As the new school year begins, families are faced with the usual daily preparations. Questions arise about what lunch choices kids will make and what snacks they’ll consume. Parents of teenagers often assume their children can handle these decisions independently. But are they truly capable? What is the level of food literacy among our youth, and have we adequately prepared them for independence and autonomy? In this context, I came across an article published in August titled “Nutrition literacy status and its association with adherence to the Mediterranean diet, anthropometric parameters, and lifestyle behaviors among early adolescents.”
This study addresses the growing recognition of the importance of food and nutrition literacy, while highlighting the limited research in this field, particularly the gap between research and practice. Existing studies have primarily concentrated on defining and measuring food or nutrition literacy. Although interventions targeting food and nutritional literacy have shown promise in promoting healthy eating, further research is required to identify effective approaches in diverse populations and settings. This study emphasizes the need for additional research to measure intervention program efficacy to enhance the policies and practices in this critical area of public health. These findings underscore the importance of understanding food/nutrition literacy and developing effective interventions to promote healthy eating habits. By bridging the research–practice divide, this study provides valuable insights for policymakers, practitioners, and researchers to address the gaps and improve food/nutrition literacy in various contexts.
Cancer is currently the most common cause of premature mortality in most developed countries and ranks second in terms of global mortality, accounting for 9.6 million deaths in 2018. Moreover, the incidence of cancer is expected to increase as the population ages. Among environmental factors, cumulative lifetime exposure to oxidative damage has been suggested to be involved in both cancer initiation and progression. Diet, a potentially modifiable lifestyle risk factor, may contribute up to 35% of cancer cases, which highlights opportunities for cancer incidence prevention.
The Mediterranean Diet (MedDiet) is a term used to identify a dietary pattern originating
from the unique multi-millennial interplay between natural food resources and the eating practices
of people living in the Mediterranean basin. The majority of MedDiet’s beneficial effects could be primarily related to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties as well as the effectiveness of this dietary pattern in controlling waist circumference and obesity. Moreover, strict, and long-lasting adherence to the MedDiet as well as the beneficial effects of specific components (e.g., olive oil or its polyphenols) seem to emerge as useful insights for interventional improvements. These findings present further insights into the MedDiet’s resources and how it could strengthen overall public health.
As promised, we will maintain the organization of the World Congress every two years. The 3rd World Science & Wine Congress will be from 14 to 16 June 2023 in Vila Nova De Gaia and the Douro region. The topic for this scientific meeting here will be “Sustainability of wine production and food systems in the Mediterranean region”.
7-ketocholesterol and 7β-hydroxycholesterol are two oxysterols mainly formed by the autoxidation of cholesterol. These two molecules are interconvertible via specific enzymes. These two oxysterols are often observed at increased amounts in biological fluids as well as tissues and organs affected during age-related diseases and in diseases of civilization such as cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, and ocular diseases as well as type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Many nutrients present in significant amounts in the Mediterranean diet, especially tocopherols, fatty acids, and polyphenols, have shown cytoprotective activities as well as several Mediterranean oils (argan and olive oils, milk thistle seed oil, and pistacia lentiscus seed oil). Consequently, a nutraceutical approach, rich in nutrients present in the Mediterranean diet, could thus make it possible to counteract certain age-related and civilization diseases associated with increased levels of 7-ketocholesterol and 7β-hydroxycholesterol.
Gut microbiota changes correlate with health status. Literature data on gut microbiota show that all dietary changes can induce the alteration of gut microbiota composition. Mediterranean diet (MD) is associated with a reduction of all-cause mortality and in this review, Giuseppe Merra and collaborators analyzed its interactions with human microbiota. In particular, they explored the modulation of the human microbiota, in response to MD adherence, focusing the attention on polyphenols, polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA)ω-3 and fiber. Evidences suggest that MD is able to modulate the gut microbiota, increasing its diversity. In fact, a Mediterranean-type dietary pattern is associated with specific gut microbiota characteristics. The available evidence, suggests that gut microbiota of subjects that follow a MD is significantly different from subjects that follow a Western diet model.
The aim of this study was to evaluate adherence to the Mediterranean diet (MedDiet) among children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes (T1D) in relation to metabolic control. Adherence to the MedDiet was assessed with the Mediterranean Diet Quality Index (KIDMED) questionnaire and physical activity by the International Physical Activity Questionnaire for Adolescent (IPAQ-A) on 65 subjects (32 males, 9–18 years) with T1D. The promotion of the MedDiet, mainly having a healthy breakfast, is a good strategy to include in the management of T1D to improve glucose and metabolic control. This research is valuable for parents to obtain the best results for their children with T1D.
Mediterranean dietary pattern is more important than that of its individual food groups. On one hand, for some foods, there was not a big difference between the most extreme consumption categories; therefore, the effect of high or low consumption would be more difficult to be observed. As more foods are included, these differences will grow. On the other hand, although we found a significant inverse association between dairy products and COVID-19, the effect of the Mediterranean diet is the combined effect of all its components, which can combine and enhance each other. Undoubtedly, the recommendation of a complete pattern is much more effective than that of isolated foods.
The Mediterranean diet (MD) is becoming a milestone for the prevention of chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Ancel Keys in the 1950’s showed a low mortality rate, particularly for coronary heart disease, among people resident in the Mediterranean area. The MD is characterized by the intake of the high amount of vegetables, fruit, and cereals and regular but moderate consumption of wine, fish, and dairy products, while olive oil is the main source of culinary fat. Therefore, it is principally a plant-based diet rich in polyphenols, a heterogeneous category of compounds with different properties and bioavailabilities. Among polyphenols, anthocyanins have been combined into the human food regime for centuries. They have been utilized as traditional herbal remedies for their ability to treat several conditions, as potent anti-oxidants, anti-diabetic and anti-carcinogenic compounds. This review summarizes our knowledge on the health-enhancing component of the anthocyanins-rich diet.