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Showing posts sorted by relevance for query protein. Sort by date Show all posts

Muscle gain diet: FOUR things YOU should know about eating protein for strength

Muscle loss is a particular concern for older people, but eating enough protein can help.

Protein is a macro-nutrient that is said to keep you feeling full, but it can also help maintain muscle to keep you strong.

Rich dietary sources include chicken, yoghurt and eggs.

However some people can struggle to consume enough, particularly if you are older, making you more at risk of muscle loss.

A study published in May in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition suggested that many elderly people were not getting enough protein for them to build muscle.

Here are four things to consider when thinking about getting enough protein. 

Eat protein between meals

“People tend to eat the most amount of protein towards the end of the day with their evening meal,” said Liam Mahoney, a nutritionist from Grenade (

“To achieve the best results, you should be evenly consuming your protein intake throughout the day. 

“The recommended daily allowance of protein is 45g for women and 55g for men, this is the minimum you should be consuming per day. 

“Ideally this should be split between breakfast, lunch, dinner and mid meal snacks. 

“Protein consumption helps regulate your hunger hormones and keeps you fuller for longer, so by eating protein regularly throughout the day - particularly with breakfast - it can help with unnecessary snacking, contributing to a successful weight management regime.”

Consume the right amount of protein

“The DRI (Dietary Reference Intake) is 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight, or 0.36 grams per pound,” explained Mahoney. 

“However, the amount of protein your body needs each day is dependent on other factors including age, activity levels and muscle mass. 

“As a starting point, calculate how much protein you should be eating daily, and also look at your carbohydrate and fat intake too to ensure you’re eating a balanced diet, and tailoring your meals and snacks to help you achieve your goals.”

Don’t just eat protein 

“Too much of a good thing can seem like a cliché, but all things must be consumed in balance,” warned Mahoney.

“Protein is one of three macronutrients within the daily diet, all vitality important for health and wellbeing. 

“This means that people who exclusively eat protein may be at risk of developing either acute or chronic health symptoms if they do not eat other food groups as part of their diet. 

“For example, a lack of carbohydrates can lead to fatigue, light-headedness and low blood sugar.”

Not all proteins are equal

“Where many people go wrong with protein is that they assume all sources are the same, when in actual fact there are so many different types, varying drastically in their quality and content of amino acids,” explained Mahoney.

“For example, the most commonly known sources of protein are found in meat and fish. 

“Meat offers a brilliant quality source of protein because it provides all nine essential amino acids, however many meats are also high in saturated fat, so it is a case of choosing the leanest options. 

“Fish on the other hand is high in protein and low in saturated fat but especially high is Omega oils. 

“You can also get good quality sources of protein from a plant based diet, lentils, quinoa and hemp seeds are all high in protein and suitable for those who do not eat meat, or fish.”

Additionally you can get it from good quality protein snacks, such as the Carb Killa range from Grenade. 


Best diet for older people: Three reasons why eating MORE protein can be anti-ageing

Protein is a macronutrient - a type of food required in large amounts in the diet - along with carbohydrates and fats.

It is broken down by the body into amino acids, which are the ‘building blocks’ of cells, and vital for numerous processes in the body.

Animal products, such as meat, milk and eggs are generally high in protein.

However, you can also get protein from plants such as legumes, like peas and beans, and nuts.

In the UK it is recommended people get 0.75g of protein per kilogram of bodyweight, meaning that if you weigh 70kg you should eat 52.5g protein a day.

However, often older people don’t consume enough protein for their body’s growing needs.

This is because body composition changes as you age, and there’s a natural decrease in bone mass and muscle strength. 

These are three reasons why older people should ensure they are getting enough protein in their diet.

Muscle strength

Research published last month revealed that older people who ate protein three times a day were better able to maintain muscle strength.

A study by McGill University in Montreal, Canada found that protein improves mobility in elderly men, and led to greater muscle strength in both men and women.

It is thought that protein is broken down at a faster rate in older people, meaning spreading protein throughout the day ensures there is enough to stimulate constant muscle building.


Eating more protein if you are older could help prevent a stroke.

Research published in 2014 in the journal Neurology found that people with the most protein in their diets were 20 per cent less likely to suffer a stroke than those with the lowest amounts in their diet.

The 250,000 participants in the study ranged from their mid-30s to their 80s.

Researchers also discovered that the risk went down by 26 per cent for every 20g increase in protein.

The scientists estimated that if everyone started eating more protein there could be 1,500,000 fewer stroke deaths per year worldwide.

Type 2 diabetes

A study published last year revealed that a diet high in protein found in dairy products could help manage type 2 diabetes. 

Researchers at Tel Aviv University discovered that whey - a by-product of cheese production - found in numerous dairy products, such as milk, yoghurt, whey protein powder and some cheeses, was more effective at controlling blood sugar.

This was compared to other sources of protein including eggs, soy or tuna.

The study also found that eating a protein-rich breakfast could aid weight loss.

Type 2 diabetes is a growing problem in the elderly, while obesity and being overweight kills millions of people a year.


Gym workout diet: Build muscle by eating THESE kind of eggs before you exercise

Gyms are likely to be packed from tomorrow, but make the most of your new membership by ensuring you are fuelling yourself with the right diet.

Exercising to build muscle is a focus for many people, and it is particularly important for older people at risk of frailty.

From the age of 30 years, muscle declines by as much as three to five per cent each decade.

Enjoying eggs for breakfast could help combat this, according to new research.

Scientists from the University of Illinois have discovered that eating whole eggs - as opposed to just egg whites - is better for muscle building and repair.

Consuming just the whites of an egg has been popular in the past for weight loss and lowering cholesterol.

However, people who consumed 18g of protein from the entire egg got more out of doing resistance exercise than those who consumed the same amount of protein from just egg whites.

In fact, post-workout muscle-building was 40 per cent greater if the former, rather than the latter, was consumed.

Egg yolks not only contain protein, but also key nutrients.

“This study suggests that eating protein within its most natural food matrix tends to be more beneficial to our muscles as opposed to getting one's protein from isolated protein sources," said Professor Nicholas Burd, study leader from the University of Illinois.

“We saw that the ingestion of whole eggs immediately after resistance exercise resulted in greater muscle-protein synthesis than the ingestion of egg whites.

"There's a lot of stress on protein nutrition in modern society, and research is showing that we need more protein in the diet than we once thought to maintain health.”

Eggs are naturally high in protein, as well as vitamin D and the antioxidants choline and beta carotene.

How you cook your eggs can also influence how good they are for you.

An expert recently revealed to whether scrambled, boiled or poached was most healthy.

Rob Hobson, Healthspan’s head of nutrition and author of The Detox Kitchen Bible: “If you are watching your weight, poaching and hard boiling are going to contain fewer calories and fat compared to scrambled or fried which are often cooked using oils, butter and cream.”


Secret to a longer life REVEALED: Low protein diet can add DECADES to your lifespan

The rise in average life expectancy in the UK was revealed to be grinding to a halt earlier this year.

Despite a century of continuous progress, research by University College London showed that increases in life expectancy had halved since 2010 in England.

However, making a simple tweak to your diet could add years - if not decades - to your life.

A study by the Francis Crick Institute in London has revealed that consuming a low protein diet could extend your lifespan.

By studying fruit flies, researchers discovered that those raised on a low protein diet in early life could live over twice as long as their peers.

Since the insects share more than two thirds of disease genes with humans, scientists believe it could indicate what might happen to our longevity too.

Researchers found that flies raised on a low protein diet during the early part of their life, and who then swapped to a standard diet, lived much longer than their counterparts fed on a standard diet throughout.

“There is evidence in humans and other mammals that a mother's diet can alter the risk of her offspring developing cardiovascular disease and diabetes much later in life, but the genetic processes underlying this effect remain to be identified,” said Alex Gould, senior author from the Francis Crick Institute.

“Obviously fruit flies are not humans, and it's important to be clear that our results in flies are certainly not a recommendation that expecting mothers should eat a low-protein diet."

Protein is a a type of macronutrient essential for growth and repair of the body and maintenance of good health, according to the British Nutrition Foundation.

High amounts can be found in foods such as eggs, chicken, beef and yoghurt.

But the findings suggest that not going over board on protein intake could help humans live longer.

Further studies will be required to conform whether there will be the same effect as in fruit flies.

Previous research from 2014 by the University of Southern California found that a high protein diet was linked to lower mortality.

Scientists discovered that adults between 50 to 65 who had a high protein intake experienced a 75 per cent increase in overall mortality and were four times more likely to die from cancer during the following 18 years than those who ate less protein.


Dairy free diet: Milk intolerance sufferers could drink THIS type of cow’s MILK

Dairy free diets have become popular of late thanks to the trend for vegan eating, and because one in five Britons claim they struggle with milk.

Many of these people believe they are lactose intolerant, meaning that they are unable to fully digest a sugar - known as lactase - found in milk.

However, many people aren’t intolerant to lactose but still struggle to digest milk.

Scientists have discovered in a new study why this could be.

Research published today in the Nutrition Journal revealed that the A1 protein, found in cow’s milk, was to blame for triggering symptoms of milk intolerance.

Scientists discovered that by removing the A1 beta casein protein, leaving just the A2 beta casein, sufferers were able to drink milk without gastrointestinal symptoms.

“This is the largest human trial to date examining the differences between the impact of the A1 and A2 protein,” said Dr Anton Emmanuel, consultant gastroenterologist.

“It suggests that proteins found in dairy can have a significant impact on digestion, and that lactose may not be the only cause of gastrointestinal issues in those with an intolerance – around 60 per cent of the world’s population.”

Researchers concluded that for many people with milk intolerance it is not lactose causing the issue, but the A1 protein.

“This exciting new research on such a large sample is significant in that it suggests that many patients’ issues with dairy may in fact be specific to the A1 milk protein that is found in regular cows’ milk,” explained Dr Anthony Hobson, clinical director of the Functional Gut Clinic.

“A simple switch to milk containing only the A2 protein could be an important part of symptom management for those suffering from milk intolerance.

“Patients often come to us convinced that their digestive troubles are due to lactose intolerance – there is a lot of self-diagnosis taking place. 

“When we then test them for the condition and it comes back negative, they are lost as to what else the problem could be – but this could explain it.”

In the study, 1,200 people  who considered themselves to have lactose intolerance drunk milk containing only A2 beta casein, called a2 Milk.

They discovered that while people who drunk regular milk experienced “acute” symptoms often associated with  milk intolerance, they showed improvements when they consumed the A2 milk.

Signs of milk intolerance include bloating, gas, pain in the lower belly, diarrhoea and throwing up.


Food component that reduces hunger may hold key in fight against obesity

Phenylalanine – a component of dietary protein – reduces food intake by affecting the release of appetite-regulating hormones in the gut, research shows. 

Experts believe that it may be the reason why diets that involve eating a lot of protein can be successful at promoting weight loss. 

However, high-protein diets such as Atkins and Dukan can be hard to maintain and may result in long-term health problems, it is claimed. 

The amino acid Phenylalanine is generated in the gut when protein is digested and has previously been shown to reduce appetite in rodents.  

To investigate its effects, scientists at Imperial College London studied the brain activity and eating habits of mice treated with the chemical. 

Phenylalanine was found to reduce food intake even at a dose 10 times lower than would be consumed daily as part of a high-protein diet. 

It also increased activation of an area of the brain known to be involved in regulating appetite. 

Lead researcher Mariana Norton said: “The next step is to establish whether Phenylalanine can drive similar appetite-reducing effects in humans. 

"Identifying the mechanisms that sense the protein may allow us to use drugs or functional foods to hijack appetite regulation – and treat obesity.” 


High blood pressure diet: Adding THIS trendy ingredient to coffee could help REDUCE it

High blood pressure is a potentially-deadly condition that affects 31 per cent of men and 26 per cent of women in the UK.

Having elevated cholesterol levels raises your risk - but altering your diet to include oat milk could help.

Made from whole oats, it is a plant-based, dairy-free alternative to cow’s milk.

However, as well as being suitable for those with particular dietary intolerances or preferences, it could help lower cholesterol levels and therefore ward off high blood pressure.

“Oat milk contains more fibre than milk and some of the other alternatives,” said Cassandra Barns, a nutritionist.

“This includes a kind of fibre called beta glucan, which has been found to help control cholesterol levels.”

Beta glucan is found in the bran of common whole grains, like oats and barley.

She added that the drink is naturally sweet and creamy so it does not need added sugars or sweeteners.

But Barns warned that it contained “significantly less” protein than cow’s milk or soya milk.

Oat milk has about 1g per 100ml versus 3g per 100ml from other milks.

Another milk alternative higher in protein is almond milk, because it is produced from a nut not a grain.

Additionally, legumes, seeds, certain vegetables and soy products are all examples of other dairy-free items that are high in protein.

While consuming a large amount of animal protein has been linked to high levels of cholesterol, eating lots of plant-based fat and protein has been found to lower cholesterol.

Cholesterol is a fatty substance needed for making certain hormones, producing vitamin D, and building healthy cells.

If you have high cholesterol levels in your blood, the excess will stick to the walls of your arteries. 

Over time, this hardens and causes the arteries to stiffen and narrow, meaning that blood no longer flows through them as easily as it once did.

As your heart struggles to push blood around your body, it could lead to high blood pressure.


Vegan diet warning: Beware THIS unexpected side-effect of SUDDENLY ditching meat and dairy

Vegan diets have grown in popularity in recent years, and involves removing everything from dairy and meat, to honey and eggs from your meals.

The rise has been attributed to environmental and health concerns, as well a host of celebrity fans including Natalie Portman and Jared Leto.

There is much evidence a plant-based diet is good for you - it has been linked to weight loss, increased energy, better heart health and lower risk of cancer.

However, cutting out several food groups at once can be detrimental to your health.

A sudden change in diet could cause short-term hair loss.

This is because adjusting to a diet without protein-rich meats and fish could affect the hair’s cell renewal and health.

“Protein is one of the most important nutrients for healthy hair,” said Cassandra Barns, a nutritionist.

“Keratin, a substance that provides the strength and structure of hair, is a protein, and our body makes it from the proteins that we eat.”

She suggested that if you want to remove animal protein from your diet to ensure you consume enough plant-based protein.

This could include replacing fish and eggs, with beans, lentils, nuts and seeds.

Another risk with embarking on a vegan diet, is deficiency in vitamin B12 and calcium.

It is due to a lack of dairy products, such as cheese, milk and yoghurt.

Vitamin B12 is important for a healthy immune system, while calcium is needed to help build and support your bone density and keep teeth strong.

Up your intake of these nutrients on a vegan diet by eating tofu, spinach and kale.

Or take a supplement, such as Nature’s Plus Source of Life Garden Vitamin B12.

However, positive side-effects you may experience by following a vegan diet include clear skin, due to lack of dairy, and better quality sleep, thanks to a diet full of nuts, leafy greens and oatmeal.


Muscle gain diet: These are THREE reasons you SHOULD eat breakfast every day

Muscle loss can be particularly worrying for people as they get older, placing them at increased risk of hip fractures and other bone injuries.

Eating a nutritious breakfast can help, but many Britons aren’t optimising their first meal of the day, according to new research.

A Meridian Foods’ survey discovered that half spend fewer than ten minutes on breakfast, while one in ten don’t eat it at all.

“Skipping breakfast or choosing a less than optimal breakfast to fill rather than nourish increases the risk of nutritional deficiencies impacting both wellbeing and performance,” said Helen Money, nutritionist at Meridian.

“A nourishing breakfast does not have to be time consuming, just stirring nut butter into porridge increases B vitamins, iron, magnesium and zinc all of which are needed for energy creation.”

In order to ward off muscle loss, protein should be the key ingredient in your breakfast, according to James Haskell, international rugby player and Meridian sporting ambassador.

He said: “Protein is essential for repairing and rebuilding muscle broken down when exercising. 

“I personally include nut butters as part of my breakfast routine as they’re a rich source of natural protein which helps stimulate muscle growth and helps my body recover.”

Protein can also be found in eggs, fish, yoghurt and chicken.

Here are three other reasons why you should eat a good breakfast on a daily basis.


Research has found people who skip breakfast have higher glucose concentrations and markers of inflammation and insulin resistance after lunch.

According to the study by the University of Hohenheim in Germany, it causes chronic inflammation, which is known to affect insulin sensitivity, and could raise the risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Heart disease

People who eat breakfast tend to have lower rates of heart disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, according to the American Heart Association.

Weight loss

As well as helping build muscle, a breakfast high in protein can help promote weight loss.

A study by Tel Aviv University discovered that it could keep people satisfied throughout the day and prevent spikes in blood sugar.


Prostate cancer breakthrough: THIS finding could pave way for new treatment

However, now scientists believe they have hit upon a major prostate cancer breakthrough.

Experts have found bone marrow is a ‘magnet’ for passing prostate cancer cells, which helps them spread outside the prostate.

The prostate is a small gland found only in men, which sits behind the bladder.

Scientists at the University of York have shown that a protein in the bone marrow acts like a ‘magnetic docking station’ for prostate cancer cells.

This helps them grow and spread outside of the prostate.

Now that this mechanism has been identified, however, scientists have found a way to block the signal in the cancer cells, disabling the cell and preventing it from multiplying at a new site in the body.

Their research showed that the protein, which normally functions to reduce inflammation after infections, has a key-like structure that locks on to opposite receptors on the stem cells of prostate cancer.

This allows cancer cells that have spread from the prostate to ‘dock’ with the protein in the bones and multiply to form a new tumour.

Once the prostate cancer has attached to the protein, a signal is sent from the surface of the cancer to the nucleus of the cell, telling it that it can start to grow.

“We have always known that the two places where prostate cancer spreads are the bones and lymph nodes, but we have not fully understood why these two locations are preferred,” said Professor Norman Maitland, from the University’s Department of Biology.

“If we imagine the prostate cancer cell as a floating ‘space rocket’ and the only way for it to perform its mission is to ‘dock’ with another ‘space vehicle’, we start to get a picture of what happens when a cancer cell moves around the body in search of a new home.


“Without this docking station, the ‘ship’, or cell, will just float around, not causing any further harm.

The receptors on the ‘docking station’, or the protein in bone, act like a magnet for the receptors on the stem cells of the cancer and once it is ‘docked’, getting rid of the cancer becomes much harder.”

Replicating this ‘docking process’ in human prostate cancer cells, the team were able to identify the signal going into the nucleus of the cancer cell and blocked it with a non-toxic drug that has previously been tested for treatment of Allergic Asthma.

They found that the drug inhibits the signal, allowing the cancer cell to survive, but ultimately disabling its ability to spread.


This could mean that cancer spread can be slowed down or be made more receptive to cell death following traditional treatments such as chemotherapy.

Professor Maitland said: “We know that this works in human cancer cells, but what we now need to find is the correct dosage of the drug in patients, and whether it will buy a man more time to fight his cancer or even stop the spread of cancer altogether."

“Clinical trials are some way off, but this is a positive and exciting step forward in tackling this disease and reducing the number of deaths.”

The research was developed through a training award, PRONEST, from the EU and was completed with support from Charity Soul.

The research is published in the journal Oncogenesis.


Alzheimer's BREAKTHROUGH: Wonder drug moves step closer after undergoing human trials

Researchers have found the drug, which destroys the tau proteins that kill neurons in the brain, can dramatically slow mental decline in just nine months. 

And in some patients the rate of decline returned to that seen in elderly people with healthy brains, said scientists. 

The international study of 800 participants found a 4mg pill, taken twice daily, achieved this result. 

But in a bizarre twist the potentially revolutionary medication does not work when taken in combination with current dementia drugs that can only target symptoms - not the cause.

The drug LMTX was invented by Professor Claude Wischik from the University of Aberdeen and has been developed by TauRx Pharmaceuticals - the spin-off company he co-founded in 2002. 

The drug had been hailed as a major breakthrough in the battle against dementia after early testing showed it could slow the onset of the disease by up to two years. 

It destroys a protein called tau which - in Alzheimer's patients - breaks away from brain cells and becomes toxic, killing neurons. 

LMTX is the first drug to be developed that blocks it - offering hope to more than 520,000 people with Alzheimer's, the main form of dementia, in the UK alone. 

The latest study published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease follows a similar trial earlier this year that suggested LMTX could be effective - even at such a low dose. 

It investigated its efficacy and safety in participants with mild Alzheimer's recruited across 12 countries who were given either 100 or 4 mg - intended as the control dose - twice daily over an 18-month period. 

Prof Wischik said in both those taking only LMTX or other dementia drugs as well their loss of brain cells - measured by MRI scans - initially progressed as expected for mild Alzheimer's. 

But after nine months of treatment the yearly rate of neuron loss in the former group reduced significantly. 

In fact it became typical of that reported in normal elderly controls without Alzheimer's. 

But the comparable rate seen in those also using other therapies - known as the 'add-on group' - progressed as usual for mild Alzheimer's. 

TauRx now aims to develop LMTX as a single treatment - or 'monotherapy' - of mild to moderate Alzheimer's. 

There is currently no other drug available or in prospect for the treatment of Alzheimer's capable of reversing it. 

Further randomised controlled studies of LMTX are set to commence shortly in which the 4 mg twice daily dose will be compared with placebo in patients with Alzheimer's who are not receiving other approved treatments - cholinesterase inhibitors or memantine. 

Lead author Prof Gordon Wilcock, of the Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences at Oxford University, said: "These data indicate the need for a further randomised controlled trial to evaluate efficacy of low dose LMTX in patients not taking current treatments." 

But other experts said the study numbers were to small to prove the drug - known as LMTX - is an effective treatment.

Dr James Pickett, head of research at Alzheimer’s Society, said: “We have been waiting more than 15 years for a new drug for dementia. 

"Most of the drugs tested so far have targeted the Alzheimer’s hallmark amyloid protein.

“This was the first large-scale trial to target another potential culprit, the tau protein. From the results that we have seen, we cannot say that LMTX is an effective drug for Alzheimer’s.

“However we look forward to seeing other innovative approaches to drug development in dementia - including targeting treatments at more than just the amyloid protein.”


Dementia breakthrough: Alzheimer’s disease symptoms may NOT start in brain

Dementia affects 850,000 in the UK and is a leading killer, and Alzheimer’s disease is its most common form.

The condition has long been associated with the brain since it affects memory, thinking, information processing and decision-making.

But new research suggests that it may actually begin elsewhere in the body.

A study by the University of British Columbia found that breakdowns in other areas could trigger brain-related symptoms.

In a study using mice, scientists found that an Alzheimer’s-causing protein, amyloid-beta, could travel - like cancer - to the brain from other parts of the body.

It is the first time researchers have shown that when the protein develops outside the brain it could still contribute to Alzheimer’s.

Past studies have associated amyloid-beta with cognitive decline.

In Alzheimer’s sufferers it forms clumps - or ‘plaques’ - that smother brain cells.

Amyloid-beta is produced in blood platelets, blood vessels and muscles, and its precursor protein is found in several other organs in addition to the brain.

The researchers believe that future Alzheimer’s drugs could now target the kidney or liver, and remove the toxic protein from the blood before it reaches the brain.

This may be more effective than drugs that directly target the brain, which is complex, sensitive and often hard to reach. 

It is thought that a drug could bind to amyloid-beta throughout the body in a way that allows the kidneys and liver to clear it out.

“The blood-brain barrier weakens as we age,” said Dr Weihong Song, from the University of British Columbia.

“That might allow more amyloid beta to infiltrate the brain, supplementing what is produced by the brain itself and accelerating the deterioration."

The findings suggest that Alzheimer’s is a ‘whole body’ problem, rather than one just related to the brain.

“Alzheimer's disease is clearly a disease of the brain, but we need to pay attention to the whole body to understand where it comes from, and how to stop it," added Song.


Dementia treatment news: People with THIS gene have 12 times greater risk of Alzheimer's

Dementia symptoms - such as memory loss and problems thinking - can be debilitating, but there is currently no cure for the condition.

However, researchers may have identified a gene that could provide the key to effective treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.

This is the most common form of dementia, which affects 850,000 people in the UK.

A study, published in the journal Nature, revealed that people with a variation of the ApoE4 gene were 12 times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease.

The ApoE gene helps to move cholesterol around the body, however, researchers suspected it could be linked to Alzheimer's and other brain diseases.

They studied the effect of the gene on a protein in the brain called tau.

Tau is a protein which stabilises the structure within the nerve cells that the cells need to carry substances, divide and use for support.

However, if these proteins become defective they can cause Alzheimer’s.

“Once tau accumulates, the brain degenerates," said David Holtzman, senior researcher at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

"What we found was that when ApoE is there, it amplifies the toxic function of tau, which means that if we can reduce ApoE levels we may be able to stop the disease process."

When ApoE was there, it triggered an immune system reaction to tau that appeared to cause damage.

In tests they looked at 79 people who had died from Alzheimer’s and discovered  people with the ApoE4 gene variant had more brain damage than those without.

However, when the ApoE was not there, tangled clumps of the tau protein were much less harmful to brain cells.

This mean that reducing the influence of ApoE could lead to a future Alzheimer’s treatment.

Researchers believe that cutting down on ApoE levels in the brain might slow or block the process of neurodegeneration - or progressive loss of brain function.

This is the first time a study had tried targeting ApoE, whereas in previous research the focus has been on amyloid beta and tau protein build-ups in the brain

"Assuming that our findings are replicated by others, I think that reducing ApoE in the brain in people who are in the earliest stages of disease could prevent further neurodegeneration," said Holtzman.


Diabetes diet warning: Eating THIS 'healthy' oil could increase risk of symptoms

There has been much debate in recent months about the healthiest oils to consume with your food.

Coconut oil has been lauded by experts, but the American Heart Association recently claimed it contains too much saturated fat which can raise cholesterol.

While sunflower oil has in the past been linked to heart health and remains advised by the NHS.

However, now an expert has revealed why the latter might be so virtuous.

"Although sunflower oil has long been touted as a ‘healthy’ oil, it’s now considered by many nutritionists and researchers to be an unhealthy choice," said Cassandra Barns, a nutritionist.

"This is partly because it’s contributing to the high amount of omega-6 fats in the average diet in comparison to omega-3.

"This imbalance can lead to inflammation in the body, and inflammation plays a big role in diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. 

"Olive oil, on the other hand, contains more monounsaturated fats rather than omega-6 fats, so doesn’t contribute to this imbalance – and, of course, we know that it has a direct link with good heart health as part of the famous ‘Mediterranean diet’."

Olive oil are a key component in a new health trend set to replace popcorn and protein balls - popped lotus seeds.

They come from the lotus flower, and the seeds have been revered for thousands of years in the East, particularly in Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine.

Back then, the seeds - which are high in protein and minerals, and low in fat - were used for a paste.

Now they are being reinvented as a crisp-like snack with particular health benefits.

Barns revealed that snacking on popped lotus seeds - such as those recently launched by Karma Bites - could help conditions such as heart disease, blood pressure and diabetes.

"They are a natural source of potassium and magnesium. Both these minerals help with normal heart function and help to keep blood pressure down at normal levels.

"Karma Bites, in particular, are higher in protein compared to the average packet of crisps.

"Because protein tends to slow down the breakdown and absorption of carbohydrates from our foods, this means they could help to better manage blood sugar."

In addition to olive oil, the NHS recommend consuming omega-6 fats in small amounts by using vegetable oils, including sunflower oil.


Weight loss diet: Five EASY ways to start shedding excess Christmas pounds NOW

With Christmas over and ‘dry’ January on the horizon, shedding excess pounds is likely to be on the thoughts of most Britons in the lull before New Year’s Eve.

However, jumping from a diet of mince pies and mulled wine to one far lower in sugar and unhealthy fats can seem daunting.

“Food is there to be enjoyed as much as it is needed for nourishment,” said Lily Soutter, a nutritionist.

“However, for some Christmas can take its toll on their waistline, which can lead to that depressing January diet.”

But Soutter said that by taking some simple steps towards a healthy, balanced diet before January can prevent the need for strict calorie counting in the new year.

Here are five easy diet switches to help you begin trimming down now.

Eat breakfast

Never skip the first meal of the day, advised Soutter.

“Set yourself up for success by having a healthy but hearty breakfast,” she said. “Research has shown that those who eat breakfast tend to have a more of a balanced diet, are less likely to be overweight, lose weight more successfully and are less likely to snack unnecessarily.  

“One study has also shown that participants who consumed good quality protein at breakfast stayed ‘fuller for longer’, which in turn prevented overeating later on in the day.”

She added that you could add protein to breakfast by eating Greek yoghurt with seeds or berries, and boiled eggs on wholegrain toast.

Use up the leftovers

While ploughing through all the leftover turkey from Christmas dinner may seem like a chore, it could help your waistline.

“Turkey may be a perfect festive choice when it comes to weight management,” explained Soutter.  “This lean meat is low in calories and is a source of good quality protein. 

“Research suggests that protein may help to stave of hunger and maintains that all-important fat burning muscle mass.

“It’s also rich in tryptophan, the precursor to our happy hormone serotonin. The happier we are the more satisfied we tend to feel.

She recommended using it up in salads, burgers, stews and soups. 

The same goes for leftover potatoes, which you may be tempted to cook in goose fat, butter, lard and ghee.

“But by swapping saturated fats for monounsaturated fats such as extra-virgin olive oil, you may be one step closer to maintaining healthy cholesterol levels and better heart health,” she explained.

Pile on the winter veg

Salads are understandably the last thing you want to devour when it’s cold outside, but vegetables can be served hot too.

Soutter recommended filling your plate with lots of festive winter vegetables.

“It’s easy to eat a 400-calorie mince pie within seconds, but not so easy to eat 400 calories worth of vegetables quite so quickly - you’d be stuffed,” she said. “Vegetables are a rich source of fibre, which can help to keep hunger at bay.

“Fill at least half of your plate with them and you’ll be guaranteed to have a lower calorie and healthier dish.

“Try rainbow coloured winter veg such as vitamin A rich carrots, vitamin C rich broccoli and antioxidant rich beetroot to support immunity.”

She added cooking them with spices or roasting them with olive oil could give them a twist.

Choose the right carbs

Many people believe January diets mean low or no carbs, but Soutter pointed out that carbohydrates are important to still include in our diet - just make sure they’re the right ones.

“During the winter months, there is a tendency to gravitate towards carb-heavy, high-calorie meals to make us feel warm and cosy,” she explained.

“Filling up on refined carbohydrates such as white rice, bread, pasta, cakes and pastries may reduce fibre intake and lead blood sugar imbalances. Both can set up a cycle, which keeps appetite in motion. But there’s no need to cut carbs during winter, the key is to choose carbs with health benefits. 

“Whole grains such as brown rice, bread and pasta are a great source of fibre – an important factor for balancing blood sugar and keeping hunger at bay. 

“Whilst root vegetables, beans, lentils and chickpeas are low in calories, nutrient dense and can satisfying those stodgy, carby cravings.”

Don’t go to a New Year’s Eve party hungry

“If you’re worried about your waistline, attending parties starving hungry may be a recipe for disaster,” warned Soutter.

“Whilst there’s nothing wrong with enjoying a canapé or two, it’s important to note that they tend to be high in calories and fat, without being particularly filling. 

“Try consuming a small meal or snack before parties to line your stomach.”

If you’d still like to celebrate the beginning of 2018 with an alcoholic beverage just make sure you avoid high-calorie cocktails.

“For a lower calorie beverage try a clear spirit - such as vodka or gin - with a no sugar mixer, like sparkling water, and a squeeze of lemon or lime,” she suggested.

“With only 70 to 90 calories per glass and zero sugar, this is a top choice for those aiming for balance.”


How to live longer REVEALED: This diet can stop you getting frail in old age

Taking a walk for a certain amount of time everyday, never retiring and just spending time in the great outdoors have all been found to boost longevity.

But now new research has revealed eating a particularly diet can lower the risk of frailty in old age. 

Eating lots of olive oil, legumes and fish are just some of the foods that should be part of your daily eating plan, according to a new study. 

And these foods are all part of the Mediterranean diet - a diet inspired by the eating habits of Greece, Southern Italy and Spain. 

The study titled ‘Adherence to Mediterranean Diet Reduces Incident Frailty Risk: System Review and Meta-Analysis’, published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, found a clear association between the Mediterranean diet and incident frailty. 

But not only was there a link - the diet was found to significantly lower the risk of frailty, particularly in community-dwelling older people. 

Here are some easy ways of incorporating the Mediterranean Diet into your lifestyle. 

Oil up

Replace butter and margarine with healthy oils, such as olive oil, as often as possible. These are a good source of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.

Go for lean protein

Swap red meat for skinless chicken, turkey, fish, beans and nuts for a healthier source of protein. These foods have less saturated fat than red meat, and fatty fish in particular provides a great source of omega 3s.

Load up on vegetables

Aim to eat lots of veg – three to eight servings a day. Opt for vegetables in a range of colours to ensure a variety of vitamins and antioxidants.

Whole grain heaven

Eat whole grains, rather than refined. Try quinoa, barley and oatmeal, and swap white bread and pasta for wholegrain alternatives.

Snack well

Change your snacking habits, choosing almonds, walnuts or sunflower seeds over processed foods packed with refined sugar. Keep your sweet tooth in check by eating fresh fruit, especially oranges and grapefruits which are crammed with vitamin C.

Don't cut out dairy

Include some milk and dairy foods, such as cheese and yoghurt. These are great sources of protein and calcium.

Take your time

Finally, people in the Mediterranean take time over their food, savouring every bite instead of shovelling it down. Giving yourself time to enjoy a meal can help you feel full up and reduce the urge to snack.

Research in the past has found the Mediterranean diet can add five years to your life. 


Bacon, flour and mushrooms: 2018’s TOP superfoods to boost health and detox

A lot of people begin diet plans after the new year begins, to detox from the festive season’s overindulgence.

Certain foods could help to boost your overall health, according to online food retailer

Maqui berries, cassava flour and bacon form part of the company’s top seven superfoods for 2018.

“Every year, we’re surprised by what new and exciting foods people are eating, and it’s great to see that 2018 isn’t going to be an exception,” said’s Darren Beale. 

“Cassava flour and macqui berries aren’t the usual foods you’d expect to see in the supermarket, but we recommend scoping them out as the health benefits are amazing.

“On the other hand, it may be surprising to see regular foods like bacon on the list, but it’s a staple favourite for most meat eaters, and opting for nitrate-free bacon provides an excellent source of protein.”

These are’s top superfoods for 2018:

Cassava flour

Cassava flour is a soft, gluten-free, nut-free and vegan-friendly flour. It contains saponins, chemicals which help to reduce inflammation and balance gut flora.

“While there may be other superfood flours out there which offer more nutritional value than cassava flour, it deserves a place on the list nonetheless thanks to it’s hypoallergenic properties and it’s fit for plant-based lifestyles,” said the retailer.


‘Superpowders’ includes turmeric, matcha, maca and cocao.

The powders have been rising in popularity, thanks to their ability to reduce arthritis pain and detox the body, scientists have claimed.

Maqui berries

These berries come from Chile and Argentina, and could be used to treat diabetes, studies have claimed.

Maqui berries could also be used to boost metabolism, reduce aging and treat cardiovascular problems, it’s been claimed.

“These tasty little berries are low in sugar and have a much milder flavour than goji or acai berries,” said “They’re also crammed with anti-oxidants and are packed with a rainbow of vitamins.

“It’s even thought they can help regulate blood sugar levels – perfect for those of you looking for a simple way to combat sugar cravings without the dreaded insulin spike.”

Tiger nuts

“These small, raisin like nuts are brimming with filling fibre, vegetable protein, potassium and prebiotics – known to assist digestion,” said

“They’re also a fantastic source of magnesium - a natural muscle relaxant and an essential mineral for your body to stay in tiptop shape.”

Nut oils

Almond oil, peanut oil, walnut oil and hazelnut oil could become more popular this year, the food retailer predicted.

Using the oils could reduce trans fat intake, and are better for your heart, it claimed.


Eating a specific type of bacon could help to reduce the effects of diabetes, strokes and heart disease, claimed

Nitrate-free bacon is an excellent source of protein, and provides the body with low-carbohydrate energy.

“It’s fair to say that bacon has had a bit of a rough go of it over the past few years, but a change is coming for 2018 and bacon will finally be recognised for the superfood it can be.”


Mushrooms are crammed full of powerful anti-oxidants, vitamin D and B-vitamins, said the food retailer.

We could soon be seeing mushroom coffee, tea, health drinks, and even body products, like soap, it said.

“It seems the modest mushroom is on its way to greatness this coming year,” said


Are YOU struggling to concentrate? Eating these cheap foods could reduce brain fog

Stress and lack of sleep can cause mental fatigue and cloudy thoughts, according to medical website Healthline.

Brain fog isn’t necessarily a health condition itself, but a symptom of other medical conditions, including diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and depression.

While brain fatigue can be frustrating, it’s possible to treat it, it said.

Eating certain foods and vitamins could keep the dreaded brain fog at bay, according to Naturopathic Nutritionist Amy Morris, from Water for Health.

Oily fish

Fats in oily fish contain the highest concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids, which are proven to make a positive difference to brain health and mood, said Morris.

“From pole-line and caught salmon to sardines, mackerel and trout, these healthy fats have long been recognised for being one of the best brain foods around,” she said.

“The compounds found in omega-3 have also been proven to aid the transmission of chemical signals from cell to cell, keeping us alert and more focused.”

Omega-3 supplements will also provide the benefits of eating oily fish, she added.

Dark chocolate

Dark chocolate is rich in the healthy nutrients flavanols, which help to boost brain function and its overall health.

The chocolate also contains phenylalanine - an animo acid that plays a key role in producing the hormone dopamine. Dopamine helps to relieve stress, and lift a low mood, said Morris.

“Nothing shouts Christmas like chocolate. Sometimes all it takes is a small bit of chocolate to lift your spirits, but ensure you are eating the right kind for it to have a positive impact on your brain.”


Organic free-range eggs, seeds, meats, nuts and lentils could give the body some added energy.

Protein is key to ensuring we have a strong body overall, and it’s crucial to forming hormones, organs and muscles, said the nutritionist.

“Like dark chocolate, protein also creates neurotransmitters like dopamine which helps us stay happy and relaxed throughout the busy festival season,” she said.

Vitamin B

Vitamin B helps to power the brain, and create red blood cells. It also helps to break down chemicals.

The “hidden gem” is found in green vegetables and wholegrain bread.

Morris said: “B vitamins are known to help conditions like anxiety, depression and heart disease, additionally increasing energy, enhancing our mood, improving our memory, boosting our skin and hair health, and also stimulating the immune system.”

Fermented foods

A healthy gut is key to having a fully-functioning brain.

A foggy brain could lead to serious issues within the body, including irritable bowel syndrome and stomach ulcers, said Morris.

“Fermented foods are packed full of good, live bacteria and yeasts which help to restore the natural balance of your gut, stomach and intestines.

“Foods such as kimchi, miso soup, sauerkraut, soya sauce, yogurt and tofu contain good bacteria, which have been shown to help your body naturally deal with stress and other emotions.”


Blood-sucking parasitic WORMS could cure asthma within 10 years

Asthma is less common in countries where people are more likely to have parasitic worms that live in the intestines, and feed off blood and mucus.

In Southeast Asia, one in 20 people have asthma, whereas one in 11 have the condition in the UK.

The worms, known as roundworms, release a protein that prevents humans from having allergic reactions.

Seeing as asthma can be triggered by allergies - including pollen and dust mites - researchers found the worms could be used to help treat the respiratory condition.

“We have known for some years that infections with parasitic worms appear to protect people against asthma,” said leader of the research, Dr Henry McSorley.

“We have always believed that identifying exactly how parasites prevent asthma could inspire new treatments.

“By identifying this new protein, we have found a new way of suppressing the allergic responses which cause asthma.

“In the future, we hope to develop this further.”

The researchers confirmed worms could be used to treat asthma in mine trials.

A treatment for the condition, that uses the protein secreted by roundworms, could be developed within five to 10 years, Asthma UK said.

The medication would reduce, and possibly even completely prevent, any allergic responses in humans.

The research was an exciting development for the draining condition, said Asthma UK’s Director of Research and Policy, Dr Samantha Walker.

“[Asthma] leaves people gasping for breath and in some cases, can be fatal, so this research is an important step towards finding a cure for this type of asthma,” said Walker.

“It is becoming clear that there are many different types of asthma and that not all of them respond to current treatment, which is why research like this is so important.”

Asthma sufferer Val Hudson described an asthma attack as feeling like someone was holding a pillow over her face.

Hudson added: “It’s incredible to think worms could cure asthma, and research like this will offer hope to the many people who like me who have asthma.”


AA Gill lung cancer: Life saving drug nivolumab writer denied now approved for NHS use

AA Gill died aged 62 last December after being diagnosed with what he proclaimed the 'full English' of cancers - lung cancer which has spread to his pancreas. 

AA Gill had chemotherapy on the NHS but could not access the immunotherapy drug nivolumab because it was not approved on the NHS.

Nivolumab, which has the brand name Opdivo and is manufactured by Bristol-Myers Squibb, should be made available to around 1,300 patients with lung cancer through the CDF, draft guidance from health watchdog NICE has said.

Bristol-Myers Squibb will fund the drug at a discounted price while more evidence is gathered to support it being widely used.

The company hopes that as more data comes to light about the drug’s effectiveness, Nivolumab will be made available to all patients with advanced lung cancer.

In new draft guidance, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has approved the drug through the Cancer Drugs Fund while more evidence is gathered on its effectiveness.

Professor Carole Longson, director of the NICE centre for health technology evaluation, said: "This new deal means that we can give patients access to what we know is a promising treatment whilst more evidence is gathered on its value."

Last year NICE issued draft guidance which said nivolumab was not cost-effective for all patients with squamous and non-squamous advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) - around 90 per cent of lung cancer cases.

But evidence presented by the drugs firm shows it is particularly effective in some patients.

Nivolumab blocks the ability of cancer to shield itself from the immune system.

It targets a protein on the surface of cells known as programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) receptor.

PD-1 reduces the activity of the body's immune cells when it binds to another protein called PD-L1.


Cancerous lung cells have more PD-L1 than normal cells, which stops the body from attacking the tumour.

Now, nivolumab will be available to some people with advanced disease whose tumours express PD-L1 if they have already been treated with chemotherapy.

Around 950 patients with squamous and 350 patients with non-squamous lung cancer are expected to receive treatment.

Professor Paul Workman, chief executive of the Institute of Cancer Research, London, said the decision was a step in the right direction.

"I'm pleased to see Nice and the drug's manufacturer showing flexibility in reaching agreement on the drug's approval.

"But this is another instance where patients in the UK have had to wait far longer than necessary to access an innovative new treatment.”

He said that initially, the drug was priced too high to ever have been judged cost-effective by the health watchdog.

“Companies need to come to the table with their best, most realistic price offer right at the start, so we get new exciting drugs, such as immunotherapies, to patients as quickly as possible.

"Immunotherapies are currently very expensive, but one of the ways to make them more cost-effective is to direct them to patients most likely to respond.”

In his last column, AA Gill said his doctor told his partner Nicola Formby: "If he had insurance, I'd put him on immunotherapy - specifically, nivolumab.

“As would every oncologist in the First World. But I can't do it on the National Health."

Gill wrote: "As yet, immunotherapy isn't a cure, it's a stretch more life, a considerable bit of life.

“More life with your kids, more life with your friends, more life holding hands, more life shared, more life spent on earth - but only if you can pay."