• Special Issue: Food, the Immune System, and the GI Tract

Special Issue: Food, the Immune System, and the GI Tract

The digestion of food and absorption of nutrients is the principal role of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract—everyone wants to know what we should eat and how it affects our body. Interactions between food and the immune system affect our microbiome, development of food allergies, nutrition, risk for inflammatory disorders or cancer, and even

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  • Veggie Diets, Especially With Fish, Cut Colorectal Cancer Risk

Veggie Diets, Especially With Fish, Cut Colorectal Cancer Risk

A vegetarian diet, especially one that includes fish, significantly reduces the risk of colorectal cancer, a large new study reports. These findings could lead to new strategies for cancer prevention. In the Adventist Health Study 2, researchers had 77,659 men and women from Seventh-day Adventist churches nationwide complete well-validated questionnaires

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  • Food Emulsifiers Increase Intestinal Permeability to Promote Inflammation

Food Emulsifiers Increase Intestinal Permeability to Promote Inflammation

Food additives commonly used to thicken and stabilize processed foods disrupt the intestinal microbiota to cause inflammation, researchers found in a study of mice. Emulsifiers are added to foods to hold together mixtures of fat and water, which would otherwise separate. Healthy mice fed a diet containing commonly used emulsifiers (1%

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  • Celiac Disease Risk Not Affected by Early Diet

Celiac Disease Risk Not Affected by Early Diet

Two studies have shown that neither breastfeeding nor timing the start of gluten-containing foods makes a difference in development of celiac disease in children at risk. The AP reported that the studies, published October 2 in the New England Journal of Medicine, show that there is no early window of

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How Does a High-Fat Diet Contribute to Pancreatic Cancer?

A high-fat diet can promote development of pancreatic cancer, but cyclooxygenase-2 (COX2) inhibitors prevent this process, according to a mouse study published in the December issue of Gastroenterology. The mechanisms appear to involve activation of oncogenic KRAS and upregulation of COX2, which promotes pancreatic inflammation. Increased body mass index and

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How Might Carbonation Contribute to Obesity?

Carbonation makes drinks seem less sweet than they really are, and could increase consumption of sugar and food, neuroscientists report in the September issue of Gastroenterology. It might be therefore be best for weight-loss plans to avoid carbonated beverages. Addition of carbon dioxide (CO2) to water (carbonation) makes it effervescent

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  • Overall Diet, Rather than Specific Foods, Affect Risk for Esophageal Cancer

Overall Diet, Rather than Specific Foods, Affect Risk for Esophageal Cancer

A Mediterranean diet and overall healthy eating, rather than a particular group of foods or nutrients, reduce the risk for esophageal cancers—particularly esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), according to the September issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Although diet has been associated with cancers of the esophagus and stomach, few prospective

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  • Is Gluten the Culprit in Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity?

Is Gluten the Culprit in Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity?

Rapidly fermented poorly absorbed short-chain carbohydrates, rather than gluten or other wheat proteins, might cause gastrointestinal symptoms in people who do not have celiac disease but feel better on gluten-free diets, according to the August issue of Gastroenterology. Individuals with non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS), do not have celiac disease (based on

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Molecular Mechanisms of Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass

Many of the beneficial effects of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), including improved glucose homeostasis, require the actions of melanocortin-4 receptors (MC4Rs) on autonomic neurons, according to the March issue of Gastroenterology. Fasting glycemia often improves within days of RYGB (see below figure), which produces greater improvements in glucose homeostasis than

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Does Vitamin D Prevent Crohn’s Disease?

Women with higher intake of vitamin D are less likely to develop Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, according to a study published in the March issue of Gastroenterology. Vitamin D deficiency has been described in patients with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), and administration of vitamin D to mice with colitis

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