Dietary Supplements in Human Health and Disease

A special issue of Nutrients (ISSN 2072-6643). This special issue belongs to the section "Phytochemicals and Human Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 5 July 2024 | Viewed by 3236

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Dipartimento di Scienza e Tecnologia del Farmaco, University of Turin, Via Pietro Giuria 9, 10125 Turin, Italy
Interests: type 2 diabetes; inflammation; insulin resistance; NLRP3 inflammasome
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Co-Guest Editor
Dipartimento di Scienza e Tecnologia del Farmaco, University of Turin, Via Pietro Giuria 9, 10125 Turin, Italy
Interests: NLRP3 inflammasome; inflammation; cancer; antiproliferative activity; herbal drugs

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Dietary supplements represent a broad range of products, including vitamins and minerals, plants and herbal extracts, amino acids, enzymes, essential fatty acids, fiber, or any combination thereof. They are administered orally and marketed in dose forms (such as pills, capsules, powders, liquids, and bars). Their worldwide use is mainly aimed to correct nutritional deficiencies or maintain an adequate intake of certain nutrients.

Unlike drugs, dietary supplements are not intended to treat, diagnose, or cure diseases. However, it is known that they may support specific physiological body functions preserving human health. Their beneficial effects associated with their low toxicity profile and easy accessibility for the general population make their consumption very popular, which is consistently increasing in both healthy and disease conditions. Nevertheless, evidence about specific mechanisms underlying their beneficial effects is lacking.

In addition, poor attention is dedicated to the side effects that they can induce due to the interactions with conventional medications. This is an underestimated point that deserves more attention.

This Special Issue will focus on the latest advances in dietary supplements. Particularly welcome will be high-quality evidence on the following: (i) the potential role of dietary supplements in human health or disease, including conditions affected by unhealthy diets and lifestyles, such as dyslipidemia, diabetes, obesity, and inflammatory conditions, focusing the attention on the properties and mechanisms that could underlie their effects; (ii) the interaction between dietary supplements and conventional drugs.

This Special Issue of Nutrients entitled “Dietary Supplements in Human Health and Disease” welcomes original research and reviews of the literature concerning this important topic.

Dr. Elisa Benetti
Dr. Valentina Boscaro
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • dietary supplements
  • nutraceuticals
  • vitamins
  • minerals
  • botanicals
  • herbs
  • human health
  • inflammation
  • diseases

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

14 pages, 1066 KiB  
Article
Bioavailability of Lutein from Marigold Flowers (Free vs. Ester Forms): A Randomised Cross-Over Study to Assess Serum Response and Visual Contrast Threshold in Adults
by Begoña Olmedilla-Alonso, Fernando Granado-Lorencio, Julio Castro-Feito, Carmen Herrero-Barbudo, Inmaculada Blanco-Navarro and Rocío Estévez-Santiago
Nutrients 2024, 16(10), 1415; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu16101415 - 8 May 2024
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Abstract
Lutein (Lut) and zeaxanthin (Zeax) are found in the blood and are deposited in the retina (macular pigment). Both are found in the diet in free form and esterified with fatty acids. A high intake and/or status is associated with a lower risk [...] Read more.
Lutein (Lut) and zeaxanthin (Zeax) are found in the blood and are deposited in the retina (macular pigment). Both are found in the diet in free form and esterified with fatty acids. A high intake and/or status is associated with a lower risk of chronic diseases, especially eye diseases. There is a large global demand for Lut in the dietary supplement market, with marigold flowers being the main source, mainly as lutein esters. As the bioavailability of Lut from free or ester forms is controversial, our aim was to assess the bioavailability of Lut (free vs. ester) and visual contrast threshold (CT). Twenty-four healthy subjects (twelve women, twelve men), aged 20–35 and 50–65 years, were enrolled in a cross-sectional study to consume 6 mg lutein/day from marigold extract (free vs. ester) for two months. Blood samples were taken at baseline and after 15, 40, and 60 days in each period. Serum Lut and Zeax were analysed using HPLC, and dietary intake was determined with a 7-day food record at the beginning of each period. CT, with and without glare, was at 0 and 60 days at three levels of visual angle. Lut + Zeax intake at baseline was 1.9 mg/day, and serum lutein was 0.36 µmol/L. Serum lutein increased 2.4-fold on day 15 (up to 0.81 and 0.90 µmol/L with free and ester lutein, respectively) and was maintained until the end of the study. Serum Zeax increased 1.7-fold. There were no differences in serum Lut responses to free or ester lutein at any time point. CT responses to lutein supplementation (free vs. ester) were not different at any time point. CT correlated with Lut under glare conditions, and better correlations were obtained at low frequencies in the whole group due to the older group. The highest correlations occurred between CT at high frequency and with glare with serum Lut and Lut + Zeax. Only in the older group were inverse correlations found at baseline at a high frequency with L + Z and with Lut/cholesterol and at a low frequency with Lut/cholesterol. In conclusion, daily supplementation with Lut for 15 days significantly increases serum Lut in normolipemic adults to levels associated with a reduced risk of age-related eye disease regardless of the chemical form of lutein supplied. Longer supplementation, up to two months, does not significantly alter the concentration achieved but may contribute to an increase in macular pigment (a long-term marker of lutein status) and thus improve the effect on visual outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Supplements in Human Health and Disease)
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14 pages, 3725 KiB  
Article
Purple Corn Extract Improves Dry Eye Symptoms in Models Induced by Desiccating Stress and Extraorbital Lacrimal Gland Excision
by Jae-Min Lee, Arin Choi, Hee-Hwan Lee, Sang Jae Park and Byung-Hak Kim
Nutrients 2023, 15(24), 5063; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15245063 - 11 Dec 2023
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Abstract
Dry eye disease (DED) occurs when there are not enough tears, and the associated symptoms—burns, itching, and a gritty feeling in the eye—can cause great discomfort. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effect of purple corn extract (PCE) on [...] Read more.
Dry eye disease (DED) occurs when there are not enough tears, and the associated symptoms—burns, itching, and a gritty feeling in the eye—can cause great discomfort. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effect of purple corn extract (PCE) on DED. Pretreatment with PCE prevented desiccation-stress-induced cell damage in human retinal pigment epithelial cells and primary human corneal epithelial cells. Furthermore, PCE reduced the mRNA expression of inflammatory mediators in the induction of desiccation stress. The therapeutic effects of PCE on DED were evaluated in an animal model with induced unilateral excision of the exorbital lacrimal gland. The administration of PCE was effective at recovering tear production, corneal surface irregularity, and conjunctival goblet cell density, as well as at reducing apoptotic cell death in the outer layer of the corneal epithelium. Collectively, PCE improved dry eye symptoms, and, therefore, it could be a potential agent to ameliorate and/or treat DED. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Supplements in Human Health and Disease)
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12 pages, 1727 KiB  
Article
Euscaphis japonica Kanitz Fruit Exerts Antiobesity Effects by Inhibiting the Early Stage of Adipogenic Differentiation
by Eunbi Lee, Juhye Park and Ju-Ock Nam
Nutrients 2023, 15(14), 3078; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15143078 - 8 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1042
Abstract
During the worldwide COVID-19 outbreak, there was an increase in the prevalence of obesity, including childhood obesity, due to which the awareness of obesity and interest in treatment increased. Accordingly, we describe EJF (Euscaphis japonica Kanitz fruit) extract as a candidate for [...] Read more.
During the worldwide COVID-19 outbreak, there was an increase in the prevalence of obesity, including childhood obesity, due to which the awareness of obesity and interest in treatment increased. Accordingly, we describe EJF (Euscaphis japonica Kanitz fruit) extract as a candidate for naturally derived antiobesity agents. In this study, we found that EJF is involved in the early stage of adipogenic differentiation in vitro and finally inhibits adipogenesis. We propose two mechanisms for the antiobesity effect of EJF. First, EJF inhibits MDI-induced mitotic clonal expansion (MCE) by inducing cell cycle arrest at the initiation of adipogenic differentiation. The second aims to regulate stability and activation at the protein level of IRS1, which initiates differentiation in the early stage of differentiation. As a result, it was found that the activation of Akt decreased, leading to the inhibition of the expression of adipogenesis-related transcription factors (PPARγ, C/EBPα) and the subsequent suppression of adipogenic differentiation. In summary, we suggest that EJF can inhibit adipogenesis and lipid accumulation by suppressing the early stage of adipogenic differentiation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. These findings indicate that EJF’s functionality could be beneficial in the treatment of obesity, particularly childhood obesity associated with adipocyte hyperplasia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Supplements in Human Health and Disease)
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