Browsing by Subject "diet"

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  • Saari, Sini; Kemppainen, Esa; Tuomela, Tero; Oliveira, M.T.; Dufour, E.; Jacobs, H.T. (2019)
    The mitochondrial alternative oxidase, AOX, present in most eukaryotes apart from vertebrates and insects, catalyzes the direct oxidation of ubiquinol by oxygen, by-passing the terminal proton-motive steps of the respiratory chain. Its physiological role is not fully understood, but it is proposed to buffer stresses in the respiratory chain similar to those encountered in mitochondrial diseases in humans. Previously, we found that the ubiquitous expression of AOX from Ciona intestinalis in Drosophila perturbs the development of flies cultured under low-nutrient conditions (media containing only glucose and yeast). Here we tested the effects of a wide range of nutritional supplements on Drosophila development, to gain insight into the physiological mechanism underlying this developmental failure. On low-nutrient medium, larvae contained decreased amounts of triglycerides, lactate, and pyruvate, irrespective of AOX expression. Complex food supplements, including treacle (molasses), restored normal development to AOX-expressing flies, but many individual additives did not. Inhibition of AOX by treacle extract was excluded as a mechanism, since the supplement did not alter the enzymatic activity of AOX in vitro. Furthermore, antibiotics did not influence the organismal phenotype, indicating that commensal microbes were not involved. Fractionation of treacle identified a water-soluble fraction with low solubility in ethanol, rich in lactate and tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates, which contained the critical activity. We propose that the partial activation of AOX during metamorphosis impairs the efficient use of stored metabolites, resulting in developmental failure. © 2019 The Authors. Journal of Experimental Zoology Part A: Ecological Genetics and Physiology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
  • Lahelma, Mari; Luukkonen, Panu K.; Qadri, Sami; Ahlholm, Noora; Lallukka-Brück, Susanna; Porthan, Kimmo; Juuti, Anne; Sammalkorpi, Henna; Penttilä, Anne K.; Arola, Johanna; Orho-Melander, Marju; Yki-Järvinen, Hannele (2021)
    Only some individuals with obesity develop liver fibrosis due to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD-fibrosis). We determined whether detailed assessment of lifestyle factors in addition to physical, biochemical and genetic factors helps in identification of these patients. A total of 100 patients with obesity (mean BMI 40.0 +/- 0.6 kg/m(2)) referred for bariatric surgery at the Helsinki University Hospital underwent a liver biopsy to evaluate liver histology. Physical activity was determined by accelerometer recordings and by the Modifiable Activity Questionnaire, diet by the FINRISK Food Frequency Questionnaire, and other lifestyle factors, such as sleep patterns and smoking, by face-to-face interviews. Physical and biochemical parameters and genetic risk score (GRS based on variants in PNPLA3, TM6SF2, MBOAT7 and HSD17B13) were measured. Of all participants 49% had NAFLD-fibrosis. Independent predictors of NAFLD-fibrosis were low moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, high red meat intake, low carbohydrate intake, smoking, HbA(1c), triglycerides and GRS. A model including these factors (areas under the receiver operating characteristics curve (AUROC) 0.90 (95% CI 0.84-0.96)) identified NAFLD-fibrosis significantly more accurately than a model including all but lifestyle factors (AUROC 0.82 (95% CI 0.73-0.91)) or models including lifestyle, physical and biochemical, or genetic factors alone. Assessment of lifestyle parameters in addition to physical, biochemical and genetic factors helps to identify obese patients with NAFLD-fibrosis.
  • Lehtisalo, J.; Lindstrom, J.; Ngandu, T.; Kivipelto, M.; Ahtiluoto, S.; Ilanne-Parikka, P.; Keinanen-Kiukaanniemi, S.; Eriksson, J. G.; Uusitupa, M.; Tuomilehto, J.; Luchsinger, J.; Finnish Diabet Prevention Study DP (2016)
    Objectives: To investigate associations of long-term nutrient intake, physical activity and obesity with later cognitive function among the participants in the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study, in which a lifestyle intervention was successful in diabetes prevention. Design: An active lifestyle intervention phase during middle age (mean duration 4 years) and extended follow-up (additional 9 years) with annual lifestyle measurements, followed by an ancillary cognition assessment. Setting: 5 research centers in Finland. Participants: Of the 522 middle-aged, overweight participants with impaired glucose tolerance recruited to the study, 364 (70%) participated in the cognition assessment (mean age 68 years). Measurements: A cognitive assessment was executed with the CERAD test battery and the Trail Making Test A on average 13 years after baseline. Lifestyle measurements included annual clinical measurements, food records, and exercise questionnaires during both the intervention and follow-up phase. Results: Lower intake of total fat (p=0.021) and saturated fatty acids (p=0.010), and frequent physical activity (p=0.040) during the whole study period were associated with better cognitive performance. Higher BMI (p= 0.012) and waist circumference (p= 0.012) were also associated with worse performance, but weight reduction prior to the cognition assessment predicted worse performance as well (decrease vs. increase, p= 0.008 for BMI and p= 0.002 for waist). Conclusions: Long-term dietary fat intake, BMI, and waist circumference have an inverse association with cognitive function in later life among people with IGT. However, decreases in BMI and waist prior to cognitive assessment are associated with worse cognitive performance, which could be explained by reverse causality.
  • Salmela, Jatta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    Several unhealthy lifestyle factors are associated with increased sickness absence (SA) and their cost. Diet and physical activity are lifestyle factors that can be altered and thus, they may include potential to effect on employer’s cost of SA. This study aimed to estimate the associations of changes in diet and leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) with employer’s direct cost of subsequent short-term (< 10 working days) SA spells. This study is a part of the Helsinki Health Study which is a longitudinal cohort of 40–60-year-old employees of the City of Helsinki in Finland (n = 8960, response rate 67 %). The participants received a phase 1 questionnaire during 2000–02 and a phase 2 questionnaire in 2007. Data from the phase 1 to the phase 2 were used to examine changes in diet and LTPA. Dietary habits were inquired by using a short food frequency questionnaire. Consumption of fruits (F) and vegetables (V) was used as an indicator of healthiness of participants’ diet. Participants’ F&V consumption was classified into three categories both in the phase 1 and 2: those who consumed neither F nor V daily, those who consumed either F or V daily and those who consumed both of them daily. In the question about LTPA, the participants estimated the intensity and the amount of their weekly leisure-time exercise, and based on these, the average weekly MET-hours were calculated. Participants were classified into three categories both in the phase 1 and 2: inactive (< 14 MET-hours/week), moderately active (≥ 14 MET-hours including LTPA with moderate intensity) and active (≥ 14 MET-hours/week including LTPA with vigorous intensity). Data of short-term SA and salaries were received from the employers’ registers between 2008 and 2012. A two-part model was used to analyze the associations between changes in diet and LTPA with the cost of SA. Employees who improved their F&V consumption from non-daily to daily and persevered physically active got 620 € (95 % CI 1194 €, -47 €) lower cost for the employer than those remaining non-daily F&V consumers and physically inactive through the 5-year follow-up, which means 21 % decrease in cost attributable to F&V consumption and LTPA. When examining changes in diet solely, improving or maintaining a greater F&V consumption tended to get lower cost, whereas the highest cost were among those who decreased their F&V consumption from daily to non-daily. No statistically significant results were found, however. Instead, those who persevered physically active (-546 €, 95 % CI -955 €, -137 €) or improved from moderately active to active (-542 €, 95 % CI -1005 €, -78 €) got 19% less cost for the employer than those remaining inactive through the follow-up. Employees who were inactive either in the phase 1 or 2 or continuously inactive got the highest cost for the employer. Improving employees’ diet and LTPA may reduce employer’s direct cost of short-term SA. Though diet had individually no significant associations with cost, improvements in diet may contribute the beneficial associations of LTPA with employer’s cost. To estimate the total cost savings that improvements in diet and LTPA may produce for the employer, all other direct and indirect cost attributable diet and LTPA, such as presenteeism and medical care cost, should also be evaluated.
  • Peltonen, Henna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Background: Preschoolers suffer frequently from infections. Large group sizes and varying hygiene practices may enhance pathogen transmission within preschool settings. Preschool-attributable infections cause economic consequences for society, which is why identifying the related risk factors is of importance. One such may be diet. Appropriate immune defence requires sufficient intakes of energy, protein, polyunsaturated fat, dietary fibre, and numerous micronutrients, whereas excess sugar and saturated fat may be harmful. However, previous nutritional research examining preschoolers’ infections has mainly focused on probiotics. Little research has been done on the role of whole-diet in preschoolers’ susceptibility to infections. Aim: The present study aimed to investigate the associations of dietary patterns with common colds, gastroenteritis, and antibiotic courses among Finnish preschoolers. Methods: The study sample included 721 children aged 3-6 years attending the cross-sectional DAGIS survey. The parents reported retrospectively how many common colds, gastroenteritis, and antibiotic courses their children had experienced during the past year. Children’s food consumption was recorded using a 47-item food frequency questionnaire filled in by the parents. The parents also reported background factors of their children and family. The following three dietary patterns were identified based on the food consumption frequencies using principal component analysis: 1) sweets-and-treats pattern (high loadings of e.g. biscuits, chocolate, and ice cream); 2) health-conscious pattern (high loadings of e.g. nuts, natural yoghurt, and berries); and 3) vegetables-and-processed meats pattern (high loadings of e.g. vegetables, colds cuts, and fruits). Dietary pattern scores were calculated for each child to describe the strength of adherence to each identified dietary pattern. The distributions of the dietary pattern scores were divided into thirds that were labelled low, moderate, and high adherence groups. Negative binomial regression analysis was used to examine the associations between thirds of the dietary pattern scores and the prevalence of common colds and antibiotic courses. Logistic regression analysis was used to investigate the associations between thirds of the dietary pattern scores and a chance of experiencing at least one gastroenteritis. Results: Prevalence of common colds was lower in moderate and high adherences to the sweets-and-treats pattern compared to low adherence (PR=0.89, 95% CI=0.80-1.00; and PR=0.88, 95% CI=0.79-0.99, respectively) and higher in high adherence to the health-conscious pattern compared to low adherence (PR=1.13, 95% CI=1.01-1.27) after adjusting for age, sex, number of children living in the same household, frequency of preschool attendance, probiotic use, and the highest educational level in the family. Moderate adherence to the sweets-and-treats pattern was associated with a lower chance of at least one gastroenteritis (OR=0.63, 95% CI=0.44-0.92) and lower prevalence of antibiotic courses (PR=0.77, 95% CI= 0.59-1.00) compared to low adherence. No significant associations were observed between the vegetables-and-processed meats pattern and the infectious outcomes. Adjustments for the background factors did not modify the associations. Conclusion: The results were unexpected. The associations observed would suggest that favouring unhealthier foods but avoiding healthier foods was linked to better immunity, which is difficult to accept as true. Parents who were most health-conscious of their children’s diet might also have been more conscious of their children’s illness conditions than less health-conscious parents, which may explain the results. Further research with longitudinal designs is needed to determine whether dietary habits play a role in preschoolers’ susceptibility to infections.
  • Lounassalo, Irinja; Hirvensalo, Mirja; Kankaanpaeae, Anna; Tolvanen, Asko; Palomäki, Sanna; Salin, Kasper; Fogelholm, Mikael; Yang, Xiaolin; Pahkala, Katja; Rovio, Suvi; Hutri-Kähönen, Nina; Raitakari, Olli; Tammelin, Tuija H. (2019)
    A physically active lifestyle and a diet rich in vegetables and fruits have a central role in promoting health. This study examined the associations between leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) trajectories and fruit and vegetable consumption (FVC) from childhood to middle age. The data were drawn from the Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study with six age cohorts. Participants were 9 to 18 years (n = 3536; 51% females) at baseline in 1980 and 33 to 48 years at the last follow-up in 2011. LTPA and FVC were self-reported. LTPA trajectories were identified using latent profile analyses, after which the mean differences in FVC across the trajectories were studied. Active, low-active, decreasingly and increasingly active trajectories were identified for both genders. An additional trajectory describing inactivity was identified for females. Those who were persistently active or increased their LTPA had higher FVC at many ages when compared to their inactive or low-active counterparts (p <0.05). In females prior to age 42 and in males prior to age 24, FVC was higher at many ages in those with decreasing activity than in their inactive or low-active counterparts (p <0.05). The development of LTPA and FVC from childhood to middle age seem to occur in tandem.
  • Vuorinen, Anna-Leena; Erkkola, Maijaliisa; Fogelholm, Mikael; Kinnunen, Satu; Saarijärvi, Hannu; Uusitalo, Liisa; Näppilä, Turkka; Nevalainen, Jaakko (2020)
    Background: To date, the evaluation of diet has mostly been based on questionnaires and diaries that have their limitations in terms of being time and resource intensive, and a tendency toward social desirability. Loyalty card data obtained in retailing provides timely and objective information on diet-related behaviors. In Finland, the market is highly concentrated, which provides a unique opportunity to investigate diet through grocery purchases. Objective: The aims of this study were as follows: (1) to investigate and quantify the selection bias in large-scale (n=47,066) loyalty card (LoCard) data and correct the bias by developing weighting schemes and (2) to investigate how the degree of loyalty relates to food purchases. Methods: Members of a loyalty card program from a large retailer in Finland were contacted via email and invited to take part in the study, which involved consenting to the release of their grocery purchase data for research purposes. Participants' sociodemographic background was obtained through a web-based questionnaire and was compared to that of the general Finnish adult population obtained via Statistics Finland. To match the distributions of sociodemographic variables, poststratification weights were constructed by using the raking method. The degree of loyalty was self-estimated on a 5-point rating scale. Results: On comparing our study sample with the general Finnish adult population, in our sample, there were more women (65.25%, 30,696/47,045 vs 51.12%, 2,273,139/4,446,869), individuals with higher education (56.91%, 20,684/36,348 vs 32.21%, 1,432,276/4,446,869), and employed individuals (60.53%, 22,086/36,487 vs 52.35%, 2,327,730/4,446,869). Additionally, in our sample, there was underrepresentation of individuals aged under 30 years (14.44%, 6,791/47,045 vs 18.04%, 802,295/4,446,869) and over 70 years (7.94%, 3,735/47,045 vs 18.20%, 809,317/4,446,869), as well as retired individuals (23.51%, 8,578/36,487 vs 31.82%, 1,414,785/4,446,869). Food purchases differed by the degree of loyalty, with higher shares of vegetable, red meat & processed meat, and fat spread purchases in the higher loyalty groups. Conclusions: Individuals who consented to the use of their loyalty card datafor research purposes tended to diverge from the general Finnish adult population. However, the high volume of data enabled the inclusion of sociodemographically diverse subgroups and successful correction of the differences found in the distributions of sociodemographic variables. In addition, it seems that food purchases differ according to the degree of loyalty, which should be taken into account when researching loyalty card data. Despite the limitations, loyalty card data provide a cost-effective approach to reach large groups of people, including hard-to-reach population subgroups.
  • Vuorio, Alpo; Kovanen, Petri T. (2018)
    This review covers the current knowledge about plant stanol esters as a dietary treatment option for heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (he-FH) children. The current estimation of the prevalence of he-FH is about one out of 200-250 persons. In this autosomal dominant disease, the concentration of plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) is strongly elevated since birth. Quantitative coronary angiography among he-FH patients has revealed that stenosing atherosclerotic plaques start to develop in he-FH males in their twenties and in he-FH females in their thirties, and that the magnitude of the plaque burden predicts future coronary events. The cumulative exposure of coronary arteries to the lifelong LDL-C elevation can be estimated by calculating the LDL-C burden (LDL-C level x years), and it can also be used to demonstrate the usefulness of dietary stanol ester treatment. Thus, when compared with untreated he-FH patients, the LDL-C burden of using statin from the age of 10 is 15% less, and if he-FH patients starts to use dietary stanol from six years onwards and a combination of statin and dietary stanol from 10 years onwards, the LDL-C burden is 21% less compared to non-treated he-FH patients. We consider dietary stanol treatment of he-FH children as a part of the LDL-C-lowering treatment package as safe and cost-effective, and particularly applicable for the family-centered care of the entire he-FH families.
  • Mäkitaipale, Johanna; Sievänen, Harri; Sankari, Satu; Vapaavuori, Outi (2019)
    During the winter time in Finland, sunlight is inadequate for vitamin D synthesis. Many pet rabbits live as house rabbits with limited outdoor access even during summer and may therefore be dependent on dietary sources of vitamin D. The aims of this study were to report the serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations in Finnish pet rabbits and to identify factors that influence vitamin D status. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations from 140 pet rabbits were determined using a vitamin D enzyme immunoassay (EIA) kit. Eleven rabbits were excluded from the statistical analysis because of unclear dietary data. The remaining 129 rabbits were divided into groups depending on outdoor access during summer (no access n = 26, periodic n = 57, regular n = 46) as well as daily diet: little or no hay and commercial rabbit food = 1 dl (n = 35). The range of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration was from 4.5 to 67.5 ng/ml with a mean of 26.1 ng/ml. Statistical general linear model adjusted for weight, age and season indicated that diet was associated with vitamin D concentrations (p = 0.001), but outdoor access during summer was not (p = 0.41). Mean 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration was significantly higher in the rabbits receiving a lot of hay and commercial food >= 1 dl (33.9 +/- 13.2 ng/ml) than in rabbits in other diet groups (24.0 +/- 8.5 ng/ml, 21.7 +/- 8.1 ng/ml, and 22.2 +/- 18.0 ng/ml, respectively). This investigation showed wide variation in 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations among Finnish pet rabbits. Diet remains a main source since outdoor access seems to be too limited to provide adequate vitamin D synthesis for most of them, and the use of vitamin D supplements is rare.
  • Dubois, Lise; Diasparra, Maikol; Bogl, Leonie-Helen; Fontaine-Bisson, Benedicte; Bedard, Brigitte; Tremblay, Richard E.; Kaprio, Jaakko; Boivin, Michel (2016)
    There is a lack of evidence pointing to specific dietary elements related to weight gain and obesity prevention in childhood and adulthood. Dietary intake and obesity are both inherited and culturally transmitted, but most prospective studies on the association between diet and weight status do not take genetics into consideration. The objective of this study was to document the association between dietary intake at 9 years and subsequent Body Mass Index (BMI) in adolescent monozygotic boy and girl twin pairs. This research used data from 152 twin pairs. Dietary data were collected from two 24-hour-recall interviews with a parent and the child aged 9 years. Height and weight were obtained when the twins were aged 9, 12, 13, and 14 years. Intrapair variability analysis was performed to identify dietary elements related to BMI changes in subsequent years. BMI-discordant monozygotic twin pairs were also identified to analyze the dietary constituents that may have generated the discordance. After eliminating potential confounding genetic factors, pre-adolescent boys who ate fewer grain products and fruit and consumed more high-fat meat and milk had higher BMIs during adolescence; pre-adolescent girls who consumed more grain products and high-fat meat and milk had higher BMIs during adolescence. Energy intake (EI) at 9 years was not related to BMI in subsequent years. Our study suggests that messages and interventions directed at obesity prevention could take advantage of sex-specific designs and, eventually, genetic information.
  • Fogelholm, Mikael; Anderssen, Sigmund; Gunnarsdottir, Ingibjorg; Lahti-Koski, Marjaana (2012)
  • Hemida, Manal; Vuori, Kristiina A.; Moore, Robin; Anturaniemi, Johanna; Hielm-Björkman, Anna (2021)
    Background: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is an idiopathic multifactorial disease in humans and dogs, usually assigned to the interactions between genes, gut microbiota, diet, environment, and the immune system. We aimed to investigate the modifiable early life exposures associated with IBD in dogs. Materials and Methods: The study data was extracted from the validated owner-reported DogRisk food frequency questionnaire. This was a cross-sectional questionnaire-based study that tested 21 different early life dietary and environmental, demographic and genetic variables for their association with IBD or not, in adult dogs. A total of 7,015 dogs participated in this study. The study covered early life periods; prenatal, neonatal, early, and late postnatal periods. Two feeding patterns, a non-processed meat-based diet (NPMD) and an ultra-processed carbohydrate-based diet (UPCD) were studied. Data was analyzed using logistic regression analysis with a backward stepwise deletion. Results: From the final models we found that the NPMD during early and late postnatal periods were significantly associated with lower IBD risk later in life. The UPCD during the same periods was associated with a higher risk of IBD incidence. Also, the maternal diet during the neonatal period showed a non-significant trend of lower IBD risk in the offspring with the NPMD and a higher IBD risk with the UPCD. Additionally, the normal body weight of puppies during the first 6 months of age was associated with a lower risk of IBD in adulthood while, slim puppies associated significantly with IBD in adulthood. From the non-modifiable background variables, we identified the maternal history of IBD as the strongest risk factor for later incidence of IBD. Furthermore, male dogs were twice as likely to develop IBD as female dogs were. Conclusions: It is reassuring for owners to know that they themselves can have an impact on their dog's health. A high-fat, low-carbohydrate NPMD exposure during early life, and a normal body condition in puppyhood were significantly associated with less IBD in adult dogs. The opposite was true for UPCD exposure and abnormal body condition score in 6 month old puppies.
  • Westerholm, Fia (Helsingfors universitet, 1995)
    21 hundar som lider av EPI deltog i ett utfodringsexperiment för att man skulleutreda näringssammansättningens inverkan på fettabsorption och avföringens hydrolasaktivitet. Fem hundar deltog dessutom i endoskopisk undersökning och av dem togs biopsier från tunntarmen. Hundarna deltog i fyra utfodringsperioder, av vilka den första var en tvåveckor lång ordinärdietperiod och de tre följande specialdietperioder. Specialdieterna utgjordes av ett med moderat fett- och fiberhalt (i/d), ett med hög fiberhalt(R/d) och ett med hög fetthalt(p/d). I slutet av varje period togs all under ett dygn producerad avföring tillvara och analyserades efter avslutade dietperioder med avseende på amylas-lipasproteas-aktiviteterna i avföringe n. Fettåbsorptionen uträknades i relation till hundens kroppsvikt. För alla specialdietperioder var den genomsnittliga absorptionen lägre än hos friska hundar. Hos friska hundar är fettabsorptionen över 90%, medan våra försökshundar under samtliga dieter hade en absorption under 90% (r/d 83%, i/d85%, p/d 83%). Fettmängden i avföringen i relation till hundens vikt låg församtliga foder över referensvärdet för friska hunda (0.3 g/kg kroppsvikt), samtliga över 0.6 g/kg kroppsvikt. Samtliga enzymaktiviteter nådde sina minsta värden då hundarna utfodrades med r/d (p mindre än 0.05) i relation till övriga dieter. I den histologiska delen deltog fem hundar, hos vilka kunde påvisas en statistiskt signifikant sänknig i antalet lymfocyter i lamina propria med r/d, i jämförelse med p/d. Antalet plasmaceller, som skulle indikera en inflammation, sjöek också då hundarna utfodrades med r/d och var statistiskt signifikant i förhållande till i/d. R/d innehåller cellulosa, som har ansetts binda lipas, liksom övriga fibrer. Denna undersökning skulle tyda på att så inte är fallet. Utfodring med ett foderinnehållande en stor fibermängd minskar eventuellt en inflammatorisk process i tunntarmens slemhinna.
  • Aapio, Fanny (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Food literacy is a noteworthy topic to be studied due to food’s considerable environmental and health effects. When food literacy and its characteristics are known, food literacy can be used as a tool to improve people’s health and the condition of the environment. Thus, this thesis aims to reveal the extent of food literacy among Finnish upper secondary school students. In this context, food literacy emphasises food-related environmental and health knowledge. Environmental knowledge is understanding of the global environmental impact of food. Health knowledge, on the other hand, is the familiarity with the relationship between excessive meat consumption and Finnish common diseases along with beliefs regarding diets and food products as a source of protein. This thesis also aims to identify to what extent does the food literacy differ based on gender, study year and living area. This study was performed as a quantitative sample survey and the data was collected using an online Typeform -questionnaire. The questionnaire reached respondents from many different Finnish localities, mainly from cities. The final data consisted of 1320 individuals and it was analysed using IMB SPSS Statistics 24 software. The following methods were used to analyse data: frequency analysis, an Independent Samples t Test, a One-way ANOVA, and a Post-hoc LSD test. Gender, study year and living area were used as grouping variables to examine the differences between groups. The results show that the students named school as the main source of food literacy. Moreover, the results indicate that awareness regarding food production, dietary health and proteins increase significantly from the first to the third study year. The students acknowledged food production causing environmental problems and that the share of food in the consumer’s climatic impact is considerable. Nevertheless, the students underestimated the climatic impact of cheese and they were unaware of the more specific characteristics of food’s environmental impacts. They also had food-related environmental misconceptions considering packaging, transportation and meat consumption. Moreover, approximately half or more of the students were aware of the connection between excessive meat consumption and the increased risk of distinct common diseases. Most of the students acknowledged a versatile vegetarian diet as being a healthy choice. The study also reveals that female students had notably higher dietary health knowledge than male students. This Master’s thesis study mainly supports the findings of previous studies on food-related knowledge. The results elucidate the extent, characteristics, gaps and misconceptions of students’ food literacy. These findings may be utilized to improve school education on food literacy, alter misconceptions and fill the gaps of knowledge in pursuit of improving the health of people and the condition of the environment.
  • Koponen, Anne M.; Simonsen, Nina; Suominen, Sakari (2019)
    The results of this study showed the importance of autonomous motivation for healthy eating. Autonomous motivation and female gender were the determinants most strongly associated with fruits, vegetables, and berries intake among patients with type 2 diabetes. Other determinants of fruits, vegetables, and berries intake were high education, high social support, high age, and a strong sense of coherence. Autonomous motivation and self-care competence mediated the effect of perceived autonomy support from a physician on fruits, vegetables, and berries intake. Thus, physicians can promote patients' fruits, vegetables, and berries intake by supporting their autonomous motivation and self-care competence. The results are in line with self-determination theory.
  • Punttila, Eliisa (Helsingfors universitet, 2013)
    The aim of this master’s thesis was to quantify the net benefits when 7 % of Finnish adults shift from their average diet to a low carbohydrate diet (VHH), a very low carbohydrate diet (EVHH) or a diet based on Finnish nutrition recommendations (SUOSITUS). The low carbohydrate diets were based on 84 food diaries that were collected by an online survey. The diet shifts were conducted by social cost-benefit-analysis (CBA) including environmental and health impacts in monetary values. The environmental impacts included changes in greenhouse gas emissions and nutrient emissions into Baltic sea while the health impacts included changes in myocardial infarction and stroke incidence related on consumption of fruits and vegetables, and in colorectal cancer incidence related on red and processed meat. The net benefits were quantified also in a scenario when the energy intake in VHH, EVHH and SUOSITUS were lower and the diets lead to 15 kilograms weight reduction and to normal weight. In the weight loss scenario the changes in colorectal cancer and type 2 diabetes incidence related on overweight were included in addition to other impacts. In the non-weight loss scenario when 7 % of Finnish adults shift to VHH, EVHH or SUOSITUS diet, the total net benefits were respectively -3,7 million, -10,8 million and 7,3 million euros per year. The net benefits of environmental impacts dominated: in VHH, EVHH and SUOSITUS cases they were -6,5 million, -12,9 million and 3,3 million euros. The largest difference between diets resulted from consumption of meat and milk products. In weight loss scenario, the net benefits from VHH, EVHH and SUOSITUS cases were 11,2 million, 5,8 million and 20,6 million euros per year and the benefits of reduced incidence of type 2 diabetes dominated: in all cases they were 10,0 million euros. In conclusion, the sift to the diet based on Finnish nutrient recommendations resulted in the highest positive net benefit. The net benefits of sifting to the VHH and EVHH diets were positive only if when these lead to significant weight loss. However, many potential impacts and factors (e.g. saturated fat, dietary fiber) were not included in this study. Further research is needed.
  • Jaakkola, Johanna M.; Pahkala, Katja; Ronnemaa, Tapani; Viikari, Jorma; Niinikoski, Harri; Jokinen, Eero; Lagstrom, Hanna; Jula, Antti; Raitakari, Olli (2017)
    Background: The child-oriented dietary intervention given in the prospective Special Turku Coronary Risk Factor Intervention Project (STRIP) has decreased the intake of saturated fat and lowered serum cholesterol concentration in children from infancy until early adulthood. In this study, we investigated whether the uniquely long-term child-oriented intervention has affected also secondarily parental diet and cardio-metabolic risk factors. Methods: The STRIP study is a longitudinal, randomized infancy-onset atherosclerosis prevention trial continued from the child's age of 8 months to 20 years. The main aim was to modify the child's diet towards reduced intake of saturated fat. Parental dietary intake assessed by a one-day food record and cardio-metabolic risk factors were analysed between the child's ages of 9-19 years. Results: Saturated fat intake of parents in the intervention group was lower [mothers: 12.0 versus 13.9 daily energy (E%), p Conclusions: Child-oriented dietary intervention shifted the dietary fat intakes of parents closer to the recommendations and tended to decrease total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in the intervention mothers. Dietary intervention directed to children benefits also parents.
  • Ghosh, Tarini Shankar; Rampelli, Simone; Jeffery, Ian B.; Santoro, Aurelia; Neto, Marta; Capri, Miriam; Giampieri, Enrico; Jennings, Amy; Candela, Marco; Turroni, Silvia; Zoetendal, Erwin G.; Hermes, Gerben D. A.; Elodie, Caumon; Meunier, Nathalie; Brugere, Corinne Malpuech; Pujos-Guillot, Estelle; Berendsen, Agnes M.; De Groot, Lisette C. P. G. M.; Feskins, Edith J. M.; Kaluza, Joanna; Pietruszka, Barbara; Bielak, Marta Jeruszka; Comte, Blandine; Maijo-Ferre, Monica; Nicoletti, Claudio; De Vos, Willem M.; Fairweather-Tait, Susan; Cassidy, Aedin; Brigidi, Patrizia; Franceschi, Claudio; O'Toole, Paul W. (2020)
    Objective Ageing is accompanied by deterioration of multiple bodily functions and inflammation, which collectively contribute to frailty. We and others have shown that frailty co-varies with alterations in the gut microbiota in a manner accelerated by consumption of a restricted diversity diet. The Mediterranean diet (MedDiet) is associated with health. In the NU-AGE project, we investigated if a 1-year MedDiet intervention could alter the gut microbiota and reduce frailty. Design We profiled the gut microbiota in 612 non-frail or pre-frail subjects across five European countries (UK, France, Netherlands, Italy and Poland) before and after the administration of a 12-month long MedDiet intervention tailored to elderly subjects (NU-AGE diet). Results Adherence to the diet was associated with specific microbiome alterations. Taxa enriched by adherence to the diet were positively associated with several markers of lower frailty and improved cognitive function, and negatively associated with inflammatory markers including C-reactive protein and interleukin-17. Analysis of the inferred microbial metabolite profiles indicated that the diet-modulated microbiome change was associated with an increase in short/branch chained fatty acid production and lower production of secondary bile acids, p-cresols, ethanol and carbon dioxide. Microbiome ecosystem network analysis showed that the bacterial taxa that responded positively to the MedDiet intervention occupy keystone interaction positions, whereas frailty-associated taxa are peripheral in the networks. Conclusion Collectively, our findings support the feasibility of improving the habitual diet to modulate the gut microbiota which in turn has the potential to promote healthier ageing.
  • Sarin, Heikki V.; Pirinen, Eija; Pietiläinen, Kirsi H.; Isola, Ville; Häkkinen, Keijo; Perola, Markus; Hulmi, Juha J. (2021)
    Prolonged periods of energy deficit leading to weight loss induce metabolic adaptations resulting in reduced energy expenditure, but the mechanisms for energy conservation are incompletely understood. We examined 42 healthy athletic females (age 27.5 +/- 4.0 years, body mass index 23.4 +/- 1.7 kg/m(2)) who volunteered into either a group dieting for physique competition (n = 25) or a control group (n = 17). The diet group substantially reduced their energy intake and moderately increased exercise levels to induce loss of fat mass that was regained during a voluntary weight regain period. The control group maintained their typical lifestyle habits and body mass as instructed. From the diet group, fasting blood samples were drawn at baseline (PRE), after 4- to 5-month weight loss (PRE-MID), and after 4- to 5-month weight regain (MID-POST) as well as from the control group at similar intervals. Blood was analyzed to determine leukocyte transcriptome by RNA-Sequencing and serum metabolome by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) platform. The intensive weight loss period induced several metabolic adaptations, including a prominent suppression of transcriptomic signature for mitochondrial OXPHOS and ribosome biogenesis. The upstream regulator analysis suggested that this reprogramming of cellular energy metabolism may be mediated via AMPK/PGC1-alpha signaling and mTOR/eIF2 signaling-dependent pathways. Our findings show for the first time that prolonged energy deprivation induced modulation of mitochondrial metabolism can be observed through minimally invasive measures of leukocyte transcriptome and serum metabolome at systemic level, suggesting that adaptation to energy deficit is broader in humans than previously thought.
  • Lahtinen, Maria; Salmi, Anna-Kaisa (2019)
    A stable isotope investigation of a large Medieval population buried in Iin Hamina, northern Finland, has been used to reconstruct palaeodiet. Iin Hamina is situated approximately 30 km away from the modern city Oulu, in close proximity to the Bothnian Bay coast and the river Ii. The material used in this study is human skeletal material from an Iin Hamina cemetery dated as 15 to 17th centuries AD and animal bones excavated in Northern Ostrobothnia from pre-industrial contexts. Stable isotope analysis of well-preserved collagen indicate that both freshwater and marine fish was the dominant protein source for the people buried at the Iin Hamina cemetery.