• Healthy Nordic diet downregulates the expression of genes involved in inflammation in subcutaneous adipose tissue in individuals with features of the metabolic syndrome.

      Kolehmainen, Marjukka; Ulven, Stine M; Paananen, Jussi; de Mello, Vanessa; Schwab, Ursula; Carlberg, Carsten; Myhrstad, Mari; Pihlajamäki, Jussi; Dungner, Elisabeth; Sjölin, Eva; et al. (American Society of Clinical Nutrition, 2015-01)
      Previously, a healthy Nordic diet (ND) has been shown to have beneficial health effects close to those of Mediterranean diets.
    • High dietary intake of saturated fat is associated with reduced semen quality among 701 young Danish men from the general population.

      Jensen, Tina K; Heitmann, Berit L; Jensen, Martin Blomberg; Halldorsson, Thorhallur I; Andersson, Anna-Maria; Skakkebæk, Niels E; Joensen, Ulla N; Lauritsen, Mette P; Christiansen, Peter; Dalgård, Christine; et al. (Amer Soc Nutrition-Asn, 2013-02)
      Saturated fat intake has been associated with both cardiovascular disease and cancer risk, and a newly published study found an association between saturated fat intake and a lower sperm concentration in infertile men.
    • Maternal dietary intakes of refined grains during pregnancy and growth through the first 7 y of life among children born to women with gestational diabetes.

      Zhu, Yeyi; Olsen, Sjurdur F; Mendola, Pauline; Halldorsson, Thorhallur I; Yeung, Edwina H; Granström, Charlotta; Bjerregaard, Anne A; Wu, Jing; Rawal, Shristi; Chavarro, Jorge E; et al. (American Society of Nutrition -ASN, 2017-07)
      Background: Refined grains, a major source of dietary carbohydrates, have been related to impaired glucose homeostasis and obesity. Emerging animal data suggest that in utero exposure to dietary refined carbohydrates may predispose offspring to an obese phenotype, indicating a potential role for nutritional programming in the early origins of obesity, but intergenerational human data are lacking.Objective: We prospectively investigated refined-grain intake during pregnancy in association with offspring growth through age 7 y among high-risk children born to women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).Design: The analysis included 918 mother-singleton child dyads from the Danish National Birth Cohort. Offspring body mass index z scores (BMIZs) were calculated by using weight and length or height measured at birth, 5 and 12 mo, and 7 y. Overweight or obesity was defined by WHO cutoffs. Linear and Poisson regressions were used, with adjustment for maternal demographic, lifestyle, and dietary factors.Results: Refined-grain intake during pregnancy was positively associated with offspring BMIZ (adjusted β per serving increase per day: 0.09; 95% CI: 0.02, 0.15) and risk of overweight or obesity at age 7 y [adjusted RR (aRR) comparing the highest with the lowest quartile: 1.80; 95% CI: 1.09, 2.98; P-trend = 0.032]. The association appeared to be more pronounced among children who were breastfed <6 mo. The substitution of 1 serving refined grains/d with an equal serving of whole grains during pregnancy was related to a 10% reduced risk of offspring overweight or obesity at 7 y of age (aRR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.82, 0.98). No associations were observed between refined-grain intake and infant growth.Conclusions: Higher maternal refined-grain intake during pregnancy was significantly related to a greater BMIZ and a higher risk of overweight or obesity at age 7 y among children born after pregnancies complicated by GDM. The findings highlight pregnancy as a potential window of susceptibility associated with offspring growth and obesity risk among this high-risk population. Data with longer follow-up are warranted.
    • Maternal protein intake during pregnancy and offspring overweight 20 y later.

      Maslova, Ekaterina; Rytter, Dorte; Bech, Bodil H; Henriksen, Tine B; Rasmussen, Morten A; Olsen, Sjurdur F; Halldorsson, Thorhallur I; Centre for Fetal Programming, Department of Epidemiology Research, Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark (EM, SFO, and TIH); the Section for Epidemiology, Department of Public Health, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark (DR and BHB); the Department of Pediatrics, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Denmark (TBH); the Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen, Frederiksberg, Denmark (MAR); the Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA (SFO); the Faculty of Food Science and Nutrition, School of Health Sciences, University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland (TIH); and the Unit for Nutrition Research, Landspitali University Hospital, Reykjavik, Iceland (TIH). (American Society of Clinical Nutrition, 2014-08-06)
      Animal studies have shown that protein intake in pregnancy may influence offspring fat metabolism and adiposity. The macronutrient ratio in human pregnancy appears to be important for offspring glucose tolerance; however, less is known about the influence on offspring adiposity.
    • Maternal protein intake in pregnancy and offspring metabolic health at age 9-16 y: results from a Danish cohort of gestational diabetes mellitus pregnancies and controls.

      Maslova, Ekaterina; Hansen, Susanne; Grunnet, Louise Groth; Strøm, Marin; Bjerregaard, Anne Ahrendt; Hjort, Line; Kampmann, Freja Bach; Madsen, Camilla Møller; Baun Thuesen, A C; Bech, Bodil Hammer; et al. (Bethesda, MD : American Society of Clinical Nutrition, 2017-08)
      Background: Recent years have seen strong tendencies toward high-protein diets. However, the implications of higher protein intake, especially during developmentally sensitive periods, are poorly understood. Conversely, evidence on the long-term developmental consequences of low protein intake in free-living populations remains limited.Objective: We examined the association of protein intake in pregnancy with offspring metabolic health at age 9-16 y in a longitudinal cohort that oversampled pregnancies with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).Design: Six hundred eight women with an index pregnancy affected by gestational diabetes mellitus and 626 controls enrolled in the Danish National Birth Cohort were used for the analysis. Protein (total, animal, vegetable) intake was assessed by using a food-frequency questionnaire in gestational week 25. The offspring underwent a clinical examination including fasting blood samples and a dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scan (subset of 650) from which metabolic outcomes were derived. Multivariable analyses were conducted applying a 1:1 substitution of carbohydrates for protein.Results: The mean ± SD protein intake in pregnancy was 93 ± 15 g/d (16% ± 3% of energy) in GDM-exposed women and 90 ± 14 g/d (16% ± 2% of energy) in control women. There were overall no associations between maternal protein intake and offspring fasting insulin and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). We found that maternal total protein intake was associated with a tendency for a higher abdominal fat mass percentage (quartile 4 compared with quartile 1: 0.40 SD; 95% CI: -0.03, 0.83 SD; P = 0.07) in GDM-exposed offspring and a tendency for a higher total fat mass percentage among male offspring (quartile 4 compared with quartile 1: 0.33 SD; 95% CI: -0.01, 0.66 SD; P = 0.06), but a small sample size may have compromised the precision of the effect estimates. GDM-exposed offspring of mothers with a protein intake in the lowest decile (≤12.5% of energy compared with >12.5% of energy) had lower fasting insulin (ratio of geometric means: 0.82; 95% CI: 0.68, 0.99; P = 0.04) and a tendency toward lower HOMA-IR (ratio of geometric means: 0.82; 95% CI: 0.66, 1.02; P = 0.07), but there was no evidence of associations with body composition. Male offspring seemed to derive a similar benefit from a maternal low protein intake as did GDM-exposed offspring.Conclusions: Overall, our results provide little support for an association of maternal protein intake in pregnancy with measures of offspring metabolic health. Further studies in larger cohorts are needed to determine whether low maternal protein intake in pregnancy may improve glucose homeostasis in GDM-exposed and male offspring.
    • Quantitative assessment of betainized compounds and associations with dietary and metabolic biomarkers in the randomized study of the healthy Nordic diet (SYSDIET).

      Tuomainen, Marjo; Kärkkäinen, Olli; Leppänen, Jukka; Auriola, Seppo; Lehtonen, Marko; Savolainen, Markku J; Hermansen, Kjeld; Risérus, Ulf; Åkesson, Björn; Thorsdottir, Inga; et al. (2019-08-28)
      Background: Recently, a group of betainized compounds have been suggested to play a role in health effects in relation to a whole-grain-rich diet. Objectives: The aims of this study were to develop a quantitative mass spectrometric method for selected betainized compounds in human plasma, and to investigate their association with nutrient intake and measures of metabolic health in participants of the SYSDIET study. Methods: The SYSDIET study was a controlled randomized intervention including individuals with metabolic syndrome, where the healthy Nordic diet (HND) group increased intakes of whole grains, canola oil, berries, and fish, whereas the control diet (CD) group consumed low-fiber cereal products, milk fat, and restricted amounts of fish and berries. A quantitative LC combined with triple quadrupole MS method for betainized compounds was developed and applied to fasting plasma samples from baseline (week 0) and the end of the intervention (week 18 or 24). Concentrations of betainized compounds were correlated with intakes of selected nutrients and fiber and measures of metabolic health. Results: Pipecolic acid betaine (PAB) concentrations were significantly higher in the HND group than in the CD group (P = 0.00032) at the end of the intervention and correlated directly (P < 0.0001) with intakes of dietary fiber (r = 0.376) and a biomarker related to whole-grain rye intake, namely the ratio of alkylresorcinol C17:0 to C21:0 (r = 0.442). PAB was associated inversely with fasting plasma insulin consistently at the beginning and at the end of the intervention (P < 0.001, r = -0.300; P < 0.01, r = -0.250, respectively), as well as IL-1 receptor antagonist (P < 0.01, r = -0.232 at the beginning; P < 0.01, r = -0.236 at the end) and serum LDL/HDL cholesterol (P < 0.01, r = -0.239 at the beginning; P < 0.01, r = -0.241 at the end). Conclusions: Among adults with the metabolic syndrome, PAB plasma concentrations were associated with fasting insulin, inflammation, and lipids and were significantly increased with adoption of the HND. Further studies are needed to clarify the biological functions of betainized compounds. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT00992641.