Monday February 24, 2020

Consuming High- Fibre Diet may Reduce Risk of Preeclampsia During Pregnancy

Pregnancy outcomes and infant immunity are linked to gut bacteria

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paracetamol, pregnancy, risk, behaviour
The study found an association between paracetamol intake and behavioural issues in children including hyperactivity and attention-deficit disorder. Pixabay

Ladies, please take note. Consuming a high-fibre diet may reduce the risk of preeclampsia during pregnancy, researchers have found.

“Simple recommendation to ‘eat real food, mostly plants and not too much’ might be the most effective primary prevention strategy for some of the most serious conditions of our time.

“The mother’s gut bacteria and diet appear to be crucial to promoting healthy pregnancy,” said study lead author Ralph Nanan, Professor at the University of Sydney.

The study, published in the journal Nature Communications, showed that pregnancy outcomes and infant immunity are linked to gut bacteria.

Fibre, Diet, Pregnancy
Ladies, please take note. Pixabay

Plant-based fibre is broken down in the gut by bacteria into factors that influence the immune system. The research team investigated the role of these metabolic products of gut bacteria during pregnancy.

The researchers found that in humans, reduced levels of acetate, which is mainly produced by fibre fermentation in the gut, is associated with the common and serious pregnancy-related condition preeclampsia.

Preeclampsia occurs in up to 10 per cent of pregnancies and is characterized by high blood pressure, protein in the urine and severe swelling in the mother’s body.

It also interferes with the child’s immune development whilst in the womb, with some evidence suggesting a link to higher rates of allergies and autoimmune diseases later in life.

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The study found that preeclampsia affected the development of an important foetal immune organ – the thymus – which sits just behind the breastbone.

Foetuses in preeclamptic pregnancies were found to have a much smaller thymus than children from healthy pregnancies.

The cells the thymus normally generates — called ‘T’ cells, and specifically those associated with the prevention of allergies and autoimmune conditions such as diabetes — also remained lower in infants after preeclampsia, even four years after delivery.

Fiber, Diet, Pregnancy
Consuming a high-fibre diet may reduce the risk of preeclampsia during pregnancy, researchers have found. Pixabay

The mechanisms of acetate on the developing foetal immune system were further examined in separate experiments involving mice that showed acetate was central in driving foetal thymus and ‘T’ cell development.

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The results showed that promoting specific metabolic products of gut bacteria during pregnancy might be an effective way to maintain a healthy pregnancy and to prevent allergies and autoimmune conditions later in life. (IANS)

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Common Myths About Consuming Almonds

Being Nut-wise: Busting the myths about almonds

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Almonds myths
Know about some facts against the common myths associated with almonds. Pixabay

BY PUJA GUPTA

Almonds are known to be one of the most popular nuts, and whilst they are enjoyed by people across the globe, there are some age-old myths associated with them. Almonds can lead to a healthy lifestyle.

India is one of the world’s oldest and most diverse cultures. Being home to varied traditions and age-old wisdom, food is a significant part that binds the country together. But often, facts get confused with cultural values. This leads to an abundance in myths, many of which we fail to overlook and tend to believe in blindly.

What really matters is that research keep changing, and so do their results. Hence, it is also not hard to believe that not all food myths are actually true.

But, it’s time to leave behind all the common myths and understand them in a better and wiser manner. Regional Head-Dietetics, Max Healthcare – Delhi, Ritika Samaddar shares some facts against the myths associated with almonds.

Almonds myths
The abundance in various cultural values leads to common myths about almonds. Pixabay

Myth 1: Eat only 5-6 almonds a day

We often come hear how 5-6 almonds are the most suitable quantity for daily consumption. However, it is recommended to consume an ounce of almonds (approximately 23 almonds) to get the health benefits. Almonds are a healthy source of energy and munching on a handful of almonds (30 grams/ 23 almonds) may help you stay active. Not just this, researchers also estimated that a daily serving of almonds (30 grams/ 23 almonds) may improve both short-term and long-term markers of blood sugar control in those with uncomplicated type 2 diabetes.

Myth 2: Almonds result in weight gain

Consumption of almonds is frequently linked to weight gain and it is commonly believed that almonds are calorie-laden. However, studies have shown that a handful of almonds may have satiating properties that promote feelings of fullness, which may keep hunger at bay between meals. In addition to this, studies have found that snacking on almonds also reduced central adiposity (belly fat) and waist circumference. Thus, eating almonds has been shown to contribute towards weight management.

Myth 3: Almonds are not vegan

It’s likely for most people to come across the latest news that’s making the rounds, about almonds not being vegan. The Vegan Society defines veganism as “a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose.” While the definition highlights that veganism aims to exclude animal use, cruelty and exploitation, it is also important to acknowledge the fact that it is practically impossible to live in a world where we are completely independent of animals.

Due to modern lifestyles, our food system relies heavily on farms that utilize bees to pollinate the crops. Therefore, veganism, in its true sense, is rather about doing one’s best not to cause harm to animals. Almonds, are in fact, filled with nutritional benefits and have a significant role to play in aiding a healthier lifestyle.

Almonds myths
Eating only 5-6 alomds a day is one of the most common myths. Pixabay

Myth 4: Almonds should only be consumed in the morning

Consuming almonds as a morning ritual only is an age-old tradition that surfaces in almost all families in India. However, what’s good is that not just morning, you can consume almonds at any time during the day. Almonds are a versatile nut, and can be eaten in any form – raw, as a snack and as part of a meal or a dessert. Whether at home, work or on the go, a handful of almonds are a convenient snack that can be eaten anywhere, any time of the day and through the year. You could keep some almonds handy in a tiffin box so you’ll always have your perfect daily portion.

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Myth 5: Soaked almonds are better than raw almonds

Have you heard people saying that consuming overnight soaked almonds has better nutritional benefits than eating raw almonds? If so, eating soaked almonds over raw almonds is a popular myth believed by most people in India. However, contrary to this, soaked almonds are only easier to chew, and have no impact on the nutritional benefits of almonds. Crunchy to eat, and rich in Vitamin B2, Vitamin E, magnesium and phosphorous, almonds are a powerhouse of nutrition, be it in any form.

To stay safe and healthy, it is best to consult an expert and opt for a healthier lifestyle. So, the next time you come across any of these myths, you know your stance! (IANS)