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8.coverUnless you have been hiding away from all published materials you will be aware that Monash University in Australia have proposed and others have supported that for people with irritable bowel syndrome, that following a diet low in FODMAP (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols content will result in symptom resolution.

Yet here at Clinical Education we have stressed that following this diet has risks of key nutrient insufficiencies and in particular those foods rich in aryl hydrocarbon receptor agonists, which are vital for gut mucosal immune balance and competence. In effect the use of a low FODMAP diet for long term health is not justified, but short term intervention may be helpful.

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PrintThe idea that bacteria in the gut may have many twists in their skill set to enhance human health has been around for a while. That they may have the capability of inducing a cytoprotective enzyme called Nrf2 in local tissues, which in turn promotes the production of glutathione, detoxification and numerous other health supportive elements has until recently been less well understood.[1]

Nrf2 activation upregulates a regulon of genes including those involved in xenobiotic and reactive oxygen species (ROS) detoxification, as well as pro-restitutive function. This pathway has attracted considerable attention because small molecule inducers of Nrf2 have cytoprotective effects against oxidant and electrophilic environmental stressors.[2],[3]

BJNThe British Journal of Nutrition published a review paper in July 2015, exploring the relationship between inflammation, diet and health. Whilst this is neither new nor novel, the momentum is becoming clear. There is a steady awareness in research that the consumption of certain foods and the absence of others contributes to a provocative change in defence molecules with the result that many of the non-communicable diseases that blight western health care can develop and thrive.

This open access article is well worth saving for those refresh reads.[1]

The importance of chronic low-grade inflammation in the pathology of numerous age-related chronic conditions is now clear. An unresolved inflammatory response is likely to be involved from the early stages of disease development.

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F1.mediumIn conjunction with the release of the JBS3 calculator the journal Heart published an open access paper looking as some of the established approaches to reducing cardiovascular risk.[1]

Whilst there are a great number of conventional strategies summarised in this review, it does not explore some of the more integrative approaches that are being increasingly developed to try to meet and manage the problems with CVD – however, it does provide a comprehensive range of lifestyle and medical interventions.

On that basis this is a useful base document that is related to the JBS3 calculator and current medical recommendations.

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JBS3One of the recent developments in risk assessment for cardiovascular disease has been the updated version of the JBS2 calculator to the JBS3.

This is an online or app based piece of software to help you determine your risk for future cardiovascular disease. Ideally it is used as a tool to moderate lifestyle and diet along with behaviour to guide an individual based on a modest range of markers on how they may reduce their risk to a minimum.

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Thursday, 13 August 2015 by

cover_natureIt is recognised that in large, the drive for what is being called ‘precision medicine’ (a medical model that proposes the customization of healthcare, with medical decisions, practices, and/or products being tailored to the individual patient) is the lamentable failure of medications to meet the needs of the majority of people who take them. What I mean by this, is that many of the best selling drugs in the world only have a rate of benefit for the people taking them of between 1 in 3 to 1 in 24 – and it may be larger. Statins for example, regularly touted as a solution to raised cholesterol – and as a result sciences answer to an increasingly disputed marker of cardiovascular risk (Just lowering cholesterol with drugs without sorting out the dietary and lifestyle factors that actually cause heart disease is nonsensical)[1], are a highly questionable treatment when viewing the numbers needed to be treated to see a benefit.[2]

indexEncapsulating relevant, informative information into a humorous and well structured presentation is a real art. In this unusual Clinical Education team recommendation I have selected the work of comedian Simon Evans, who on the 29th July 2015 (radio 4) gave a half hour or so summary on the consequences of eating too much sugar, how that happened and why it is so difficult to stop, despite its miserable health consequences. His witty, articulate and informative summary is one of the best I have heard and suggest that you pod cast it, or save it for a car journey or activity, where you have chance to enjoy and share the experience.

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cov200hUnless you have been living in a far flung part of the world where access to data is limited most people are aware that sugar has finally been determined to be a far more problematic part of human health decline and disease risk that the much trumpeted but now derided role of fats. Recently poularised opinions, driven by scientists such as Robert Lustig and communicated via films such as Fed Up have in the minds of many made sugar the new tobacco.

PR-cover-v78_n2.inddFor some time now there has been a growing body of supportive evidence that the relationship between the bacteria in our digestive tract and our central nervous system may not be as tenuous as some may like to think. In a recent study published in Pediatric Research[1] a retrospective review of data in a small but informative group of children, indicates there may be a positive relationship between the use of a well studied probiotic and reduced risk of developing neuropsychiatric illness.

SmallLogoThe simple observation that associated mental health with food choice, ingestion and availability were apparent to the earliest of clinicians and for many people the use of foods and food concentrates have been both a help and a hindrance in managing mood and more complex neurological challenges.

Nutritional Therapists familiar with the work of Dr Abram Hoffer will be aware that some of the early work looking for bio-markers linked to nutrient need and supra dose supplementation has produced remarkable improvements in some people. However the pharmaceutical industry drove the attention of relevant clinicians towards pharmaceutical intervention, and whilst some surgical approaches have long been abandoned, talking therapies and drug therapy remain the primary point of intervention.

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