Consumer Tips

February 6, 2009
Health problems caused by iron deficiency may go undiagnosed for a long time when more sensitive indicators of iron status are not measured. Ask your doctor for a full panel of iron blood tests if you think you are running low on iron.
Iron deficiency sometimes goes unseen

February 9, 2009
Since only animal foods contain significant amounts of vitamin B-12, people consuming vegan and macrobiotic diets are at risk for B-12 deficiency. Studies on these groups have reported poor B-12 status in as many as 90 percent of the study participants.
Vitamin B-12 deficiency impairs brain

February 21, 2009
Consuming adequate amounts of folic acid is important to overall health. However, taking high dose folic acid supplements can interfere with the timely diagnosis of vitamin B-12 deficiency that is common in older people and strict vegetarians.
Taking folate supplements not for all

February 25, 2009
The fear of getting too much iron in their diet seems to be causing many seniors to get too little iron. The health consequences of both extremes are serious. When making diet changes for health, remember iron is an essential nutrient.
Seniors still need adequate iron for good health

March 12, 2009
Vertigo and dizziness are most often related to inner ear problems or the side effects of drugs. Another possible cause is iron deficiency (even without anemia). If other causes of dizziness are not established, iron status should be thoroughly evaluated.
Lower risk of falling with good nutrition

May 9, 2009
The most common conditions linked to low magnesium intake are high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and osteoporosis. That’s a good reason to include green vegetables, beans, whole grains, and nuts in your daily diet.
Brown rice can provide vital magnesium

July 18, 2009
Because prepared and fast-food products in the U.S. usually do not contain iodized salt, researchers fear that poor iodine nutrition may be causing many health problems.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

August 3, 2009
Modern cases of rickets have occurred when well-intentioned parents fed their infants macrobiotic diets that lacked a dietary source of vitamin D. Particularly for infants and toddlers, milk alternatives should be fortified with vitamin D since this may be the sole source of nutrients for the child.
Rickets makes a comeback

August 4, 2009
It is well known that vitamin D deficiency leads to weakened bones. However, more recent research also links low vitamin D levels to increased risk of many other health problems, including certain types of cancer, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and even diabetes.
Vitamin D can protect against many diseases

August 25, 2009
Inadequate dietary zinc depresses immune function, making a person more vulnerable to infectious diseases. Diets devoid of animal foods tend to increase the risk of zinc deficiency because beans and whole grains contain phytates that inhibit the absorption of zinc.
Think zinc if 20-year-old looks like 10

August 29, 2009
Studies show that thyroid function can be impaired by a nutrient deficiency of iodine, iron, vitamin A, or selenium. Like other parts of the body, the small thyroid gland depends on multiple nutrients from ample amounts of a wide variety of foods in the diet.
Iron plays an important role for the thyroid

August 31, 2009
A diet low in magnesium contributes to several chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, poor blood lipid patterns, and high blood glucose. Consuming a variety of green vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and beans helps to get adequate magnesium.
Brown rice can provide vital magnesium

September 2, 2009
Vitamin B-12 deficiency can seriously damage the nervous system. The risk of B-12 deficiency is greatest for the elderly and vegetarians. Blood tests for levels of methylmalonic acid and homocysteine assist physicians in the evaluation of B-12 status.
Dietary B-12 may not be enough

September 4, 2009
The average adult in the U.S. consumes only 75 to 80 percent of recommended intake for the essential mineral magnesium. Low magnesium intake likely contributes to many chronic ailments. A diet with a wide variety of unprocessed wholesome foods can easily meet magnesium needs.
Brown rice can provide vital magnesium

September 6, 2009
Vitamin D plays important roles in the function of the immune system. If you wear sunscreen, avoid the sun, and/or have dark skin, you are more likely to need sources of vitamin D from food or supplements.
Holiday flu could be caused by a shortage of vitamin D

September 14, 2009
Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms are subtle and are not easily diagnosed. Sixty percent of deficiencies are due to insufficient dietary intake and malabsorption. Taking a preventive B-12 supplement is commonly recommended for those entering their sixth or seventh decades of life.
Remember B-12 for healthy aging

September 27, 2009
It is common knowledge that iodine is essential for normal function of the thyroid gland. Less widely appreciated is the fact that normal iron status also is essential for production of the thyroid hormone.
Iron plays an important role for the thyroid

October 20, 2009
Vitamin D deficiency is making a comeback and the consequences include bone loss, impaired immune function, and even loss of muscle strength. Major food sources are fortified milk, fish, and fortified foods like orange juice with added calcium and vitamin D.
Vitamin D deficiency makes a comeback

October 25, 2009
Iron deficiency is one of the most common and serious nutrition problems in the world. Some types of hair loss are among the many possible effects of iron deficiency.
Iron deficiency sometimes goes unseen

November 19, 2009
Good vitamin D status is important for the immune system and may be especially important during the flu season. When we limit sunshine exposure, it is important to get vitamin D from foods like fatty fish and fortified milk or dietary supplements.
Holiday flu could be caused by a shortage of vitamin D

November 20, 2009
Recommendations to meet daily iron needs assume that the diet includes animal foods. A diet based only on plant foods needs to contain nearly twice as much iron due to limited absorption of iron from plant foods.
Vegetarian diet alone is not panacea for health

December 29, 2009
New research indicates that a variety of emerging health problems may be caused decreased iodine in the U.S. food supply. When you use salt, select the iodized type.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

February 6, 2010
Health problems caused by iron deficiency may go undiagnosed if the deficiency does not produce anemia. This "nonanemic" iron deficiency may have negative effects on brain development during infancy.
Iron deficiency sometimes goes unseen

February 7, 2010
Iodine is an essential nutrient for nerve development in infants and thyroid function at any age. For some people, iodized salt is a major source of this mineral and cutting back on salt can decrease iodine intake.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

March 17, 2010
The classic sign of B-12 deficiency is anemia, causing increased fatigue. B-12 deficiency can also manifest itself as short-term memory problems similar to early Alzheimer's disease. Taking a preventive B-12 supplement is recommended for those entering their sixth or seventh decades of life.
Remember B-12 for healthy aging

August 13, 2010
According to recent research, levels of the essential nutrient iodine have declined in the American diet over the past two decades. As people decrease their intake of iodized salt, it becomes more important to include seafood in the diet on a regular basis.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

September 7, 2010
Vitamin D plays important roles in the function of the immune system. Avoiding sun exposure may benefit skin health, but a lack of sunshine does increase your need for food or dietary supplement sources of vitamin D.
Holiday flu could be caused by a shortage of vitamin D

September 20, 2010
Dehydration can adversely affect many body functions, especially in older adults. Even something as basic as balance can be impaired, leading to an increased risk of falling.
Lower risk of falling with good nutrition

October 8, 2010
Most Americans consume only 75 to 80 % of the magnesium recommended for long term health. Green vegetables, beans, and whole grains (including brown rice), are good food sources of magnesium.
Brown rice can provide vital magnesium

October 19, 2010
Iodized salt is the major source of essential iodine in many people’s diets. When salt is restricted in the diet, alternative sources of iodine need to be included to avoid iodine deficiency and thyroid problems. Food sources include seafood and foods from plants grown near the ocean.
Salt restriction could increase risk of iodine deficiency

October 24, 2010
Pagophagy is the medical term for the drive to consume copious amounts of ice. People with this condition frequently are deficient in iron and correcting the deficiency eliminates the craving.
With this eating disorder, 1 theory does not fit all

November 5, 2010
Too much or too little of some nutrients can change the senses of taste and smell. For example, a deficient or imbalanced intake of iron or zinc can eventually impair normal sensitivity to flavors and odors.
Balanced living keeps senses sharp

November 24, 2010
The most common conditions linked to chronically low magnesium intake include high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and osteoporosis. Spinach, nuts, seeds, beans, and brown rice are all reasonable sources of magnesium.
Brown rice can provide vital magnesium

December 20, 2010
Excessive alcohol consumption increases a person's requirement for thiamin (vitamin B-1). Symptoms associated with B-1 deficiency include: erratic eye movements, staggering gait and deranged mental functions.
B-1 deficiency causes serious health woes

January 4, 2011
January is Thyroid Awareness Month! Thyroid function can be impaired by a dietary deficiency of iodine, iron, selenium, and/or vitamin A. To keep your thyroid in shape, eat a wide variety of foods from all the major food groups.
Iron plays an important role for the thyroid

January 19, 2011
A common condition called Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is often caused by iron deficiency. RLS researchers recommend that serum ferritin, a blood index of body iron stores, be greater than 50 ng/ml.
Iron deficiency might play role in jittery legs

May 3, 2011
If you frequently have an irritation or a cut at the corners of your mouth, your diet might be low in vitamin B-2. Reasonable sources of B-2 (riboflavin) include fortified cereals, milk and other dairy products, almonds, and meats.
Riboflavin works with other vitamins

August 16, 2011
Obesity appears to impair iron status by raising the levels of a hormone called hepcidin. This hormone reduces the body's absorption of iron from the diet.
Obesity may influence blood iron levels

December 11, 2011
Low vitamin D status now has been shown to be more common in obese children than normal weight children and it appears to be associated with increased insulin resistance. Consuming milk, other vitamin D fortified beverages, and fatty fish can increase vitamin D in the diet.
Diabetes, Vitamin D Levels Linked in Heavy Kids

February 10, 2012
Legumes like soybeans contain iron in a form called ferritin. This is the form that the human body uses to store iron. New research indicates that legume ferritin is reasonably well absorbed by the human intestine. However, it is not known how well this form of iron will improve the iron status of an iron deficient individual.
Novel Iron Source: Newly Identified Iron Absorption Mechanism

March 22, 2012
There is growing evidence that sun exposure does not produce adequate amounts of vitamin D for many people. Food and supplemental sources of the vitamin appear to be the best option.
Sun Exposure Not Enough to Correct Vitamin D Deficiency

March 30, 2012
Growing knowledge about our genetic differences should eventually lead to gene-based personalized nutrition recommendations. New research on genetic variations in an enzyme associated with folic acid provides insight on how genetic differences can affect nutrient need.
Genetic Polymorphisms: What Color are Your Eyes?

April 3, 2012
A new report summarizing biochemical indicators of the nutritional status of the U.S. population identifies iodine, iron and vitamin D as the most commonly deficient nutrients.
Some Americans Not Getting Essential Nutrients

May 15, 2012
Correcting specific nutrient inadequacies is known to significantly reduce chronic disease risk. In a recent study, a scientifically designed nutrition bar was shown to improve several biomarkers of chronic disease risk factors in 25 normal healthy adults in just two weeks.
New Nutrition Bar Improves Metabolic Biomarkers Linked to Cardiovascular Disease, Cognitive Decline, and Anti-Oxidant Defenses in Only Two Weeks

June 14, 2012
When vitamin D status is assessed, the blood level of a form of the vitamin called 25-hydroxy vitamin D is measured. Normal liver production of this compound is dependent on iron. Consequently, iron deficiency may promote poor vitamin D status.
Vitamin D requires iron aid, and both are often lacking

September 27, 2012
Although nutritionists often encourage people to meet their nutrient needs from eating a wide variety of wholesome foods, fortified foods have had a very impressive track record of decreasing nutrient-related health problems. For example, fortification of flour with folic acid has substantially reduced the incidence of neural tube defects in infants.
What are the Alternatives to Fortifying Staple Foods?

February 25, 2013
The American Academy of Pediatrics has stressed that iron deficiency, even without anemia, is strongly associated with adverse neurological development in infants and toddlers. A Boston study used a sensitive screening tool for iron deficiency in 8 to 18 month old children. They found that almost half of the children were iron deficient. However, 84 percent of the iron deficient children were not anemic - the most common measure used to assess iron status.
Zinc Marker Spots Kids' Iron Deficiency

March 15, 2013
Iron deficiency is a major factor damaging the health of many women and children around the world. The iron deficient condition can be aggravated by a deficient intake of other nutrients such as vitamins A, B2, B6, B12, E and folate.
Multiple Micronutrient Interactions with Nutritional Anemia

March 18, 2013
It has been shown that smokers require greater amounts of vitamin C than non-smokers. New Danish research indicates that good vitamin D status also is important to reduce the smoking-related cancer risk of smokers.
For Smokers, Low Levels of Vitamin D May Lead to Cancer

March 30, 2013
Young children are especially vulnerable to iron deficiency during the first 5 years of life due to the demands of rapid growth. It has been estimated that 80% of the world's children are iron deficient. Since poor iron status impairs brain development, childhood iron deficiency can have a severe lifelong impact on its victims.
Iron Deficiency Anemia: Children Deserve More

April 11, 2013
Improving iron status in those with iron deficiency can be challenging due to negative gastrointestinal effects of high doses of iron. After 100 days of iron supplementation, iron status of children (3 to 5 years old) improved similarly with doses of 20 or 40 mg per day, however, a weekly dose of 40 mg was much less effective.
What Works Better to Raise Hemoglobin: Weekly Supplementation or Daily Supplementation?

June 30, 2013
A new study indicates that the composition of our intestinal bacterial population can affect vitamin D status. Supplementing 66 people with a Lactobacillus bacteria for 9 weeks increased average vitamin D status significantly compared to a placebo group.
Vitamin D Levels Significantly Increased By Probiotic Lactobacillus Reuteri NCIMB 30242

July 30, 2013
Adding a chunk of iron to various foods during preparation was found to significantly increase iron content. To help make this practice more acceptable to a Cambodian population with very high rates of iron deficiency anemia, the iron "chunks" were made in the form of a "lucky fish."
This Iron Fish Offers Relief From Anemia

September 24, 2013
Changes in the appearance of the tongue and inside of the mouth can be clues of nutrient deficiencies. An ongoing deficient intake of some B vitamins, vitamin C, or iron can cause a variety of signs and symptoms.
Oral and facial signs offer clues to vitamin deficiency

September 24, 2013
Changes in the appearance of the tongue and inside of the mouth can be clues of nutrient deficiencies. An ongoing deficient intake of some B vitamins, vitamin C, or iron can cause a variety of signs and symptoms.
Oral and facial signs offer clues to vitamin deficiency

September 25, 2013
Changes in the appearance of the tongue and inside of the mouth can be clues of nutrient deficiencies. An ongoing deficient intake of some B vitamins, vitamin C, or iron can cause a variety of signs and symptoms.
Oral and facial signs offer clues to vitamin deficiency

October 6, 2013
A study of Peruvian babies found that those borne by iron deficient mothers were able to absorb a greater percentage of the iron from their food than babies of mothers with adequate iron status. However, the babies of iron deficient mothers were shorter and weighed less.
How Iron Status Affects Iron Absorption in Infants

October 9, 2013
Basic research on the effects of zinc deficiency in yeast cells shows that certain proteins fold abnormally which disrupts their normal function. This abnormal protein folding is similar to what is observed in some age-related brain diseases in humans. Understanding this process in yeast cells may lead to research in human cells to see if zinc is involved in brain disease.
Zinc Discovery May Shed Light On Parkinson's, Alzheimer's

November 18, 2013
When the body is deficient in an essential vitamin or mineral, it can influence gene expression and cause the level of specific proteins to decrease or increase. Scientists are using this concept to evaluate nutrient status by measuring the blood levels of specific proteins. This promises to provide a much quicker and less expensive way to evaluate vitamin and mineral status.
New Testing Strategy Detects Population-Wide Vitamin, Mineral Deficiencies

January 16, 2014
Vitamin B12 deficiency is a common problem in older people and those who do not consume animal foods. Probably the best current test for B12 status is measurement of blood levels of methylmalonic acid. Its levels increase as B12 status declines. A new rapid analysis technique will help to make assessment of B12 status simpler and much quicker.
Improved Vitamin B12 Test May Help Young and Old Alike

February 21, 2014
During pregnancy, both vitamin A deficiency and excessive intake can be very damaging to the developing fetus. New results from a study using a mouse model found that vitamin A deficiency during pregnancy caused the offspring to have lung developmental problems that commonly trigger asthma.
Potential link between prenatal vitamin A deficiency and postnatal asthma

February 23, 2014
A new study confirms older research that showed iron deficiency increases platelet aggregation, making the blood more "sticky." This is likely to increase the risk of having a stroke.
Iron deficiency may increase stroke risk through sticky blood

March 2, 2014
Choline is essential for normal function of all cells, including brain cells. The intake of choline by older children, men, women, and pregnant women is far below recommended adequate intake levels. Two of the richest sources of choline are eggs and meat.
Get to know choline's essential role

April 1, 2014
Don't tell villains that dwell on the dark side, but researchers have proposed that the reason that good generally triumphs over evil is because the villains are likely deficient in vitamin D! Honest, this is not just an April Fool's joke, there is a real journal reference for this daily tip.
Hobbit villains hobbled by 'vitamin D deficiency'

September 7, 2014
A study of 1000 infants and toddlers (age 6 to 30 months), in low- to middle-income neighborhoods in New Delhi, reported that more than of two-thirds of the children were anemic. The researchers attributed this to diets that were deficient in iron, folate, and vitamin B12.
Anaemia common in north Indian children: Study

September 11, 2014
Iron deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency, affecting at least two billion people around the world. For many people, the major sources of iron in the diet are grains and legumes. Unfortunately, these foods contain substances that strongly inhibit the absorption of iron by the intestine. Plant breeding that increases iron in these foods also needs to focus on decreasing inhibitors such as phytate.
Are you Familiar with all the Tools to Reduce Prevalence of Iron Deficiency Anemia?

September 19, 2014
Vitamin E Deficiency: It is estimated that at least 90 percent of Americans consume less than the estimated requirement for the average person. The adverse consequences of inadequate vitamin E include increased infection, anemia, stunting of growth, and poor outcomes during pregnancy for both infant and mother.
Vitamin E intake critical during 'the first 1,000 days'

November 10, 2014
Vitamin B12 Status Assessment: New research shows that assessment of vitamin B12 status can be done accurately from finger stick blood drops after the blood has dried. This new technique, that measures methylmalonic acid (an indicator of B12 function), promises to make screening for B12 status much simpler for the clinician.
Simple new test developed to detect vitamin B12 deficiency

November 12, 2014
Compulsive Ice Chewing in Iron Deficiency: Many people with iron deficiency develop pagophagia (compulsive ice chewing). A study of people with iron deficiency anemia found that ice chewing enhanced performance on testing of neuropsychological function. The researchers propose that the cold exposure of ice chewing may trigger increased blood flow to the brain.
Research says ice like ‘coffee’ for people with iron deficiency

December 24, 2014
Nutrition at Conception: Research on people who were conceived during the Dutch Famine (winter of 1944-1945) indicates that the starvation conditions affected the regulation of their DNA expression in a variety of ways. One consequence of this is a tendency to have higher LDL cholesterol levels as adults.
People conceived during the Dutch famine have altered regulation of growth genes

January 20, 2015
Folic Acid Fortification of Flour: Since we started adding folic acid to most refined wheat flour products in 1998, the number of babies born with birth defects affecting the brain and spinal cord (neural tube defects) declined by about 35 percent. Enriched white flour contains much more folic acid than corn or whole wheat flours. If you don't eat white flour products, make sure you have other good sources of folic acid in your diet - leafy greens, lentils, orange juice, and many fortified breakfast cereals.
Folic acid saves 1,300 babies each year from serious birth defects of brain and spine

January 22, 2015
Obesity and Nutrient Deficiency: A large study of over 18,000 adults in the U.S. found that obese people were more likely to have inadequate intakes of key nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, calcium, and magnesium. Since this study estimated nutrient intake from self-reported food intake, it needs to be confirmed with more rigorous study designs.
Hidden Hunger, Micronutrient Inadequacies and Health Consequences in the U.S.

January 26, 2015
Vitamin A and Type 2 Diabetes: Adult mice consuming a vitamin A deficient diet developed high blood glucose that was associated with impaired pancreas function. This study showed that the function of insulin-producing cells in the pancreas is especially dependent on normal vitamin A status. Adequate vitamin A nutrition also may be important in the prevention and treatment of type 2 diabetes people.
Could vitamin A deficiency be a cause of type 2 diabetes?

February 15, 2015
Vitamin D and Cardiovascular Disease: The results of a study on over 2,000 people in Finland, found that those with lower vitamin D status during their child and teen years had greater left carotid artery thickness, an indicator of developing cardiovascular disease. Not meeting nutrient needs, especially during developmental years, can have a life-long impact on health.
Low childhood vitamin D linked to adult atherosclerosis

February 26, 2015
Vitamin D and Diabetes: People with prediabetes or diabetes were found to have lower vitamin D status than those with normal blood sugar control. Despite this association with diabetes, body weight and obesity were unrelated to vitamin D status. More research is needed to see if vitamin D supplementation of diabetics can help their blood glucose control.
Vitamin D deficiency linked more closely to diabetes than obesity

March 9, 2015
Vitamin E Under-consumed: The 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee found that 90 percent of adults in the U.S. do not consume the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) for vitamin E. Theoretically, 50 percent of the population requires more than the EAR, so this level of vitamin E intake is likely contributing to a variety of health problems that include Alzheimer's disease, liver disease, and miscarriages during the first trimester of pregnancy.
Want to Know if Age or Sex affects Vitamin E Inside the Body?

April 3, 2015
Vitamin B12 Deficiency in Elderly: Vitamin B12 status can be difficult to evaluate in older people. Despite normal blood levels of B12, markers of B12 function often still indicate a deficient state. New research reports that this is more likely to occur when a person is experiencing increased oxidative stress.
Wow, Measuring Nutritional Status is Insightful

April 9, 2015
Sodium and Potassium Recommendations: Another study finds that the current recommendations for cutting down sodium and increasing potassium are too extreme. About three out of 1000 people in the U.S. meet these recommendations. One study found that the few people who met potassium recommendations accomplished it mainly by drinking lots of coffee.
Are current dietary guidelines for sodium and potassium reasonable?

April 12, 2015
The metal zinc is an essential nutrient that has 100s of functions in the body. Among other things, zinc deficiency impairs the senses of taste and smell. The best absorbed sources of zinc are meat, poultry, and fish.
Think zinc if 20-year-old looks like 10

April 19, 2015
Hair loss and Nutrition. Hair thinning is sometimes a sign of inadequate iron in the diet. Physicians who specialize in treating hair thinning prefer to see the index of body iron stores (ferritin) at a level greater than 70 ng/ml.
Iron deficiency sometimes goes unseen

April 29, 2015
Sodium, Potassium, and Blood Pressure: A study that followed over 2000 adolescent black and white girls for 10 years found that those with higher levels of potassium in the diet had lower blood pressure. The level of sodium intake, however, had no effect on blood pressure.
Potassium improved blood pressure in teen girls, salt had no adverse effect

May 19, 2015
Vitamin B12 and Cardiovascular Disease: Vitamin B12 deficiency can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Vegetarians often have inadequate vitamin B12 status due to low amounts of the vitamin in their diet. To lower their risk of heart disease, most vegetarians need to take B12 supplements and/or consume B12-fortified foods.
Lack of Vitamin B12 may Increase Heart Disease Risk Among Vegetarians

May 26, 2015
Vitamin E and Muscle: Vitamin E functions as an antioxidant throughout the body. Muscle weakness is one of the major effects of vitamin E deficiency. This appears to be due to vitamin E playing an essential role in muscle cell membrane repair. Consequently, low vitamin E status is likely to impair muscle recovery from exercise.
How vitamin E keeps muscles healthy

May 27, 2015
Blood Donation and Iron Status: Maintaining healthy blood donors requires adequate replacement of iron lost from the body in donated blood. Female donors are at greater risk than men of developing iron deficiency due to having much greater iron needs. For frequent blood donors, it is very difficult to replace iron by diet alone. Iron supplementation is usually required.
Frequent female blood donors often at risk of iron deficiency: study

June 11, 2015
Vitamin D in Pediatric Burn Recovery: The stress of suffering from a severe burn appears to lower vitamin D status and this can persist long after the burn. Even with vitamin D supplementation, 25 percent of pediatric burn patients showed evidence of deficiency one year after the burn.
New research calls for vitamin D supplementation in critically ill pediatric burn patients

June 14, 2015
Importance of Hydration: Summer heat increases water needs. Severe dehydration can lead to a medical emergency. Less severe chronic under-hydration has fewer obvious signs but can lead to problems like kidney stones, blood pressure fluctuations, headaches and intestinal problems.
Summer time is fluid time to stay safe

June 29, 2015
Urine Color and Hydration: Even mild dehydration can affect brain function in adults and children. A new study found that children age 8 to 14 can accurately evaluate their hydration status with a urine color gauge. However, if you use urine color to evaluate your hydration, remember that taking a supplement containing vitamin B2 (riboflavin) can make urine very yellow in color for a few hours even if your hydration status is good.
Researcher Finds Color of Urine to Be Valid Gauge for Hydration in Children

July 10, 2015
Vitamin D: Genetics, skin pigmentation, and sun exposure all affect how much vitamin D you need in your diet and/or supplements. A recent study with vitamin D deficient African Americans found that supplementation with the currently recommended 600 IU per day was not adequate to raise their blood levels of vitamin D (25-OH vitamin D) to the preferred level during a 16-week period of supplementation. Doses of 2000 and 4000 IU did raise blood vitamin D to the preferred level. 4000 IU per day is currently considered to be the tolerable upper intake level for vitamin D.
Vitamin D can be Measured: Has Your 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 been Assayed?

July 19, 2015
Iodine and Foods: Restaurant and fast-food products, as well as many prepared foods in the U.S. do not contain iodized salt. Therefore researchers fear that poor iodine nutrition may be causing or aggravating many of today's health problems.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

July 27, 2015
Iodine and Cardiovascular Health: Iodine deficiency disrupts the normal production of thyroid hormone which affects many body functions. Among the many consequences of iodine deficiency is an increased risk of cardiovascular disease associated with increased blood levels of LDL cholesterol.
Iodine Supplementation Improves Iodine Status and Cardiovascular Disease Markers

August 30, 2015
B12 and Blood Tests: Vitamin B-12 deficiency can seriously damage the nervous system. The risk of B-12 deficiency is greatest for the elderly and vegetarians. Blood tests for levels of methylmalonic acid and homocysteine assist physicians in the evaluation of B-12 status.
Dietary B-12 may not be enough

September 12, 2015
Restless Legs Syndrome: Various nutrient deficiencies may play a role in Restless Legs Syndrome. Iron deficiency is the most likely contributor. Deficiencies of folic acid and vitamin B-12 also may be part of the cause in some people.
Iron deficiency might play role in jittery legs

September 28, 2015
High Folate Rice: Folate deficiency is a major health problem in many parts of the world. A deficiency of this B vitamin seriously damages normal fetal neurological development among a host of other problems. Researchers at Ghent University in Belgium have developed a way to not only increase the folate content of rice, but also to put the folate in a form that does not degrade in storage. This promises to be a very valuable technology to reduce folate deficiency world-wide.
Scientists create rice variety with high folate stability

October 9, 2015
Vitamin E and Metabolic Syndrome: People with metabolic syndrome have excess belly fat, elevated blood pressure, low "good" cholesterol, and high levels of blood glucose and triglycerides. A new study found that people with this syndrome require more vitamin E than people without this syndrome.
Metabolic syndrome leads one in three Americans to need more vitamin E

October 22, 2015
Rice Fortification: Wheat flour is easy to fortify and has been enriched with key vitamins and iron for decades. Enrichment of rice with similar nutrients could benefit many populations that rely primarily on rice as their staple food. However, rice fortification is not as simple. The best technique to reliably provide added nutrients to rice appears to be rice extrusion using a dough made from rice that is mixed with micronutrients and extruded to create a fortified rice-like product. Consumer acceptance of this form of rice may be the challenge.
Rice Fortification: An Option for Countries with Rampant Folate Deficiency?

October 25, 2015
Hair Loss: Iron deficiency is one of the most common and serious nutrition problems in the world. Some types of hair loss are among the many possible effects of iron deficiency.
Iron deficiency sometimes goes unseen

October 28, 2015
B12, Dementia and Stroke: Chronic vitamin B12 deficiency can cause dementia and stroke. The deficiency is common in older people and its diagnosis often is missed by health care providers. Diagnosis of the deficiency is not difficult, but it requires the appropriate blood tests. Treating or preventing B12 deficiency can be accomplished by vitamin B12 injections or daily supplementation.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency and its Contribution to Dementia and Stroke

November 4, 2015
Obesity and Vitamin E Needs: New research indicates that obese people absorb vitamin E less efficiently than those of normal body weight. These results suggest that vitamin E recommendations should be increased for those with obesity.
Obese people need more vitamin E, but actually get less

December 1, 2015
Belly Fat and Vitamin D: A study of over 1000 adults in China found that those with more abdominal (visceral) fat had lower vitamin D status. Vitamin D requirements may be greater in people with more body fat.
Vitamin D Screening Provides Valuable Information

December 15, 2015
Nutrition for Heart and Head: Two new studies separately provide evidence that blood values for two key nutrients are associated with health and optimal function. Low omega-3 fatty acid levels were associated with an increase in heart attacks and low iron status (even mild iron deficiency) impaired various measures of cognitive function.
Suboptimal Omega-3 and Iron Blood Concentrations Affect Performance & Function

February 14, 2016
Iodine Deficiencies: In the U.S., iodized salt has been a major source of the essential nutrient iodine. With the encouragements to cut back on salt, it is important to make sure that people still meet their need for iodine.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

March 14, 2016
Often Forgotten Iron Deficiency Symptoms: Swallowing Difficulty and Fingernails: An interesting case study in an open-access journal shows a classic case of seemingly unrelated signs of potential long-term iron deficiency - difficulty swallowing and flattened or spooned fingernails.
Doctors weren't sure why a woman couldn't swallow until they looked at her nails

April 12, 2016
Plant Food Iron Sources: Because iron deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency in the world, researchers have been working to decrease known inhibitors of iron absorption. Although developing beans with lower amounts of the iron absorption inhibitor phytate showed some promise, the lower phytate beans also caused unacceptable gastrointestinal problems.
Can Biofortification or Reduction of Phytic Acid in Beans Increase Iron Uptake?

April 27, 2016
Vitamin D Deficiency: Darker skin is a human evolutionary adaptation to sunny environments. When dark skin individuals, like most African Americans, live in environments with less sun exposure, vitamin D synthesis can drop to low levels. Low vitamin D status is being linked to alterations in gene expression that might increase the risk of developing cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Vitamin D insufficiency, low rate of DNA methylation in black teens may increase disease risk

April 28, 2016
Hydration: A review of national data on water consumption by researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that the average American is consuming reasonable amounts of water. However, the average water intake by both men and women over age 60 is lower than recommended.
Americans Getting Adequate Water Daily, CDC Finds

May 24, 2016
Vitamin A and the Heart: Using a mouse model, researchers found that eating a vitamin A-deficient diet altered how genes were expressed in heart cells. Vitamin A has many functions and it even appears to play an important role in heart function.
Role of Vitamin A in maintaining a healthy heart

May 26, 2016
Iodine Decline: The trend toward reducing salt intake and switching from common iodized salt to uniodized specialty salts like sea salt, kosher salt, etc. appears to be contributing to a decline in the U.S. consumption of iodine. This reduced iodine intake, along with low iron status contributes to thyroid malfunction.
Iodine and Thyroid Health: Putting 2 and 2 Together

June 3, 2016
Dehydration in Old Age: A common way to evaluate dehydration in young to middle-age adults is to measure the concentration of their urine (osmolality). New research indicates that this measure does not accurately determine hydration status in older people because of common age-related changes in kidney function. Blood tests (osmolality) are much more reliable for assessing hydration status in older people.
Urine tests not reliable for dehydration in older adults

June 13, 2016
Zinc Deficiency: An interesting study conducted with piglets found that just one week with inadequate zinc intake decreased pancreatic production of digestive enzymes and impaired digestion.
A diet lacking in zinc is detrimental to human and animal health

July 30, 2016
Hydration and Blood Pressure: Dehydration can lead to overly low blood pressure and impair both brain function and balance. Drinking enough fluid can especially help older people avoid falls due to dizziness or disorientation.
Lower risk of falling with good nutrition

August 13, 2016
Iodine Deficiency and Decreased Salt: According to recent research, levels of the essential nutrient iodine have declined in the American diet over the past two decades. As people decrease their intake of iodized salt, it becomes more important to include seafood in the diet on a regular basis.
Researchers fear deficiency of iodine intake

September 17, 2016
Magnesium Deficiency and Blood Pressure: Marginal-to-moderate magnesium deficiency may play a role in high blood pressure and conditions associated with inflammatory stress. Boost magnesium in your diet by including green vegetables, beans, and whole grains.
Brown rice can provide vital magnesium

December 5, 2016
Vitamin D and Multiple Sclerosis: Low concentrations of vitamin D in newborn infants are associated with an increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS) later in life. However, some people with normal vitamin D status at birth also developed MS, so it does not appear that vitamin D deficiency at birth causes MS. It may be that other factors associated with low vitamin D status play a role in the causes of MS.
Vitamin D status in newborns and risk of MS in later life

March 31, 2017
Vitamin B1 Deficiency in Infants: In 2004, an infant formula mistakenly lacking vitamin B1 (thiamin) was fed to a number of infants. At the time, some infants died from the mistake. Others developed neurological problems that seemed to resolve when vitamin B1 was replenished in their diets. However, a follow-up study of the surviving children at six years of age found that the deficiency in infancy had long-term negative effects on measures of gross and fine motor function and balance skills.
Infant vitamin B1 deficiency leads to poor motor function and balance

April 15, 2017
Burns and Vitamin E: A recent study of children who suffered from serious burn injury found that the body's vitamin E levels tended to drop to seriously low levels during the first 4 weeks of recovery. It is not known why this extreme physiological stress on the body affects vitamin E status or if other types of stress have similar effect.
Burn injuries rapidly deplete vitamin E

April 20, 2017
Zinc and Heart Health: A new study using piglets as a research model found that relatively short-term zinc deprivation (a few days) triggered a significant increase in oxidative stress in heart muscle. It is not yet clear exactly how this may translate to long term heart health in people. Red meats are among the richest sources of well absorbed zinc.
Zinc supply affects cardiac health

May 16, 2017
Nutrient Deficiency and Animal Behavior: Researchers observed that wild European hamsters living in corn fields were exhibiting strange behaviors, including eating their live young shortly after birth. A laboratory experiment that fed the animals a diet primarily consisting of corn resulted in the same behaviors in the lab setting. It turned out that the abnormal behavior was due to a deficiency of niacin and the animals were suffering from the condition called pellagra in humans.
Wild hamsters raised on corn eat their young alive

June 20, 2017
Iron Deficiency in Young Children: A study with iron deficient children age 9 to 48 months compared a moderate daily dose of the traditional iron sulfate supplement to the same dose of an iron polysaccharide complex supplement that was expected to be more effective. Both supplements improved iron status, however the iron sulfate supplement was more effective and had less side effects. It was thought that the moderate dose of iron used in the study helped to reduce adverse reactions.
Traditional treatment is better for iron-deficiency anemia, clinical trial shows