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‘Everything in Moderation’ could be poor nutrition advice

A diverse diet may be a poorer one, and also bad for your metabolic health. Using data from 6,814 participants, scientists from the University of Texas Health Science Centre measured diet diversity and change in waist circumference over 10 years. Diet diversity is defined as less similarity amongst the foods that people eat; it was measured by the ‘total count’ (of varying foods eaten in a week), ‘evenness’ (the equality of calories spread over the foods eaten), and ‘dissimilarity’ (the characteristics of some foods that might contribute to metabolic health, for example trans-fat content or fibre).

The researchers managed to dissect the nerve fibres from mice that innervated adipocytes and assess the functional relevance of these neurones. They observed obvious fat breakdown and fat mass reduction on activation of the sympathetic neurones. This study has not only clarified how leptin has its lipolytic effect but suggests new therapeutic strategies for overcoming the central leptin resistance seen in obesity.

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