Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a serious health condition. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of polyphenol-rich Aronia melanocarpa fruit juice (AMFJ) on glucose tolerance, triglyceride levels, and adipose tissue in rats with MS induced by high-fat high-fructose (HFHF) diet. Fifty rats were allocated in 5 groups: control, MS, MS+AMFJ2.5, MS+AMFJ5, and MS+AMFJ10. In the course of 10 weeks, the control group was on a regular rat diet while the other groups received HFHF diet. During the experiment, control and MS groups were treated daily orally with distilled water (10.0 mL kg−1) and the other three groups – with AMFJ at doses of 2.5, 5.0, and 10.0 mL kg−1, respectively. In MS rats, glucose intolerance, hypertriglyceridemia, visceral obesity, and increased adipocyte size were observed. In AMFJ-treated groups, the serum glucose and triglycerides, as well as visceral fat and adipocyte size decreased significantly and did not differ from those of the control group. AMFJ at doses 2.5 and 5.0 mL kg−1 showed an anti-apoptotic activity in adipocytes, while at the dose of 10 mL kg−1 a pro-apoptotic effect was detected. In conclusion, AMFJ could antagonise most of the negative consequences of HFHF diet on carbohydrate and lipid metabolism in a rat MS model.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is one of the most common chronic liver diseases with unclarified pathomechanism and without evidence-proven therapy. Dietary polyphenols, targeting oxidative stress, are at the center of investigations. Our aim was to examine the effects of a polyphenol rich extract on metal element homeostasis and transmethylation ability in non-alcoholic fatty liver model. A ten-day rat model was used (control group, hyperlipidemic group with fat-rich diet, hyperlipidemic group with fat-rich diet and polyphenol supplementation, N = 8 in each group). The hyperlipidemic diet increased the concentration of the majority of the elements with significantly higher contents of B, Co, Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn, Na, Ni, P, Se, Si, and Zn in the liver. Further elevation of Al, Pb, and Sn concentrations could be observed in polyphenol supplemented animals. The polyphenol supplement unexpectedly decreased the transmethylation ability of the liver (132.00 vs. 114.15 vs. 92.25 HCHO μg g−1) further. The results emphasize the possible role of altered metal and non-metal element concentrations and decreased transmethylation ability in the pathomechanism of fatty liver disease. Dietary supplementation with natural compounds may have undesirable effect as well, there is the necessity to improve the efficacy of polyphenol formulations because of their low oral bioavailability.
COVID-19 lockdown affects people's daily routine and has an impact on their lifestyle. Recent studies documented associations between body weight changes and children's lifestyle during social isolation. Childhood obesity is associated with a higher risk of COVID-19 severity and mortality. Our aim was to assess the effects of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic on children's sleep, screen time, physical activity, and eating habits. 387 parents of five elementary school students between 16 and 26 June 2020 were interviewed through an online questionnaire. Physical activity level decreased (63.8%), sleep (60.9%) and screen (5.64 ± 3.05 h/day) times and food intake (39.8%) increased. 80.6% of parents reported changes in children's diet: increased consumption of fruits and vegetables (32.4%), breakfast (15.5%), water and sugar-free beverages (17.6%), snacks (40.4%), sugary drinks (9.9%) was observed. Body weight increased in 44.4% of children. The results of the survey conducted under GYERE®-Children's Health Program are in line with the international literature findings: body weight change during the quarantine is significantly associated with food intake, snacking, sugary drinks, and we also found association with fruit and vegetable consumption and lack of breakfast. Effective strategies and electronic health interventions are needed to prevent sedentary lifestyle and obesity during lockdown.
This study was designed to investigate the effects of green tea on lipid profile, liver tissue damage, and oxidative stress in rats fed a diet including high fructose. Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into four groups: Control (C), Fructose (F), Green Tea (GT), and F+GT. F and F+GT groups were given 20% fructose in the drinking water for eight weeks. Green tea (2 mg kg−1) was administrated to GT and F+GT groups by oral gavage for eight weeks. Biochemical parameters in serum and oxidative stress markers in the liver were analysed. The liver sections were stained with haematoxylin-eosin. As of the 3rd week of the experiment, the body weight of rats in the F group showed a statistically significant increase in comparison with the F+GT group. The serum glucose and triglyceride levels of the F+GT group significantly decreased when compared with the F group. The fructose-induced degenerative changes in the liver were reduced with green tea. Green tea may serve a protective role against hyperlipidaemia and liver injury in rats fed a high fructose diet.
Several misconceptions exist about foods and nutrition. Many believe, that the human body can “acidify”, thus, an “alkaline diet” should be followed. The acid-base balance is a characteristic of a normally functioning human body. Throughout our metabolic processes, acids and substances with acidic pH are produced continuously, which, in the case of a healthy person, does not affect the pH of the human body. In those rare cases, when an overall pH imbalance evolves in the human body due to its life-threatening nature, it requires urgent medical intervention. Furthermore, it cannot be influenced by dietary interventions.
This paper highlights evidence regarding acidification and the acid-base balance, with special attention to certain food groups. Foodstuffs have different specific pH value (acid-base character), they can be acidic, alkaline, or neutral in elemental state. Beside their chemical nature, the effect they have on the human body depends on the mechanism of their metabolism, as well. Diet and ingredients have direct and indirect effects on the human body's intracellular and extracellular compartments (especially blood and urine), still they do not influence its pH significantly.
Alkaline diets were born in the absence of evidence-based information and/or the misunderstanding and wrong interpretation of the available and up-to-date scientific facts. The convictions of consumers and the promotion of the alkaline diet lack the scientific basis, so it can be harmful or even dangerous in the long run.
In summary, scientific evidence on the efficacy or prophylactic effects of an alkaline diet is not available.
To overcome the problems of seasonality and geographical location in fruit production and processing, the production of aseptic semi-finished juice is an excellent solution. Even without refrigeration, aseptic pressing has a shelf life of more than a year, making it possible to produce finished products all year round. The production technology involves the addition of ascorbic acid to the pulp to fix or preserve colour. There is an increasing customer demand for ascorbic acid substitutes on the international market. In Hungary, one of the most important exports is aseptic sour cherry juice. In our work, ascorbic acid used for colour fixation was replaced by acerola concentrate. The anthocyanin content and colour coordinate values (L*, a*, b*, H, C) of aseptically filled sour cherry juice were determined and compared with the control sample during the 12 months of storage.
As a means of assisting the selection of promising soil classification systems, a set of criteria were presented and tested. Inside the studied slightly saline plot World Reference Base (WRB) and Hungarian soil classification (HU) were compared at all four levels in terms of class separability, correlation to biomass, parsimony and homogeneity of classes. WRB surpassed HU in terms of the very important homogeneity of classes only, but HU performed better in terms of class separability, correlation to biomass and parsimony of classes. With many possible classification units WRB categorized the soil into a large number of classes, but 67% and 78% of them were single-profile classes at levels 3 and 4, respectively inside the ca 0.9 km2 area.
A review of the international literature also found that the amount and the presence in slurry of oestrus inducer hormone preparations used in intensive dairy cattle production has not been investigated. In our study, we followed the path of 5 different sex-inducing drugs (alfaglandin, PGF, dinolytic, gonavet, ovarelin) including three active pharmaceutical ingredients (D-Phe6-Gonadorelin, Kloprostenol and Dinoprost-tromethamine) used in a cattle farm in Pest County from their use until their appearance in the slurry from 2017 to 2020. The study included a review of drug consumption and a seasonal analysis of the hormonal effects of slurry produced on the farm in quarterly cycles each year. We also tested separately the hormonal effects of the hormone preparations used on the farm. For the estrogenic effect tests, the yeast test with the human estrogenic receptor was used according to ISO 19040. Statistical evaluation of the results (Pearson correlation and Principal Component Analysis) was used to identify relationships between the use of sex inducers, the reproductive biology of the colony and the estrogenic effect of the slurry. We found that the estrogenic effects of slurry and sludge are strongly correlated. All three pharmaceuticals tested showed a strong correlation with the estrogenic effect of slurry/sludge. Our investigations confirm that slurry among other reasons due to its hormone and drug content shall be considered as a material that needs to be disposed of by new treatment methods before application to the field, because of its environmental and health risks.
Cover crops serve as an essential source of nutrients in the soil and generally improve the soil’s properties. Cover crops’ production is considered a benefit of the soil quality; by protecting the soil from erosion, reducing the weeds and the so-called soil-borne plant pathogens. Different varieties of cover crops can be cultivated such as legumes, non-legumes, brassica, and grass-type of plants with a variability of the symbiosis. A pot experiment was carried out with five cover crops, as non-symbiont (Brassica carinata B.c.), single-symbiont with arbuscular mycorrhiza fungi (AMF) (Phacelia tanacetifolia P.t., Avena strigosa A.s.) and double symbiont with AMF and nitrogen-fixing bacteria (Vicia benghalensis V.b., Vicia faba V.f.) crops; and a mixture of the five species, placed in sandy soil (arenosol) in plastic pots (5000 g soil) in 4 repetitions. One of the pots with mixed cover crops was inoculated by AM fungi industrial product. We measured soil biological activity of dehydrogenase (DHA) and fluorescein-diacetate (FDA) enzymes, the frequency of AM fungi (F%), the all protein, glomalin content and electrical conductivity (EC) of the soils. Mixture of all the cover crops resulted maximum EC and significantly enhanced the enzymatic, DHA, FDA activities in comparison with single plants. Mycorrhiza colonization frequency was high in all cover crops except the mustard (B.c.), as nonsymbiont. Vetch (V.b.), as double symbiont was responding very positively to AMF inoculation, and enhanced the performance of its growth. It was found in the pot experiment, that vetch, has the highest capacity to retain soil-protein, glomalin concentration, as well. The mixture of five cover crops could be suggested to use, due to the synergistic positive performance of the individual crops, and the better functioning of beneficial fungal / bacterial symbiosis.
Open-field small plot long-term experiment was set up during 2011 with willow (Salix triandra × S. viminalis ‘Inger’), grown as a short rotation coppice energy crop in Nyíregyháza, Hungary. The sandy loam Cambisol with neutral pH was treated three times (2011, 2013, and 2016) with 15 t ha–1 municipal sewage sludge compost (MSSC) and with 600 kg ha–1 (2011, 2013) or 300 kg ha–1 (2016) wood ash (WA). In 2018 the MSSC-treated plots were amended with 7.5 t ha–1 municipal sewage sediment (MSS), and 300 kg ha–1 WA. MSSC and WA or MSS and WA were also applied to the soil in combinations during all treatments. Control plots remained untreated since 2011. Repeated application of wastewater solids (MSSC, MSS) and wood ash (WA) significantly enhanced the amounts of As (up to +287%), Ba, Cd (up to +192%), Cu, Mn, Pb, and Zn in the topsoil of willows. The combined application of MSSC+MSS+WA resulted in significantly higher Mn and Zn and lower As Ba, Cd Cr, and Pb concentrations in topsoil than MSSC+MSS treatment of soil without WA. Nitrogen concentrations in leaves of treated plants were generally slightly lower or similar to control. All soil treatments significantly enhanced the uptake or accumulation of nutrient elements (Ca, K, Mg, P) and potentially toxic elements (As, Ba, Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, Pb, and Zn) in the leaves of willows during 2018, 2019, and 2020. Significantly higher Mn or Zn concentrations were measured in MSSC+MSS+WA than in MSSC+MSS treatments. Significant amounts of Cd (up to 1.11 mg kg–1) or Zn (up to 183 mg kg–1) can be translocated (phytoextracted) from a soil amended with wastewater solids or wood ash to willow leaves. In 2018 the treatments decreased the chlorophyll fluorescence values, while in 2019 and 2020 the light adapted fluorescence yield (Y) values were higher in treated than in control plants.