Research Studies

Keep up with the latest in nutrition research from the scientific community.

Check back often for the most up-to-date studies about nutrition and wellness, including comprehensive resources about celiac disease, diet and brain health, and the benefits of whole grains.

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Food groups associated with a reduced risk of 15-year all-cause death

June 2016 / European Journal of Clinical Nutrition

V Bongard, D Arveiler, J Dallongeville, J-B Ruidavets, A Wagner, C Simon, N Marécaux and J Ferrières

This long-term observational cohort study aimed to investigate the potential impact of dietary patterns on death. The study population, comprised of 960 men, found that consumption of certain food groups, including bread, was independently predictive of lower risk of death.

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Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects

May 2016 / The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

An extensive study by The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine found no substantiated evidence of a difference in risks to human health between current commercially available genetically engineered (GE) crops and conventionally bred crops, nor did it find conclusive cause-and-effect evidence of environmental problems from the GE crops.

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CIMMYT Series on Carbohydrates, Wheat, Grains, and Health: Carbohydrates, Grains, and Wheat in Nutrition and Health: Their Relation to Digestion, Digestive Disorders, Blood Glucose, and Inflammation

January/February 2016 / Cereal Foods World

Jones J, et al.

Igrains-for-your-brain2n part three of the series, the authors take a closer look at how different carbohydrates affect insulin levels, inflammation, the gut microbiome, and gut-related diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome. This report also covers celiac disease and food allergies.

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CIMMYT Series on Carbohydrates, Wheat, Grains, and Health: Carbohydrates, Grains and Wheat in Nutrition & Health: An Overview. Part II: Grain Terminology and Nutritional Contributions

November/December 2015 / Cereal Foods World

Jones, J et al.

In part two of this series, the authors cover topics regarding grain terminology, including definitions of milling, enrichment, whole grains and various other processing terms. (more…)

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Prebiotic consumption and the incidence of overweight in a Mediterranean cohort: the Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra Project

November 2015 / American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Perez-Cornago A et al.

In this cohort study, researchers looked at consumption of prebiotics (fructans and GOS) over nine years. They found that the risk of becoming overweight was 15-17% lower in participants in the highest quartile of fructan and GOS consumption. (more…)

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Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Health Implications of Dietary Fiber

November 2015 / Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

It is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that the public should consume adequate amounts of dietary fiber from a variety of plant foods.

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CIMMYT Series on Carbohydrates: Wheat, Grains and Health: Carbohydrates, Grains and Wheat in Nutrition and Health: An Overview Part 1. Role of Carbohydrates in Health

September-October 2015 / Cereal Foods World

Jones J, et al.

Cereal grains provide a wide variety of nutrients, dietary fibers and phytochemicals. The combination uniquely positions them as a source of nutrition to both sustain and nourish a global population.

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Navigating the gluten-free boom: from essential medical treatment to ill-conceived fad diet

August 2015 / Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants

Gaesser G, Angadi S

Despite health claims for gluten-free eating from celebrities and the media, there is no evidence indicating the general population would be better off avoiding gluten for weight loss in individuals without celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity and wheat allergy.

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Whole-grain foods and chronic disease: evidence from epidemiological and intervention studies

August 2015 / Proceedings of the Nutrition Society

Seal C, Brownlee I

There is increasing evidence from both observational and intervention studies that increased intake of whole grain foods has positive health benefits, including lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers. Whole grain consumers may also have better digestive health and are likely to have lower BMI and gain less weight over time.

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Whole-grain products and whole-grain types are associated with lower all-cause and cause-specific mortality in the Scandinavian HELGA cohort

July 2015 / British Journal of Nutrition

Johnsen NF, et al.

A study following a Scandinavian cohort demonstrated intake of whole grains was associated with a lower risk of mortality, indicating whole grain consumption is an important aspect of preventing early death.

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Anemia prevalence may be reduced among countries that fortify flour

June 2015 / British Journal of Nutrition

Barkley J, et al.

In a study examining data on anemia in countries that fortify flour (and those that do not), researchers found that every year a flour fortification program was in place was associated with a 2.4% decrease in anemia prevalence among non-pregnant women.

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Dietary fibre and incidence of type 2 diabetes in eight European countries: the EPIC-InterAct Study and a meta-analysis of prospective studies

May 2015 / Diabetologia

InterAct Consortium

Fibre intake is inversely related to the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and cereal fibre found in grain foods, such as bread, rice and pasta, was found to be the most protective. Researchers found the protective effect of fibre intake on diabetes risk may be partially explained by body weight.

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Genetic gains in agronomic and selected end-use quality traits over a century of plant breeding of Canada Western Red Spring Wheat

May 2015 / Cereal Chemistry

P. Hucl, C. Briggs, R.J. Graf and R.N. Chibbar

Researchers compared wheat grown from wheat seeds dating from 1860 to present day. They found that wheat grown today remains similar to ancient wheat in terms of protein and carbohydrate quality and concentration. This refutes critics claims that modern wheat has “changed” and is the cause of modern-day diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes.

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No effects of a short-term gluten-free diet on performance in non-celiac athletes

May 2015 / Medicine & Science in Sport & Exercise

Lis D, et al.

A short-term gluten-free diet had no overall effect on performance, GI symptoms, well-being, and a select indicator of intestinal injury or inflammatory markers in non-celiac endurance athletes.

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Cost of Nutrients Analyses Using the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey: A Focus on Grain Foods

April 2015 / The FASEB Journal

Victor Fulgoni, III and Yanni Papanikolaou

The objective of the present study was to assess the cost of energy, nutrients, and related substances in the American diet and to define some of the most cost effective foods for providing these food components.

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Consumption of Certain Grain Food Patterns is Associated With Improved Diet Quality and Nutrient Intakes in US Adults: A NHANES 2005-2010 Analysis

April 2015 / The FASEB Journal

Yanni Papanikolaou and Victor Fulgoni

We identified the most commonly consumed grain food patterns in US adults and compared nutrient intakes, diet quality (via Healthy Eating Index), anthropometric and physiological parameters of those consuming various grain foods patterns to those not consuming grains.

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Modeling Changes in Daily Grain Foods Intake: An Analysis to Determine the Impact on Nutrient Intakes in Comparison to the USDA Ideal Food Pattern

April 2015 / The FASEB Journal

Yanni Papanikolaou and Victor Fulgoni

Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) encourage increased whole grains (WG) and dietary fiber intake while limiting refined grains (RG). We identified how changes in DGA recommendations for grain intake could impact nutrient/energy intake for US adults.

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The Case for Refined Grains in a Balanced Diet

June 2014 / Cereal Foods World

R. Miller

Refined grains plays a role in a healthy diet providing many benefits including B vitamins and folic acid, nutrients which may be lacking in some diets.

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Dietary fiber intake and mortality among survivors of myocardial infarction: prospective cohort study

April 2014 / BMJ

Li S, et al.

A greater intake of dietary fiber after a heart attack, especially cereal fiber, was inversely associated with all cause mortality. In addition, increasing consumption of fiber from before to after experiencing a heart attack was significantly associated with lower all cause and cardiovascular mortality.

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Maternal Dietary Patterns and Preterm Delivery: Results from Large Prospective Cohort Study

March 2014 / BMJ

L. Englund-Ogge, et al.

Women adhering to a “prudent” dietary pattern during pregnancy were at lower risk of preterm delivery compared with other women. Although these findings cannot establish causality, they support dietary advice to pregnant women to eat a balanced diet including vegetables, fruit, whole grains, and fish and to drink water.

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Total dietary fiber intakes in the US population are related to whole grain consumption: Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2009 to 2010

March 2014 / Nutrition Research

M Reicks, et al.

Whole grain foods make a substantial contribution to total dietary fiber intake and should be promoted to meet recommendations.

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Fortified Foods Are Major Contributors to Nutrient Intakes in Diets of US Children and Adolescents

February 2014 / Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Louise A. Berner, PhD, et al

Enriched and fortified foods, like enriched grain products, prove to be a major contributor of key nutrients like iron, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, and zinc in the diets of US children.

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Prospective study of Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension– and Mediterranean-style dietary patterns and age-related cognitive change: the Cache County Study on Memory, Health and Aging

December 2013 / American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Wengreen et al

Higher levels of accordance with both the DASH and Mediterranean dietary patterns were associated with consistently higher levels of cognitive function in elderly men and women over an 11-y period.

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Nutrition Therapy Recommendations for Management of Adults with Diabetes

November 2013 / Diabetes Care, October 2013

Marion J. Franz, et al.

An updated evidence-based position statement from the American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends all adults living with diabetes seek nutrition counsel as a part of a managed care plan. The ADA reinforces there is no “one size fits all” approach to diabetes and the focus should be on eating patterns as a whole, rather than strict diet plans.

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Does Wheat Make Us Fat and Sick?

September 2013 / Journal of Cereal Science

Fred J.P.H. Brouns, et al.

Despite suggestions wheat consumption has adverse effects on health, these arguments cannot be substantiated by science. In fact, consuming foods containing whole wheat in recommended amounts has been associated with significant reductions in risks for type 2 diabetes and heart disease as well as more favorable long-term weight management.

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The State of Science Regarding Consumption of Refined and Enriched Grains

September 2013 / Cereal Foods World

Judi Adams

As part of a series of articles dedicated to providing unified grains health messaging, this piece overviews the research on the impact of grain consumption on health, with a focus on enriched grains’ nutritional contributions.

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Mediterranean Diet And Depressive Symptoms Among Older Adults Over Time

August 2013 / Journal of Nutrition, Healing and Aging

K.A. Skarupski, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2This study supports the hypothesis that adherence to a diet comprised of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fish and legumes may protect against the development of depressive symptoms in older age.

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Cardiovascular risk profile and cognitive function in young, middle-aged, and elderly subjects

June 2013 / Stroke

H. Joosten, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2This study examined the relationship between cardiovascular risk factors and cognitive decline in people ages 35-44. A worse overall cardiovascular profile was associated with poorer cognitive function, revealing cognitive decline occurs earlier than previously realized.

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Adherence To A Mediterranean Diet And Risk Of Incident Cognitive Impairment

April 2013 / Neurology

Georgios Tsivgoulis, MD, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2A prospective, population-based, cohort finds higher adherence to Mediterranean diet was associated with a lower likelihood of incident cognitive impairment independent of potential confounders. This association was moderated by the presence of diabetes mellitus.

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Type 2 Diabetic And Alzheimer’s Disease Mice Present Similar Behavioral, Cognitive, And Vascular Anomalies

March 2013 / Journal of Alzheimer's Disease

Carvalho C, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2Type 2 diabetes is considered a major risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. To elucidate the links between both pathological conditions, the behavioral and cognitive functions in mice were compared.

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Nutritional status and dietary habits in Parkinson’s disease patients in Ghana

February 2013 / Nutrition

M. Barichella, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2In Parkinson’s disease, the redistribution of macronutrient intake by limiting fat intake and introducing high-quality carbohydrates as a main source of calories may help relieve associated gastrointestinal symptoms associated with the condition.

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Plasma Alkylresorcinols, Biomarkers of Whole-Grain Intake, Are Related to Lower BMI in Older Adults

September 2012 / Journal of Nutrition

Jiantao Ma, Alastair B. Ross, et al.

Blood markers of whole-grain intake confirm a previously observed inverse relationship between whole-grain intake and Body Mass Index (BMI).

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Gluten-Free Diet: Imprudent Dietary Advice for the General Population?

September 2012 / Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Dr. Glenn Gaesser

Despite the health claims for gluten-free diets, there is no published experimental evidence to support such claims for the general population. In fact, data suggests that gluten may provide health benefits, and that avoidance may not be justified for healthy individuals.

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Carbohydrate Intake and Overweight and Obesity among Healthy Adults

July 2012 / Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Anwar T. Merchant, ScD, DMD, et al.

Consuming a low-carbohydrate diet is associated with greater likelihood of being overweight or obese among healthy adults. Lowest risk may be obtained by consuming 47% to 64% energy from carbohydrates.

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Associations Among 25-Year Trends In Diet, Cholesterol And BMI From Observations In Northern Sweden

June 2012 / Nutrition Journal

Ingegerd Johansson, et al.

Following a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet may lead to increased cholesterol levels, which could increase risk for developing heart disease.

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Maternal Periconceptional Folic Acid Intake And Risk Of Autism Spectrum Disorders And Developmental Delay

May 2012 / American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Rebecca J Schmidt, et al.

Mothers who consume the recommended amount of folic acid during the first month of pregnancy may be at a lower risk of having a child who develops autism spectrum disorder.

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Folate Intake And Incidence Of Hypertension Among American Young Adults: A 20-Y Follow-Up Study

May 2012 / American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Pengcheng Xun, et al.

Higher intake of folate in young adulthood was associated with a decreased risk of developing high blood pressure later in life.

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Childhood Cancer Incidence Trends in Association With US Folic Acid Fortification (1986–2008)

May 2012 / Pediatrics

Amy M. Linabery, MS, PhD, et al.

Since fortification of enriched grains began in the U.S. in 1998, there has been a decrease in the incidence of certain types of childhood cancers.

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The Diet Factor in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

February 2012 / Pediatrics

J. Gordon Millichap, MD, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2In the Australian Raine study, the relationship between dietary patterns and ADHD was examined in a population-based cohort of live births followed to age 14. Two major dietary patterns were identified, according to foods considered the main contributors.

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Relationship between Whole-Grain Intake, Chronic Disease Risk Indicators, and Weight Status among Adolescents

January 2012 / Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

In Young Hur, PhD, RD, et al.

Whole-grain intake in adolescents was related to positive nutrient profiles and chronic disease risk factors, which supports current recommendations to promote greater intake of whole grains among adolescents.

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Evaluation Of The Evidence Between Consumption Of Refined Grains And Health Outcomes

January 2012 / Nutrition Reviews

Peter G. Williams

A literature review on the relationship between consumption of refined grains and health outcomes found no associations between the intake of refined-grain foods and cardiovascular disease, diabetes, weight gain, or overall mortality, up to 50% of all grain foods consumed.

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Reduced Risks of Neural Tube Defects and Orofacial Clefts With Higher Diet Quality

October 2011 / Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine

Suzan L. Carmichael, PhD, et al.

Women who eat diets rich in fruits, vegetables and grains one year before pregnancy have a decreased risk of having a baby born with birth defects compared with women who do not.

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Risk Factors and Preventive Interventions for Alzheimer Disease

September 2011 / Archives of Neurology

Martha L. Daviglus, MD, PhD, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2Numerous studies have investigated risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). However, at a recent NIH State-of-the-Science Conference, an independent panel found insufficient evidence to support the association of any modifiable factor with risk of cognitive decline or AD.

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High Folate Intake Is Related to Better Academic Achievement in Swedish Adolescents

July 2011 / Pediatrics

Torbjörn K. Nilsson, MD, PhD, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2Adolescents who consumed a diet rich in folic acid displayed improved academic performance. Students who regularly consumed adequate amounts of folic acid in their diets did better in school than those who did not.

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High Levels of Folate From Supplements and Fortification Aren’t Associated With Increased Risk of Colorectal Cancer

July 2011 / Gastroenterology

Victoria L. Stevens, et al.

After examining cancer rates since the government-mandated fortification of enriched grains began in 1998, researchers found that eating more enriched grains to increase intake of folic acid can actually be protective against developing colorectal cancer.

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Ten Great Public Health Achievements—- United States, 2001—2010

May 2011 / Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report


Mandatory folic acid fortification of enriched grain products, one of the top public health achievements of the first decade of the 21st century, has contributed to a 36% reduction in neural tube defects, preventing an estimated 10,000 NTD-affected pregnancies.

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Clinical and Subclinical Macrovascular Disease as Predictors of Cognitive Decline in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes

April 2011 / Diabetes Care

I. Feinkohl, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2In this review, several studies have linked dementia to diabetes. As the population ages, the prevalence of type 2 diabetes and risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease increase at parallel rates. Both diseases are chronic and are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality.

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Dietary Fiber Intake and Mortality in the NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study

February 2011 / Archives of Internal Medicine

Yikyung Park, ScD, et al.

A diet rich in whole grain fiber can lower the risk of death in adults ages 50-71. Researchers followed participants over a nine-year span and found that those with high-fiber diets were significantly less likely to die during the study than those with low-fiber diets.

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High Fat Feeding Promotes Simultaneous Decline In Insulin Sensitivity And Cognitive Performance

February 2011 / Behavioral Brain Research

A.D. McNeilly, et al.

grains-for-your-brain2This study confirmed a possible association between type 2 diabetes mellitus-related insulin sensitivity and the development of dementia including Alzheimer’s disease in animals.

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Whole-Grain Consumption Is Associated with Diet Quality and Nutrient Intake in Adults

January 2011 / American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Carol E. O'Neil, PhD, MPH, RD, LDN, et al.

Consuming three servings of whole-grain foods daily significantly lowered blood pressure in middle-aged adults. Since high blood pressure is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, reducing blood pressure through diet can decrease the risk of developing heart disease.

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