Peer-Reviewed Scientific Articles​

Animal source foods for the alleviation of double burden of malnutrition in countries undergoing nutrition transition


Journal: Animal Frontiers

Publication Date: 9/2019

Summary: Double burden of undernutrition in children and adults along with high prevalence of obesity-related chronic diseases in adults in developing countries undergoing nutrition transition is an enormous policy challenge. Interventions that promote childhood growth and help maintenance of muscle mass in later life would be the key to tackle the double burden of malnutrition. Animal source foods could have an important role in combating the double burden of malnutrition in low-income countries where diets are predominantly cereal based with very low intakes of animal source foods. In the settings where childhood undernutrition is highly prevalent, affordable animal source foods should be explicitly promoted as a part of guidelines on infant and young child feeding. Nutrition counseling needs to be coupled with enhancing the affordability and access to animal source foods for low-income households through macro- and micro-level policy interventions.

Key Takeaways

Increasing access to affordable animal based foods in areas of undernutrition can promote childhood growth and help with muscle mass maintenance later in life.

Increasing Access to Affordable Animal Foods Can Combat Malnutrition

Can the digestible indispensable amino acid score methodology decrease protein malnutrition


Journal: Animal Frontiers

Publication Date: 9/2019

Summary: The new system for estimating protein quality of human foods, which is called “Digestible Indispensable Amino Acid Score” or DIAAS, allows for calculation of the amino acid quality of food proteins that are based on ileal digestibility rather than total tract digestibility and values for each amino acid may be calculated. By recognizing the pig as an appropriate model for determining DIAAS values in human food proteins, a procedure for the standardized measurement of DIAAS values in a large number of food proteins has been established. Because digestibility values for amino acids in individual food proteins are additive in mixed meals, DIAAS values for mixed meals may be calculated. By comparing DIAAS values of mixed meals to the requirements for digestible indispensable amino acid, the amino adequacy of the meal may be calculated. Animal proteins such as meat and milk have greater DIAAS values than plant proteins, but by complementing plant proteins with low DIAAS values with animal proteins with greater DIAAS values, balanced meals that are adequate in all amino acids can be provided.

Key Takeaways

By utilizing pigs as a model to determine how different sources protein are digested and absorbed in the gut, this study can make more accurate predictions about protein utilization in humans. Meat and milk proteins are more digestible and absorbable than plant proteins.

Animal Protein Sources Are More Digestible And Absorbable Than Plant Proteins

Vitamin D deficiency in mothers, neonates and children


Journal: The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Publication Date: 01/2018

Summary: Vitamin D deficiency mainly occurs if strict vegetarian diet is followed as mostly the source of vitamin D is animal based. Low vitamin D levels results in increased possibility of gestational diabetes among pregnant women, low birth weight and pre-eclampsia in infants, and mothers may suffer bone impairment, osteoporosis, hypocalcaemia, and hypertension. Vitamin D deficiency is directly linked with severe complication in mothers and neonates, causing rickets, poor fetal growth and infantile eczema in neonates.

Key Takeaways

Strict vegan diets can lead to low Vitamin D, which can result in gestational diabetes, low birth weight, and high blood pressure during pregnancy. Mothers can also experience low calcium and osteoporosis. Newborns may also experience rickets, poor growth, and eczema due to Vitamin D deficiency.

Vegan Diets, Vitamin D, and Problems During Pregnancy and Birth

Role of carnitine in the regulation of glucose homeostasis and insulin sensitivity: evidence from in vivo and in vitro studies with carnitine supplementation and carnitine deficiency


Journal: European Journal of Nutrition

Publication Date: 02/2012

Summary: In view of the above mentioned beneficial effect of carnitine supplementation on glucose tolerance during insulin-resistant states, carnitine supplementation might be an effective tool for improvement of glucose utilization in obese type 2 diabetic patients. However, further studies are necessary to explain the conflicting observations from studies dealing with carnitine deficiency.

Key Takeaways

Carnitine is a nutrient only found in meat. When carnitine is supplement may improve blood sugar in obese type 2 diabetics.

Supplementing With Nutrients Found Only In Meat Show Health Benefits

Severe nutritional vitamin deficiency in a breast-fed infant of a vegan mother


Journal: European Journal of Pediatrics

Publication Date: 04/2005

Summary: Case report of severe vitamin deficiency and failure to thrive in a breast fed infant of a vegan mother

Key Takeaways

N of 1 study showing an infant with vitamin deficiencies due to lack of nutrients in vegan mother's breast milk.

Vegan Diet Does Not Supply Children With Adequate Nutrition for Proper Development

Signs of impaired cognitive function in adolescents with marginal cobalamin status


Journal: The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Publication Date: 09/2000

Summary: Data on dietary intake, psychological test performance, and biochemical variables of cobalamin status were collected from 48 adolescents who consumed macrobiotic (vegan type) diets up to the age of 6 y, subsequently followed by lactovegetarian or omnivorous diets, and from 24 subjects (aged 10–18 y) who were fed omnivorous diets from birth onward. Our data suggest that cobalamin deficiency, in the absence of hematologic signs, may lead to impaired cognitive performance in adolescents.

Key Takeaways

Feeding children vegan diets at young ages during crucial developmental periods may cause a decrease in cognitive performance due to Vitamin B12 deficiency.

Children Who Are Fed Vegan Diets Are Less Intelligent

Nutritional vitamin B12 deficiency in a breast-fed infant of a vegan-diet mother


Journal: Clinical Pediatrics

Publication Date: 04/1986

Summary: Case report of breast fed infant of vegetarian mother that developed severe vitamin B12 deficiency

Key Takeaways

Vegetarian diets are low in vitamin B12, and breast feeding mothers who are depleted in this nutrient may cause deficiencies of B12 in their infants.

Infantile B12 Deficiency May Occur If Mother Is On Vegetarian Diet

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