High intake of vegetables decreases the risk of type 2 diabetes in Asian women

March 26, 2008

Asian populations are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes (T2D). In this study scientists from Vanderbilt Institute for Medicine and Public Health in Nashville and from research institutes in Shanghai examined the intake of either fruits or vegetables and any protective effect that may lower the incidence of T2D in women. Data was collected on 64,191 women with no history of T2D or other chronic disease at the start of the study. They found that the highest 20% consumption of Vegetables (the top quintile) had a 38% reduced risk of developing T2D. Fruits were not protective. The study is published in the March 2008 issue of The Journal of Nutrition.

The most efficient bone building effects of Vitamin D start only when the level of active Vitamin D in the blood reaches a minimum of 50 nmol/L

Tutorial; The parathyroid glands are four small pea size glands located behind the thyroid gland; the thyroid gland is in the base of the neck below the larynx (voice box). The sole purpose of the parathyroid glands is to regulate the calcium levels in the blood because this mineral is required for nerve and muscle function. These glands release parathyroid hormone (PTH) if the level of calcium in the blood falls too low and PTH acts to raise the blood level primarily by stimulating the breakdown and release of calcium from bone. PTH hormone from the parathyroid glands balances the activity of a second hormone released from the thyroid gland that is called Calcitonin. Calcitonin and PTH to a degree have opposite effects. If there is too much calcium in the blood Calcitonin slows the breakdown of bone and release of calcium but it also decreases calcium absorption from the digestive tract and causes calcium excretion to increase in the urine.
Study; This newly published study was performed in Jakarta and Kuala-Lumpur; very sunny cities where you would expect women to have adequate levels of Vitamin D since its manufacture is a reaction between cholesterol in our skin and sunshine. The study was performed to examine the interaction between Vitamin D, PTH, and Calcium. The researchers from New Zealand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Canada examined blood levels of active Vitamin D and PTH in 504 non-pregnant women between the ages of 18 to 40. Over 60% of the women had an insufficiency of Vitamin D in their serum (less than 50 nmol/L) but less than 1% had an outright deficiency (less than 17.5 nmol/L). Once the level of blood Vitamin D reaches approximately 52 nmol/L according to calculations by the researchers there is no further suppression of PTH (and bone loss) occurring meaning that a woman has to reach at least 50 nmol/L to achieve the best bone building effects associated with Vitamin D intake and a blood level of higher than 52 although needed to fend off other conditions and diseases will likely have no added impact on bone building. Calcium intake did not influence PTH release even at a daily intake of almost 700mg. The study is published online ahead of print in the March 7th, 2008 issue of the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.