Leptin is a 16kD protein that is produced by adipocytes and regulates fat stores and body weight by affecting the appetite and thermogenesis. It is known that a correlation exists between the circulating leptin level and body mass index. It is also known that the plasma leptin level is higher in women than men, particularly in pregnant women, and rises with the onset of puberty. Leptin has been shown in vitro to affect the hypothalamic-pituitary release of gonadotropin and ovarian steroidogenesis, suggesting that leptin may be associated with normal reproductive events. This paper reports the relationship among the plasma leptin level, sex hormones, nutritional intake and eating behavior for ovulatory functions. The serum leptin concentration was correlated with the serum estradiol concentration, and changed during the menstrual cycle. The serum leptin concentration in the group with an ovulatory dysfunction was lower than that in the group with regular ovulation. The fat intake, irregularity of eating behavior and smoking habits in the group with the ovulatory dysfunction were more prominent than in the group with regular ovulation. The lower leptin level may have reflected nutritional abnormalities and eating behavior. Leptin should therefore be considered a key factor for indicating regular ovulation or an ovulatory dysfunction.
A cross-sectional study on young females undergoing weight loss control was conducted to investigate their dietary and lifestyle characteristics. The subjects were 297 women (20-29 years) who had completed questionnaires on lifestyle during the 1998 Kyoto Citizen's Health and Nutrition Study. The relationships were evaluated by the chisquare test. The fraction of smokers was 32.4% of those on weight loss control, this being significantly higher than of others who had been on weight loss control before, and of those who have never been on weight loss control. The percentage of those having undesirable dietary habits was also significantly higher with those on weight loss control. Another dietary habit was eating certain kinds of food (eggs, fruits, etc.) less frequently than the others. The evaluation also showed that the nonsmokers on weight loss control had a worse dietary balance than the others.
The relationship was studied among the nutritional status, lifestyle, QOL and physical characteristics of female college students. Sixty-five female students from junior college (aged 19-20 years) were enrolled in this study. The height, weight, body mass index (BMI), percentage of body fat, arm circumference (AC), triceps skinfold thickness (TSF), mid-arm muscle circumference (AMC), and mid-arm muscle area (AMA) were assessed for each participant. The food intake was also measured (3-day dietary record), and a qualitative questionnaire on the lifestyle and QOL (SF-36) were also performed. The density of the calcaneus in the right leg was measured as the osteo sono assessment index (OSI) with an AOS-100 ultrasonic bone density measuring instrument, and adjusted for age and sex (Z score). Each participant was classified into one of two groups based on the bone density: the low bone density group (Z score<100%, n=20) and high bone density group (Z score≥100%, n=45). We compared the anthropometric measurements, nutrient intake, lifestyle, and QOL score between those two groups. About 30% of the students were classified into the low bone density group. Half of these students (47.6%) had experience of dietary restriction, 23.8% reported meal-skipping behavior, and many had insufficient food. Significantly lower body weight, BMI, percentage of body fat, AC, and TSF were apparent in the students of low bone density group than in those of the high bone density group, although there was no difference in QOL score between the two groups. The results indicate the significant relationship of the bone density with the lifestyle and anthropometric measurements for emale junior college students, but no significant relationship with QOL.
The predictive factors of nutritional. decline in well-nourished functionally competent community-living elderly people were investigated, based on a two-year longitudinal study (1994-1996). The subjects were well-nourished, with a mean serum albumin level>4.0g/dl (men, 4.17g/dl; women, 4.25g/dl), and functionally competent elderly people (61 men and 194 women) aged 67 years and over (mean age, 72.3 years) living in a rural area (Nangai village, northern Japan). Potential confounding factors were simultaneously investigated at the baseline, and predictive factors for serum albumin decline (≥0.2g/dl) over the 2-year study were subjected to a multiple logistic regression analysis. The respective average levels of serum albumin decline for the men and women were 0.08 and 0.10g/dl over the 2-year period. The decline of serum albumin was positively and independently associated with hospitalization within one year (3.16 relative risk (RR), 95% confidence interval (CI); 1.13-8.81, a fall within one year (2.21 RR, 95% CI; 0.89-5.45), a low level of leisure-time activity (never or sometimes, 2.17RR, 95% CI; 0.98-4.82), and limitation to high-level functional capacity (instrumental self-maintenance score<5; subscale of Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology Index of Competence, 2.68 RR, 95% CI; 0.95-7.77). These four factors had a synergistic effect on the serum albumin decline; relative to the reference group with no one applicable factor, RR of the groups with at least one and two applicable factors were respectively 1.83 (95% CI; 0.76-4.42) and 7.12 (95% CI; 2.41-21.01), after adjusting for potential confounders. The results suggest that physical inactivity accelerated the decline of nutritional status with advancing age in well-nourished functionally competent community-living elderly people.
A liquid nutrient mixture especially rich in vitamin B1 was given for 8 weeks to 10 nursing home residents with poor nutritional status. The intake of trace minerals (zinc and copper) and water-soluble vitamins (B1 and B2) by these subjects had been much less than the RDA levels, although the energy intake was relatively adequate. Three of the 10 subjects showed hypoalbuminemia (serum albumin less than 3.5mg/dl), and six showed a low serum vitamin B1 level (less than 28ng/ml). The administration of the supplement did not affect the intake of the diet, but provided an increased intake of various nutrients, especially the water-soluble vitamins. The serum vitamin Bi level was increased to the standard level in all the 10 subjects after 4 weeks of administration. The three subjects with hypoalbuminemia showed an increased serum albumin concentration after 8 weeks. A body weight gain was also observed up to 8 weeks which disappeared when the administration was stopped. The administration of a supplement to provide energy, protein and water-soluble vitamins may be useful for improving the condition of elderly people with poor nutritional status.
We investigated the fat preference of weaning rats born to 8 dams of the Sprague-Dawley strain. The dams had been divided into two groups: one group (LF) was given during pregnancy and lactation a low-fat diet containing 3.5% soybean oil, and the other group (HF) was given a high-fat diet containing 7% soybean oil and 14% lard. After weaning, each pup was given both the high-fat diet and low-fat diet placed in separate cups. The fat preference was determined by measuring the intake of these two diets over 8 days. The respective intake proportions by weight of the high-fat diet were 81% and 88% by the pups from the LF and HF groups, while the respective fat energy ratios of the total dietary intake were 35% and 37%. No significant differences in the body, liver or perirenal fat tissue weights and liver lipid concentrations after self-selection were apparent between both groups of pups, in spite of the large difference in dietary fat level intake by both dam groups. There was no significant difference in the selfselection of dietary fat by the weaning pups. These results suggest that, immediately after weaning, all the rats had a high-fat preference which was not conditioned by the diet of the pregnant and lactating dams, nor by possible nibbling of the dams' diet during nursing.