Fermented Dough Higher in Antioxidants

Nutrition and food scientists at the University of Maryland, led by Professor Liangli Yu, studied the antioxidant activity in whole wheat pizza doughs fermented for different periods and cooked at different temperatures. They found that dough left to ferment for 48 hours had a 130 percent rise in a major wheat antioxidant – and that cooking the pizza for just 7 minutes at 288°C (550° F) resulted in a pie that had the highest oxygen radical absorbing and scavenging capacities.
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2009. DOI:10.1021/jf802083x

Whole Grains and weight control

A team of Dutch researchers led by LPL van de Vijver studied 2078 men and 2159 women aged 55-69 years, and found that higher whole grain consumption was associated with lower BMI and a reduced risk of overweight and obesity. For every additional gram of whole grain consumption, men’s risk dropped 10% and women’s risk dropped 4%.
European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, January 2009; 63, 31–38

Buckwheat Protein Shows Promise For Lowering Blood Glucose

A study from the Jilin Agricultural University in China investigated the blood glucose lowering potential of buckwheat protein, pitting it against a toxic glucose analogue called alloxan. This insidious chemical selectively destroys insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, causing characteristics similar to type 1 diabetes when found in rodents and many other animal species. Different doses of buckwheat protein were administered, and researchers discovered that the blood glucose levels of test subjects were indeed lowered when compared to the control group.
Journal of Jilin Agricultural University, 2009; 31(1):102-4

Whole Grains and Fruits blunt diabetes' impact

Soluble fibers from whole grains and fruits may reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome in people with Type 2 diabetes. That’s the finding of T Steemburgo and a team of researchers in Brazil. Their cross-sectional study of 214 patients seems to indicate that greater consumption of fruits and vegetables may blunt some of the additional risks associated with diabetes.
European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, January 2009; 63, 127–133

Carotenoids abound in Corn food products

Carotenoids are plant pigments that act as antioxidants, and are especially associated with eye health. Scientists at Purdue University studied yellow maize (corn) to better understand the bioavailability of the carotenoids therein.  They found that lutein and zeaxanthin were the major carotenoids, making up about 70% of total carotenoid content. They also found that bioavailability of different carotenoids varied according to the type of foods (breads, extruded corn puffs, porridge).
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. November 12, 2008; 56(21): 9918-26. Epub Oct 21, 2008.

Whole Grains Lower Heart Failure Risk

Whole grain consumption lowers heart failure risk, while eggs and high-fat dairy raise risks. That’s the finding of researchers from the University of Minnesota and the University of North Carolina, who followed more than 14,000 people for over 13 years. “It would be prudent to recommend that those at high risk of HF increase their intake of whole grains and reduce intake of high-fat dairy and eggs,” said lead researcher Jennifer Nettleton, PhD.
Journal of the American Dietetic Association, November 2008; vol 108(11)

Dietary Factors reduce Diabetes Risk

The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) being carried out by researchers around the U.S. and in Norway, has found that eating a “low risk food pattern” including more whole grains, fruits, green leafy vegetables, low-fat diary, and nuts/seeds, was associated with a 15% lower diabetes risk. Researcher Jennifer Nettleton, PhD, stressed that the interplay of a variety of healthy foods likely contributes to the reduced risk.
Diabetes Care, Sept 2008; 31(9):1777-82. Epub June 10, 2008.

Antioxidants High, in Emmer and Einkorn

In Ankara, Turkey, scientists at Hacettepe University’s Department of Food Engineering compared 18 ancients wheats (12 emmer, 6 einkorn) with 2 modern bread wheats, to assess their total phenolics and flavonoids, phenolic acids, lutein, total yellow pigment, and total radical scavenging capacities. Results showed “remarkably higher total antioxidant activity” in emmer varieties, and “quite high levels of lutein” in the einkorn samples. In conclusion, the findings were considered to be key to “breeding wheat varieties for higher concentration and better composition of health-beneficial phytochemicals.”
Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, August 27, 2008; 56(16): 7285-92

Sorghum May Protect Against Diabetes and Insulin Resistance

Advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs) are increasingly implicated in the complications of diabetes. A study from the University of Georgia Neutraceutical Research Libraries showed that sorghum brans with a high phenolic content and high anti-oxidant properties inhibit protein glycation, whereas wheat, rice or oat bran, and low-phenolic sorghum bran did not. These results suggest that “certain varieties of  sorghum bran may affect critical biological processes that are important in diabetes and insulin resistance.”
Phytotherapy Research. 2008 Aug;22(8):1052-6

Western Diet Linked with Greater Mortality

After following 72,113 women for almost twenty years, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health concluded that eating a “prudent” diet rich in vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, fish and poultry may reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease and for overall mortality. The study divided the women into two groups, those eating the “prudent” diet and those consuming a typical “Western” diet with high levels of red meat, processed meat, refined grains, french fries, and sweet or desserts.
Circulation, July 15, 2008; 118(3):230-7. Epublished June 23, 2008.

Rye Porridge More Satisfying for Breakfast

Scientists at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala decided to investigate whether whole grains keep people full and satisfied longer than refined grains – and whether specific types of whole grains are more satisfying than others. Working with 22 healthy adults, they fed their subjects either rye porridge or refined wheat bread for breakfast and then whole wheat pasta or refined wheat pasta for lunch. In both cases, the two options offered equal amounts of energy (calories). They found that the two pastas varied little in their subsequent effects on appetite, but that the rye porridge had “prolonged satiating properties up to 8 hours after consumption, compared to refined wheat bread.” (However, even though the rye breakfast made subjects feel full longer, it did not diminish subsequent food consumption.)
Food & Nutrition Research, 2008; 52. Doi 10.3402/fnr.v52i0.1809. Epub Jul 28.

Organic Wheat Judged Tastier

Scientists at the University of Alberta baked whole wheat bread using the same cultivar of hard red spring wheat grown both conventionally and organically. They then asked 384 consumers to rate the taste – once, with unlabeled samples and no knowledge of the different origins, and again, after the breads had been labeled and the different growing conditions described. Consumers rated the taste of the organic bread higher both in the blind test and the informed test. Their ratings were unaffected by information on the environmental benefits of organic farming, but they liked the organic bread even more after learning of the potential health benefits of organically-grown foods.
Journal of Food Science, May 2008; 73(4): H50-7