Pan European Networks - Horizon 2020 - page 47

low contributions to the total amount of AGEs in a diet, either because
they are generally prepared at low temperatures or since they comprise
smaller portions of diets.”
The MSCA fellow added that there was also further correlation between
AGE content in the blood and those suffering with Alzheimer’s.
Cooking culture
Recognising this unfortunate connection, it is important to consider what
action can be taken to help AGE content in the diet, as well as the
potential of developing the disease. The findings by Perrone and Grant
have particularly unlucky consequences for people living in the United
States and the UK, where diets are considered to be rich in meat.
As the build-up of AGEs is influenced by the cooking and consuming of
hot food, a method that can be used to tackle this accumulation is to
modify meal habits, possibly even adapting to healthier food cultures
such as those enjoyed in the Mediterranean. This southern European
diet, characterised by a high fish content, olive oil, fresh vegetables and
cereals, is typical in Italy, Greece and parts of France and contrasts greatly
to diets found in other European and North American countries.
Consequently, Perrone emphasised to Portal the importance of
addressing cooking temperatures: “As cooking helps to increase the
build-up of AGEs in foods, it could be considered important to eat less
hot or cooked food. Cooking is particularly related to the creation of pre-
prepared meals. Food manufacturers often add AGEs to food to make it
more tasty, and consequently premade foods, in particular pre-prepared
meat products, have a high AGE content, again increasing the risk of
more proof and demonstrative research need
to be carried out.
“After assessing the relevant data, a focus
study was undertaken and a link between AGEs
and Alzheimer’s was proven, and AGEs were
shown to be a biomarker. This study calculated
the intake of different foods, including meat and
vegetables, and assessed the impact they had
on patients. In this way, you can extrapolate
information using different formulas,” Perrone
told Portal.
“By calculating AGE content using different
mathematical equations, results continued to
show a direct correlation between AGE content
and the prevalence of Alzheimer’s. Once again,
diets higher in meat and cooked foods
demonstrated a greater risk of developing the
disease. The clinical study is the first
demonstration measuring the AGE intake and
linking the results with diets.”
As Perrone and Grant discussed in further detail
in their research paper: “In typical national diets,
we found that meat made up the highest
contribution of AGEs, followed by vegetable
oils, cheese and fish. Foods such as
cereals/grains, eggs, fruit, legumes, milk, nuts,
starchy roots and vegetables generally make
H O R I Z O N 2 0 2 0 P R O J E C T S : P O R TA L
Reducing the amount
of AGEs consumed
in a diet can help
tackle obesity
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