Nutrients delay aging, support healthy pregnancy

2017-01-ni-healthy-birthVitamin C, folate, potassium and telomeres

Telomeres are the end-caps that protect each strand of chromosomes in every cell. Chromosomes  contain the DNA instructions to reproduce a healthy cell, but each time a cell divides, telomeres shorten, eventually stopping cell division. The longer the telomere, the younger biological age of the organism.

In this study, doctors measured the nutritional value in the diets of 1,958 Korean men, age 40 to 69, and followed up 10 years later to measure telomere length. There were no differences in men over age 50, which doctors said was probably because the older participants got fewer nutrients overall. For men under age 50, those who consumed the most vitamin C, folate, and potassium had longer telomeres than men under 50 who got less of these three nutrients, indicating younger biological age.

Omega-3 and pre-term births

Taking the omega-3 fish oils DHA and EPA during the last half of pregnancy reduced pre-term births and increased birthweight. In this study, 2,399 pregnant women took a placebo or 800 mg per day of DHA plus 100 mg of EPA per day during the second half of pregnancy.

Women who took DHA with EPA had 51 percent fewer very-pre-term births compared to placebo, and several more post-term births, with fewer of the omega-3 infants needing neonatal intensive care. The omega-3 kids weighed an average of 2.5 ounces more than kids of moms who took the higher fiber levels had better overall cardio-metabolic scores. Kids who got more fiber from whole foods such as potatoes, fruits, and vegetables had better cardio-metabolic  scores than kids whose fiber came mostly from cereals.

Doctors said that even though the effects were modest, high fiber in infancy reduces the cardio-metabolic disease burden on society, and increases chances for a healthy adult life.

Natural Insights For Wellbeing January 2017
Reference: Journal of Human Nutrition & Dietetics; August, 2016, Published Online

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These articles provide nutritional information only and do not replace professional medical advice.