Dr. Richard Harris
Study: Lifestyle Behaviors and Cardiometabolic Diseases by Race and Ethnicity and Social Risk Factors Among US Young Adults, 2011 to 2018
Often, we equate being young to being healthy, but more evidence shows that many young adults have cardiometabolic disease or risk factors. The prevalence of diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and cardiometabolic risk factors has increased in young adults since 1998. This study assessed self-reported lifestyle factors (smoking, excessive drinking, poor diet quality, physical activity, and sleep duration) in adults aged 18 to 44.
Overall, 22% of the survey population currently smoked, 16.3% drank excessively, 49.3% had poor diet quality, 25.7% had inadequate physical activity, and 35.8% had insufficient sleep duration. The prevalence of having zero lifestyle risk factors was 20.1% while having two or more was 45.2%.
The prevalence of cardiometabolic diseases in this population was as follows: obesity 35.7%, dyslipidemia 37.3%, hypertension 10.2%, prediabetes 25.8%, diabetes 4.4%, chronic kidney disease 6.8%, NAFLD (now called MASLD) 31.1% and metabolic syndrome 18.9%. The prevalence of having none of the five cardiometabolic conditions was 39.7%, while 22.% had two or more.
Studies like this further reinforce how we must change how we associate health and age. In my opinion, you are never too young or too old to think about and implement strategies to improve your cardiometabolic health.
Study: Acceptability, Tolerability, and Estimates of Putative Treatment Effects of Probiotics as Adjunctive Treatment in Patients With Depression A Randomized Clinical Trial
Approximately 60% of people with MDD (major depressive disorder) have some degree of nonresponse to first-line treatments, and about 33% continue to experience symptoms despite utilizing other therapies. Probiotics have been proven effective when added to antidepressant medicines for reducing depressive symptoms. This study sought to examine tolerability and adherence to probiotic therapy while also looking at efficacy.
They found a 97.2% adherence to probiotic therapy during the 8-week trial. No serious adverse effects were reported. Some experienced nausea and indigestion in the probiotic group, which was transient. Overall, GI symptoms decreased in both the placebo and probiotic groups. Depressive symptoms improved in the placebo and probiotic groups, but greater improvement was seen in the probiotic group. They also found evidence that the improvement in the probiotic group may be driven by improvement in anxious and somatic symptoms.
This study was a small pilot study looking at the tolerability and feasibility of adding probiotics to antidepressants. It further adds to the evidence that probiotics can be recommended as adjunct treatments for depression. It is essential to select probiotics with strains of bacteria that have proven effective. This study used a probiotic with 14 strains of bacteria: Bacillus subtilis, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium breve, Bifidobacterium infantis,Bifidobacterium longum, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp bulgaricus, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus helveticus, Lactobacillus salivarius, Lactococcus lactis, and Streptococcus thermophilus. As usual, discuss supplements with your doctor or pharmacist before starting them.