research. Inexpensive diagnostic technologies based on a simple finger stick, will allow individuals and communities to better assess diet quality, prevent essential nutrient malnutrition and related diseases.

When a vitamin, or iron, or EPA+DHA level is found to be low, we will know that we need to add foods rich in the shortfall nutrient to our diet, be it naturally occurring or fortified, or a dietary supplement. By repeating the assessment in a few months, we can verify that the nutrient gap has been closed. We can then find peace of mind.

If a nutrient level is unnecessarily high, it will be possible to replace some foods in our habitual diet or choose a less potent dietary supplement  to re-balance our bodies with respect to that nutrient.

In my opinion, the era of precision nutrition cannot come soon enough.

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As seen in this study, genetics can affe

As seen in this study, genetics can affect nutrient requirements. Genetic testing isn’t necessary. Just measure status. T allele carriers at FADS1 SNP rs174546 may need to consume more EPA than C allele carriers to maintain similar blood concentrations.

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Measuring fatty acids in breast milk and

Measuring fatty acids in breast milk and/or infant blood (heel stick) would be the best way to determine if lactating mums are consuming enough DHA+ARA to support their baby’s development 1,000 Days Gates Foundation OmegaQuant

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Defining RDAs seems anachronistic. I am

Defining RDAs seems anachronistic. I am individual. Individuals differ. As relationships between 25(OH)D vs outcome (Risk of CVD, dementia, etc) are known & optimal status is established, I want regular vitamin D assessment so I can maintain low risk

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