Dairy Research Bulletin – April 2020

Welcome to the April 2020 Dairy Research Bulletin. The Dairy Research Bulletin delivers a brief synopsis of the most current Human, Animal, and Environmental dairy research that is going on in the World, and also that which is of special interest to California dairy producers and consumers alike.

If you would like to peruse the most pertinent dairy research from months past, then visit the Dairy Research Bulletin Archive.

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Selected Articles on Social Responsibility, Environmental Management, and Sustainability

Quantifying the Farmland Application of Compost to Help Meet California’s Organic Waste Diversion Law. Harrison BP, Chopra E, Ryals R, Campbell JE. Environ Sci Technol. 2020 Apr 7;54(7):4545-4553.

  • California’s landmark waste diversion law, SB 1383, mandates the diversion of 75% of organic waste entering landfills by 2025. Much of this organic waste will likely be composted and applied to farms. However, compost is expensive and energy intensive to transport, which limits the distance that compost can be shipped.
  • Though the diversion of organic waste from landfills in California has the potential to significantly reduce methane emissions, it is unclear if enough farmland exists in close proximity to each city for the distribution of compost.
  • To address this knowledge gap, a team of experts developed the Compost Allocation Network (CAN), a geospatial model that simulates the production and transport of waste for all California cities and farms across a range of scenarios for per capita waste production, compost application rate, and composting conversion rate.
  • The researchers applied this model to answer two questions: how much farmland can be applied with municipal compost and what percentage of the diverted organic waste can be used to supplement local farmland.
  • The results suggest that a composting system that recycles nutrients between cities and local farms has the potential to play a major role in helping California meet SB 1383 while reducing state emissions by -6.3 ± 10.1 MMT CO2e annually.

Determination of Dairy Cattle Euthanasia Criteria and Analysis of Barriers to Humane Euthanasia in the United States: Dairy Producer Surveys and Focus Groups. Wagner BK, Cramer MC, Fowler HN, Varnell HL, Dietsch AM, Proudfoot KL, Shearer J, Correa M, Pairis-Garcia MD. Animals (Basel). 2020 Apr 29;10(5). pii: E770

  • There are currently no clear guidelines in the US and some other countries regarding euthanasia decision making timelines for dairy cattle that become injured or ill to the extent that recovery is unlikely or impossible.
  • This study aimed to identify decision making criteria and the most common factors considered when making and carrying out euthanasia decisions.
  • Dairy producers were recruited to participate in a mailed survey (Part I, 307 completed surveys were returned) or in one of three focus groups (Part II, 8-10 producers/group, n= 24).
  • Part I (survey): Farm owners were most commonly responsible for on-farm euthanasia and most respondents would treat and monitor compromised cattle for a majority of 15 health conditions. Responses were highly variable; for example, 6.3% and 11.7% of respondents would never euthanize a non-ambulatory cow or calf, respectively.
  • Part II (focus groups): Three main themes (animal, human, and farm operation) were identified from discussion which focused primarily on animal welfare (16% of the discussion) and human psychology (16%). Participants expressed a desire to eliminate animal suffering by euthanizing, alongside a wide range of emotional states.
  • Development of specific standards for euthanasia is a critical next step and more research is needed to understand the human emotions surrounding euthanasia decision making.

Appraisal and ranking of poly-aluminium chloride, ferric chloride and alum for the treatment of dairy soiled water. Mohamed AYA, Siggins A, Healy MG, Ó hUallacháin D, Fenton O, Tuohy P. J Environ Manage. 2020 Apr 29;267:110567.

  • Land spreading of dairy soiled water may result in pollution of ground and surface waters. Treatment of DSW through sludge-supernatant separation using chemical coagulants is a potential option to reduce the negative environmental impacts of dairy soiled water.
  • The aims of this study were to (1) assess the effectiveness of three chemical coagulants – poly-aluminium chloride, ferric chloride, and alum – in improving effluent quality, and (2) assess the properties of the sludge that is generated as by-product from the process for its suitability for land application.
  • Ferric choloride was the best performing coagulant when taking into consideration optimum doses to minimize pollutants, optimum mixing times, and cost.
  • Generated sludges had higher nutrient content and fewer E. coli than raw dairy soiled water, and did not display any evidence of phytotoxicity to the growth of Lolium perenne L. using germination tests.
  • The study discussed the results in a sustainable farm management context, and suggested that the effluent (supernatant) from the treatments may be recycled to wash farm yards, saving water. In parallel, the sludge portion can be applied to amend soil properties with no adverse impacts on the grass growth, providing an agronomic value as an organic fertilizer, and reducing the risk of nutrient losses.
  • This management approach could minimize the overall net cost compared to land application of raw dairy soiled water.

Symposium review: Future of housing for dairy cattle. Galama PJ, Ouweltjes W, Endres MI, Sprecher JR, Leso L, Kuipers A, Klopčič M. J Dairy Sci. 2020 Apr 21. pii: S0022-0302(20)30298-8.

  • Increased labor efficiency has been an important driver of the change from tie-stall barns to cubicle barns (also known as freestall barns).
  • The objective of this review was to describe recent changes and expected developments in housing systems for dairy cows.
  • These new developments should create an appropriate production environment for modern high-producing dairy cows and stimulate dairy farming-related developments in management, agro-technology, and equipment.
  • In future housing systems, the natural behavior of cows, climate control, emissions of ammonia and greenhouse gases, reuse of waste, manure quality, the aesthetics of buildings in the landscape, and capital efficiency are becoming increasingly important elements. To address future requirements, new concepts beyond cubicle barns must be developed.
  • Freewalk housing systems; that is, loose housing systems without cubicles, would meet some of these future demands. These systems operate with composting bedding material or artificial permeable floors as lying and walking areas. However, these barns are still in development.
  • Combinations of cubicle and freewalk housing systems, together with other techniques being developed, might become a major future housing system. Other techniques and systems that are being explored according to sustainability criteria include the multi-climate shed, the CowToilet to separate feces and urine, and multifunctional buildings. These buildings and techniques can be part of land-based or, less commonly, city-based farming systems, such as floating farms.

Analysis of closed versus operating dairies in the southeastern United States. Ellis J, DeLong KL, Lambert DM, Schexnayder S, Krawczel P, Oliver S. J Dairy Sci. 2020 Apr 21. pii: S0022-0302(20)30303-9.

  • Significant changes have occurred in the US dairy industry in the last decade, involving the number of dairy farms, herd size, milk quality, and management practices, yet the dairy industry remains the fourth leading agricultural sector in the United States, with $38 billion of milk sales in 2017.
  • Although the number of dairy cows in the United States has remained relatively constant over the past decade, at approximately 9 million head, the number of dairy operations has decreased by 30%, resulting in larger dairies. This trend is even more prevalent in the southeastern United States, where the number of dairies has decreased by 39% from 5,315 in 2008 to only 3,235 in 2017.
  • Additionally, downward pressure on bulk tank somatic cell count, which is used as a milk quality metric and has implications regarding animal health, intensified with US processors’ introduction of incentive and penalty systems for quality milk production, necessitating better management of mastitis in dairy herds.
  • This study analyzes differences between dairies that have closed compared with dairies still operating in the southeastern United States. This study examines factors that affect southeastern US dairy farms’ persistence in the industry by using primary survey data collected in 2013 through a mail survey of Grade A dairies in Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. Dairies that were no longer operational had exited the industry from 2007 through 2014.
  • Dairy farms with more cows and higher average milk production per cow were more likely to be operational. For an additional 10 kg/d of milk production per cow, the dairy was 1.5% more likely to be operational. For each 100 additional cows a dairy had, it was 4% more likely to be operational.
  • The analysis also identifies nonpecuniary determinants of operational status for southeastern US dairies, such as mastitis management practices. Findings suggest that operations capable of leveraging scale effects are more likely to remain operational, with results affirming the consolidation of the US dairy industry and demonstrating that more productive farms are more likely to stay in operation.
  • Results also suggest that factors other than farm size affect a dairy’s operational status.

Farmers’ actions toward sustainability: a typology of dairy farms according to sustainability indicators. Bánkuti FI, Prizon RC, Damasceno JC, De Brito MM, Pozza MSS, Lima PGL. Animal. 2020 Apr 15:1-7.

  • Milk production is an important economic and social activity in many countries. Failure to meet institutional and market demands for quality and sustainability has led farmers, particularly small-scale farmers, to leave agriculture.
  • The aim of this study was to assess and compare the sustainability of dairy farms in Paraná, Brazil.
  • A semi-structured questionnaire was administered to 75 dairy farm operators. Sustainability indicators were generated on the basis of economic, environmental and social data using exploratory factor analysis. Factor scores were subjected to hierarchical clustering, which resulted in the formation of three groups of dairy farms.
  • Groups 1, 2 and 3 had high, intermediate and low levels of sustainability, respectively. Group 1 comprised large-scale dairy farms with high productivity. Dairy farms with intermediate sustainability (group 2) had medium production capacity, and farms with low sustainability (group 1) had the smallest production scale and capacity.
  • Large-scale dairy farms have greater economic, environmental, and social sustainability and are, therefore, more likely to survive in the medium and long term.

Effects of different types of zinc supplement on the growth, incidence of diarrhea, immune function, and rectal microbiota of newborn dairy calves. Chang MN, Wei JY, Hao LY, Ma FT, Li HY, Zhao SG, Sun P. J Dairy Sci. 2020 Apr 16. pii: S0022-0302(20)30273-3.

  • Neonatal diarrhea in dairy calves causes huge economic and productivity losses in the dairy industry. Zinc is an effective anti-diarrheal agent, but high doses may pose a threat to the environment.
  • Therefore, the researchers aimed to evaluate the effects of low-dose zinc supplementation on the growth, incidence of diarrhea, immune function, and rectal microbiota of newborn Holstein dairy calves.
  • Thirty newborn calves were allocated to either a control group (without extra zinc supplementation), or groups supplemented with either 104 mg of zinc oxide (ZnO, equivalent to 80 mg of zinc/day) or 457 mg of zinc methionine (Zn-Met, equivalent to 80 mg of zinc/day) and studied them for 14 days. The rectal contents were sampled on d 1, 3, 7, and 14, and blood samples were collected at the end of the study.
  • Supplementation with ZnO reduced the incidence of diarrhea during the first 3 days of life, and increased serum IgG and IgM concentrations. The Zn-Met supplementation increased growth performance and reduced the incidence of diarrhea during the first 14 days after birth. The results of fecal microbiota analysis showed that Firmicutes and Proteobacteria were the predominant phyla, and Escherichia and Bacteroides were the dominant genera in the recta of the calves.
  • As the calves grew older, rectal microbial diversity and composition significantly evolved. In addition, dietary supplementation with ZnO reduced the relative abundance of Proteobacteria in 1-day-old calves, and increased that of Bacteroidetes, Lactobacillus, and Fecalibacterium in 7-day-old calves, compared with the control group.
  • Supplementation with Zn-Met increased the relative abundance of the phylum Actinobacteria and the genera Fecalibacterium and Collinsella on day 7, and that of the genus Ruminococcus after 2 weeks, compared with the control group. Thus, the rectal microbial composition was not affected by zinc supplementation but significantly evolved during the calves’ early life.
  • Zinc supplementation reduced the incidence of diarrhea in young calves. In view of their differing effects, we recommend ZnO supplementation for dairy calves during their first 3 days of life and Zn-Met supplementation for the subsequent period.
  • These findings suggest that zinc supplementation may be an alternative to antibacterial agents for the treatment of newborn calf diarrhea.

Dose-response effect of 3-nitrooxypropanol on enteric methane emissions in dairy cows. Melgar A, Welter KC, Nedelkov K, Martins CMMR, Harper MT, Oh J, Räisänen SE, Chen X, Cueva SF, Duval S, Hristov AN. J Dairy Sci. 2020 Apr 8. pii: S0022-0302(20)30258-7.

  • The feed additive 3-nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP) has been shown to be an effective enteric methane mitigant with consistent effects across studies, however little research has been conducted with this feed additive in dairy cows.
  • This experiment was designed to test the effect of inclusion rate of 3-nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP), a methane inhibitor, on enteric methane emissions in dairy cows.
  • The study was conducted with 49 multiparous Holstein cows in a randomized complete block design in 2 phases; phase 1 was with 28 cows, and phase 2 with 21 cows. Cows were fed a basal total mixed ration ad libitum and were blocked based on days in milk, milk yield, and enteric methane emissions during a 14-day period.
  • Treatments were control (no 3-NOP) and 40, 60, 80, 100, 150, and 200 mg of 3-NOP/kg of feed dry matter. Following a 14-day adaptation period, enteric gaseous emissions (methane, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen) were measured over a 3-day period.
  • Compared with the control, inclusion rate of 3-NOP quadratically decreased daily enteric methane emissions from 22 to 40%. Maximum mitigation effect was achieved with the 3 highest 3-NOP doses (with no statistical difference among 100, 150, and 200 mg/kg). The decrease in methane emission yield and emission intensity ranged from 16 to 36% and from 25 to 45%, respectively.
  • Emissions of hydrogen quadratically increased 6- to 10-fold, compared with the control; the maximum increase was with 150 mg/kg 3-NOP.
  • Treatment did not affect daily emissions of carbon dioxide, but a linear increase in carbon dioxide emission yield was observed with increasing 3-NOP doses.
  • Dry matter intake and milk yield of the cows was not affected by 3-NOP. Milk fat concentration and yield were increased by 3-NOP due to increased concentration of de novo synthetized short-chain fatty acids in milk. Inclusion of 3-NOP also tended to increase milk urea nitrogen but had no other effects on milk components.
  • In this short-term experiment, 3-NOP decreased enteric methane emissions without affecting dry matter intake or milk yield and increased milk fat in dairy cows. Maximum mitigation effect was achieved at 100 to 200 mg/kg of feed dry matter.

A Meta-analysis Describing the Effects of the Essential oils Blend Agolin Ruminant on Performance, Rumen Fermentation and Methane Emissions in Dairy Cows. Belanche A, Newbold CJ, Morgavi DP, Bach A, Zweifel B, Yáñez-Ruiz DR. Animals (Basel). 2020 Apr 3;10(4). pii: E620.

  • There is an increasing pressure to identify feed additives which increase productivity or decrease methane emissions.
  • This paper aims to elucidate the effects of supplementing a specific essential oils blend Agolin®Ruminant on the productivity of dairy cows in comparison to non-treated animals.
  • A total of 23 in vivo studies were identified in which Agolin was supplemented at 1 gram/day per cow; then a meta-analysis was performed to determine the response ratio on milk yield, rumen fermentation, methane emissions and health.
  • Results indicated that an adaptation period of at least 4 weeks of treatment is required. Whereas short-term studies showed minor and inconsistent effects of Agolin, long-term studies (>4 weeks of treatment) revealed that Agolin supplementation increases milk yield (+3.6%), fat and protein corrected milk (+4.1%) and feed efficiency (+4.4%) without further changes in milk composition and feed intake.
  • Long-term treatment also decreased methane production per day (-8.8%), per dry matter intake (-12.9%) and per fat and protein corrected milk yield (-9.9%) without changes in rumen fermentation pattern.
  • In conclusion, despite the mode of action is still unclear and the small number of studies considered, these findings show that Agolin represents an encouraging alternative to improve productivity in dairy cows.

Milk Metabotyping Identifies Metabolite Alterations in the Whole Raw Milk of Dairy Cows with Lameness. Zwierzchowski G, Zhang G, Mandal R, Wishart DS, Ametaj BN. J Agric Food Chem. 2020 Apr 15;68(15):4507-4514.

  • Cow’s retail milk contains around 2,355 metabolites, most of which are essential nutrients and important compounds that serve the growing needs of the newborn calves and protection from infections. A few reports have shown that, during disease states, including mastitis or ketosis, there are significant alterations in milk composition.
  • The objective of this study was to evaluate whether whole raw milk originating from Holstein dairy cows affected by lameness alters its composition.
  • A total of 20 healthy control cows and 6 cows diagnosed with lameness were selected out of 100 sampled cows in a nested case control study at 2 weeks postpartum, and whole raw milk samples were collected and analyzed.
  • In total, 168 metabolites were identified and quantified for this study. A total of 35 of the identified metabolites decreased versus control cows. Only two metabolites (i.e., sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine and phosphatidylethanolamine ae C42:1) were increased in the milk of lame cows.
  • In conclusion, milk metabotyping of lame cows revealed significant changes in multiple milk components, including amino acids, lipids, and biogenic amines. Most of the milk compounds identified as altered were lowered, suggesting deflection of nutrients from the mammary gland to the host needs for healing lameness-associated pathological processes.

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Selected Articles on Dairy Intake and Human Health

The role of dairy foods in lower greenhouse gas emission and higher diet quality dietary patterns. Ridoutt BG, Baird D, Hendrie GA. Eur J Nutr. 2020 Apr 10.

  • There is conflicting advice about the inclusion of dairy foods in a lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emission dietary pattern.
  • The purpose of this research was to assess the prevalence of dairy food intake among higher diet quality and lower GHG emission diets in Australia and within these diets assess the association between level of dairy food intake and adequate intake of a broad range of nutrients.
  • Dietary intake data collected using a 24-hour recall process were sourced from the most recent Australian Health Survey. Diet quality was assessed by level of compliance with the food group-based Australian Dietary Guidelines.
  • A subgroup of 1,732 adult (19 years and above) daily diets was identified having higher diet quality score and lower GHG emissions (HQLE). Intake of core dairy foods (milk, cheese, yoghurt) was assessed and nutrient profiling was undertaken for 42 macro- and micronutrients.
  • The HQLE subgroup had 37% higher diet quality score and 43% lower GHG emissions than the average Australian adult diet. Intake ofdairy foods was very common (90% of HQLE diets) and greatly exceeded the intake of non-dairy alternatives (1.53 serves compared to 0.04 serves).
  • HQLE daily diets in the highest tertile of dairy food intake were more likely to achieve the recommended intake of a wide range of nutrients, including calcium, protein, riboflavin, vitamin B12, folate, phosphorous, magnesium, iodine and potassium compared to other HQLE daily diets.
  • Core dairy foods have an important role for achieving adequate nutrient intakes in a healthy and lower GHG emission dietary pattern in Australia.

Got Mylk? The Emerging Role of Australian Plant-Based Milk Alternatives as A Cow’s Milk Substitute. Zhang YY, Hughes J, Grafenauer S. Nutrients. 2020 Apr 28;12(5).

  • Growing ethical, environmental and health concerns have encouraged demand for novel plant-based milk alternatives, yet it remains nebulous whether these products are nutritionally adequate as cow’s milk replacements.
  • The aim of this study was to conduct a cross-sectional survey of plant-based milk alternatives available in major Australian supermarkets and selected niche food retailers from November 2019 to January 2020 and assess two dietary scenarios (adolescents and older women) where dairy serves were substituted for plant-based alternatives against Australian Estimated Average Requirements (EAR).
  • The researchers collected compositional data from nutrition panels in juxtaposition with derivatives from the Australian Food Composition database, with a total of 115 products, including tree nuts and seeds (n= 48), legumes (n = 27), coconut (n = 10), grains (n = 19) and mixed sources (n = 10).
  • Just over 50% of products were fortified, but only 1/3 contained similar calcium content to cow’s milk. Indiscriminate substitutions might reduce intakes of protein and micronutrients, particularly vitamin A, B2, B12, iodine and zinc, and lead to reductions >50% of the EARs for protein, zinc and calcium in the chosen dietary scenarios.
  • To avoid unintended dietary outcomes, it is vital that consumers make pragmatic decisions regarding dietary replacements for cow’s milk.

The effects of cultured dairy and non-dairy products added to breakfast cereals on blood glucose control, satiation, satiety, and short-term food intake in young women. Mather K, Boachie R, Anini Y, Panahi S, Anderson GH, Luhovyy BL.  Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2020 Apr 15.

  • Breakfast cereals are often consumed with dairy products or non-dairy alternatives; however, the effect of the combination on blood glucose and food intake control is not well investigated.
  • In a randomized, crossover study, 24 healthy women consumed, to satiation, one of three treatments:
    • Greek yogurt with granola (150kcal, 9.2g protein, 2.6g fat, 2.0g dietary fiber, and 21.5g available carbohydrate/100g);
    • Cultured coconut product with granola (146kcal, 3.2g protein, 3.2g fat, 5.6g dietary fiber, and 21.9g available carbohydrate/100g);
    • Water control.
  • The 2-hour blood glucose iAUC was 52% lower after the dairy compared to non-dairy treatment. While there were no differences in food intake between the caloric treatments consumed to satiation, protein intake was three times higher and fiber intake was four times lower after the dairy compared to non-dairy treatment.
  • Both caloric treatments resulted in similar suppression of ad libitum food intake at 2 hours and subjective appetite over 2 hours compared to water. The cumulative food intake over 2h hours was lower after water.
  • The 1.8-fold-increase in postprandial insulin after dairy compared to non-dairy treatment may explain the reduction in blood glucose without an increase in subsequent energy intake.
  • In conclusion, blood glucose in young females is lower after a breakfast with granola in a high-protein cultured dairy than when in a high-fiber non-dairy cultured product.

Fermented Dairy Products, Probiotic Supplementation, and Cardiometabolic Diseases: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Companys J, Pla-Pagà L, Calderón-Pérez L, Llauradó E, Solà R, Pedret A, Valls RM. Adv Nutr. 2020 Apr 11. pii: nmaa030.

  • Fermented dairy foods and probiotics are promising tools for the prevention and management of cardiometabolic diseases, respectively.
  • The relation between the regular consumption of fermented dairy foods and cardiometabolic disease risk factors was assessed by prospective cohort studies, and the effect of probiotic supplementation added into a dairy matrix on cardiometabolic disease parameters was evaluated by randomized controlled trials.
  • Moreover, the effects of probiotic supplementation added into a dairy matrix were compared with those administered in capsule/powder form.
  • 20 prospective cohort studies and 52 randomized controlled trials met the inclusion criteria for the systematic review and meta-analysis.
  • In prospective cohort studies, fermented milk was associated with a 4% reduction in risk of stroke, ischemic heart disease, and cardiovascular mortality; yogurt intake was associated with a risk reduction of 27% for type 2 diabetes and 20% for metabolic syndrome development.
  • In randomized controlled trials, probiotic supplementation added into dairy matrices produced a greater reduction in lipid biomarkers than when added into capsules/powder in hypercholesterolemic subjects, and probiotic supplementation by capsules/powder produced a greater reduction in type 2 diabetes biomarkers than when added into dairy matrices in diabetic subjects. Both treatments (dairy matrix and capsules/powder) resulted in a significant reduction in anthropometric parameters in obese subjects.
  • In summary, fermented milk consumption is associated with reduced cardiovascular risk, while yogurt intake is associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome development in the general population.
  • Furthermore, probiotic supplementation added into dairy matrices could be considered beneficial for lowering lipid concentrations and reducing anthropometric parameters. Additionally, probiotic capsule/powder supplementation could contribute to type 2 diabetes management and reduce anthropometric parameters.

Effect of dairy intake with or without energy restriction on body composition of adults: overview of systematic reviews and meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials. López-Sobaler AM, Aparicio A, López Díaz-Ufano ML, Ortega RM, Álvarez-Bueno C. Nutr Rev. 2020 Apr 6. pii: nuaa003.

  • Some studies suggest that consumption of dairy products can aid in weight loss, while others suggest a negative effect or no effect.
  • An overview of systematic reviews and meta-analyses was conducted to examine the effect of dairy product consumption on changes in body composition.
  • The MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Central Database of Systematic Reviews, and Web of Science databases were searched from inception to April 2018. Six systematic reviews and 47 associated meta-analyses (which included the results of 58 different randomized controlled trials) published in English or Spanish and reporting data on dairy intake and changes in weight, fat mass, lean mass, or waist circumference were included.
  • Dairy consumption interventions without dietary energy restriction had no significant effects on weight, fat mass, lean mass, or waist circumference. Interventions in energy-restricted settings had significant effects on fat mass and body weight.
  • Increasing total dairy intake without energy restriction in adults does not affect body composition. In the context of an energy-restricted diet, however, increased dairy intake results in lower fat mass and body weight but has no conclusive effects on waist circumference or lean mass.

Association between dairy product intake and hypertriglyceridemia in Korean adults. Park SJ, Park J, Song HJ, Lee CH, Lee HJ. Nutr Res Pract. 2020 Apr;14(2):152-159.

  • Hypertriglyceridemia may be a more important predictor of cardiovascular disease in Asian population consuming carbohydrate-rich foods than in Western populations. Dairy products are known to play a beneficial role in obesity, dyslipidemia, and metabolic syndrome, but the results vary depending on gender and obesity.
  • In this study, researchers investigated the associations between dairy product intake and hypertriglyceridemia in Korean adults.
  • The participants were selected from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2007-2012 (KNHANES IV and V). A total of 22,836 participants aged 19-64 years were included in the analysis. A food frequency questionnaire used to determine the frequency of consumption of products (milk and yogurt).
  • A significantly decreased risk of hypertriglyceridemia was detected in the highest dairy product intake frequency group (≥ 1 time/day) compared to that for the lowest dairy product intake frequency group.
  • Among obese participants, the group with the highest intakes of milk (in men, 36% lower odds) and yogurt (in women; 47% lower odds) showed inverse associations with hypertriglyceridemia. No associations were detected in normal weight participants.
  • The association between dairy product intake and hypertriglyceridemia differed by gender and obesity status. Further prospective studies are needed to confirm these associations.

Effects of Whey Protein Supplementation on Aortic Stiffness, Cerebral Blood Flow, and Cognitive Function in Community-Dwelling Older Adults: Findings from the ANCHORS A-WHEY Clinical Trial. Lefferts WK, Augustine JA, Spartano NL, Hughes WE, Babcock MC, Heenan BK, Heffernan KS. Nutrients. 2020 Apr 10;12(4). pii: E1054.

  • Interventions that improve vascular function may in turn have favorable effects on cognitive function. Combining nutrition with pharmacology has given rise to nutraceuticals: foods and/or dietary supplements with bioactive properties leading to possible physiological and health benefits. Whey protein is one such nutraceutical with the potential to improve both cardiovascular and cognitive health.
  • ANCHORS A-WHEY was a 12-week randomized controlled trial designed to examine the effect of whey protein on large artery stiffness, cerebrovascular responses to cognitive activity and cognitive function in older adults.
  • 99 older adults were randomly assigned to 50gram/daily of whey protein isolate or an iso-caloric carbohydrate control for 12 weeks.
  • Carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity increased slightly in the carbohydrate group and significantly decreased in the whey protein isolate group. Aortic hemodynamic load was unaltered for carbohydrates but decreased significantly for whey protein isolate. Although emotion recognition selectively improved with whey protein isolate, it had no effect on other domains of cognitive function.
  • Compared to carbohydrates, whey protein isolate supplementation results in favorable reductions in aortic stiffness and aortic hemodynamic load with limited effects on cognitive function and cerebrovascular function in community-dwelling older adults.

Whey protein ingestion in elderly diet and the association with physical, performance and clinical outcomes. Camargo L, Doneda D, de Oliveira VR. Exp Gerontol. 2020 Apr 11:110936

  • Nutrition is critical to the health of the elderly, since most of them have a deficiency in key nutrient. The use of whey protein may be a food strategy to increase protein intake.
  • The objective of this work was to evaluate the ingestion of whey protein for the elderly and the association with physical performance and clinical outcomes.
  • A systematic review was conducted in order to find papers that shed some light in the correlation between whey protein and the elderly.
  • 35 papers were selected of which 22 had a physical performance outcome and 13 had clinical outcomes.
  • Studies indicate that whey protein supplements promote protein synthesis in the elderly, improving muscle performance and aerobic capacity, protecting against sarcopenia and reducing the risk for falls.
  • Whey protein also appears to contribute to improved health, recovery from disease, prevention of cardiovascular and metabolic risks, and hepatic steatosis complications.
  • Data suggest that whey protein supplements may be promising for the health improvement of the elderly.