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Volume 38, No. 2

Food Reactions: We're All Different

"Huge" differences even though people ate the same foods

Do we all respond to a tomato in the same way? Or any food for that matter?

Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, suspected that we don't, so they set out to explore the issue.

They decided to look at blood sugar levels after people ate, called postprandial blood glucose levels, to see if they varied from one individual to another after eating the same meals. Elevated blood glucose levels are a major risk factor for diabetes and obesity, which are epidemic.

They found a wide variance in how the same foods affected different people.

"The huge differences that we found in the rise of blood sugar levels among different people who consumed identical meals highlights why personalized eating choices are more likely to help people stay healthy than universal dietary advice," co-author Eran Segal, with the department of Computer Science and Applied Math at Weizmann, said during a press conference.

The authors, who published their findings Thursday in the journal Cell, collected data on 800 study participants (who did not have diabetes, though some had prediabetes) using health questionnaires, body measurements, blood tests, glucose monitoring, stool samples, and a mobile app to report lifestyle and food intake. Data on almost 46,900 meals were measured altogether. Read the full article.

Originally published by CBS News. Written by Mary Brophy Marcus
Photo by Michael Coghlan. Licensing agreement.

For informational purposes only - not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, nor an endorsement by the American Nutrition Association®. Use permitted for non-profit and non-commercial uses or by healthcare professionals in their practice, with attribution to Other use only with written ANA℠ permission. Views expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of the ANA℠. Works by a listed author subject to copyrights as marked. © 2010 ANA℠