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Introduction The endocannabinoid system, or ECS, is an important physiological system involved in regulating and balancing numerous functions and processes in the human body, including brain plasticity, learning and memory, stress and emotions, immune response, inflammation, appetite and food intake, bone and muscle health, digestion, metabolism, and energy balance (Figure 1).1 An imbalanced, prolonged alteration in the ECS—such as clinical endocannabinoid deficiency, which occurs when there are changes in function or density of cannabinoid receptors and/or endogenous cannabinoids levels—may negatively…

Introduction The endocannabinoid system, or ECS, is an important physiological system involved in regulating and balancing numerous functions and processes in the human body, including brain plasticity, learning and memory,…

Introduction Maintaining weight loss is important for the management of many of the complications of obesity, including reductions in blood pressure, glucose, and insulin concentrations, and may reduce the risk of diabetes and all-cause mortality.1,2 Due to adaptive physiological changes that occur following weight loss, as well as the need for continued implementation of positive diet and lifestyle changes, maintaining long-term weight loss can be a challenge, and the odds of weight regain are very high. Significant research efforts have…

Introduction Maintaining weight loss is important for the management of many of the complications of obesity, including reductions in blood pressure, glucose, and insulin concentrations, and may reduce the risk…

Introduction Meal replacements (MRs) are typically products intended to replace an entire meal. Forms of MRs usually vary from shakes, powdered shake mixes, bars, or soups. MRs are different from protein supplements in that they provide a range of macro- and micronutrients that would otherwise be found in a meal. One of the weight loss and weight maintenance strategies involves the use of MRs as part of a low-calorie diet (LCD).

Introduction Meal replacements (MRs) are typically products intended to replace an entire meal. Forms of MRs usually vary from shakes, powdered shake mixes, bars, or soups. MRs are different from…

Introduction Ketosis is a normal physiological process during which the body utilizes fat to produce ketone bodies as its main fuel.1 Ketosis occurs when there is an absence or shortage of carbohydrates in the diet or glycogen storage in the body, such as during overnight fasting or prolonged fasting, during extended exercise, or when following a ketogenic diet.1 Ketogenic diets are very low in dietary carbohydrate (<50 g per day) and high in fat, and provide an adequate amount of…

Introduction Ketosis is a normal physiological process during which the body utilizes fat to produce ketone bodies as its main fuel.1 Ketosis occurs when there is an absence or shortage…

Introduction Large-scale epidemiological analyses have found an inverse association between intake of cruciferous vegetables (e.g., broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts) and risk of cardiovascular disease, some cancers, and all-cause mortality.1,2 Cruciferous vegetables are a rich source of a variety of bioactive compounds, including sulfur-containing phytochemicals known as glucosinolates.3 Glucosinolates may have evolved as a form of defense; when a glucosinolate-containing plant is mechanically damaged (e.g., by chewing), the molecule is exposed to and subsequently hydrolyzed by the enzyme myrosinase.…

Introduction Large-scale epidemiological analyses have found an inverse association between intake of cruciferous vegetables (e.g., broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts) and risk of cardiovascular disease, some cancers, and all-cause…

Introduction Our human ancestors evolved and developed adaptive mechanisms that allowed survival during periods of food availability and scarcity with seasonal fluctuations of both types and quantities of nutrients.1 In this context, modern humans now face a different challenge with increased food abundance and food accessibility. Not only has the number of commercial food establishments increased dramatically in the last few decades, a large percentage of nonfood establishments (e.g., retail outlets, gas stations, office buildings, etc.) also have made food…

Introduction Our human ancestors evolved and developed adaptive mechanisms that allowed survival during periods of food availability and scarcity with seasonal fluctuations of both types and quantities of nutrients.1 In…

Introduction Medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) are lipid molecules composed of a glycerol backbone and three medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA) whose chain lengths are between 6 and 12 carbon atoms.1 Long-chain triglycerides (LCT), on the other hand, contain long-chain fatty acids (LCFA) whose chain lengths are 14 or more carbon atoms.1 Because the digestion and absorption of MCT involve fewer biological steps than LCT (see mechanisms of action), MCT are easily absorbed and more rapidly transported to target organs for utilization, and…

Introduction Medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) are lipid molecules composed of a glycerol backbone and three medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA) whose chain lengths are between 6 and 12 carbon atoms.1 Long-chain triglycerides…

Estrogen affects the growth, differentiation, and function of numerous tissues throughout the female body—not just those involved in reproduction. This hormone plays an important role in bone health, protects the cardiovascular system, and influences behavior and mood. While appropriate levels of estrogens are essential for good health, several studies conclude that as inappropriate exposure to estrogen increases, the risk of several cancers—including breast, ovary, prostate, and thyroid—also increases.1-7 Furthermore, disproportionate estrogen exposure can lead to other health problems, including polycystic…

Estrogen affects the growth, differentiation, and function of numerous tissues throughout the female body—not just those involved in reproduction. This hormone plays an important role in bone health, protects the…

Introduction Humans are constantly exposed to synthetic environmental chemicals found in household items, industrial products, pesticides, herbicides, plastics, flame retardants, paints, electrical equipment, cosmetics, and food preservatives. Many of these compounds are endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that interfere with the endocrine system, including adipose tissue. EDCs may alter physiology during the whole life span of an individual, from fetal development to adulthood.1 Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and bisphenol A (BPA) are the most well-known classes of…

Introduction Humans are constantly exposed to synthetic environmental chemicals found in household items, industrial products, pesticides, herbicides, plastics, flame retardants, paints, electrical equipment, cosmetics, and food preservatives. Many of these…

What is collagen? The most abundant structural protein in the body, collagen is responsible for the structure of skin, connective tissue, tendons, bones, and teeth. The major collagen types are I, II, and III, which form the structural fibrils of tissues.1 Function As the main group of structural proteins of the extracellular matrix, collagen proteins form elastic molecular networks to strengthen tendons and elastic sheets that support skin and internal organs. They also function as biologically active components of tissues…

What is collagen? The most abundant structural protein in the body, collagen is responsible for the structure of skin, connective tissue, tendons, bones, and teeth. The major collagen types are…

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