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Examining the Utility of a Laser Device for Measuring Height in Free-Living Adults and Children

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Background: Height is an important health assessment measure with many applications. In the medical practice and in research settings, height is typically measured with a stadiometer. Although lasers are commonly used by health professionals for measurement including facial imaging, corneal

Background: Height is an important health assessment measure with many applications. In the medical practice and in research settings, height is typically measured with a stadiometer. Although lasers are commonly used by health professionals for measurement including facial imaging, corneal thickness, and limb length, it has not been utilized for measuring height. The purpose of this feasibility study was to examine the ease and accuracy of a laser device for measuring height in children and adults.

Findings: In immediate succession, participant height was measured in triplicate using a stadiometer followed by the laser device. Measurement error for the laser device was significantly higher than that for the stadiometer (0.35 and 0.20 cm respectively). However, the measurement techniques were highly correlated (r2 = 0.998 and 0.990 for the younger [<12 y, n = 25] and older [≥12 y, n = 100] participants respectively), and the estimated reliability between measurement techniques was 0.999 (ICC; 95 % CI: 0.998,1.000) and 0.995 (ICC; 95 % CI: 0.993,0.997) for the younger and older groups respectively. The average differences between the two styles of measurement (e.g., stadiometer minus laser) were significantly different from zero: +0.93 and +0.45 cm for the younger and older groups respectively.

Conclusions: These data demonstrate that laser technology can be adapted to measure height in children and adults. Although refinement is needed, the laser device for measuring height merits further development.

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Date Created
2015-08-31

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Perceived Ratio of Vegetable to Fruit in Juice Diets: A Case Study of the Online Juicing Population

Description

The purpose of this study was to determine the ratio of vegetable to fruit incorporated during a fresh vegetable and/or fruit juice diet. Juicing is the process of extracting the liquid part of a plant, fruit, or vegetable. Food can

The purpose of this study was to determine the ratio of vegetable to fruit incorporated during a fresh vegetable and/or fruit juice diet. Juicing is the process of extracting the liquid part of a plant, fruit, or vegetable. Food can be ground, pressed, and spun to separate the liquid from the pulp. A juice diet involves juicing and consuming a variety of vegetables and fruits. The primary objective of this study was to gather information about the ratio of vegetable to fruit incorporated in freshly made juices during a juice diet. Therefore, the study survey inquired about various topics related to ingredient ratio during a juice diet. The survey data allowed for examination of the relationships between ingredient ratio and certain variables (e.g. gender, age, length of time juicing, juice fast participation, health effects, etc.). The study participants were recruited using online social media. Facebook was the primary method for reaching the online juicing community. A written invitation was distributed in several health related Facebook groups encouraging any person with experience juicing to complete an anonymous survey. This post was also shared via Twitter and various health related websites. The study survey data was used to examine the relationships between ingredient ratio and specific variables. The survey data showed participants had varying levels of experience with juicing. The responses indicated many participants were familiar with juice fasting and many participants completed more than one juice fast. Based on the survey response data, the most common ratio of vegetable to fruit incorporated by the participants during a juice diet was 80% vegetable to 20% fruit. The majority of participants indicated daily consumption of freshly made juice containing 70% -100% vegetables. Based on the survey response data, beginner juicers may be less inclined to incorporate organic produce into their juice diet compared to advanced juicers. The majority of participants reported positive health benefits during a juice diet. Some of the positive health benefits indicated by participants include weight loss, increased energy, and a positive impact on disease symptoms. Some of the negative side effects experienced by participants during a juice diet include frequent urination, headache, and cravings. Cross tabulation calculations between the ratio of ingredients and several variables covered by the study survey demonstrated statistical significance (i.e. length of time juicing, frequency of drinking juice, juice fast participation, number of juice fasts completed, servings of vegetables/fruit in a juice, percent of organic vegetables/fruit used in a juice, perceived positive side effects, and perceived negative side effects). This study provided insight about the average ratio of vegetable to fruit incorporated by participants during a juice diet. When analyzing the data it is important to consider the survey data was self-reported. Therefore, every result and conclusion is based on the individual perceptions of the study participants. In future experimentation, the use of medical tests and blood work would be useful to determine the biological and biochemical effects of drinking raw vegetable and/or fruit juice on the human body.

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2015-05

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Validation Study of a Laser as a New Tool for Height Measurement

Description

Height is an essential measure for the evaluation of an adult's health, and especially important for the measure of children's health.4 Lasers have been popularly used in many areas such as construction, engineering, government for defense purposes, and for equestrians.

Height is an essential measure for the evaluation of an adult's health, and especially important for the measure of children's health.4 Lasers have been popularly used in many areas such as construction, engineering, government for defense purposes, and for equestrians. Lasers are depended on for their accuracy, reliability, and ease of use.8, 9 It can be reasoned then that lasers should be a reliable way of measuring height, proving to be accurate and easy to use. Currently, stadiometers are the standard way of measuring height. For the study a laser tool was created to measure the volunteers' heights. Volunteers were recruited from a total of four various public sites in different cities. Participants were categorized into three groups, children (ages 2-12), adolescents (13-18), and adults (19+). A total of 128 participants were measured. Results showed a strong positive correlation between measurements of the stadiometer and the laser (figure 3). While there were limitations to this study, results show that a laser may be a validated tool to measure height accurately

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2014-05

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Almond consumption and weight loss in obese and overweight adults

Description

Nut consumption, specifically almonds, have been shown to help maintain weight and influence disease risk factors in adult populations. Limited studies have been conducted examining the effect of a small dose of almonds on energy intake and body weight. The

Nut consumption, specifically almonds, have been shown to help maintain weight and influence disease risk factors in adult populations. Limited studies have been conducted examining the effect of a small dose of almonds on energy intake and body weight. The objective of this study was to determine the influence of pre-meal almond consumption on energy intake and weight in overweight and obese adults. In this study included 21, overweight or obese, participants who were considered healthy or had a controlled disease state. This 8-week parallel arm study, participants were randomized to consume an isocaloric amount of almonds, (1 oz) serving, or two (2 oz) cheese stick serving, 30 minutes before the dinner meal, 5 times per week. Anthropometric measurements including weight, waist circumference, and body fat percentage were recorded at baseline, week 1, 4, and 8. Measurement of energy intake was self-reported for two consecutive days at week 1, 4 and 8 using the ASA24 automated dietary program. The energy intake after 8 weeks of almond consumption was not significantly different when compared to the control group (p=0.965). In addition, body weight was not significantly reduced after 8 weeks of the almond intervention (p=0.562). Other parameters measured in this 8-week trial did not differ between the intervention and the control group. These data presented are underpowered and therefore inconclusive on the effects that 1 oz of almonds, in the diet, 5 per week has on energy intake and bodyweight.

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Date Created
2011

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Selenium supplementation and cardiovascular outcome markers in hemodialysis patients: a randomized, controlled trial

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Background Hemodialysis (HD) patients elicit an oxidant-antioxidant imbalance in addition to a selenium deficiency, possibly contributing to cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality. Objective To evaluate the effect of selenium supplementation on CVD outcomes and antioxidant status in HD patients. Design A

Background Hemodialysis (HD) patients elicit an oxidant-antioxidant imbalance in addition to a selenium deficiency, possibly contributing to cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality. Objective To evaluate the effect of selenium supplementation on CVD outcomes and antioxidant status in HD patients. Design A randomized controlled intervention trial conducted from October 2012 to January 2013. Participants/setting The study included 27 maintenance HD patients (61.1+17.5y, 14M, 13F) receiving HD in the greater Phoenix, AZ area. Intervention Patients received one of three treatments daily: 2 Brazil nuts, (5g, 181µg/day of selenium as selenomethionine [predicted]), 1 tablet of selenium (200µg/day of selenium as selenomethionine), or control (3 gummy bears). Main outcome measures Antioxidant status outcome measures included total antioxidant capacity, vitamin C, and RBC and plasma glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px). CVD outcomes measures included brain natriuretic peptide; plasma cholesterol, high density lipoprotein, low density lipoprotein, triglycerides; blood pressure, and thoracic cavity fluid accumulation. Statistical analyses performed Repeated measures ANOVA analyzed changes over time and between groups at months 0 and 2 and months 0 and 3. Results Independent analysis showed the Brazil nuts provided 11µg of selenium/day and the pill provided 266µg of selenium/day. Consequently, the Brazil nut group was combined with the placebo group. 21 patients completed 2 months of the study and 17 patients completed the study in its entirety. Data was analyzed for months 0, 1 and 2. No significant differences were noted for antioxidant status outcome measures with the exception of plasma GSH-Px. Patients receiving the selenium pill had a significant increase in plasma GSH-Px compared to the placebo group (6.0+11 and -4.0+7.6, respectively, p=0.023 for change between month 0 and month 2). No significant differences were seen in total antioxidant capacity or for CVD outcome measures over time or between groups. Conclusions These data indicate that selenium supplementation increased plasma GSH-Px concentration in HD patients; however, oxidative stress was not altered by selenium supplementation. The low vitamin C status of HD patients warrants further research, specifically in conjunction with selenium supplementation.

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Date Created
2013

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Transforming Downtown Phoenix into a Blue Zone

Description

Almost from the beginning of time, humankind has searched for the secret to longevity. Early on in ancient Greece, many mythologies centered around that of Ambrosia, a holy ‘nectar’ through which gods gained their immortality (Maaz, 2006). As mentioned in

Almost from the beginning of time, humankind has searched for the secret to longevity. Early on in ancient Greece, many mythologies centered around that of Ambrosia, a holy ‘nectar’ through which gods gained their immortality (Maaz, 2006). As mentioned in the Iliad and the Odyssey, it was believed this honey-like nectar could heal wounds, resurrect the dead and provide immortality. One of China’s earliest emperor’s, Qin Shi Haug of the Qin Dynasty, ordered a nationwide search for a potion of eternal life (“How China's first emperor,” 2017). Qin commissioned a number of alchemists to create a sort of mixture from substances such as cinnabar, jade, and hematite, as these were believed to increase longevity in the person who consumed them (“How China's first emperor,” 2017). In India, the elixir of life has many names, and Indian alchemists spent a great deal of time experimenting with mercury and other minerals in hopes to find the key to immortality (Rastogi et al., 2015). While there have been great advances throughout history to increasing longevity – worldwide life expectancy is at an all-time high – we have yet to find the elixir of life (World Health Organization, 2016). Attempts on finding the secret to a longer life can be seen throughout the rest of history in modern medicine, antibiotics, vaccines, new fad diets, and studies on happiness and purpose. One of the most recent and promising studies on increasing lifespan is the study of Blue Zones.
Blue Zones are geographic clusters that are known as longevity regions (Huang & Jacquez, 2017). These regions are seen to have a larger number and distribution of centenarians among their populations compared to the rest of the world. There are currently five Blue Zones across the globe: Ikaria, Greece, Loma Linda, California, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica, Okinawa, Japan, and Sardinia, Italy. Blue Zones have become a catalyst for researchers to unlock the secret to longevity. The most well-known and extensive Blue Zone research, led by Dan Buettner and his National Geographic team, discovered that all of the Blue Zones have nine common factors (Buettner, 2012). These factors have been developed into pillars that Buettner believes are the key to a longer, healthier and happier life. The nine pillars are: 80% rule, plant slant, wine at 5, move naturally, down shift, purpose, belong, right tribe, and loved ones first. It is proposed that by incorporating these pillars into one’s life, the likelihood of living to be a centenarian increases exponentially.

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2020-05

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Obesity and the Use of Brown Adipose Tissue as a Tool for Fat Loss in Obese Humans

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Obesity is now an epidemic in the United States and scientists must work to approach it from a unique angle. The focus of my thesis is the application of brown adipose tissue as a combatant for fat loss in the

Obesity is now an epidemic in the United States and scientists must work to approach it from a unique angle. The focus of my thesis is the application of brown adipose tissue as a combatant for fat loss in the body. Unused as adults, brown adipose tissue increases metabolism and mitochondrial function to burn more fat in individuals that cannot lose weight conventionally. Current research works to introduce safe hormonal pathways in the sympathetic nervous system to generate more of this tissue.

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2013-05

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Will the daily consumption of commercially available high-protein pasta and cereal, in comparison to traditional gluten-free pasta and cereal, favorably impact weight loss and satiety in adults adhering to calorie restricted diets?

Description

ABSTRACT

Objective: This research examined the effectiveness of a weight loss diet incorporating high protein pasta and breakfast cereal products as compared to a weight loss diet using conventional versions of

ABSTRACT

Objective: This research examined the effectiveness of a weight loss diet incorporating high protein pasta and breakfast cereal products as compared to a weight loss diet using conventional versions of gluten-free pasta and breakfast cereal.

Design: In a 6-week parallel-arm food trial (representing the first phase of a 12-week cross-over trial), 26 overweight and obese (Mean BMI 43.1 ± 12.4 kg/m²) participants, free of related comorbidities, were randomly assigned to the Zone diet (~29% energy intake from protein) or a control diet (~9% energy from protein). Participants were included in the trial if they satisfied the criteria for elevated risk for metabolic syndrome (top half of the TG/HDL ratios of all who were tested). Participants were instructed to eat prepared meals (total of 7 cereal packets and 14 pasta meals weekly) that included patented food technologies for the Zone diet and commercially available gluten-free rice pasta and a conventional name brand boxed cereal for the control diet. Body composition was measured with a bioelectrical impedance scale at weeks 1, and 6. Food records and diet adherence were recorded daily by the participants.

Results: Both the Zone and control diets resulted in significant weight loss (-2.9 ± 3.1 kg vs. -2.7 ± 2.6 kg respectively) over time (p = 0.03) but not between groups (p = 0.96). Although not statistically significant, the Zone diet appears to have influenced more weight loss at trial weeks 3, 4, and 5 (p = 0.46) than the control diet. The change in FFM was significant (p = 0.02) between the Zone and control groups (1.4 ± 3.6 kg vs. -0.6 ± 1.5 kg respectively) at week-6. Study adherence did not differ significantly between diet groups (p = 0.53).

Conclusions: Energy-restricted diets are effective for short-term weight loss and high protein intake appears to promote protein sparing and preservation of FFM during weight loss. The macronutrient profile of the diet does not appear to influence calorie intake, but it does appear to influence the quality of weight loss. Other measures of body composition and overall health outcomes should be examined by future studies to appropriately identify the potential health effects between these diet types.

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Date Created
2015

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Evaluation of nutritional quality through a counselor administered weight loss program utilizing a smart phone app

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ABSTRACT This study evaluated the LoseIt Smart Phone app by Fit Now Inc. for nutritional quality among users during an 8 week behavioral modification weight loss protocol. All participants owned smart phones and were cluster randomized to either a control

ABSTRACT This study evaluated the LoseIt Smart Phone app by Fit Now Inc. for nutritional quality among users during an 8 week behavioral modification weight loss protocol. All participants owned smart phones and were cluster randomized to either a control group using paper and pencil record keeping, a memo group using a memo function on their smart phones, or the LoseIt app group which was composed of the participants who owned iPhones. Thirty one participants completed the study protocol: 10 participants from the LoseIt app group, 10 participants from the memo group, and 11 participants from the paper and pencil group. Food records were analyzed using Food Processor by ESHA and the nutritional quality was scored using the Healthy Eating Index - 2005 (HEI-2005). Scores were compared using One-Way ANOVA with no significant changes in any category across all groups. Non-parametric statistics were then used to determine changes between combined memo and paper and pencil groups and the LoseIt app group as the memo and paper and pencil group received live counseling at biweekly intervals and the LoseIt group did not. No significant difference was found in HEI scores across all categories, however a trend was noted for total HEI score with higher scores among the memo and paper and pencil group participants p=0.091. Conclusion, no significant difference was detected between users of the smart phone app LoseIt and memo and paper and pencil groups. More research is needed to determine the impact of in-person counseling versus user feedback provided with the LoseIt smart phone app.

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Date Created
2011

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Subject-coded versus investigator-coded diet analysis among overweight individuals: a comparison of methods

Description

The evaluation of nutritional status by dietary intake assessment is fundamental to nutrition research. Accurate assessment allows for health professional-moderated diet adjustment in order to promote disease prevention and management. However, dietary intake can be extremely challenging to measure properly

The evaluation of nutritional status by dietary intake assessment is fundamental to nutrition research. Accurate assessment allows for health professional-moderated diet adjustment in order to promote disease prevention and management. However, dietary intake can be extremely challenging to measure properly as reliability and accuracy are essential. As technology use has become more prevalent in recent years, an assortment of online, web-based diet analysis methods have begun to emerge. Are these modern methods as accurate as the traditional methods? The aim of this study was to compare and contrast diet analyses from a feeding trial in which both subject-coded (using the Automated Self Administered 24 hour recall, or the ASA24) and investigator-coded (using the Food Processor diet analysis program) diet records were available. Sixty-four overweight (body mass index >27-40 kg/m2) members of a campus community between the ages of 20-45 were recruited for an 8-week parallel arm, randomized controlled trial to evaluate the impact of two different pre-dinner meal snacks on satiety, calories consumed, and contribution to modest weight loss. As part of the study requirements, participants completed 3-day food logs at four different times during the trial: pre-trial, and week 1, 4, and 8. Participants also entered their dietary information into the ASA24 website the day after the intake was recorded by hand. Nutrient intake values were compared between the ASA24 records and the handwritten food logs. All statistical analyses were performed using SPSS Statistical Analysis version 19.0; bivariate analyses and Spearman correlation analyses were utilized. Energy, macronutrient, and micronutrient intakes did correlate significantly between the two methodologies, though both under-reporting and over-reporting were found to exist. Carbohydrate and fiber intakes were under-reported by subjects; retinol, beta-carotene, and vitamin C amounts were over-reported. These results are consistent with previous findings in reporting differences and suggest that the ASA24 is a comparably accurate dietary tracking tool to the traditional diet record method.

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Date Created
2012