This review article discusses the Mediterranean diet for veterans as a possible basis for good health (1). Veterans with disability represent a big burden worldwide and often require long-term rehabilitation. Unhealthy dietary and lifestyle habits, including smoke and alcohol abuse, are common in veterans. The Mediterranean diet has been suggested as a natural, non-pharmacological nutraceutical for healthy ageing. Although there is a broad consensus on the positive effect of plant foods consumption, the presence of glucosinolates, flavonoids and furanocoumarins in some plant foods and beverages must be taken into consideration owing to their potential interfering with drugs metabolism and bioavailability. A personalized nutrition is recommended in veterans who are in treatment for comorbidities.
This study investigated the recent studies that show different mechanisms through which vitamin C can be used as a preventative or a therapeutic agent for the treatment of H. pylori related infections (1). The treatment of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) induced infections using antibiotic therapies is clinically well accepted; however, using a noninvasive approach with the implementation of therapeutic agents such as vitamin C is not well investigated. Vitamin C has certain characteristics, which allow for it to be considered as a potential treatment option for patients with H. pylori infections. Vitamin C's hostility and mechanism of action towards H. pylori infection in peptic ulcer disease can be classified into two categories: as a preventative agent and alternatively as a therapeutic agent.
The objective of this study was to describe the observed changes in nutrient intakes following a 3-month anti-inflammatory diet, and to explore potential relationships between the change in nutrients and the change in various inflammatory mediators (1). The treatment group demonstrated a significant reduction in fat intake, a significant increase in protein intake and no change in carbohydrates or energy intake. The treatment group showed a significant increase in some nutrients with established anti-inflammatory properties including vitamins A, C, and E, and omega-3 fatty acids. Significant reductions in proinflammatory nutrients were observed including trans fatty acids, caffeine, and sodium. The treatment group also showed significant reductions in the proinflammatory mediators.
Tryptophan is an essential plant-derived amino acid that is needed for the in vivo biosynthesis of proteins. After consumption, it is metabolically transformed to bioactive metabolites, including serotonin, melatonin, kynurenine, and the vitamin niacin (nicotinamide). This review surveys and interprets our current knowledge of the reported multiple analytical methods for free and protein-bound tryptophan in pure proteins, protein-containing foods, and in human fluids and tissues, the nutritional significance of l-tryptophan and its isomer d-tryptophan in fortified infant foods and corn tortillas as well the possible function of tryptophan in the diagnosis and mitigation of multiple human diseases (1).
This systematic review and meta-analysis examined the effects of probiotic supplementation in children for functional constipation (1). They included 4 trials reporting data on 382 children with functional constipation. Overall, there were no significant differences in treatment success, spontaneous bowel movements per week, fecal soiling episodes per week, straining at defecation, use of lactulose, use of laxatives, fecal incontinence, pain during defecation, flatulence, and adverse events between probiotics and placebo. Further, the use of probiotics was associated with lower frequency of glycerin enema use and abdominal pain. The authors conclude that the use of probiotics was associated with significant improvement in glycerin enema use and abdominal pain but did not affect the treatment success and other function indices.
Vitamin D levels have been linked to certain pain states, including migraine. In this study, the authors investigated whether vitamin D supplementation would be beneficial for adult patients with migraine (1). A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled parallel trial was conducted in migraine patients (36 women and 12 men, 18-65 years of age). A 4-week baseline period was conducted before randomization to 24 weeks of treatment. Participants were assigned to receive Vitamin D (n = 24, 18 women and 6 men, 100 μg/day Vitamin D or placebo (n = 24, 18 women and 6 men). Migraine attacks and related symptoms were assessed by self-reported diaries. The response rate (i.e., experiencing a 50% or greater reduction in migraine frequency from baseline to week 24), change in migraine severity, and number of migraine days were recorded.
In this study, the authors examined the efficacy of an Internet-based stress management program (1). The program is based on cognitive-behavioral therapy and was inspired by the "Funambule" program in Quebec. Four questionnaires (Perceived Stress Scale, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, Scale of Satisfaction in Studies, and General Health Questionnaire) uploaded online were answered thrice: during "preintervention", "postintervention", and "follow-up" stages, the latter of which occurred three months after the intervention. The sample comprised 128 university students, with the majority being women (81.25%). The self-esteem scores of the control group were significantly higher than those of the experimental group at the preintervention stage, but this difference disappeared at the postintervention and follow-up stages.
This study investigated whether the potential anxiety relief provided by auricular acupressure could improve the efficacy of habit reversal treatment, as evidenced by improved stomatological and other outcomes (1). In a pragmatic, randomized, crossover, pilot clinical trial, 83 nail biters (8-12 years old) received habit reversal treatment in combination with either auricular acupressure intended to reduce anxiety (Method A) or placebo auricular acupressure (Method B). The alternative protocol was employed after a two-month washout period. The results showed that forty-one children successfully completed both arms of the treatments and attended all appointments. There were significant differences in the efficacy of habit reversal treatment, the anxiety score, the nail status, and the SGI in favor of Method A.
Evidence for blood pressure-lowering effects of vitamin C (VC) supplementation in clinical trials is inconsistent and limited studies have examined the effect of VC supplementation on hypertension (HTN) control. In this study, eligible patients were cluster assigned to receive 300 mg VC per day or nothing for 6 months (1). During the 6-month follow-up period, a questionnaire survey was obtained and standardized blood pressure measurements were performed on all subjects. Oral administration of VC significantly decreased the diastolic blood pressure and pulse pressure with a significant increase in HTN control.
This review discusses immune system dysfunction as a possible target of autism therapy (1). Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder with an unknown etiology and currently few effective therapies. Immune system alterations have being demonstrated in ASD, both in humans and via animal models; immune imbalance thus arises as a possible pathway for drug intervention.
Recent literature has focused on the association of psoriasis with lower than normal or highly deficient vitamin D blood levels. This study investigated the controversial association between psoriasis and vitamin D levels (1). From 2012 to 2014, 561 subjects were assessed, of which 170 had psoriasis, 51 had an autoimmune bullous, and 340 were healthy patients. Anagraphical data, 25(OH)D blood levels, and seasons of vitaminD levels assessments were recorded for each group.Vitamin D levels were significantly different among the 3 groups. Psoriatic patients had significantly lower serum levels of 25(OH)D (21.8 ng/mL) than healthy controls (34.3 ng/mL). Patients with bullous diseases showed the lowest vitamin D mean values (18.2 ng/mL).
The goal of this study was to explore the prevalence with which Australian Western herbalists treat menstrual problems and their related treatment, experiences, perceptions, and interreferral practices with other health practitioners (1). Members of the Practitioner Research and Collaboration Initiative practice-based research network identifying as Western Herbalists (WHs) completed a specifically developed, online questionnaire. Western Herbalists regularly treat menstrual problems, perceiving high, though differential, levels of effectiveness. For menstrual problems, WHs predominantly prescribe individualised formulas including core herbs, such as Vitex agnus-castus, and problem-specific herbs.
Musculoskeletal symptoms are the most common adverse effects of aromatase inhibitors and often result in therapy discontinuation. Small studies suggest that acupuncture may decrease aromatase inhibitor-related joint symptoms. The goal of this study was to determine the effect of acupuncture in reducing aromatase inhibitor-related joint pain (1). Patients were randomized 2:1:1 to the true acupuncture (n = 110), sham acupuncture (n = 59), or waitlist control (n = 57) group. True acupuncture and sham acupuncture protocols consisted of 12 acupuncture sessions over 6 weeks (2 sessions per week), followed by 1 session per week for 6 weeks. The waitlist control group did not receive any intervention. All participants were offered 10 acupuncture sessions to be used between weeks 24 and 52.
Health-related effects of a vegetarian or vegan diet are known to support parameters positively affecting exercise performance in athletes, whereas knowledge about psyche and wellbeing is sparse. Therefore, the aim of the Nutrition and Running High Mileage (NURMI) Study (Step 2) was to compare Quality of Life (QOL) scores among endurance runners following a vegetarian or vegan dietagainst those who adhere to an omnivorous diet (1). The study was conducted following a cross-sectional design. A total of 281 recreational runners (159 women, 122 men) completed the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire consisting of the domains physical health, psychological wellbeing, social relationships and environment, which generates scores on a scale from 4 to 20. It was found that 123 subjects followed an omnivorous diet and 158 adhered to a vegetarian/vegan diet.
Ketogenic diet therapies have proven efficacy for refractory epilepsy. In this study, the authors observed remarkable efficacy of the diet in two patients with hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy (1). They analysed their cases with refractory structural epilepsies of acquired origin to characterize their response to the ketogenic diet. The classical ketogenic diet was implemented with dietary ratios of 3:1 to 4.4:1. Seizure frequency at 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, and 2 years was ascertained. A responder was defined as greater than 50% seizure reduction compared to baseline. The results showed that the ketogenic diet was effective in patients with a developmental and epileptic encephalopathy due to an acquired structural aetiology.