Research uncovers the health benefits of whole grains

A study led by the University of Eastern Finland has explored the impact of whole grain-rich diets on the body and concluded that, besides the already understood type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease impact, a diet rich in whole grains is also associated with improved glucose metabolism amongst other health benefits.

The research, reported in Food Navigator, used metabolomic analysis to investigate the effects of a whole-grain rich diet on the body’s metabolites. Speaking of the research, principle investigator of the study Dr Kati Hanhinevasaid “whole grains are one of the healthiest foods there is,” adding that, “up until now, however, we haven’t understood the cellular mechanisms through which a whole grain-rich diet impacts our body.”

The research uncovered that a whole grain-rich diet increased the levels of betaine compounds and that there is a correlation between improved glucose metabolism and increased presence of betaine compounds in the body.

Should universities be encouraging students to improve their diets?

A cross-sectional study looked at the dietary habits of university students in the UK with a view of characterising these dietary patterns and their sociodemographic and lifestyle antecedents.

As published in BioMed Central, the study concluded that while a “substantial proportion of students followed health-promoting diets”, students may benefit from a university policy that promoted student engagement in cooking and food preparation, and increased availability of low-cost healthier food items.
students diets in the UK
The study identified four patterns including that female and older students tend to have healthier diets whilst male students veered towards a diet of convenience food, red meat and alcohol, which could impact on their health long term.

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Alison Astill-Smith author Alison is Director and Founder of Metabolics who writes about Metabolics updates, events and natural healthcare. Her experience and passion for natural supplements and healthcare comes from her years of experience as a practising osteopath, having founded Metabolics in her search for high quality, natural products in her own work. Alison has been a qualified and practising Osteopath since 1981 and regularly gives seminars on a range of healthcare subjects to the wider practitioner community helping share her knowledge and experience. You can find her on Google+ Alison Claire.