Diet and Inflammation in Metabolic Syndrome

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Chronic inflammation mechanistically contributes to the pathophysiology of insulin resistance, which subsequently leads to the development of MetSyn. The global prevalence of MetSyn is approximately 25% with the prevalence being higher (≈ 35%) in developed countries. Two primary objectives for the treatment of MetSyn include reducing the underlying causes (i.e., obesity and physical inactivity), and treating associated non-lipid and lipid risk factors. Epidemiologic studies have shown that a healthy dietary pattern is inversely associated with inflammation and MetSyn, and a Western dietary pattern is positively associated. The Mediterranean and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension dietary patterns are two healthy eating patterns that benefit inflammation. Similar food-based dietary patterns that are indigenous to other cultures also have been shown to benefit inflammation. A recent study reported anti-inflammatory benefits of a very nutrient dense dietary pattern rich in phytochemicals and micronutrients from food groups that are recommended in current dietary guidelines. Numerous healthy diet intervention studies, both with and without weight loss, have demonstrated significant benefits on inflammatory markers and MetSyn. Weight loss, and especially loss of visceral adipose tissue decreases markers of inflammation, as well as incidence of MetSyn. Many intervention studies have identified a variety of functional foods that decrease inflammation and MetSyn. With the growing number of nutrient-dense functional foods that benefit inflammation, one important goal is to further refine dietary guidance and make more specific food recommendations that target MetSyn.

Dr. Penny Kris-Etherton, PhD, RD, FAHA, FNLA, FASN, CLS
Distinguished Professor of Nutrition, Department of Nutritional Science, Pennsylvania State University

Dr. Penny Kris-Etherton, a world-renowned expert and national leader in food and nutrition, is Distinguished Professor of Nutrition in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the Pennsylvania State University, where she has been on the faculty since 1979. Her research expertise is cardiovascular nutrition. She conducts controlled clinical nutrition studies designed to evaluate the role of diet on risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). These studies have evaluated established and emerging CVD risk factors including lipids, lipoproteins, blood pressure, inflammatory markers, measures of oxidative stress and adhesion molecules. She and her colleagues have studied many different populations, including healthy participants, overweight and obese individuals, as well as persons at risk for CVD. Her research integrates clinical and basic research to evaluate underlying mechanisms that account for the diet-induced clinical responses, including the molecular mechanisms of action. Penny embraces interdisciplinary research that integrates the expertise of many colleagues.

Penny has served on many national committees that have established dietary guidelines and recommendations. She served on the 2nd Adult Treatment Panel of the National Cholesterol Education Program, the Dietary Reference Intakes for Macronutrients Committee of the National Academies, the Health and Human Services/United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee 2005, and the Nutrition Committee of the American Heart Association that published diet and lifestyle recommendations for the prevention and treatment of CVD. She is a Fellow of the American Heart Association, the National Lipid Association, and the American Society for Nutrition. Her many awards include the 2014 Ralph Homan Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Oil Chemists Society, Marjorie Hulsizer Copher Award from the American Dietetic Association in 2007 (ADA), the Elaine Monsen Research Award from the American Dietetic Association Foundation (2005), Foundation Award for Excellence in Research by the ADA (1998), and the Lederle Award for Human Nutrition Research awarded by the American Society for Nutritional Sciences (1991), and is listed as a U.S. News & World Report best diet expert.

She served as president of the National Lipid Association and chair of the Medical Nutrition Council of the American Society for Nutrition. Currently she serves as chair of the American Heart Association Nutrition Committee. Penny has published over 300 scientific papers and 30 book chapters and has co-authored four books. Her research program has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the private sector.

***Original Source: “2016 CNS Thematic Conference", Saturday, January 16, 2016

Length: 15:17

Type: Video

Last Updated: March 17, 2016

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