In the news – health and nutrition research

In this week’s article, we provide a roundup of some of the most recent health and nutrition related articles in the news, five items comprising:

  • Consider a vitamin D supplement alongside breastfeeding, UK government report suggests
  • Does exercise and fitness help shape our gut microbiome?
  • Could active folate help boost IVF chances? Fertility study backs 5-MTHF over folic acid
  • Sugar linked to raised Alzheimer’s risk
  •  Antidepressant prescriptions for children on the rise


Consider a vitamin D supplement alongside breastfeeding, UK government report suggests

Breastfed infants up to 12 months should receive a daily vitamin D supplement according to a report by the UK Scientific Advisory  Committee on Nutrition (SACN) that details feeding in the first year of life.

The publication recommends a ‘safe intake’ of vitamin D (8.5-10 micrograms per day (μg/d)) for all breastfed infants from birth after figures found 6% of infants were at risk of vitamin D deficiency.

However, the report also points out data from both Infant Feeding Surveys (IFS) and the Diet and Nutrition Survey of Infants and Young Children (DNSIYC) showed the proportion of infants receiving vitamin supplements was low (less than 14%).

Read the full article here.

Related Cytoplan blogs 

The importance of nutrition for children’s health 


Does exercise and fitness help shape our gut microbiome?

Researchers in the US have reaffirmed a suggested link between our gut bacteria and sports – with a finding that people with higher cardiovascular fitness have higher levels of certain ‘beneficial bacteria’.

Writing in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, the research team believe the findings could lead to a ‘personalised exercise prescription’ that is designed to improve gut and overall health.

We’re not there yet,” said study researcher Ryan Durk from San Francisco State University. “But this helps create that foundation.

Read the full article here.

Related Cytoplan blogs 

Supporting your gut with ‘functional foods’

Gut flora – the gatekeeper to your health?


Could active folate help boost IVF chances? Fertility study backs 5-MTHF over folic acid

Couples undergoing fertility treatments may benefit from genetic screening and supplementation with 5-MTHF glucosamine salt (active folate), instead of the high doses of folic acid traditionally used, say researchers.

Published in the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics, the study suggests that the conventional use of large doses of folic acid (of 5 mg/day) has little benefit for couples with recurrent miscarriages.

According to the team behind the study, there is a strong link between an impaired folate cycle, due to the presence of polymorphism of the enzyme methylentetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR), and the capacity to achieve conception and carry a pregnancy to term.

Read the full article here. 

Related Cytoplan blogs

Nutrients required for female fertility 

Fertility and pregnancy – the importance of nutrition 


Sugar linked to raised Alzheimer’s risk

An extra spoonful of sugar in a cup of tea could increase the risk of Alzheimer’s, a study has found.

Consuming sugary drinks and food, whether sweetened by the manufacturer or by the consumer, was associated with a higher chance of developing dementia, according to the findings presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Chicago.

Those consuming the equivalent of two-and-a-half teaspoons of added sugar a day were found to have a 54 per cent raised risk of developing Alzheimer’s, in the study of 2,200 people. The research could not confirm that one caused the other — it may be that a separate factor raises both the risk of getting Alzheimer’s and the tendency to sweeten food.

Read the full article here. 

Related Cytoplan blogs

The Bredesen Protocol – Is Nutrition the key to Alzheimer’s?

The link between stress and brain health


Antidepressant prescriptions for children on the rise 

The number of antidepressants prescribed to children in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland has risen over the past three years, figures obtained by BBC’s File on 4 reveal.

In England, there was a 15% rise. Scotland saw a 10% increase. And in Northern Ireland the number rose by 6%.

In total, there were 950,000 prescriptions issued between April 2015 and March 2018.

Experts have linked the rise to waits for specialist mental health services.

Read the full article here. 


If you have any questions regarding the topics that have been raised, or any other health matters please do contact me (Clare) by phone or email at any time.

clare@cytoplan.co.uk, 01684 310099

Clare Daley and the Cytoplan Editorial Team


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