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Mediterranean Diet Meta-Analysis

Happy Halloween! So on a day many will be consuming lots of sugary candy and junk food, here's a new meta-analysis on the benefits of the Mediterranean Diet.

This study found that adherence to a Mediterranean diet can help prevent numerous conditions linked to an aging brain, including decline in cognitive function, depression and stroke.

High adherence to this healthy dietary pattern, was associated with reduced stroke, cognitive impairment, and depression. Moderate adherence also seemed to offer some protection from depression cognitive impairment, but its protective effect on stroke was diminished. However, when broken down by sex, the protective effect against stroke was stronger among males. Also, the benefits of moderate adherence against depression seemed to fade away with advancing age.


Melatonin for Weight Loss?

It feels like a long time since I've posted a new study! Well, here is an interesting one--albeit, an animal study--that shows melatonin's potential as a weight loss ingredient.

The research team used a rat model to reveal that melatonin consumption is associated with the induction of "beige fat" that is known to help regulate body weight control, and offer metabolic benefits. If you haven't heard these terms before, "beige fat" is white fat that has "browned." What does that mean?


Vitamin K2 Slows Progression of Arterial Calcification

Well, a second study on vitamin K in as many posts. This prospective, randomized study was designed to compare the effect of vitamin K2 plus low-dose vitamin D or vitamin D alone on the progression of coronary artery calcification score (CACS) and common carotid intima media thickness (CCA-IMT).

42 non-dialysis patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stage 3-5 and CACS≥10 Agatston units were randomized to one of two treatment arms: 
  1. K+D group received daily 90 μg vitamin K2 (as MK-7) plus 10 μg (400 IU) cholecalciferol (D3)
  2. D only group received 10 μg cholecalciferol


Vitamin K Improves Memory

So on Friday, I co-delivered a presentation on PQQ with the global authority on PQQ, Dr. Masahiko Nakano. For those who were able to attend, thank you for your participation in making the event a success! While PQQ is amazing for memory, today's study of discussion is on vitamin K's role in memory and cognition.

Back in 2011, I covered an animal study linking vitamin K to cognitive health and another study linking arterial calcification (a result of low vitamin K status) to dementia. Now here is another study showing K's potential brain benefits.

Data from 320 participants in the Québec Longitudinal Study on Nutrition and Successful Aging (NuAge), researchers found that higher plasma phylloquinone (vitamin K1) levels were associated with better verbal episodic memory performance, including the 20-minute delayed free recall trials (but no links were found between phylloquinone levels and other measures of cognitive function).

"Episodic memory" is the memory of events within a space-time context (for example, remembering where you left your iPhone), so it's an aspect of cognition important to everyday life.


Keratin Shows Promise Against Osteoarthritis

First there was glucosamine, then eggshell membrane. It looks as if keratin could be the new superstar ingredient in the joint health category, and another published human study adds more support for its use.

The branded ingredient used in the latest study was Cynatine FLX (500 mg/day), which was administered to 50 men and women with knee osteoarthritis for 60 days in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial.