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April 2015 Issue

Research Roundup: April 2015

Chocolate May Fight Type 2 Diabetes. Recent findings suggest chocolate may play a role in insulin resistance. In a study that included 18,235 men over the age of 66 years, researchers compared men who ate no chocolate to those who ate 1-3 (1-ounce) servings per month, 1 serving per week, and at least 2 servings per week. Risk of developing type 2 diabetes reduced by 7, 14, and 17 percent, respectively. The individuals with the greatest protection were those with a BMI under 25 and who consumed 1-2 servings of chocolate per week.

(American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, November 2014)

Take Vitamin D with a Moderate-Fat Meal. Taking your vitamin D supplement with a meal containing fat can increase absorption, according to researchers at Tufts University. Fifty healthy individuals were divided into three groups and assigned to take a vitamin D3 supplement (50,000 International Units) with one of three meals: fat-free, 30 percent fat with a higher monounsaturated fat ratio, or 30 percent fat with a higher polyunsaturated fat ratio. The researchers found that while type of fat did not change absorption, fat-containing meal groups had 32 percent more absorption than the fat-free group.

(Journal of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, November 2014)

Flavonoids Aid Healthy Aging. Consumption of flavonoid-rich foods, such as berries, oranges, apples, wine, tea, and chocolate, by women during mid-life may lead to greater physical and mental health and well-being later on. Researchers analyzed data from the Nurses’ Health Study, which included 13,800 women with no major chronic disease followed for 15 years. The women with the highest flavonoid intakes had significantly higher odds of healthy aging, which was defined as survival to ≥70 years of age with no major chronic diseases or major impairments in cognitive or physical function or mental health.

(American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, October 2014)