Diet Functional Components for Disease Prevention and Management

A special issue of Nutrients (ISSN 2072-6643). This special issue belongs to the section "Nutritional Epidemiology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 5 June 2024 | Viewed by 3848

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Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, University of Brescia, 25123 Brescia, Italy
Interests: plant extract; metabolism; cancer
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

A balanced diet provides all the nutrients needed for human health and proper growth. Recently, more attention has been drawn toward foods that exhibit additional benefits beyond their basic nutritional value due to their functional component content. These bioactive compounds are naturally present in food and include carotenoids, prebiotics, omega-3 fatty acids, fibers, and antioxidants, all of which have proved beneficial in many diseases’ treatment and prevention.

Certain foods that are rich in functional components can reduce the risk of certain non-communicable diseases, including diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis, metabolic syndrome, and neurological and cardiovascular diseases. Thus, recommending a diet characterized by a wide variety of foods rich in functional components is a cost-effective, adjustable, and viable strategy in the management of diseases.

The present Special Issue aims to summarize recent evidence on “Diet Functional Components for Disease Prevention and Management”. Furthermore, the impact of functional nutrients on the prevention and treatment of different diseases as well as on their underlying mechanisms will also be addressed in this Special Issue.

This Special Issue welcomes submissions of original research and reviews of the scientific literature, including systematic reviews and meta-analyses.

Dr. Francesca Bonomini
Guest Editor

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Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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17 pages, 9784 KiB  
Article
Potential Neuroprotective Effect of Melatonin in the Hippocampus of Male BTBR Mice
by Matteo Bonetti, Lorena Giugno, Elisa Borsani and Francesca Bonomini
Nutrients 2024, 16(11), 1652; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu16111652 - 28 May 2024
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Abstract
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder identified by impairments in common social interactions and repetitive behaviors. In ASD patients, substantial morphological alterations have been observed in the hippocampus, which represents an important region for the development of social skills. Melatonin, commonly [...] Read more.
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder identified by impairments in common social interactions and repetitive behaviors. In ASD patients, substantial morphological alterations have been observed in the hippocampus, which represents an important region for the development of social skills. Melatonin, commonly found in many foods and plants, is also produced by the pineal gland. This indolamine, known to regulate the circadian rhythm, shows antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. We therefore hypothesized that melatonin may reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the hippocampus of ASD patients. We explored our hypothesis using the BTBR mouse, a well-regarded murine transgenic model for ASD. Immediately after weaning, male BTBR and C57BL/6 mice underwent an 8-week treatment with melatonin or vehicle. Later, through immunohistochemistry and the immunoblotting analysis of the hippocampus, we evaluated the overall expression and cellular localization of Nrf2 and SOD1, two enzymes involved in the oxidative stress response. Similarly, we evaluated NLRP3 and NFkB, two mediators of inflammation, and GAD67, an enzyme responsible for the synthesis of GABA. Ultimately, we addressed melatonin’s potential to regulate iron metabolism through a DAB-enhanced Perls reaction assay. Results showed melatonin’s potential for modulating the analyzed markers in BTBR mice, suggesting a potential neuroprotective effect in ASD patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diet Functional Components for Disease Prevention and Management)
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Review

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34 pages, 1195 KiB  
Review
Vitamin D and Dyslipidemia: Is There Really a Link? A Narrative Review
by Antonella Al Refaie, Leonardo Baldassini, Caterina Mondillo, Michela De Vita, Elisa Giglio, Roberto Tarquini, Stefano Gonnelli and Carla Caffarelli
Nutrients 2024, 16(8), 1144; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu16081144 - 12 Apr 2024
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Abstract
Nowadays, the interest in the extraskeletal effects of vitamin D is growing. In the literature, its several possible actions have been confirmed. Vitamin D seems to have a regulatory role in many different fields—inflammation, immunity, and the endocrine system—and many studies would demonstrate [...] Read more.
Nowadays, the interest in the extraskeletal effects of vitamin D is growing. In the literature, its several possible actions have been confirmed. Vitamin D seems to have a regulatory role in many different fields—inflammation, immunity, and the endocrine system—and many studies would demonstrate a possible correlation between vitamin D and cardiovascular disease. In this paper, we deepened the relationship between vitamin D and dyslipidemia by reviewing the available literature. The results are not entirely clear-cut: on the one hand, numerous observational studies suggest a link between higher serum vitamin D levels and a beneficial lipid profile, while on the other hand, interventional studies do not demonstrate a significant effect. Understanding the possible relationship between vitamin D and dyslipidemia may represent a turning point: another link between vitamin D and the cardiovascular system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diet Functional Components for Disease Prevention and Management)
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25 pages, 1542 KiB  
Review
Empowering Strategies for Lifestyle Interventions, Diet Modifications, and Environmental Practices for Uterine Fibroid Prevention; Unveiling the LIFE UP Awareness
by Somayeh Vafaei, Samar Alkhrait, Qiwei Yang, Mohamed Ali and Ayman Al-Hendy
Nutrients 2024, 16(6), 807; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu16060807 - 12 Mar 2024
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Abstract
Uterine fibroids (UFs) are the most common prevalent benign tumor among women of reproductive age, disproportionately affecting women of color. This paper introduces an innovative management strategy for UFs, emphasizing the curbing of disease prevention and progression. Traditionally, medical intervention is deferred until [...] Read more.
Uterine fibroids (UFs) are the most common prevalent benign tumor among women of reproductive age, disproportionately affecting women of color. This paper introduces an innovative management strategy for UFs, emphasizing the curbing of disease prevention and progression. Traditionally, medical intervention is deferred until advanced stages, necessitating invasive surgeries such as hysterectomy or myomectomy, leading to high recurrence rates and increased healthcare costs. The strategy, outlined in this review, emphasizes UF disease management and is named LIFE UP awareness—standing for Lifestyle Interventions, Food Modifications, and Environmental Practices for UF Prevention. These cost-effective, safe, and accessible measures hold the potential to prevent UFs, improve overall reproductive health, reduce the need for invasive procedures, and generate substantial cost savings for both individuals and healthcare systems. This review underscores the importance of a proactive UF management method, paving the way for future research and policy initiatives in this domain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diet Functional Components for Disease Prevention and Management)
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