Types of Diets

Discussion Assignment 2 – This assignment has to deal with types of diets. I am not only talking about weight-reduction diets, but also other diets, like macrobiotic, veganism, natural hygiene, etc. I would like each of you to pick a diet and explain the history of the diet, what is eaten by people following the diet, what diseases the diet might be associated in alleviating or causing, and any other interesting aspects about the diet. Also, do your best to find studies about these diets by using google scholar (http://scholar.google.com/ (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.). Interpret the data in these studies and do your best to evaluate whether the data is sound. Remember to cite your sources and not to plagiarize. Your grade will depend on the quality, not the quantity of posts. In addition to posting about your diet, I would like each of you to respond (peer review) to another classmate’s post about the diet they have chosen to document. You can also get credit for a peer review response if you respond to a comment I make to you. Also, you will notice that I have randomly assigned you into groups. Your grade will not depend on whether another student posts or the quality of another student’s post. A grading rubric will be attached and I will give an example of a post.

Here is an example post below.

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The calorie restriction diet has only been studied for the past thirty years in laboratory settings. The basics of the diet focus on gradually reducing a person’s intake of calories by 10% to 40% (Hursting et al., 2003). The idea is to provide undernutrition without malnutrition. The calorie restriction diet has been studied in yeast, worms, flies, and now mammals. Lab data indicates that rodent models following the calorie restriction diet see reduced amounts of multiple forms of cancer, as compared to the control group that was fed a non-calorie restricted diet (Hursting et al., 2007). These studies have prompted researchers to examine calorie restricted diets in a laboratory model, rhesus macaques, more closely related to humans. The study was run for twenty years, and the results indicate that rhesus macaques following the calorie restriction diet reduced the incidence of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and brain atrophy. In addition, 80% of the calorie restricted animals were still alive at the end of the study compared to only 50% of the controls (Coleman et al., 2009). Will these results translate into humans? This is still yet to be discovered. Humans provide too many variables for long-term diet studies. Outside of the laboratory, scientists have found many instances where humans have been subjected to reduced calorie diets. An example would be where reduced calorie diets were applied to Spanish nursing home residents. The result was that the residents experienced decreased morbidity and mortality (Valejo, 1957). Forced calorie restriction diets due to wars, famine, or the Holocaust have shown mixed results. The benefits of restricting calories seem to be outweighed by missing nutrients from the diet. In addition, reduction of calories by 80% or more in Holocaust survivors resulted in increased cancer risk (Keinan-Boker et al., 2009). As for the molecular pathways that contribute to the benefits of the calorie restriction diet, hormones involved in energy, such as insulin and leptin, inflammatory proteins (cytokines), and a family of proteins called the sirtuins have all been implicated in producing the positive effects seen in the calorie restriction diet. Many drug companies are now targeting some of these molecular marker proteins in an attempt to provide the positive effects of calorie restriction without the patient having to go through the difficulty actually reducing their intake of calories.


Hursting,S.D.et al. (2003) Calorie restriction, aging, and cancer prevention: mechanisms of action and applicability to humans. Annu. Rev. Med. 54, 131–152.

Hursting,S.D. et al. (2007) Energy balance and carcinogenesis: underlying pathways and targets for intervention. Curr. Cancer Drug Targets, 7, 484–491.

Colman,R.J. et al. (2009) Caloric restriction delays disease onset and mortality in rhesus monkeys. Science, 325, 201–204.

Vallejo,E.A. (1957) [Hunger diet on alternate days in the nutrition of the aged.]. Prensa Med. Argent., 44, 119–120.

Keinan-Boker,L. et al. (2009) Cancer incidence in Israeli Jewish survivorsof World War II. J. Natl Cancer Inst., 101, 1489–1500.


Types of diets: http://www.everydiet.org/diets.htm (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

Citing articles in APA format: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/07/ (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

Please avoid plagiarizing your comments. Please avoid plagiarism

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