Research Roundup

April 2016 Issue

Probiotics, Omega-3, Canned Produce

Probiotics Relieve Constipation

A daily probiotic may help to increase gastrointestinal wellbeing among healthy adults who suffer from constipation. A total of 1,248 subjects aged 17-80 years were given either a placebo, 1 billion colony forming units (CFUs) of the probiotic strain BB-12 (Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. Lactis), or 10 billion CFUs of BB-12 daily for four weeks. Four weeks of supplementation with BB-12 resulted in higher defecation frequency and greater abdominal comfort compared to those who took the placebo.

British Journal of Nutrition, November 2015

Omega-3 May Help Depression

Blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids were inversely associated with depressive symptoms, according to a recent Japanese study. Data from 1,050 Japanese men and 1,070 Japanese women (average age of 60) found that greater levels of the omega-3s EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) were associated with fewer depressive symptoms. EPA and DHA are found in fatty fish.

British Journal of Nutrition, November 2015

Canned Produce Linked to Better Diets

People who eat canned fruits and vegetables have better diet quality, greater overall fruit and vegetable consumption, consume more fiber and potassium, and consume less fat and saturated fat compared to children and adults who do not eat canned fruits and vegetables, according to a new study. Researchers analyzed data from 2001 to 2010 of almost 42,000 American adults and children, and found that children who eat canned fruits and vegetables also consume more vitamin A, calcium, and magnesium. Weight, waist circumference, and blood pressure were found to be similar among all individuals independent of their intake of canned fruits and vegetables.

Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, November 2015