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1.
Nutrients ; 14(11)2022 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1869726

ABSTRACT

Women with low household income and from racial/ethnic minority groups are at elevated risk of food insecurity. Food insecurity during pregnancy is associated with overall less healthy diets, lower intake of the pregnancy-supportive nutrients iron and folate, and significant variations in diet across the course of a month. The goal of this study was to explore the impact of an ongoing $40/month supplement for fruits and vegetables (F&Vs) provided to pregnant people enrolled in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women and Children (WIC). Our primary outcome was food insecurity using the USDA 6-item survey, and our secondary outcome was dietary intake of F&Vs based on the 10-item Dietary Screener Questionnaire. Participants in intervention and comparison counties completed surveys at enrollment and approximately three months later (n = 609). Mean ± SD food insecurity at baseline was 3.67 ± 2.79 and 3.47 ± 2.73 in the intervention and comparison groups, respectively, and the adjusted between-group change from baseline to follow-up in food insecurity was 0.05 [95% CI: -0.35, 0.44] (p > 0.05). F&V intake (in cup equivalents) was 2.56 ± 0.95 and 2.51 ± 0.89 at baseline in the two groups, and the adjusted mean between-group difference in changes from baseline was -0.06 [-0.23, 0.11] (p > 0.05). Recruitment and data collection for this study coincided with the most intensive of America's COVID relief efforts. Our results may indicate that small increases in highly targeted food resources make less of a difference in the context of larger, more general resources being provided to individuals and households in need.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Food Assistance , Child , Diet , Female , Food Security , Food Supply , Fruit , Humans , Minority Groups , Pregnancy , Vegetables
2.
Prev Chronic Dis ; 19: E27, 2022 05 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1865634

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: US school systems underwent major upheaval, including closures, implementation of virtual and/or hybrid learning, and stringent infection mitigation protocols, during the initial phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. We aimed to examine the association between food insecurity and perceived health, perceived stress, and social determinants of health concerns among elementary schoolteachers serving predominantly low-income children during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: Brighter Bites, a nonprofit organization that weekly distributes fresh fruits and vegetables and nutrition education materials to more than 300 schools serving racial and ethnic minority populations with low income, conducts annual surveys of participating teachers to help determine subsequent efforts to support schools and families during the school year. We analyzed self-reported data collected electronically by the Brighter Bites teachers survey in 76 elementary schools during summer 2020. We used generalized linear mixed models to measure the association between food insecurity and health-related concerns. RESULTS: Of 862 teachers who responded to the survey, 685 answered the 2 questions about food insecurity status; of these, 199 (29.1%) reported experiencing food insecurity. Food insecurity was positively associated with poor perceived general health, greater perceived stress, concerns about various social determinants of health, and changes in fruit and vegetable consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic. CONCLUSION: Our study demonstrated the high prevalence of food insecurity and highlights its associated factors among elementary schoolteachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. It calls attention to the high correlation of various concerns among elementary schoolteachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Further intervention and policy efforts are needed to relieve food insecurity-related concerns and enhance well-being among teachers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Food Insecurity , Food Supply , Humans , Minority Groups , Pandemics , Vegetables
3.
Nutrients ; 14(10)2022 May 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1855726

ABSTRACT

Promoting a healthy diet is a relevant strategy for preventing non-communicable diseases. This study aims to evaluate the impact of an innovative tool, the SAlBi educa nutrition app, in primary healthcare dietary counseling to improve dietary profiles as well as adherence to the Mediterranean diet. A multi-center randomized control trial comprising 104 participants was performed. Both control (n = 49) and intervention (n = 55) groups attended four once-weekly sessions focusing on healthy eating habits and physical activity, over one month. As well as attending the meetings, the intervention group used the app, which provides self-monitoring and tailored dietary advice based on the Mediterranean diet model. In a second intervention (one arm trial), the potential of SAlBi educa was evaluated for three months during the COVID-19 pandemic. At 4 weeks, the intervention group had significantly increased their carbohydrate intake (7.7% (95% CI: 0.16 to 15.2)) and decreased their total fat intake (-5.7% (95% CI: -10.4 to -1.15)) compared to the control group. Significant differences were also found for carbohydrates (3.5% (95% CI: -1.0 to 5.8)), total fats (-5.9% (95% CI: -8.9 to -3.0)), fruits and vegetables (266.3 g/day (95% CI: 130.0 to 402.6)), legumes (7.7g/day (95% CI: 0.2 to 15.1)), starchy foods (36.4 g/day (95% CI: 1.1 to 71.7)), red meat (-17.5 g/day (95% CI: -34.0 to -1.1)), and processed meat (-6.6 g/day (95% CI: -13.1 to -0.1)) intakes during the COVID-19 pandemic. SAlBi educa is a useful tool to support nutrition counseling in primary healthcare, including in special situations such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Trial registration: ISRCTN57186362.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Diet, Mediterranean , Mobile Applications , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Nutrients , Pandemics , Pilot Projects , Vegetables
4.
Appetite ; 174: 106047, 2022 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1850648

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to have altered parents' daily feeding practices, including what and how much they feed their children, which may have negative implications for children's weight. The primary aim of this study was to examine patterns of and variation in parents' daily food and beverage offerings at dinner across 10 days during the COVID-19 pandemic using descriptive analysis and non-parametric tests. Ninety-nine parents (Mage = 32.90, SDage = 5.60) of children ages 2-4 years (M = 2.82, SD = 0.78) completed an online baseline survey and 10 daily surveys (929 completed surveys) assessing their daily food and beverage offerings at dinner. On average, parents did not offer recommended foods and beverages on a daily basis; parents offered vegetables and protein most often across the 10 days, however, less than 50% of parents offered the recommended serving size for each group. The intraclass correlations and random sampling plots revealed considerable within-parent variation in food and beverage offerings. Eating dinner as a family, planning dinner in advance, and preparing a homemade dinner were associated with more vegetable and protein offerings, while processed, fast, or fried foods were offered less often when dinner was planned or homemade. Dairy, water, and refined grains were offered more often when dinner was homemade, while whole grains, processed, fast, or fried foods, and sugar-sweetened beverages were offered less often when dinner was homemade. The results provide documentation of parents' daily food and beverage offerings at dinner within the context of COVID-19 and point towards the importance of examining predictors and consequences of parents' daily feeding practices.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adult , Beverages , Child , Child, Preschool , Feeding Behavior , Humans , Meals , Pandemics , Parents , Surveys and Questionnaires , Vegetables
5.
Cad Saude Publica ; 38(4): EN166721, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1841187

ABSTRACT

We analyzed the impact of the efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic on the prices of food sold by a food supply center located in the sixth largest city in Brazil. We examined the percentage change in the prices of 20 types of foods, adjusted by market conditions, using municipal contingency plan stages to compare opening and closing of non-essential services, including bars and restaurants (stage 1: first phase of essential services-only; stage 2: flexibilization; and stage 3: second phase of essential services-only with a "pre-pandemic" period [stage 0]). Log-prices were lower in all contingency stages for leafy greens (variation: 42% to 56%) and vegetables (variation: 28% to 40%). Log-prices of eggs and fruit were 20% and 16% lower during stages 1 and 3, respectively. Strategies to combat the COVID-19 pandemic lowered the prices of eggs, fruit, leafy greens, and vegetables regardless of the market conditions. Accordingly, the supply and demand for fresh and minimally processed foods were affected by the economic crisis and difficulties to access and/or buy perishable foods more often. The impacts of efforts to defeat the pandemic must ensure the human right to adequate food, considering that low prices do not necessarily indicate food security.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Food Supply , Humans , Pandemics , Vegetables
6.
Nutrients ; 14(9)2022 Apr 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1820348

ABSTRACT

Many studies have shown that the immune system requires adequate nutrition to work at an optimal level. Not only do optimized nutritional strategies support the immune system, but they also reduce chronic inflammation. Nutritional supplements that are recommended for patients with critical illnesses are thought to also be effective for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients in the intensive care unit. Some studies have recommended fresh fruits and vegetables, soy, nuts, and antioxidants, such as omega-3 fatty acids, to improve immune system activity. Although nutritional status is considered to be an important prognostic factor for patients with COVID-19, there is to date no sufficient evidence that optimal nutritional therapies can be beneficial for these patients. Some have argued that the COVID-19 pandemic is a good opportunity to test the effectiveness of nutritional intervention for infectious diseases. Many researchers have suggested that testing the proposed nutritional approaches for infectious diseases in the context of a pandemic would be highly informative. The authors of other review papers concluded that it is important to have a diet based on fresh foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and healthy fats (i.e., olive oil and fish oil), and to limit the intake of sugary drinks as well as high-calorie and high-salt foods. In this review, we discuss the clinical significance of functional food ingredients as complementary therapies potentially beneficial for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19. We believe that our review will be helpful to plan and deploy future studies to conclude these potentials against COVID-19, but also to new infectious diseases that may arise in the future.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/prevention & control , Diet , Diet, Fat-Restricted , Humans , Life Style , Nutritional Status , Pandemics/prevention & control , Vegetables
7.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(8)2022 04 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1809865

ABSTRACT

Vegetables constitute a major component of human food security. They are the main sources of essential nutrients including antioxidants, natural dyes, minerals, and vitamins. Eating habit issues related to the consumption of vegetables are gaining importance within the context of a healthy lifestyle, longevity, and physical fitness. Additionally, food quality is of primary importance, and so-called eco-food (defined as food as natural as possible, without fertilizers, pesticides, or preservatives) seems to be the most popular world-trend in healthy nutrition. Keeping these ideas in focus, research on vegetable consumption in Poland in the context of conventional or organic production was performed using online questionnaire surveys. The results revealed that the rate of vegetable consumption depended primarily on economic status, except for the potato, which was a staple cutting across all economic strata. Among the 108 analyzed respondents, 74% bought vegetables from certified organic farms. However, 59% bought organic vegetables "rarely" or "sometimes", and only 15% "often". Next, respondents chose to buy vegetables from fresh food markets (45%) and in local shops (41%). About 20% of the respondents acquired vegetables from their own farms. Among the reasons for choosing vegetables from certified organic farms, respondents mentioned in decreasing order: "desire for proper nutrition" (30%), "thinking that organic vegetables are healthier" (28%), and "organic vegetables are generally better" (7%).


Subject(s)
Feeding Behavior , Vegetables , Diet , Food Security , Fruit , Humans , Organic Agriculture , Poland
8.
Nutrients ; 14(8)2022 Apr 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785849

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus pandemic has acted as a reset on global economies, providing us with the opportunity to build back greener and ensure global warming does not surpass 1.5 °C. It is time for developed nations to commit to red meat reduction targets and shift to plant-based dietary patterns. Transitioning to plant-based diets (PBDs) has the potential to reduce diet-related land use by 76%, diet-related greenhouse gas emissions by 49%, eutrophication by 49%, and green and blue water use by 21% and 14%, respectively, whilst garnering substantial health co-benefits. An extensive body of data from prospective cohort studies and controlled trials supports the implementation of PBDs for obesity and chronic disease prevention. The consumption of diets high in fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, fish, and unsaturated vegetable oils, and low in animal products, refined grains, and added sugars are associated with a lower risk of all-cause mortality. Meat appreciation, health concerns, convenience, and expense are prominent barriers to PBDs. Strategic policy action is required to overcome these barriers and promote the implementation of healthy and sustainable PBDs.


Subject(s)
Diet , Vegetables , Animals , Fruit , Humans , Prospective Studies , Whole Grains
9.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(7)2022 04 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785662

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this communication is to describe the preliminary evaluation of the Virginia Fresh Match (VFM) financial incentive program for fresh fruits and vegetables for Virginia Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program shoppers and to determine if there were differences in incentive outcomes by race. In this cross-sectional study, a questionnaire was administered to shoppers using Virginia Fresh Match incentives at participating farmers markets and community-based food retail outlets. Repeated measures ANOVAs were used to detect differences in fruit and vegetable consumption between demographic groups over time. Chi-square tests were used to determine if there were associations between race and perceived impact of VFM incentives on making food last and the attribution of VFM incentives to changes in fruit and vegetable consumption frequency. Frequency of fruit and vegetable intake was significantly higher during VFM incentive use, with a difference of 1.17 ± 0.07 and 1.07 ± 0.07 on a Likert scale measure, respectively (p ≤ 0.001). There were racial differences in assertions that VFM incentives helped food to last. VFM incentives were effective at increasing fruit and vegetable consumption, but racial differences should be considered in the administration of VFM to avoid reinforcing systems or approaches that may contribute to disparities in food access and food security.


Subject(s)
Fruit , Vegetables , Cross-Sectional Studies , Demography , Motivation , Virginia
10.
BMC Med ; 20(1): 147, 2022 04 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1779648

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In March 2020, the UK implemented the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough) to minimise job losses. Our aim was to investigate associations between furlough and diet, physical activity, and sleep during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We analysed data on 25,092 participants aged 16-66 years from eight UK longitudinal studies. Changes in employment, including being furloughed, were based on employment status before and during the first lockdown. Health behaviours included fruit and vegetable consumption, physical activity, and sleep. Study-specific estimates obtained using modified Poisson regression, adjusting for socio-demographic characteristics and pre-pandemic health and health behaviours, were statistically pooled using random effects meta-analysis. Associations were also stratified by sex, age, and education. RESULTS: Across studies, between 8 and 25% of participants were furloughed. Compared to those who remained working, furloughed workers were slightly less likely to be physically inactive (RR = 0.85; [95% CI 0.75-0.97]; I 2 = 59%) and did not differ overall with respect to low fruit and vegetable consumption or atypical sleep, although findings for sleep were heterogenous (I 2 = 85%). In stratified analyses, furlough was associated with lower fruit and vegetable consumption among males (RR = 1.11; [1.01-1.22]; I 2 = 0%) but not females (RR = 0.84; [0.68-1.04]; I 2 = 65%). Considering changes in quantity, furloughed workers were more likely than those who remained working to report increases in fruit and vegetable consumption, exercise, and hours of sleep. CONCLUSIONS: Those furloughed exhibited similar health behaviours to those who remained in employment during the initial stages of the pandemic. There was little evidence to suggest that adoption of such social protection policies in the post-pandemic recovery period and during future economic crises had adverse effects on population health behaviours.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Diet , Exercise , Fruit , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Sleep , United Kingdom/epidemiology , Vegetables , Young Adult
11.
Front Public Health ; 9: 706151, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1775820

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Neighborhood environment factors are relevant for dietary behaviors, but associations between home neighborhood context and disease prevention behaviors vary depending on the definition of neighborhood. The present study uses a publicly available dataset to examine whether associations between neighborhood socioeconomic status (NSES) and fruit/vegetable (FV) consumption vary when NSES is defined by different neighborhood sizes and shapes. Methods: We analyzed data from 1,736 adults with data in GeoFLASHE, a geospatial extension of the National Cancer Institute's Family Life, Activity, Sun, Health, and Eating Study (FLASHE). We examined correlations of NSES values across neighborhood buffer shapes (circular or street network) and sizes (ranging from 400 to 1,200 m) and ran weighted simple and multivariable regressions modeling frequency of FV consumption by NSES for each neighborhood definition. Regressions were also stratified by gender. Results: NSES measures were highly correlated across various neighborhood buffer definitions. In models adjusted for socio-demographics, circular buffers of all sizes and street buffers 750 m and larger were significantly associated with FV consumption frequency for women only. Conclusion: NSES may be particularly relevant for women's FV consumption, and further research can examine whether these associations are explained by access to food stores, food shopping behavior, and/or psychosocial variables. Although different NSES buffers are highly correlated, researchers should conceptually determine spatial areas a priori.


Subject(s)
Feeding Behavior , Residence Characteristics , Adult , Female , Fruit , Humans , Social Class , Vegetables
12.
J Food Biochem ; 46(3): e13884, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1759204

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS CoV-2) is a lethal virus that causes COVID-19 (Coronavirus disease 2019), the respiratory illness that has caused the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though multiple pharmacological trials are ongoing, there is no proof that any treatment will effectively cure or prevent COVID-19. Currently, COVID-19-infected patients are being managed with non-specific medications to suppress the symptoms and other associated co-morbidities. Nitric oxide is a bio-signaling molecule that has been shown to be effective for treating several viral infections in humans. Household Natural foods rich in nitrites and nitrates (NO donors) have been scientifically proven to have therapeutic benefits against immune-related respiratory tract infections. It was understood that NO could inhibit the early stage of SARS CoV-2 invasion into the human cell. Fruits and vegetables containing nitrites and nitrates have been revised and are now thought to be potential anti-CoV agents for effective control of other associated systemic disorders. The purpose of this review is to highlight some key facts about the treatment and prevention of COVID-19 infection with foods rich in nitric oxide and its donors. PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS: Improving the body's immune system is the early step to be considered as a preventive measure to stop the spreading of COVID-19 infection. Emerging research continues to mount that dietary nitrates/nitrites from plant foods are being healthy as well as keep us away from infectious diseases. They are now incorporated into low-risk adjuvant therapy for various infections and systemic disorders. This concept portrays the regular consuming foods such as fruits and vegetables that are rich in nitric oxide which have the potential to promote health, improve general well-being, and reduce the risk associated with the highly contagious diseases. Hence, we recommend adding nitrates and nitrites-containing food to the regular diet to improve the self-immunity as well as to fight against COVID-19 disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Diet , Health Promotion , Humans , Immune System , Nitric Oxide Donors , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Vegetables
13.
J Nutr ; 151(11): 3413-3420, 2021 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1758780

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Controlled intervention trials are needed to confirm a positive association from epidemiological studies between vegetable consumption and bone health. OBJECTIVE: We investigated whether providing vegetables at the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) recommended amount affects excretion of acid and calcium in urine and bone turnover markers in serum in adults with low vegetable intake. METHODS: In total, 102 adults (19 males and 83 females, age 18-65 y, BMI ≥25 kg/m2) consuming ≤1 serving of vegetables (128 g raw leafy or 64 g cooked vegetables) per d were recruited in a 2-arm, parallel, randomized, controlled, and community-based 8-wk feeding intervention trial. The 2 arms included a vegetable intervention (VI) during which participants received extra vegetables (∼270 g/d) and an attention control (CON) group that conducted only the testing visits. Measurements included nutrient intake, plasma carotenoids, and bone-related markers in serum and urine. Differences between CON and VI at week 8 were tested using the ANCOVA with baseline values as a covariate. RESULTS: Compared with CON, carotenoid intake (mean ± SD) was higher (6.4 ± 3.4 compared with 2.0 ± 1.2 mg/d) (P < 0.01) and dietary potential renal acid load was lower (20 ± 13 compared with 3.4 ± 14 mEq/d) (P < 0.01) in VI. Compared with CON at week 8, urine titratable acid and Mg were 24 and 26% lower, respectively, while urine pH was 3% greater (P < 0.05) and serum C-terminal telopeptide of type I collagen (CTX) was 19% lower in VI. There were no group differences in serum concentrations of propeptide of type 1 procollagen and tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase or urinary excretion of deoxypyridinoline and CTX. CONCLUSIONS: Consumption of vegetables at the DGA-recommended amount by adults with low vegetable intake potentially benefits bone health. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT02585102.


Subject(s)
Bone Resorption , Vegetables , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Biomarkers , Bone Resorption/prevention & control , Diet , Humans , Middle Aged , Obesity , Overweight , Young Adult
14.
J Nutr ; 151(12): 3701-3709, 2021 12 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1713685

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Practical risk reduction strategies are needed to address cardiovascular disease. Beans can decrease LDL cholesterol; however, research into different daily amounts and varieties is warranted. OBJECTIVES: To examine the effects of canned beans (daily rotation of black, navy, pinto, dark red kidney, white kidney) in 1-cup (1CB, 180 g) and ½-cup (½CB, 90 g) daily amounts compared with a 1-cup white rice (WR) control on serum lipid and glycemic biomarkers in adults with elevated LDL cholesterol. METHODS: Adults [n = 73, mean ± SD age: 48.1 ± 14.2 y; BMI (in kg/m2): 25.9 ± 4.22; fasting serum LDL cholesterol: 3.0-5.0 mmol/L] consumed 1CB, ½CB, and WR for 4-wk treatment periods separated by ≥4-wk washouts in a multicenter, randomized, crossover study. Fasting serum LDL cholesterol (primary outcome) and other lipids and glycemic biomarkers (secondary outcomes) were measured on study days 1 and 29 of each treatment period with study day 29 values compared using repeated-measures ANCOVA, including study day 1 values as covariates. RESULTS: Treatment completion was n = 66 for 1CB, n = 68 for ½CB, and n = 64 for WR. Total cholesterol on study day 29 was lower for 1CB (P = 0.04) but not ½CB (P = 0.77) compared with WR (-5.46%, -2.74%, -0.65% changes from study day 1, respectively) and did not differ between 1CB and ½CB (P = 0.17). LDL cholesterol on study day 29 was also lower for 1CB (P = 0.002) but not ½CB (P = 0.30) compared with WR (-8.08%, -3.84%, +0.49% changes from study day 1, respectively) and did not differ between 1CB and ½CB (P = 0.11). Other lipids and glycemic biomarkers did not differ among treatments. CONCLUSIONS: Consumption of 1 cup (180 g) of canned beans of multiple varieties decreased total and LDL cholesterol in adults with elevated LDL cholesterol, supporting a practical strategy for cardiovascular disease risk reduction. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT03830970.


Subject(s)
Cardiovascular Diseases , Vegetables , Adult , Biomarkers , Cardiovascular Diseases/prevention & control , Cholesterol, LDL , Cross-Over Studies , Humans , Middle Aged
15.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(3)2022 Feb 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1686812

ABSTRACT

Flavonols are a subclass of natural flavonoids characterized by a remarkable number of biotechnological applications and health-promoting properties. They attract researchers' attention due to many epidemiological studies supporting their usage. They are phytochemicals commonly present in our diet, being ubiquitous in the plant kingdom and, in particular, relatively very abundant in fruits and vegetables. All these aspects make flavonols candidates of choice for the valorization of products, based on the presence of a remarkable number of different chemical structures, each one characterized by specific chemical features capable of influencing biological targets inside the living organisms in very different manners. In this review, we analyzed the biochemical and physiological characteristics of flavonols focalizing our attention on the most promising compounds to shed some light on their increasing utilization in biotechnological applications in processing industries, as well as their suitable employment to improve the overall wellness of the humankind.


Subject(s)
Diet, Healthy , Flavonols/metabolism , Flavonols/pharmacology , Food Industry , Fruit/chemistry , Functional Food , Humans , Vegetables/chemistry
16.
Nutrients ; 14(3)2022 Jan 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1643630

ABSTRACT

School disruptions during the COVID-19 pandemic were a likely threat to food security and exacerbated risk factors associated with poor nutrition and health outcomes among low-income youth. As part of an ongoing school-based study aimed at improving physical activity and dietary behaviors (the COACHES study), associations between youth-reported food insecurity and dietary intake across the pandemic-affected academic year of 2020-2021 were examined. Middle school students (6th and 7th grade, 94% Black/African-American, 92% free-/reduced-price lunch eligible) answered validated surveys on food insecurity and diet and were measured for height and weight for calculation of weight status during Fall 2020 (n = 88) and Spring 2021 (n = 56). During this time, schools underwent a combination of in-person, hybrid, and remote learning. Nearly half of participants were overweight or obese (47%), and self-reported food insecurity was near 30% at both time points. Less than one-third of youth met fruit and vegetable intake guidelines, and more than half drank two or more sugar-sweetened beverages daily. While controlling for sex, maternal education, and weight status, food insecurity was not significantly associated with fruit and vegetable or sugar-sweetened beverage intake. Independent of weight status, youth were aware of being food insecure, yet it did not have an apparent impact on these food groups of concern. These findings highlight the need for greater understanding of youth perceptions of food insecurity in order to adequately address dietary quality and quantity concerns among children.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Adolescent , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Food Insecurity , Food Supply , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Vegetables
17.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(2)2022 01 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1632943

ABSTRACT

Online grocery shopping has the potential to improve access to food, particularly among low-income households located in urban food deserts and rural communities. The primary aim of this pilot intervention was to test whether a three-armed online grocery trial improved fruit and vegetable (F&V) purchases. Rural and urban adults across seven counties in Kentucky, Maryland, and North Carolina were recruited to participate in an 8-week intervention in fall 2021. A total of 184 adults were enrolled into the following groups: (1) brick-and-mortar "BM" (control participants only received reminders to submit weekly grocery shopping receipts); (2) online-only with no support "O" (participants received weekly reminders to grocery shop online and to submit itemized receipts); and (3) online shopping with intervention nudges "O+I" (participants received nudges three times per week to grocery shop online, meal ideas, recipes, Facebook group support, and weekly reminders to shop online and to submit itemized receipts). On average, reported food spending on F/V by the O+I participants was USD 6.84 more compared to the BM arm. Online shopping with behavioral nudges and nutrition information shows great promise for helping customers in diverse locations to navigate the increasing presence of online grocery shopping platforms and to improve F&V purchases.


Subject(s)
Food Supply , Rural Population , Adult , Consumer Behavior , Habits , Humans , Urban Population , Vegetables
18.
Am J Health Promot ; 36(2): 385-387, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1624918

ABSTRACT

Both global and US data show associations between COVID-19 death rates and overweight or obesity, which are also risk factors for several other outcomes. Evidence suggests that among the strategies to reduce overweight and obesity are the simple actions of increasing fruit and vegetable consumption and physical activity. Potential benefits include saving thousands of lives and billions of dollars in a future pandemic and reduced risk of other chronic conditions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Diet , Fruit , Humans , Overweight/epidemiology , Overweight/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Vegetables
19.
Appetite ; 168: 105743, 2022 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1607686

ABSTRACT

In March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic led to a strict lockdown in France for 2 months, drastically changing the daily life of the population. We investigated changes in perceived diet quality and cooking practices during the lockdown in comparison with the preceding period. Between June 9 and 30, 2020, 2422 participants were recruited and completed a questionnaire regarding the evolution of their overall diet and cooking habits during the lockdown. Descriptive analyses showed that 41.5% of participants described dietary changes with a similar proportion reporting positive or negative changes (22.0% and 19.5%, respectively). The exceptional circumstances of the lockdown provided a positive opportunity for some people to improve their diet quality by spending more time cooking (54.8% of those reporting a positive change) or eating more fresh products, including fruits and vegetables (47.4%). By contrast, other participants reported a decline in their diet quality, mainly caused by poorer dietary choices due to the consumption of comfort food (50.3% of those reporting a negative change), snacking (40.1%), or food supply issues (35.9%). The lockdown led to a massive rise in home cooking with 42.0% of all participants cooking more frequently (vs 7.0% cooking less), as barriers such as time constraints were reduced. Using multivariate analyses, we found that this change in cooking frequency varied among population subgroups, especially in regard to financial situation, as individuals in financial difficulty tended to cook less. As home cooking has already been linked to better diet quality and thus health status, our results suggest that the lockdown increased social health inequalities. An adequate public health response is therefore needed to support nutritionally vulnerable populations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Disease Control , Cooking , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Vegetables
20.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep ; 71(1): 1-9, 2022 Jan 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1606062

ABSTRACT

The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans* advise incorporating more fruits and vegetables into U.S. residents' diets as part of healthy dietary patterns. Adults should consume 1.5-2 cup-equivalents of fruits and 2-3 cup-equivalents of vegetables daily.† A healthy diet supports healthy immune function (1) and helps to prevent obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and some cancers (2); having some of these conditions can predispose persons to more severe illness and death from COVID-19 (3). CDC used the most recent 2019 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance system (BRFSS) data to estimate the percentage of states' adult population who met intake recommendations overall and by sociodemographic characteristics for 49 states and the District of Columbia (DC). Overall, 12.3% of adults met fruit recommendations, ranging from 8.4% in West Virginia to 16.1% in Connecticut, and 10.0% met vegetable recommendations, ranging from 5.6% in Kentucky to 16.0% in Vermont. The prevalence of meeting fruit intake recommendations was highest among Hispanic adults (16.4%) and lowest among males (10.1%); meeting vegetable intake recommendations was highest among adults aged ≥51 years (12.5%) and lowest among those living below or close to the poverty level (income to poverty ratio [IPR] <1.25) (6.8%). Additional policies§ and programs that will increase access to fruits and vegetables in places where U.S. residents live, learn, work, and play, might increase consumption and improve health.


Subject(s)
Diet, Healthy/statistics & numerical data , Fruit , Nutrition Policy , Recommended Dietary Allowances , Vegetables , Adult , Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , United States
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