Diet and lifestyle, both play a huge role in regulating our health. The modern lifestyle of today leads most people towards unhealthy and irregular eating habits. This may lead to many lifestyle-related and chronic diseases like diabetes, obesity and heart issues. Cardiovascular Diseases (CVD) are most prevalent and cause most of the deaths worldwide. It has become increasingly important to keep a check on food intake and regulate diet. Dietitians and nutritionists may have a hard time analysing one's dietary pattern accurately and their assessment is largely dependent on the patients' response, which is subject to personal perception and also biasness. To make the job of nutritionists easy, a team of researchers at McMaster University has come out with a viable solution.
The study conducted by the researchers found many chemical signatures or metabolites in blood and urine that can precisely reflect eating pattern and dietary intake. This can be of great help, especially for dietitians to develop apt diet targets of their patients.
The team of scientists performed a metabolic phenotyping on 42 healthy participants who took part in the Diet and Gene Intervention (DIGEST) pilot study. Under this, the participants were fed two different kinds of diet for a period of over two weeks. Prudent diet included more fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains, which were rich in proteins and fibers. Modern Western diet included trans fats, processed foods, red meat and sweetened beverages.
“In this work, we sought to identify specific metabolic trajectories in plasma and urine that may serve as responsive biomarkers reflecting short-term changes in habitual diet, which were measured in free-living individuals outside of a dedicated metabolic ward or hospital stay. These dietary biomarkers not only confirmed good adherence to assigned food provisions, but were also associated with healthy eating patterns indicative of a Prudent diet, as compared to a Western diet that increases overall risk for CVD,” reported Philip Britz-McKibbin, a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at McMaster University and lead author of the study, which was a collaboration with Dr. Sonia Anand and colleagues from the Departments of Medicine, and Health Research, Evidence, and Impact.
The finding of the study that was published in the journal ‘Nutrients' addresses a major problem of correctly assessing the dietary status of an individual.
“The advent of high throughput and low cost metabolomics technologies allows for a more accurate assessment of diet exposures applicable to large-scale epidemiological and clinical intervention studies. This is urgently needed to validate the utility of dietary biomarkers in nutritional epidemiology to better guide public health policies for the prevention of cardiometabolic and neurodegenerative disorders that increasingly impact an aging population,” added Prof Philip Britz-McKibbin.