This lecture, presented by Town Hall Seattle and sponsored by PCC Community Markets, is titled “Ask Marion: The Politics of Food and Nutrition.” It’s at 7:30 pm Seattle time and 10:30 pm New York time. Get tickets here.
Five more industry-funded studies with expected results. Score: 47 to 1
The Inadmissibility of What We Eat in America and NHANES Dietary Data in Nutrition and Obesity Research and the Scientific Formulation of National Dietary Guidelines. Archer E, Pavela G, Lavie CJ. Mayo Clin Proc. 2015 Jul;90(7):911-26. doi: 10.1016/j.mayocp.2015.04.009. Epub 2015 Jun 9.
- Conclusion: we conclude that M-BM [memory-based dietary assessment methods] data cannot be used to inform national dietary guidelines and that the continued funding of M-BMs constitutes an unscientific and major misuse of research resources.
- Funding: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases of the National Institutes of Health.
- Potential Competing Interests: Dr Archer has received honoraria from the International Life Sciences Institute and The Coca Cola Company. Dr Lavie reports receiving consulting fees and speaking fees from The Coca-Cola Company….
- Comment: This is part of what appears to be a concerted effort by Coca-Cola to discredit NHANES, the national survey of dietary intake and disease risk that consistently associates soda intake to poor health.
A high-protein breakfast prevents body fat gain, through reductions in daily intake and hunger, in “Breakfast skipping” adolescents. Heather J. Leidy, Heather A. Hoertel, Steve M. Douglas, Kelly A. Higgins and Rebecca S. Shafer. Obesity. Article first published online: 4 AUG 2015. DOI: 10.1002/oby.21185
- Conclusions: The daily addition of a HP [high-protein] breakfast improved indices of weight management as illustrated by the prevention of body fat gain, voluntary reductions in daily intake, and reductions in daily hunger in breakfast skipping adolescents with overweight/obesity.
- Funding: The Pork Checkoff supplied the funds to complete the study.
- Disclosure: The authors declared no conflict of interest.
- Comment: Industry-funded investigators typically state that funding does not introduce conflicts of interest.
Breakfasts Higher in Protein Increase Postprandial Energy Expenditure, Increase Fat Oxidation, and Reduce Hunger in Overweight Children from 8 to 12 Years of Age. Jamie I Baum, Michelle Gray, and Ashley Binns. J. Nutrition. First published August 12, 2015, doi: 10.3945/jn.115.214551 J. Nutr. jn214551
- Conclusion: This study indicates that breakfast macronutrient composition affects postprandial responses in both NW [normal weight] and OW [overweight] children. A PRO [protein-rich breakfast] increases postprandial EE [energy expendititure] and fat oxidation, reduces hunger, and increases satiety when compared with a carbohydrate-based breakfast.
- Funding: Supported by a grant from the Egg Nutrition Center/American Egg Board, Chicago, IL. The Egg Nutrition Center/American Egg Board was not involved in the design, implementation, analysis, or interpretation of the data.
- Author disclosures: JI Baum, M Gray, and A Binns, no conflicts of interest.
- Comment: These industry-funded investigators also deny that funding introduces conflicts of interest.
The Effect of Breakfast vs. No Breakfast on Brain Activity in Adolescents when Performing Cognitive Tasks, as Assessed by fMRI [functional magnetic resonance imaging]. Jonathan Fulford1, Joanna L Varley2 and Craig A Williams. Nutritional Neuroscience 2015 epub ahead of print.
- Conclusion: Although no statistically significant (P > 0.05) improvement in task performance was determined, significantly higher activation was recorded in the frontal, premotor, and primary visual cortex areas in the breakfast trial relative to the fasting condition…Such a finding may have important implications in the examination of the role of diet, and specifically breakfast, in determining children’s performance within the school environment.
- Funding: A grant was received of £18,678.08 from Kellogg Marketing & Sales Company (UK) Ltd to cover MRI scanning costs. Otherwise the research was conducted with the support of internal institutional funds and the authors received no other direct or indirect support, with no further competing interests.
- Comment: Ordinarily I’m not concerned about food companies’ donating products to be tested but £18,678.08 seems noteworthy, especially since the only point of this study is to demonstrate that breakfast-eaters do better (higher brain activation even though no significant gain in task performance).
Suboptimal Serum α-Tocopherol Concentrations Observed among Younger Adults and Those Depending Exclusively upon Food Sources, NHANES 2003-2006. McBurney MI, Yu EA, Ciappio ED, Bird JK, Eggersdorfer M, Mehta S (2015). PLoS ONE 10(8): e0135510. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0135510
- Conclusion: The prevalence of inadequate vitamin E levels is significantly higher among non-users of dietary supplements…Our findings provide evidence that most Americans have serum α-tocopherol levels below 30 μmol/L. The EAR [Estimated Average Requirement], epidemiological and randomized controlled studies all indicate that maintaining a serum α-tocopherol concentration of 30 μmol/L may have beneficial effects on mortality, cognitive function and reproduction [Note: “may” indicates that what follows is speculative].
- Funding: This statistical analysis of data collected by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)…was supported by DSM Nutritional Products, a manufacturer of vitamin E. MM, EC, JB and ME are employees of DSM Nutritional Products. DSM Nutritional Products provided support in the form of salaries for authors MM, EC, JB, and ME and as an unencumbered gift to Cornell University that was used to support EY as a graduate research assistant.
- Competing interests: This study was supported by DSM Nutritional Products, a manufacturer of vitamins, including vitamin E, for food, dietary supplement, and pharmaceutical use. MM, EC, JB, and ME are employees of DSM Nutritional Products.
- Comment: Inadequate vitamin E in this study is defined as a serum level below a certain cut-point with uncertain clinical significance. According to the Dietary Reference Intakes, clinical signs of vitamin E deficiency have not been observed in healthy populations.
Note: Since mid-March, I have posted 47 industry-funded studies with results favorable to food companies or trade associations, vs. 1 study with unfavorable results.
If you see industry-funded studies with results that must have made the sponsor unhappy, please send.