Comparison of serum carotenoid responses between women consuming vegetable juice and women consuming raw or cooked vegetables. (1/1434)

The objective of this study was to examine serum concentrations of alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, and beta-cryptoxanthin due to consumption of vegetable juice versus raw or cooked vegetables. Subjects included female breast cancer patients who had undergone surgical resection and who were enrolled in a feasibility study for a trial examining the influence of diet on breast cancer recurrence. A high-vegetable, low-fat diet was the focus of the intervention, and some of the subjects were specifically encouraged to consume vegetable juice. At 12 months, blood samples were collected and analyzed for carotenoid concentrations via high-performance liquid chromatography methodology. Matched analysis and paired t test were conducted on two groups: those who consumed vegetable juice (the juice group) and those who consumed raw or cooked vegetables (no juice group). Serum concentrations of alpha-carotene and lutein were significantly higher in the vegetable juice group than in the raw or cooked vegetable group (P < 0.05 and P = 0.05, respectively). Paired t test analysis did not demonstrate a significant difference in serum values of beta-carotene, lycopene, and beta-cryptoxanthin between subjects consuming juice and those not consuming any juice. These results suggest that alpha-carotene and lutein appear to be more bioavailable in the juice form than in raw or cooked vegetables. Therefore, the food form consumed may contribute to the variability in serum carotenoid response to vegetable and fruit interventions in clinical studies.  (+info)

Serum levels of ochratoxin A in healthy adults in Tuscany: correlation with individual characteristics and between repeat measurements. (2/1434)

Ochratoxin A (OTA), a mycotoxin widely contaminating staple foods and beverages, has been classified as a "possible human carcinogen (Group 2B)" by the IARC. Serum levels of OTA were measured in a group of 138 healthy adults (age, 35-65 years) living in the area surrounding Florence (Tuscany, central Italy) and detected in all but four samples (97%). After the exclusion of one subject with a peak value of 57.2 ng/ml, OTA levels ranged between 0.12 and 2.84 ng/ml, with mean and median values of 0.56 and 0.48 ng/ml, respectively. OTA levels were significantly higher in men than in women (0.64 versus 0.50) and correlated positively with height. A strong association was found with the season in which blood samples were obtained, with summer values higher than autumn values. On the other hand, OTA levels tended to be negatively associated with blood pressure, either systolic or diastolic; no association was evident with age, weight, body mass index, and smoking history. The associations with height and season persisted in a multivariate regression analysis. A subgroup of subjects provided a repeat blood sample approximately 1 year later. The Spearman correlation coefficient between 68 pairs of original and repeat measurements was practically null (r = 0.05). Only two subjects (2.9%) had OTA levels of >1 ng/ml on both occasions. These results suggest that OTA contamination is widespread in foods consumed by this population, in agreement with previous reports from Italy and other countries. A strong seasonal variation, which possibly differs from year to year, was observed. OTA serum levels are a short-term biomarker with a high within-subject variability; therefore they have limited use at the individual level but can be used to characterize populations or subgroups of subjects. Additional analyses are needed to explore the dietary determinants of OTA levels in this population.  (+info)

Enteropathogenic bacteria in faecal swabs of young children fed on lactic acid-fermented cereal gruels. (3/1434)

The influence of consumption of a lactic acid-fermented cereal gruel togwa with pH < or = 4 on the presence of faecal enteric bacteria such as campylobacter, enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC:O157), enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC), salmonella and shigella was evaluated. Under 5 years old healthy children listed in an ascending order of age were alternatively assigned and given either a lactic-acid fermented cereal gruel togwa (test diet) or an unfermented cereal gruel uji (control diet) once a day for 13 consecutive days. The presence of the enteropathogens was examined in rectal swabs collected from the children at baseline (before feeding session started), on days 7 and 13, and additionally 14 days (follow-up day) after the feeding session had stopped. The swabs were cultured on to different optimal media for respective enteropathogen and confirmed by standard microbiological and serological methods. Campylobacter spp. dominated among the enteropathogens (62% out of total) followed by Salmonella spp., ETEC and Shigella spp. Children with isolated enteropathogens in the togwa group was significantly reduced (P < 0.001) from 27.6% at baseline to 7.8, 8.2 and 12.7% on days 7, 13 and follow-up day, respectively. The effect was more pronounced in those children taking togwa > 6 times during the study period. In the control group, there was a slight decrease from 16.7% at baseline to 11.4% on day 7 and 8.1% on day 13. On the follow-up day, enteropathogens were found in 22.6% of the children, which was significantly higher than in those children taking togwa > 6 times. We conclude, that regular consumption of togwa with pH < or = 4, once a day, three times a week may help to control intestinal colonization with potential diarrhoea-causing pathogens in young children.  (+info)

Combinations of intervention treatments resulting in 5-log10-unit reductions in numbers of Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella typhimurium DT104 organisms in apple cider. (4/1434)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently mandated a warning statement on packaged fruit juices not treated to reduce target pathogen populations by 5 log10 units. This study describes combinations of intervention treatments that reduced concentrations of mixtures of Escherichia coli O157:H7 (strains ATCC 43895, C7927, and USDA-FSIS-380-94) or Salmonella typhimurium DT104 (DT104b, U302, and DT104) by 5 log10 units in apple cider with a pH of 3.3, 3.7, and 4.1. Treatments used were short-term storage at 4, 25, or 35 degrees C and/or freeze-thawing (48 h at -20 degrees C; 4 h at 4 degrees C) of cider with or without added organic acids (0.1% lactic acid, sorbic acid [SA], or propionic acid). Treatments more severe than those for S. typhimurium DT104 were always required to destroy E. coli O157:H7. In pH 3.3 apple cider, a 5-log10-unit reduction in E. coli O157:H7 cell numbers was achieved by freeze-thawing or 6-h 35 degrees C treatments. In pH 3.7 cider the 5-log10-unit reduction followed freeze-thawing combined with either 6 h at 4 degrees C, 2 h at 25 degrees C, or 1 h at 35 degrees C or 6 h at 35 degrees C alone. A 5-log10-unit reduction occurred in pH 4.1 cider after the following treatments: 6 h at 35 degrees C plus freeze-thawing, SA plus 12 h at 25 degrees C plus freeze-thawing, SA plus 6 h at 35 degrees C, and SA plus 4 h at 35 degrees C plus freeze-thawing. Yeast and mold counts did not increase significantly (P < 0.05) during the 6-h storage at 35 degrees C. Cider with no added organic acids treated with either 6 h at 35 degrees C, freeze-thawing or their combination was always preferred by consumers over pasteurized cider (P < 0.05). The simple, inexpensive intervention treatments described in the present work could produce safe apple cider without pasteurization and would not require the FDA-mandated warning statement.  (+info)

Growth from spores of nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum in heat-treated vegetable juice. (5/1434)

Unheated spores of nonproteolytic Clostridium botulinum were able to lead to growth in sterile deoxygenated turnip, spring green, helda bean, broccoli, or potato juice, although the probability of growth was low and the time to growth was longer than the time to growth in culture media. With all five vegetable juices tested, the probability of growth increased when spores were inoculated into the juice and then heated for 2 min in a water bath at 80 degrees C. The probability of growth was greater in bean or broccoli juice than in culture media following 10 min of heat treatment in these media. Growth was prevented by heat treatment of spores in vegetable juices or culture media at 80 degrees C for 100 min. We show for the first time that adding heat-treated vegetable juice to culture media can increase the number of heat-damaged spores of C. botulinum that can lead to colony formation.  (+info)

Caffeine content of beverages as consumed. (6/1434)

Quantitative analysis of beverages prepared at home by staff of the Addiction Research Foundation revealed a lower and much more variable caffeine content of both tea and coffee than had been reported in earlier studies, most of which were based on analysis of laboratory-prepared beverages. Median caffeine concentration of 37 home-prepared samples of tea was 27 mg per cup (range, 8 to 91 mg); for 46 coffee samples the median concentration was 74 mg per cup (range, 29 to 176 mg). If tea and coffee as drunk contain less caffeine than generally supposed, the potency of caffeine may be greater than commonly realized, as may the relative caffeine content of certain commercial preparations, including chocolate and colas. The substantial variation in caffeine content emphasizes the need to establish actual caffeine intake in clinical, epidemiologic and experimental investigations of caffeine effects.  (+info)

Teas and other beverages suppress D-galactosamine-induced liver injury in rats. (7/1434)

We compared the effects of various types of beverages (teas, coffee, and cocoa) on D-galactosamine-induced liver injury by measuring plasma alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) activities in 7-wk-old male Wistar rats. The effects of five fractions extracted with different organic solvents from green tea, different types of dietary fibers, and some short chain fatty acids were also investigated. All of the beverages tested significantly suppressed D-galactosamine-induced enhancement of plasma enzyme activities when powdered beverages were added to the diet (30 g/kg) and fed to rats for 2 wk. Plasma ALT activities were 1155 +/- 82 [micromol/(min.L), control], 289 +/- 61 (green tea), 626 +/- 60 (roasted green tea), 471 +/- 84 (puerh tea), 676 +/- 69 (oolon tea), 423 +/- 76 (black tea), 829 +/- 53 (coffee), and 885 +/- 89 (cocoa). The profile of AST activities was similar. The caffeine-containing fraction from green tea had no significant effect, whereas the other four fractions, including the soluble fiber fraction, significantly suppressed liver injury. In addition to tea fibers, many other types of dietary fiber (hemicellulose, chitin, chitosan, alginate, pectin, guar gum, glucomannan, and inulin, but not cellulose) had liver injury-preventive effects when added to the diet (30 g/kg), suggesting that liver injury-prevention may be one of the general effects of dietary fibers. Of three short-chain fatty acids tested (acetate, propionate, and butyrate), only acetate prevented liver injury when added to the diet (15 g/kg), supporting the possibility that the liver injury-preventive effect of dietary fibers may be mediated at least in part by certain organic acids. These results suggest that several beverages possess preventive effects on certain types of liver injury, such as that induced by D-galactosamine, and that different constituents of high and low molecular weights contribute to the liver injury-preventive effects of green tea.  (+info)

Nutrient intake and use of beverages and the risk of kidney stones among male smokers. (8/1434)

High intakes of calcium, potassium, and fluids have been shown to be associated with lowered risk of kidney stones. The authors studied the associations between diet and risk of kidney stones in a cohort of 27,001 Finnish male smokers aged 50-69 years who were initially free of kidney stones. All men participated in the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Lung Cancer Prevention Study and completed a validated dietary questionnaire at baseline. After 5 years of follow-up (1985-1988), 329 men had been diagnosed with kidney stones. After data were controlled for possible confounders, the relative risk of kidney stones for men in the highest quartile of magnesium intake was 0.52 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.32-0.85) as compared with men in the lowest quartile. Intake of fiber was directly associated with risk (relative risk (RR) = 2.06, 95% CI 1.39-3.03). Calcium intake was not associated with the risk of kidney stones. Beer consumption was inversely associated with risk of kidney stones; each bottle of beer consumed per day was estimated to reduce risk by 40% (RR = 0.60, 95% CI 0.47-0.76). In conclusion, the authors observed that magnesium intake and beer consumption were inversely associated and fiber intake was directly associated with risk of kidney stones.  (+info)