Elucidation of the function and mechanism of the innate immune system has shown that natural killer (NK) cells play an important role, particularly for protection against viral infection and cancer; they also seem to participate in maintaining the health of senescent people and their longevity. The fundamental aspects of innate immunity and NK cells is explained first in this review. Bibliographic information on effective nutrient composition, food ingredients, and life style for activating NK cells is then presented and explained.
The relationship between bone metabolism, physical activity level and muscle strength was investigated in 27 men and 68 women with a mean age of 80 years. After the daily nutritional intake and walking amount had been recorded for one week, fasting blood and second urine samples were collected early in the morning, and the body height, weight, fat percentage and grip strength were measured. In addition, the index of bone mineral density was evaluated by quantitative ultrasound to determine the speed of sound (SOS) in the right calcaneus. The following blood and urinary markers of bone turnover were measured: serum bone-specific alkaline phosphatase (BAP) and osteocalcin (OC) for bone formation, and urinary crosslinked N-telopeptides of type I collagen (NTx) and deoxypiridinoline (DPD) for bone resorption. The SOS level was significantly lower, while the OC, NTx and DPD levels were significantly higher in the women than in the men, suggesting a higher bone turnover in the women. Significant negative correlations were observed in the women between the grip strength and both the NTx and DPD levels. Furthermore, the NTx level was significantly higher in the low-grip-strength group (25 percentile low-ranking) than in the 25 percentile high-ranking group, while the lean body mass and daily walking amount were significantly lower in the medium- and low-grip-strength groups. These results demonstrate that maintaining muscle strength may suppress the increased bone resorption in older women.
To study the food preference of elderly patients in health care facility, we surveyed by weighing the amount of the leftover food from 1, 241 dishes. The subjects were 457 patients who were able to feed themselves. The average food intake rate was 87.3±9.8% in the group aged less than 80, and 81.8±10.8% in the group aged above 80 (p<0.01). The energy intake adequacy was 97.0% in the younger group, and 92.6% in the older group. It was clear that an increase in the intake rate was needed, particularly for the older patients. The intake rate of meat, fish and shellfish, sources of animal protein, was significantly less than that of other animal food, while the intake of vegetables, sources of vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber, was significantly less than that of other plant food. It was indicated that increasing the intake rate of these nutritional sources was needed to maintain an enhance the general medical condition of the patients. About food preference of elderly, the different knowledge from preceding information was obtained. It is possible that relieving the patients of the bother of getting food and cooking might have led to this situation, and that their preference may reflect the eating habits of their generation as well as age-related changes.
The dietary intake of biotin, niacin and vitamin B6 was estimated by the total diet method on the basis of the food classification and data on the apparent per capita food consumption in the Tokyo Metropolitan area obtained from the Japanese National Nutrition Survey of 1999. These vitamins were analyzed by a microbiological assay. The respective dietary intake of biotin, niacin and vitamin B6 was 45.1μg/day, 16.0mg/day and 1.26mg/day, these figures exceeding the recommended dietary allowance for adult Japanese females that was established in 2000. The main sources of biotin were meat and eggs, and constituted 30% of the dietary intake.
The results of this study provide a method for accurately estimating the nutritional value of cooked food in nutrition investigations and during menu preparation. Vegetable products in the “Standard Tables of Food Composition in Japan, Fifth Revised Edition” were categorized by food group, method of cooking, and other factors. The rate of change of each element in each food group due to cooking by various methods was examined. The rates of element change by cooking in vegetable products could be divided into 28 levels. Differences in the rates of element change by cooking were apparent between the groups, even within the same food group. These rates of element change by cooking enable the nutritional value of food after cooking to be accurately calculated, even for those elements with no nutritional value.
For the consumers of worksite meal program, its program is a chance to aware, know and deepen their knowledge and attitudes towards nutrition and health. In addition, it is a chance to communicate with their colleagues and to take a rest. On the other hand, for managers, it is necessary to promote worksite meal management actively from the viewpoint of health promotion as health promotion practitioners. To take in sight consumer's QOL and activities of related organizations or groups is a basic concept of health promotion law. The process of the development of the evaluation sheet for nutrition activities in occupational health and outline of the evaluation sheet will be reported.