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Breast cancer patients have a higher risk for osteoporotic fractures than women of their same age who have not had breast cancer. The risk is thought to be attributed to endocrine therapies that are commonly used as adjuvant treatments for hormone-sensitive cancers. By interfering with the action of estrogen, these treatments can have adverse effects on bone health.

Glucosamine is a popular supplement for joint health, but emerging evidence suggests that it may also influence cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. Animal studies have found that glucosamine has anti-inflammatory effects and prevents the development of atherosclerotic plaques. Cross-sectional data from human epidemiological studies have found inverse associations between glucosamine use and the risks of heart attacks and death. Prospective data on the association between glucosamine use and CVD was lacking until researchers followed patients over an average of 7 years as part of the US Biobank study.

Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) has traditionally been used as an herbal medicine for depression, heart disease, sleep disorders, and stress.  It contains active constituents that exert anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Based on animal models of allergic asthma, researchers have concluded that saffron might reduce airway inflammation, hyper-responsiveness, and muscle contraction. The first clinical trial of saffron for allergic asthma was published in 2019 in Respiratory Research.

Vitamin D is known to affect innate and acquired immunity. A study published in 2019 in PLoS One investigated the association between serum vitamin D deficiency and allergic symptoms. The study relied on data from a historical cohort of pregnant women enrolled in the Japan Environment and Children’s Study (JECS).

Depression is a significant problem worldwide, and estimates suggest that only one in 3 cases are effectively treated with conventional therapies. Even with successful treatment, relapse occurs in about half of cases. Dietary patterns have the potential to reduce the risk of depression by interacting with a variety of neurological pathways. Diet influences inflammation, oxidative stress, neuroplasticity, mitochondrial function, and the gut microbiome—all of which interact with pathways that influence depression and mood.

Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH) affects one in 2 men between the ages of 51 and 60 and increases in prevalence with age. As a result of BPH, about half of all men over the age of 80 report lower urinary tract symptoms, which can be measured by the validated International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS). When symptoms are mild-to-moderate, watchful waiting with annual evaluation is the norm. This period is an opportune time to use nutritional or herbal interventions.

Transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) cause approximately one in 4 ischemic strokes, leading to cognitive dysfunction and long-term disabilities. Clinical stroke trials suggest that citicoline may offer some neuroprotective benefits, but the ICTUS randomized controlled trial found similar global recovery for citicoline and placebo groups. Exploring combination therapies to synergize with citicoline supplementation is, therefore, a reasonable next step.

Cystic fibrosis is a progressive genetic disorder that leads to mucus accumulation in the lungs, pancreas, and other organs. Patients with cystic fibrosis are at an increased risk of respiratory infections as well as pancreatic insufficiency and intestinal inflammation. Probiotics might support respiratory and digestive health in patients with cystic fibrosis by exerting immunomodulatory effects or interfering with biofilm formation.

The rise in obesity has paralleled the increased industrialization of processed foods. Ultra-processed foods have become common worldwide and make up the majority of calories consumed in the United States. Ultra-processed foods are typically high in calories, salt, sugar, and fat but low in essential nutrients. Some are engineered to disrupt normal appetite control.

Obesity has been associated with poorer cognitive function, including poorer hippocampal function. One potential mechanism related to both obesity and hippocampal function may be related to decreased intake and neural concentration of lutein. Lutein is a carotenoid that accumulates in neural tissue at concentrations up to 5 times more than other carotenoids. Lutein has been found to influence hippocampal-dependent memory performance, possibly via its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.

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