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Metagenics Names Sara Gottfried, MD as New Chief Medical Officer

Importance of infant diet in establishing a healthy gut

Babies born at home have more diverse, beneficial bacteria, study finds

New Study Shows Peanuts Match Almonds for Controlling Diabetes




Released: 11/02/18


Metagenics Names Sara Gottfried, MD as New Chief Medical Officer

ALISO VIEJO, Calif.,  Metagenics, Inc., a health sciences company, announced today that it has named Sara Gottfried, MD as its new Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and President of Metagenics Institute, the company's educational arm. A systems-based hormone expert, Dr. Gottfried is a Harvard-educated physician-scientist and an MIT-trained bioengineer as well as board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology.

In her new role at Metagenics, Dr. Gottfried will drive overall education and practitioner outreach strategy and provide insights on emerging areas of clinical interest. She will be a part of the company's global leadership team, supporting further international expansion, and engage and drive support with industry key opinion leaders around the world.

Dr. Gottfried is a New York Times best-selling author of three books: The Hormone Cure, The Hormone Reset Diet, and Younger. She is also the founder and CMO of the Gottfried Institute, where she has taught healthcare professionals – including medical, naturopathic, osteopathic and chiropractic physicians, as well as acupuncturists, nutritionists and health coaches – methods focused on rebalancing hormones and advancing healthspan of their clients using her proprietary and evidence-based 3-Step Gottfried Protocol™. Previously, Dr. Gottfried has taught on the adjunct faculty at the University of California at San Francisco and Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine and performed clinical research at the Brigham and Women's Hospital and Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in bioinformatics and breast cancer risk reduction.

"We are fortunate to have a Chief Medical Officer of Dr. Gottfried's caliber and experience step in to lead our education," said Brent Eck, Metagenics CEO. "Dr. Gottfried shares our vision of helping practitioners along their lifestyle medicine journey as well as making personalized nutritional intervention the standard of care in the promotion of optimal health. As a Functional Medicine practitioner, she has firsthand experience in how making lifestyle changes can help patients reclaim their lives. We're excited for her to bring her knowledge and experience to Metagenics as we enter our next chapter of lifestyle education."

"The opportunity to help Metagenics in its mission to drive a fundamental shift in healthcare, here in the United Statesand around the world, captured my attention in a profound way," remarked Dr. Gottfried. "Metagenics has created a uniquely collaborative ecosystem dedicated to robust science, research, quality and support of clinicians. As a strong advocate for patients' and clinicians' wellbeing, these values are essential to me. I look forward to developing a comprehensive, leading-edge educational strategy that better serves existing clinicians and enables more practitioners to make the transition to personalized lifestyle medicine."

Dr. Gottfried joined the Metagenics team September 4, 2018.

Released: 11/02/18


Importance of infant diet in establishing a healthy gut

A child has until the age of two-and-a-half to establish healthy gut bacteria -- with little change after this point, new research has revealed.

The study also reinforced the important role breastfeeding plays in providing good gut bacteria to babies during the early stages of their life.

The team, involving Newcastle University, UK, identified that the bacterium, Bifidobacterium, was abundant in breast milk and declined rapidly after breastfeeding stopped.

The research, published today in the journal Nature, is one of the largest clinical microbiome studies in babies to date.

Key bacteria

Dr Christopher Stewart, from Newcastle University's Institute of Cellular Medicine, co-led the research, which used a cohort of patients involved in the pioneering TEDDY (The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young) study.

Bifidobacterium is regarded as beneficial and is one of the main bacteria used in probiotics, owing to its potential therapeutic properties.

It is hoped that this research will enable a greater understanding into what can be done to produce the same benefits of breastfeeding when breast milk is not available.

Dr Stewart said: "Breastfeeding has long been understood to be good for infants and epidemiological evidence shows being breastfed early in life is associated with lower risk of many later life diseases, such as allergy and obesity.

"Targeting the nutrients in breast milk that encourage the growth of healthy bacteria in the infant gut, or providing probiotic containing Bifidobacterium, represent important avenues for future research aimed at restoring the beneficial properties of being breastfed when breast milk is not available."

The research revealed that once infants were weaned there was a rapid turnover in the bacterial community and a loss of most of the Bifidobacterium, replaced by bacteria within the Firmicutes phyla. Firmicutes are typical of an adult microbiome and the appearance of these bacteria once breastfeeding was stopped occurred much quicker than experts expected.

Dr Stewart said: "Because a diet without breast milk delivers different nutrients to the gut, this rapid turnover in the bacterial community is likely to be in response to the new food sources promoting the growth of a different community.

"Remarkably, from this point on, the microbiome progressed quickly towards being stable, where the bacteria in the gut will potentially remain for the rest of that individual's life."

Microbiome development

Scientists used sequencing-based approaches to analyse 12,500 stool samples from 903 children in the TEDDY study, collected monthly from children aged three to 46 months old. Microbiome composition and diversity changed over time in three distinct phases: the developmental phase (3-14 months), transitional phase (15-30 months) and stable phase (31 months onwards).

Vaginal birth was associated with a temporary increase in Bacteroides bacteria. Siblings, exposure to pets, and geographical location were also factors in the differences between microbiome profiles.

Dr Joseph Petrosino, director of the Alkek Center for Metagenomics and Microbiome Research at Baylor College of Medicine, Texas, USA, was group leader of the microbiome study.

He said: "We know that the first few years of life are important for microbiome establishment. You are born with very few microbes, and microbial communities assemble on and in your body through those first years of your life.

"In this study, we took a closer look at the establishment of the microbiome over the first few years of life, and the early life exposures associated with that sequence of events, in this amazing cohort."

In a sister paper in the same journal, experts from the Broad Institute analysed nearly 11,000 stool samples from 783 infants in the TEDDY study to characterise the early gut microbiome in children progressing to type 1 diabetes. They report that the microbiomes of infants without type 1 diabetes harbour more genes related to fermentation and short-chain fatty-acid synthesis that, in combination with previous evidence, are associated with a protective effect.


 

Story Source: Newcastle University.

Released: 11/02/18


Babies born at home have more diverse, beneficial bacteria, study finds

Infants born at home have more diverse bacteria in their guts and feces, which may affect their developing immunity and metabolism, according to a study in Scientific Reports.

Understanding why babies born at home have more diverse microbiota for at least a month after birth, compared with those born in a hospital, could help prevent disease later in life. The human microbiome consists of trillions of bacteria, fungi and viruses that live on and in our bodies, many of which benefit our health and prevent chronic conditions such as obesity, diabetes, asthma and gut inflammatory disorders. Microbes transmitted from mother to baby help prevent chronic disease.

"The reasons for the differences between infants born at home versus in hospitals are not known, but we speculate that common hospital interventions like early infant bathing and antibiotic eye prophylaxis or environmental factors -- like the aseptic environment of the hospital -- may be involved," said senior author Maria Gloria Dominguez-Bello, a professor in Rutgers University-New Brunswick's Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology and Department of Anthropology.

In the study, researchers followed 35 infants and their mothers for a month after birth. Fourteen infants were born at home (four of them in water) and 21 in the hospital. All 35 infants were delivered vaginally without interventions (including no maternal antibiotic treatment) and were exclusively breastfed. All infants were delivered by midwives who supported mothers, and they all had skin-to-skin contact with their babies, and began breastfeeding shortly after birth.

In a related analysis, fecal samples of month-old infants born in a hospital showed greater inflammatory gene expression in a human epithelial cell model, compared with infants born at home. Epithelial cells cover organ linings, skin and mouths.

While more research is needed, the study suggests that revamping the hospital environment for non-high risk births, so it more closely approximates home conditions, may be beneficial.

The study included researchers from Rutgers, New York University, Sejong University in Seoul, South Korea, and the University of California San Francisco.


Story Source: Rutgers University.

Released: 11/02/18


New Study Shows Peanuts Match Almonds for Controlling Diabetes

If you thought almonds were healthier than peanuts, think again. A study published in the journal Nutrients in October 2018 found that peanuts are just as good as almonds for lowering blood glucose levels in diabetic patients.

"Research has shown that eating nuts is beneficial for type 2 diabetes," says Dr. Samara Sterling, director of research for The Peanut Institute. "This new study highlights that people can choose peanuts as a low-cost option to get the same benefits that they would from a more expensive nut like almonds. In fact, the American Diabetes Association considers peanuts a superfood."

The recent study sought to compare the effects of either peanut or almond consumption on health in patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Twenty-five participants were fed a low-carbohydrate diet for 12 weeks and were placed in one of two groups: the Almond group or the Peanut group.

All participants were instructed to consume approximately two servings of peanuts or almonds each day. By the end of the 12 weeks, they all showed significant improvement in various measures for diabetes. However, the authors of the study found that almonds were no better than peanuts for improving glucose levels. In fact, peanut consumption improved both fasting blood glucose and postprandial glucose (glucose levels tested two hours after a meal). By the end of the study, there was also no difference in hemoglobin A1c levels (a marker of long-term glucose control) between the Peanut and Almond groups.

The authors noted that, while nuts are routinely recommended for controlling type 2 diabetes, it is not always possible for many patients to consume tree nuts due to their high cost.

Peanuts are a low-cost option that can help to lower blood glucose if consumed daily as part of a balanced diet. That is good news for the 29 million people in the United States suffering from type 2 diabetes. With the rising cost of medications to control this condition, it is reassuring to know that eating healthy does not have to be costly too.

In fact, eating peanuts may even contribute to reducing insulin needs over time, which is an added benefit. Peanuts have a low glycemic index of 14, which prevents spikes in blood sugar and in turn reduces insulin needs. A previous study demonstrated that when peanuts or peanut butter are included in a high glycemic load meal, they keep blood sugar stabilized so that it does not rise too quickly. In addition, a 2014 study found that daily consumption of peanuts enriched the American Diabetes Association meal plan and improved blood lipids as well as vitamin E, niacin and magnesium levels of participants.  

Link to the study: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30360498

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