The role of dietary components in mitigating inflammation and related health conditions

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Doreen Y. Larvie (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Seth M. Armah

Abstract: Low-grade inflammation is a systemic response to infection and is implicated in a plethora of chronic conditions. This response is exacerbated due to excess production of reactive oxygen species and inflammatory cytokines, which can impair micronutrient status and lead to negative health outcomes. Antioxidant foods/food components including nuts and phytates are potential vehicles for mitigating inflammation and its adverse effects. Yet, data on their effects on health outcomes are scanty. The main aim of this project was to identify antioxidant foods/food components that can reduce inflammation and related health outcomes and improve micronutrient status. To achieve this, we investigated the association between phytate intake and cognition in adults = 60 years using NHANES 2013-2014. Phytate intake was estimated using published data on phytate content of food groups. Regression analysis was used to determine the association between cognitive function scores and phytate intake. We also determined the association between COVID-19 severity and dietary intake among individuals diagnosed with COVID-19. As part of the Nutrition and COVID-19 in North Carolina (NC-NC) study, subjects completed online health and dietary assessment surveys. A COVID-19 severity index (CSI) was developed from reported symptoms. Regression analysis was used to investigate the relationship among COVID-19 severity index (CSI), nutrient intake, and dietary patterns developed using cluster analysis. Lastly, we studied the effect of almond intake on inflammation and iron status in a mouse model of aging. Hepcidin, IL-6, and iron status biomarkers were measured from plasma and tissue samples of aged C57BL/6 mice fed an almond diet (15% calories from almonds) for 13 weeks compared to control mice. Findings from these studies revealed that phytate was positively associated with cognition among adults = 60 years while selenium (Se) intake was inversely associated with CSI among individuals with Se and zinc (Zn) intake below the median. Additionally, among mice fed an almond-supplemented diet, iron status (higher hemoglobin, liver, and spleen iron stores) improved in mice fed an almond-supplemented diet compared to those fed a control diet without almonds. In conclusion, our study showed that antioxidant foods/food components may contribute to improvements in inflammation-related health outcomes.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2022
Anemia of inflammation, Antioxidants, Cognition, COVID-19, Dietary components, Inflammation
Antioxidants $x Health aspects
Inflammation $x Nutritional aspects
Cognition disorders $x Nutritional aspects
COVID-19 (Disease) $x Nutritional aspects

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