Does drinking red wine prevent obesity? No, no it doesn’t.

When you read that you can lose weight by drinking red wine, that’s a statement that you should interpret cautiously.

The headlines on red wine and weight loss stemmed from a recent animal study investigating the effects of a purified form of the phytochemical resveratrol on preventing obesity and related complications. The authors determined that resveratrol converts a type of fat called white adipose tissue into brown fat, which is a more metabolically active (and energy-burning) type of fat that can lead to weight loss.

So why the leap to red wine in recent headlines? Resveratrol is  primarily concentrated in grapes and a limited number of other foods such as peanuts and some berries. And red wine makes a catchy headline.

Sources of ResveratrolBut although red wine is a source of resveratrol, it carries side effects with it such as being highly concentrated in calories and alcohol, all of which can promote weight gain and increase risk for disease when Continue reading

Nordic, Anti-Inflammatory and Intermittent: Eating Patterns for Cancer Prevention

Research increasingly looks to overall dietary pattern, rather than any single nutrient, phytochemical or even food, to reduce cancer risk. How appropriate, therefore, that the closing session of the 2014 AICR Research Conference focused on the latest research on several popular dietary patterns.canstockphoto2916430

The New Nordic Diet originated in Denmark to create a healthy eating pattern that suits the foods and flavor palate of Scandinavian countries. The diet’s heavy on fish, cruciferous and root vegetables (like cabbage and carrots) and oatmeal; it’s lighter on pork and other red meats. You’ve probably heard about a Mediterranean dietary pattern’s association with lower risk heart disease and other health benefits, but some featured foods are not universally accessible or familiar.

At the conference, Thomas Meinert Larsen, PhD, showed results of studies in which intensive half-year programs of people following the New Nordic Diet brought improvements in heart health risks and weight loss. This shows potential to reduce cancer risk, with eating changes that participants actually enjoyed. Continue reading

Our Meeting Menu: Inspiration for Your Holiday Parties

We, at AICR know how tough it is to follow our recommendations on the road – whether for vacation or work related conferences. At our research conference last week we want our attendees to be able to live the message, so we work hard to make sure they get delicious, beautiful and cancer-fighting meals.

Black Bean & Barley Salad for Day 2 lunch

Black Bean & Barley Salad for Day 2 lunch

Months before the conference we begin working closely with the hotel chef talking about our recommendations, recipes and research-based New American Plate. The chef had no trouble embracing our basic food guidelines:

  • Eat more of a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes such as beans.
  • Limit the amount of red meats (such as beef, pork and lamb) you eat and avoid processed meats.
  • Limit consumption of salty foods and foods processed with salt (sodium).
Mini-tarts. Flavor-filled small bites.

Flavor-filled chocolate and lemon mini-tarts.

Our specifications also include vegetarian options, modest portions of whole grains, and light and small desserts. Continue reading