No one-fits-all healthy diet exists | Science News

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No one-fits-all healthy diet exists

Search on for genes to explain why weight, cholesterol, insulin vary in mice on same food plan

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5:01pm, July 18, 2016
ketogenic meal

EATING RIGHT  Different genetic strains of mice had varying reactions to eating a ketogenic diet (example of foods shown), a high-fat, low-carb diet. The results back up recent evidence that people’s responses to foods may differ widely.

ORLANDO, Fla. — Weight gain may depend on how an individual’s genes react to certain diets, a new study in mice suggests.

Four strains of mice fared differently on four different diets, William Barrington of North Carolina State University in Raleigh reported July 15 at the Allied Genetics Conference.

One strain, the A/J mouse, was nearly impervious to dietary changes. Those mice didn’t gain much weight or have changes in insulin or cholesterol no matter what they ate: a fat-and-carbohydrate-laden Western diet, traditional Mediterranean or Japanese diet (usually considered healthy) or very low-carbohydrate, fat-rich fare known as the ketogenic diet.

In contrast, NOD/ShiLtJ mice gained weight on all but the Japanese diet. Those mice’s blood sugar shot up — a hallmark of diabetes — on a Mediterranean diet, but decreased on the Japanese diet.  

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