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Common Questions

Health News

  • Vitamin D3 May Be Best Option to Sustain Vitamin D Blood Levels

    Monday, January 25, 2021
    New Science
    Vitamin D3 May Be Best Option to Sustain Vitamin D Blood Levels
    ×

    A 2015 single-blind study found that vitamin D3 supplements may be better than vitamin D2 supplements at sustaining vitamin D blood levels. Vitamin D2, also called ergocalciferol, and vitamin D3, also called cholecalciferol, are different forms of vitamin D that have similar, though not identical, actions in the body. Published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the study divided 33 healthy people into three groups: the first group received a placebo, the second received D2, and the third received D3. The two vitamin D groups started off with a very large, single dose of 100,000 IU, followed by 4,800 IU per day starting at day seven for another two weeks. After tracking the participants’ blood levels for 77 days, the researchers concluded that:

    • At least at first, D2 and D3 were about as equally effective at raising vitamin D levels.
    • However, D3 was better at sustaining vitamin D blood levels: at day 77, those receiving D3 had higher levels of vitamin D than either the D2 group or the placebo group.

    These findings are consistent with other research which has shown that D3 is a more effective form of vitamin D. While more research is needed to confirm these results, consumers might still want to choose D3 supplements to be sure they get the most out of their vitamin D.

    Source: European Journal of Clinical Nutrition

  • Coffee May Help You Follow Through with Your Fitness Resolutions

    Wednesday, January 20, 2021
    New Science
    Coffee May Help You Follow Through with Your Fitness Resolutions
    ×

    Evidence shows most of us will give up on our New Year’s fitness resolutions by June. But, according to Professor Samuele Marcora, a University of Kent endurance expert, drinking coffee could help those of us who have a hard time sticking to an exercise routine. In a paper published in the scientific journal Sports Medicine, Marcora explained that people tend to be inactive because sedentary activities which require zero effort, like watching TV, are more attractive than exercise, which, in comparison, appears to require tremendous amounts of effort. This perception of effort, or the anticipation of physical exertion, discourages many otherwise motivated people from participating in exercise. Marcora believes that caffeine could reduce this perception of effort, making exercise more attractive. He cites research that links relatively low doses of caffeine with a variety of positive fitness-related outcomes, including:

    • Reduced muscle pain caused by exercise.
    • Boosted pleasure and enjoyment during exercise.

    It’s important to note that much of the research that explores this relationship involves people who are already physically active—more research is needed to understand coffee’s effect on people who are just beginning their fitness journey. But, if you’re already a coffee drinker, it might not hurt to down a cup before your next workout to see if it helps you go the distance.

    Source: Sports Medicine

  • Don't Like Leafy Greens? The Good Bacteria in Your Gut Do

    Monday, January 18, 2021
    New Science
    Don't Like Leafy Greens? The Good Bacteria in Your Gut Do
    ×

    A critical discovery that bacteria feed on an unusual sugar molecule found in leafy greens could provide an important insight into how "good" bacteria protect our gut and promote health. The findings, published in Nature Chemical Biology, suggest that leafy greens are essential for feeding good gut bacteria. Researchers from Melbourne and the UK identified a previously unknown enzyme used by bacteria, fungi, and other organisms to feed on the unusual but abundant sugar sulfoquinovose—SQ for short—found in green vegetables.

    Dr Goddard-Borger, the lead scientist behind the research, said the discovery could be exploited to cultivate the growth of "good" gut bacteria. “Every time we eat leafy green vegetables we consume significant amounts of SQ sugars, which are used as an energy source by good gut bacteria,” he said. “Bacteria in the gut, such as crucial protective strains of E. coli, use SQ as a source of energy. E. coli provides a protective barrier that prevents growth and colonization by bad bacteria, because the good bugs are taking up all the habitable real estate.”

    Leafy greens include vegetables like kale, spinach, and romaine lettuce. Find more information on individual greens here.

    Source: Walter and Eilza Hall Institute

  • Multivitamins May Increase Fish Oil's Effectiveness

    Wednesday, January 13, 2021
    New Science
    Multivitamins May Increase Fish Oil's Effectiveness
    ×

    A double-blind, placebo-controlled study found taking fish oil and multivitamins together had added benefits over just taking fish oil alone. Published in Nutrients, the study investigated how different dosages of fish oil, taken with or without multivitamins, affected the incorporation of omega-3 fatty acids into red blood cells. Researchers found that the omega-3 index (a measure involving total, combined amounts of the fatty-acids EPA, DHA, and DPA) increased only in the study participants receiving 6 grams of fish oil daily with a multivitamin, as compared to the placebo group. In addition, researchers noted that women were generally better able to incorporate long-chain omega-3s into red blood cells, suggesting that future recommendations for fish oil supplements might need to be gender-specific. These particular findings are consistent with other research that has found males and females may respond differently to omega-3 supplementation, although it is one of the few so far to examine the effects of fish oil and multivitamins taken in combination.

    Source: Nutrients

  • Three Eating Behaviors That May Cause Weight Gain

    Monday, January 11, 2021
    New Science
    Three Eating Behaviors That May Cause Weight Gain
    ×

    You’ve probably heard the key to weight management includes making good diet choices, like consuming plenty of fruits and vegetables, and making good lifestyle choices like staying active and getting enough sleep. Now, a study published in the journal Obesity further defines the recipe for weight management, finding that weight gain may also be associated with the way you eat. For the study, researchers recruited 1,638 people, ages 18 to 60, between 2008 and 2010. Participants were surveyed to assess how often they participated in the following “unhealthy eating behaviors”:

    • Not planning how much food to eat
    • Consuming pre-cooked or canned foods
    • Buying snacks
    • Eating at fast-food chains
    • Not choosing low-calorie foods
    • Not removing visible fat from meat or skin from chicken
    • Eating while watching TV or sitting on a sofa

    Researchers followed up on the participants’ weight changes through 2012. After controlling for physical activity, alcohol consumption, and certain chronic diseases, they found that:

    • People who reported engaging in five or more unhealthy eating behaviors were 61% more likely to gain about seven pounds or more during the follow-up period compared with those who participated in fewer of these behaviors.
    • Only three unhealthy behaviors were independently linked to weight gain: not planning how much food to eat, eating at fast-food restaurants more than once a week, and eating while watching TV. Compared with those who did not participate in any of these behaviors, people who engaged in any one of them had a 54% higher risk of gaining about seven pounds or more, and those who engaged in more behaviors had a 70% or higher risk of gaining about seven pounds or more during the follow-up period.
    • Eating pre-cooked or canned foods and buying snacks from vending machines were not associated with weight gain.

    This study highlights how habits like eating in front of the TV and not planning meal portions may lead to weight gain. While more clinical research is needed to validate some of this study’s conclusions, previous research confirms that sedentary behavior and large portion sizes are two factors associated with weight gain. If you’re trying to lose weight, remember that there is no substitute for choosing healthy foods and getting plenty of exercise, and developing good habits around eating may give you just the extra support you need.

    Source: Obesity

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Copyright © 2021 TraceGains, Inc. All rights reserved.

The information presented by TraceGains is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2021.