Liset E.M. Elstgeest, Laura A. Schaap, Martijn W. Heymans, Linda M. Hengeveld, Elke Naumann, Denise K. Houston, Stephen B. Kritchevsky, Eleanor M. Simonsick, Anne B. Newman, Samaneh Farsijani, Marjolein Visser, Hanneke A.H. Wijnhoven for the Health ABC Study
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2020. doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/nqaa099
The current dietary guidelines recommend a protein intake of ≥0.8 g protein per kg body weight per day (g/kg BW/d), but experts propose a higher intake for older adults (1.0 to 1.2 g/kg BW/d). Since there are differences in body composition and hormonal milieu between sex and race, protein needs may also differ between men and women or blacks and whites. It is unknown whether optimal protein intake differs by sex or race.
We aimed to examine sex- and race-specific associations of dietary protein intake with 3- and 6-year changes in muscle mass and gait speed, and the development of mobility limitation during 6 years in US older men and women.
Data were from 2400 community-dwelling men and women aged 70-81 years and living in the areas of Memphis, TN, and Pittsburgh, PA (US), who participated in the Health, Aging, and Body Composition (Health ABC) Study.
We found that a higher protein intake was associated with less muscle mass loss over 3 years in women, specifically black women, but not over 6 years or with a decline in gait speed. In men, protein intake was not associated with changes in muscle mass and gait speed. A higher protein intake was associated with a lower risk of mobility limitation in both men and women, specifically white women. In conclusion, associations between protein intake and physical outcomes may vary by sex and race. Therefore, it is important to consider sex and race in future studies regarding protein needs in older adults.
You can access the full scientific article here
The outbreak of COVID-19, a new form of coronavirus, and its rapid spread around the world has required the PROMISS project partners to adapt to keep everyone safe and healthy.
- Our annual PROMISS consortium meeting was held virtually and although we couldn’t meet up face-to-face, we were able to have virtual in-depth discussions and decide effectively on the project’s next steps.
- Our PROMISS long-term (cost)effectiveness study also had to adapt its final tests to ensure participants’ health and safety. Starting from March 16 2020, the final follow-up measurement was postponed until further notice. Final measurements were resumed in April (through interview by phone) except for the physical measurements. Starting from the beginning of June, the physical measurements at the clinic site were also resumed in both Finland and the Netherlands. Those with no health complaints potentially caused by the coronavirus were allowed to visit the clinic site.
- The way PROMISS results are disseminated is impacted too. Our partners’ conferences European Geriatric Medicine Society – EuGMS and European Society for Clinical Nutrition & Metabolism – ESPEN are going virtual and the International Congress of Dietetics has been postponed to 2021. Nevertheless, we will make sure that the strategies developed based on our PROMISS research findings will be shared with the relevant target audiences.
The PROMISS consortium encourages everyone to follow the guidance of the World Health Organisation and government measures taken in our respective countries. For reliable information about the pandemic, please visit only trusted sources among which:
- European Commission (available in all EU languages) and European Centre for Disease Control
- World Health Organisation(available in different languages), including: WHO recommendation how to maintain good mental health during COVID-19
- COVID-19 and older people in Europe (from our partner AGE Platform Europe)
- Covid-19 and nutrition page from the American Society for Nutrition
Teuni H Rooijackers, Marga C Ocké, Linda M Hengeveld , Marjolein Visser, Jolanda MA Boer
Public Health Nutrition 2020, 1-13. doi:10.1017/S1368980020000026
Adequate protein intake is important for the health and physical functioning of older adults. There are indications that the timing of protein intake may influence total protein intake, but evidence is limited so far. Therefore we studied the association between timing of protein intake and the total amount of protein ingested in 739 community-dwelling Dutch older adults (70+), who participated in the Dutch National Food consumption Survey 2010-2012. Participants were interviewed at home by trained dieticians twice, with a mean interval of four weeks about all food and drinks they had eaten the day before. For all foods and drinks consumed, the amount and time of consumption was recorded. For each day we calculated how much protein the participant ingested. If the participant ingested less than 0.8 g protein per kilogram of body weight, protein intake was considered to be low that day.
The results showed that protein intake differed across hours of the day with peaks between 08:30-09:29h (mostly breakfast), 12:30-13:29h (mostly lunch), and 17:30-18:29h (mostly dinner). On the 290 days that protein intake was low, for each hour of the day the average amount of protein ingested was lower compared to the 1188 days with a higher protein intake. This lower intake at either time of day may, however, just reflect a lower food consumption and does not necessarily provide information on the distribution of protein intake over the day. Therefore, we also investigated how much of the total protein was ingested in the morning, midday or in the evening. On days with a low protein intake, a larger part of the total protein intake was ingested in the morning (22%), compared to days with a higher protein intake (17%). If a larger part of total protein was consumed in the morning, there was a higher change that the total protein intake of that day was low. Weaker associations were observed for the part of protein that was ingested midday or in the evening. These results confirm results of other studies on this topic and suggest that timing of protein intake may influence total protein intake. Drawing final conclusions on the effect of timing of protein on total protein intake from our study is difficult. It is important to look in more depth into the timing of protein intake in experimental studies actively manipulating protein intake at different hours of the day, to see if timing of protein intake can be used to increase the likelihood of an adequate protein intake among older adults.
You can access the full scientific article here
Our PROMISS partners VIVES and HAS – Universities of Applied Sciences in Belgium and the Netherlands – have been busy the last few weeks recording the first Masterclass videos targeting food industry.
These Masterclass videos in the form of webinars are embedding PROMISS scientific findings into the broader research context on protein malnutrition and translate them into more practical guidelines for food industry.
So far three videos have been recorded and are being edited right now.
Stay tuned for their release later this year!
“Behind the scenes” pictures
Ilse Reinders, Hanneke Wijnhoven, Marjolein Visser
Clin Nutr ESPEN. 2020 Jun;37:157-167. doi: 10.1016/j.clnesp.2020.02.020
As many older adults do not meet the (current and higher) recommendations, we examined the feasibility (effectiveness and appreciation) of two dietary advice strategies to increase protein intake following either an even distribution of protein consumption over the day (‘even’ strategy) or a peak in protein consumption during one meal moment (‘peak’ strategy).
Older adults aged ≥ 65 years (n=60) who live at home were randomised into one of three groups; two intervention groups (‘even’ or ‘peak’ strategy) and one control group. Over the course of four weeks, participants of both intervention groups received personalised dietary advice and protein enriched food products (such as puddings, rice pudding, coconut water and whey-protein powder) to increase their daily protein intake. The ‘even’ group was advised to consume a maximum of 20 g of protein during each meal or snack moment while the ‘peak’ group was advised to consume at least one daily meal with 35–45 g of protein.
Both intervention groups increased their protein intake after four weeks significantly compared to the control group and participants following the ‘peak’ strategy more often had at least one meal per day very high in protein (≥35 g). Both intervention groups considered the advice to increase protein as (very) clear, and most reported they would (partly) continue following the advice to increase protein intake.
The ‘even’ and ‘peak’ dietary advice strategies were effective in increasing protein intake in four weeks and both well appreciated by community-dwelling older adults.
You can access the scientific article here
Our PROMISS partner EuGMS (European Geriatric Medicine Society) organizes its 16th International Congress in Athens, Greece, 7-9 October 2020!
Abstract submission and call for Symposia are now open!
Conference Website: https://eugms.org/2020.html
Eva Kiesswetter, Bart JF Keijser, Dorothee Volkert, Marjolein Visser.
Eur J Clin Nutr. 2019 doi: 10.1038/s41430-019-0536-4.
As involuntary weight loss in older age is related to functional decline and to mortality, the knowledge about factors affecting body weight is of importance. One factor that may influence body weight in older people is the oral health status. Therefore, we aimed to investigate the longitudinal associations of different oral health characteristics with body weight in community-dwelling older adults.
We used data of 657 community-dwelling older adults aged 55-80 years from the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA). The first assessment of oral health and body weight took place in 2005/07 and the second in 2015/16. To describe oral health status, aspects relating to teeth, dentures, and oral problems (e.g. bleeding gums) as well as the self-rated oral health were assessed.
The proportions of people being edentulous and wearing dentures increased during follow-up and the proportions of people suffering from oral health problems remained relatively stable over time. About two thirds of the participants rated their oral health status as healthy. In our analyses, only the self-rated oral health status was associated with body weight.
In community-dwelling older adults self-rated oral health may indicate changes in body weight in the long term. Therefore, this simple measure could serve to identify a risk for weight loss and to initiate oral interventions in clinical practice.
You can access the scientific article here
The Centre of expertise for Agrotechnology and Biotechnology at the VIVES University of Applied Sciences, Belgium, has gathered extensive expertise on malnutrition among older persons in the PROMISS project. Taking this expertise, VIVES developed specific training and education material for different actors within the practice-oriented research project “Seniorproof”.
For example, an “ambiance box“ was developed to inspire caregivers to decorate a meal attractively. In addition, a taste panel was set up that can help companies and industrial kitchens to develop new food products that are adapted to the preferences and needs of the older persons.
Learn more about VIVES’ work in the article 65+’ers en hun liefde voor de maaltijd (Dutch only)
Vanneste, E., Van den Broeck, L., Desplenter , A., & Schutyser, E. (2019). 65+’ers en hun liefde voor de maaltijd. Tijdschrift voor voeding en diëtetiek, 14-17
To make the PROMISS project even more accessible, the project partners have been working on visualizing key aspects of the project through videos. The first video (see below) gives an overview of the PROMISS project. Future videos will focus on first findings and provide insights into different partners’ roles and contributions to the project. Follow us on twitter @PROMISS_VU to not miss any new video releases on our PROMISS Project Youtube Channel
Nuno Mendonça, Andrew Kingston, Antoneta Granic, Carol Jagger.
Age and Ageing, afz142, https://doi.org/10.1093/ageing/afz142
Frailty is a clinical syndrome defined as an increased vulnerability to recover after a health shock. Pre-frailty and frailty are estimated to be present in 42% and 11% of community‐dwelling older adults respectively, and both increase with age. Frail older adults are at increased risk of disability, hospitalisation, care home admission and death. In this study we have used five criteria: muscle weakness, slow walking speed, low physical activity, exhaustion, and unintentional weight loss to define frailty. Malnutrition is central to all these criteria and it might be that a good intake of dietary protein is a viable strategy to change the progression of frailty in older adults by slowing down the progressive loss of muscle mass and physical function. We used data from a study on 700 very old adults that turned 85 years old in 2006/2007 living in North East England and we followed them until they were 90. Protein intake was estimated with a 24-hour multiple pass recall (people were asked what foods and drinks were consumed in the past 24 hours) on two different occasions in 2006/2007. We found that participants with higher protein intake were less likely to become frail if they were pre-frail to begin with. This was also true for those who had protein intake higher than 0.8 or 1.0 grams per kilogram of adjusted bodyweight. Energy intake seems to play an important role in this relationship between protein and frailty.
Eva Kiesswetter, Linda M. Hengeveld, Bart JF Keijser, Dorothee Volkert, Marjolein Visser.
Journal of Dentistry, Volume 85, June 2019, Pages 73-80 doi.org/10.1016/j.jdent.2019.05.017
Malnutrition is a state of energy or protein deficiency, which causes measurable changes in body functions. Among older people malnutrition is widespread and is associated with frailty, functional decline and poor quality of life. Malnutrition can be caused by multiple different factors such as disease-related, functional, psychological, and socio-economic aspects. Moreover, it is assumed that the oral health status plays a role in the development of malnutrition, as mastication and insalivation are important steps in eating and digesting. Therefore, the aim of our study was to investigate the association of different oral health characteristics and the development of malnutrition during 9-years in community-dwelling older adults.
The data used were from the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam (LASA). We included participants aged 55-80 years without malnutrition at the beginning of the investigation. To describe oral health status, aspects relating to teeth, dentures, oral hygiene and oral problems (e.g. bleeding gums) as well as the self-rated oral health were assessed.
Of the 19 investigated oral health characteristics, toothache while chewing was identified to increase the risk of devolving malnutrition. In addition, for a poor self-rated oral health and the feeling of a dry mouth in combination with having no teeth we found indications that they might play a role in the long-term development of malnutrition. Regarding strategies to prevent malnutrition in older people these three aspects are of specific interest as they are modifiable and can be easily assessed by self-reports.
You can access the scientific article here
K.S. Fluitman, H.J. Nadar, D.S. Roos, H.W. Berendse, B.J.F. Keijser, M. Nieuwdorp, R.G.Ijzerman, M. Visser
J Nutr Health Aging (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12603-019-1241-7
A common phenomenon amongst older adults is a decline in appetite, which is thought to contribute to the occurrence of undernutrition. This decline in appetite is called: “Anorexia of Aging”. Many factors are thought to contribute to anorexia of aging, including a decrease in smell function as we become older. A deteriorating sense of smell is believed to diminish eating pleasure and change people’s food-related choices. This would then lead to lower food intake and ultimately undernutrition.
In this study, we evaluated whether sense of smell was associated with appetite, weight change and BMI. In other words: do people with poorer sense of smell also report poorer appetite, suffer more weight loss and have a lower BMI? In 2012-2013, we used a commercially available smell test (the 40-item UPSIT test) to assess sense of smell in 824 Dutch older adults, aged 55-65 years old. All these older adults were also enrolled in the larger LASA-study which studies the consequences of aging in the Netherlands. In addition to the results of the smell test, we made use of the self-reported appetite, weight, and BMI, as well as many other variables measured by LASA.
Ultimately, 673 participant had correctly filled out the UPSIT-test and were included in this study. No association between sense of smell and appetite or weight change could be found. However, there was an association between poorer sense of smell and lower BMI in older adults who smoke, but not in older adults who do not smoke.
This means that poor sense of smell in older adults who also smoke might be a vulnerable group when it comes to undernutrition.
You can also read the scientific article here.
Alessandra C. Grasso, Yung Hung, Margreet R. Olthof, Wim Verbeke and Ingeborg A. Brouwer
Nutrients 2019, 11, 1904; doi:10.3390/nu11081904doi.org/10.1111/jgs.16011
Considering today’s environmental challenges such as climate change and biodiversity loss, sustainable dietary strategies are needed to meet the high protein requirement of a growing aging population. This study investigated the readiness of older adults to accept the consumption of the following alternative, more sustainable protein sources: plant-based protein, insects, single-cell protein, and in vitro meat. We used data from a survey that was conducted among 1825 older adults aged 65 years or above living in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and Finland.
Dairy-based protein was the most accepted protein source among older adults, with 75% of the respondents reporting dairy to be acceptable or very acceptable. When it came to alternative, more sustainable protein sources, 58% of the respondents reported to accept plant-based protein, 20% reported to accept single-cell protein, 9% reported to accept insect-based protein, and 6% reported to accept in vitro meat-based protein. We found that fussy eaters were less likely to accept eating alternative, more sustainable protein sources. Older adults who were more active in sustainable food consumption (e.g. purchases organic food) and who were highly educated were more likely to accept eating alternative, more sustainable sources. Valuing health, sensory appeal, and price when making food choices, as well as gender and country of residence were found to influence acceptance, although not consistently across all the protein sources.
This paper concludes that a relatively high acceptance of plant-based protein sources provides an opportunity to increase protein intake in an environmentally sustainable way in EU older adults. More research is needed to determine ways to increase acceptance of more innovative, technology-driven protein sources such as single-cell protein and in vitro meat among older adults.
You can also read the scientific article here.
Linda M. Hengeveld, Hanneke A.H. Wijnhoven, Margreet R. Olthof, Ingeborg A. Brouwer, Eleanor M. Simonsick, Stephan B. Kritchevsky, Denise K. Houston, Anne B. Newman, Marjolein Visser.
Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. (2019) 00:1-8 doi.org/10.1111/jgs.16011
Frailty can be described as a fragile health state that makes a person very vulnerable for health problems. Frail older persons are at higher risk for developing mobility problems, becoming institutionalized and losing independence. For older adults and their families, the possibility to postpone or prevent the development of frailty is likely highly desirable.
Diet is one of the modifiable factors that are supposed to contribute to the prevention of frailty in older adults. Moreover, previous studies have shown that many older adults consume a diet that is of insufficient quality (i.e., their diet does not fully conform to national dietary guidelines) or that is low in protein. We investigated whether poor diet quality and low protein intake would increase the risk of developing frailty in the future.
The data are from the Health, Aging, and Body Composition (Health ABC) Study, which consists of community-dwelling older adults aged 70 years and over, who live in the areas of Memphis, TN, and Pittsburgh, PA (USA).
We found that older adults with a poor-quality diet had a higher risk of developing frailty compared to older adults with a good-quality diet. We found no relationship between protein intake and risk of frailty. In conclusion, our study suggests that it is important to adhere as much as possible to the national dietary guidelines for older adults to postpone or prevent the development of frailty.
You can also read the scientific article here
Nuno Mendonça, Andrew Kingston, Antoneta Granic, Tom R. Hill, John C. Mathers, Carol Jagger
European Journal of Nutrition 2019 Jan 10. doi.org/10.1007/s00394-019-02041-1
We aimed to determine the contribution of protein intake, and the interaction between protein intake and physical activity, to the transition between disability free and disability using the Newcastle 85+ Study. We included more than 700 older adults living in the community and turning 85 in 2006/2007 and we followed them until 90 years of age. Protein intake was estimated with a 24-hour multiple pass recall (people were asked what foods and drinks were consumed in the past 24 hours) on two different occasions in 2006/2007. Study participants were also asked about their ability to perform 17 activities of daily living (ADL) (able to get in and out of a chair, cut own toenails, manage own medications, etc.) in 2006/2007, and after 18, 36 and 60 months. A simple score was derived by summing the number of ADLs that the participant had difficulty with and a score >1 was considered as disability. We found that an increase in protein intake, especially ≥0.8 or 1g of protein per kg of adjusted body weight per day (g/kg aBW/d) decreased the likelihood of developing disability. An average 85-year-old with protein intake <1g/kg aBW/d was expected to spend 0.86 years disability free and 3.63 years disabled over 5 years while another participant with ≥1.0 g/kg aBW/d was expected to spend 1.58 years disability free and 3.01 years disabled. We also found that those physically active and with a good protein intake were less likely to transition from disability-free to disability than those within the same physical activity level but with worse protein intake. This means that higher protein intake, especially in combination with higher physical activity may delay the incidence of disability in very old adults.
Prof. Marian de van der Schueren, our PROMISS member from ESPEN (European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism), is spreading the word in the Netherlands on the importance of increasing protein intake for older adults.
“Stay fit: eat more protein!” published in a magazine for older people (KBO-PCOB Magazine) includes 7 robust tips from our PROMISS partner on how to ensure you’re getting enough protein and also lists 25 foods rich in protein such as tenderloin, salmon, milk, eggs or walnuts.
Addressing an even wider audience in the NRC (Dutch national newspaper), “Ageing healthy with proteins” also focuses on why protein is important for older people: “Proteins are essential for preserving muscle mass, resilience and your mental state”, explains Prof. de van der Schueren.
Read the full articles in Dutch here:
Yung Hung, Hanneke A. H. Wijnhoven, Marjolein Visser and Wim Verbeke
Nutrients 2019, 11(4), 777; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11040777
European older adults have been studied according to their appetite and protein intake profiles, and the relevant dietary and physical activity behavioural determinants were identified. A survey with 1,825 older adults aged 65 years or above in five European countries (Netherlands, United Kingdom, Finland, Spain and Poland) was conducted in June 2017.
Older adults with a poor appetite and lower level of protein intake is characterized by a larger share of people aged 70 years or above, living in the UK or Finland, having an education below tertiary level, who reported some or severe financial difficulties, having less knowledge about dietary protein and being fussier about food. This group also tends to have a higher risk of malnutrition in general, oral-health related problems, experience more difficulties in mobility and meal preparation, lower confidence in their ability to engage in physical activities in difficult situations, and a lower readiness to follow dietary advice. Therefore, effective dietary strategies to increase protein intake should take into account sensory properties, familiarity, affordability, accessibility and convenience.
Consumption of certain foods at a certain moment of the day and physical activity level or pattern were associated with a lower risk of having lower protein intake. Low level of physical activity emerged as a risk factor for having a lower protein intake in older adults with poor appetite, and vigorous physical activities between lunch and dinner were associated with a lower risk in older adults with good appetite.
This study provides an overview and highlights the similarities and differences in older adults’ profiles, as well as the challenges in promoting healthy ageing regarding protein intake. Recommendations for optimal dietary and physical activity strategies to prevent protein malnutrition were derived, discussed and tailored according to older adults’ profiles.
Antoneta Granic, Nuno Mendonça, Avan A. Sayer, Tom R. Hill, Karen Davies, Mario Siervo, John C. Mathers, Carol Jagger
Clinical Nutrition 2019 Jan 10. doi.org/10.1016/j.clnu.2019.01.009 [Epub ahead of print].
Sarcopenia is a progressive loss of muscle mass and muscle strength that may lead to disability, falls, and hospitalisation. The very old, those aged 85 years and older, are the fastest growing age group in most western societies and are at especially high risk of sarcopenia. Onset of sarcopenia may be partly explained by diet. Therefore, we aimed to explore the role of dietary patterns and protein intake in the risk of sarcopenia over 3 years. Our study, the Newcastle 85+, was based in North East England, and involved more than 750 people aged 85 years old. These participants had their diet estimated by a 24 hour multiple pass recall (people are asked what foods and drinks they consumed in the past 24 hours) on two different days of the week and from this, dietary patterns were derived. Sarcopenia was measured over 3 years according to a muscle mass index, gait speed and grip strength. We identified three dietary patterns: ‘Low Red Meat’, ‘Traditional British’ and ‘Low Butter’ that varied by unsaturated fat spreads/oils, butter, red meat, gravy and potato consumption. We found that very old adults who had a dietary pattern high in foods characteristic of a traditional British diet (high butter, red meat, gravy and potato consumption, and high fat and energy intake), especially compared to a low butter dietary pattern (high in unsaturated fat spreads/oils, fibre, percentage of energy from protein and starch) had an increased risk of sarcopenia even when overall protein intake was good. These results add to the limited literature on the role of the whole diet in sarcopenia in very old adults.
Over 20 million older citizens are at risk of protein malnutrition in Europe, whose consequences on health are serious and often irreversible.
Based on the outcomes of our research, PROMISS will develop optimised, sustainable and evidence-based dietary and physical activity strategies, which are currently tested in the Netherlands and Finland for effectiveness and cost-effectiveness in a long-term intervention study.
The project will show whether these strategies together with new food concepts and products will prevent malnutrition and support active and healthy ageing.
- A sneak peek of PROMISS research (p. 2-5)
- Consumers’ habits and their consequences
- Enriched bread with raisins and apple pie
- Protein rich soups
- Towards tailored dietary strategies
- Daily sedentary time and physical activity among Dutch older adults
- Nutrition and appetite under the magnifying glass (p. 6-7)
- The Protein Screener 55+: interview with Dr. Hanneke Wijnhoven
- What comes next? (p. 7-8)
- Read about what keeps our team busy in the coming months
Enjoy reading the third PROMISS newsletter here.
Our PROMISS partner, Christine Yung Hung from the University of Ghent, Belgium, presented PROMISS project results at the 168th EAAE Seminar on 7 February in Uppsala, Sweden.
The seminar addressed the questions of behavioural perspectives in agricultural economics and management by an exchange of current ideas and knowledge related to the effect of human personal characteristics, values, rationality, attitudes, emotions, goals, cognition etc. on production and consumption decisions.
Christine Yung Hung’s presentation contributed to the theme by presenting some of PROMISS’ WP4 results under the heading “Behavioural Determinants Shaping Protein Intake in European Older Adults”. PROMISS’ WP4 aims to quantify specific attitudes and preferences of older adults, as food consumers, with regard to dietary and physical activity characteristics and daily patterns according to appetite and malnutrition strata, and was therefore an excellent fit for the seminar’s overall theme.
Sharing insights these insights will help the advancement of the academic field but may also contribute to the formulation of efficient and effective public and private policy schemes, advisory support, and measures to affect production and consumption choices.
Daily sedentary time and physical activity among Dutch older adults
Higher physical activity is associated with lower chronic disease risk among older adults. However, less is known about the optimal balance between daily physical activity and sedentary time and their correlates among older adults. In this study van Ballegooijen et al from the VU University in Amsterdam objectively measured physical activity patterns and assessed its correlates in a large sample of older Dutch adults. In addition, they examined different combined profiles of sedentary time and physical activity across strata of sex, age, education and BMI groups.
They made use of cross-sectional data from 1,201 participants of the 2015-2016 examination of the Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam, a population-based cohort of older Dutch adults. The mean age was 71 year and 51% were women Participants were instructed to wear an Actigraph accelerometer for 7 consecutive days at the right hip. Time spent in sedentary (<100 counts per minute [cpm]), light (100-2020 cpm), and moderate and vigorous activity (MVPA) ≥2020 cpm) were calculated and compared across age, sex, education and BMI groups.
The authors conclude that the majority of wake time was spent sedentary 65% followed by light (33%), and moderate to vigorous physical activity (2%). Higher age and higher BMI were related to more time spent sedentary, while female sex and lower education were related to less time spent sedentary. The combination of high sedentary time and low physical activity was significantly associated with higher age, higher BMI, and slower walking speed compared to the combination of low sedentary time and high physical activity. This suggests that increasing light activity might be an effective and feasible strategy in older persons to reduce sedentary time.
In a nutshell, these are the key findings of the study:
- Dutch older adults spend on average 65% of their waking time sedentary.
- Older adults’ sedentary time differs by age, sex, education and BMI groups.
- The combination of high sedentary time and low physical was associated with higher age, higher BMI, and slower walking speed compared to the combination of low sedentary time and high moderate to physical activity.
Linda M. Hengeveld, Anouk D.A. Pelgröm, Marjolein Visser, Jolanda M.A. Boer, Annemien Haveman-Nies, Hanneke A.H. Wijnhoven
Clinical Nutrition ESPEN, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.clnesp.2018.10.013
Adequate protein intake is required to maintain muscle health, which is of great importance for prevention or delay of disability and mortality. However, a substantial part of older adults has a protein intake below the recommended 0.8 gram per kg body weight per day. In this study we explored the timing of the day, the origin (animal or vegetable) and food sources of protein intake of older adults (70 years and older) from The Netherlands. We also examined if we could characterize older adults with a low protein intake. For example, are they lower educated, do they have difficulties with walking or are they living alone? This knowledge will help us to develop strategies to improve the diet of older adults with a low protein intake.
We found that 15% of these older adults had a protein intake below the recommended 0.8 gram per kg body weight per day. Compared to older adults with a high protein intake, older adults with a low protein intake consequently ate less protein at all meal moments (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack moments). Furthermore, older adults with a low protein intake ate less protein from animal origin than older adults with a high protein intake. The biggest food sources of protein were similar among those with a low and a high protein intake: dairy, meat and cereals. Out of a long list of characteristics, we only found that older adults who follow a diet, who are obese an who don’t drink alcohol are more likely to have a low protein intake. However, in general we did not find that there is a specific group of characteristics that defines older adults with a low protein intake, which means that this can occur in every older person.
This study shows that the timing and animal versus vegetable origin of protein intake differs between older adults with a low and with a high protein intake. Because food sources and characteristics appear largely similar between those with a high and low protein intake, strategies to improve the diet of older adults with a low protein intake should target a broad population and multiple food sources.
The whole scientific paper can be found here
Ben je een onderzoeksassistent met affiniteit voor de wetenschap die maatschappelijke impact wil hebben? Solliciteer dan bij de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU).
De onderzoeksassistent voert praktisch werk uit voor een interventiestudie naar het effect van voeding op gezond ouder worden. Hij/zij richt zich voornamelijk op het werven van studiedeelnemers, het screenen van mogelijk deelnemers, het invullen van studiegegevens, en overige administratieve taken ten behoeve van de studie.
- werven van studie deelnemers
- screenen van mogelijke deelnemers
- invoer van studiegegevens in database
- diverse administratieve taken
- afgeronde HBO opleiding (richting van voeding en diëtetiek is een pré)
- werkervaring in onderzoeksetting is een pré
- goed inlevingsvermogen en affiniteit met ouderen
- zelfstandig en flexibel ten aanzien van werkinhoud en werkdagen
- goede mondelinge en schriftelijke communicatie vaardigheden
Wat bieden wij?
Een uitdagende functie bij een maatschappelijk betrokken organisatie. Het salaris bedraagt afhankelijk van opleiding en ervaring op voltijdse basis minimaal € 2.579,- en maximaal € 2.972,- bruto per maand, conform salarisschaal 8.0- 8.3. De functie is ingedeeld volgens UFO-profiel (Onderwijs-/Onderzoeksmedewerker 3) en staat open voor 0.6 fte.
De arbeidsovereenkomst wordt aangegaan voor een periode van 9 maanden.
Daarnaast beschikt de VU over aantrekkelijke secundaire arbeidsvoorwaarden en regelingen die een goede combinatie van werk en privé mogelijk maken, zoals:
- maximaal 41 vakantiedagen bij een voltijds dienstverband
- 8% vakantietoeslag en 8,3% eindejaarsuitkering
- ruime bijdrage aan ABP-pensioenregeling
- bijdrage aan reiskosten voor woon-werkverkeer
- keuzemodel voor fiscale uitruil van bepaalde arbeidsvoorwaarden
Over de VU
Bijdragen aan een betere wereld door onderscheidend onderwijs en grensverleggend onderzoek, dat is de ambitie van de VU. Een universiteit waar persoonlijke vorming én maatschappelijke betrokkenheid centraal staan. Waar we vanuit verschillende disciplines en achtergronden samenwerken aan innovaties en nieuwe inzichten. Ons onderzoek beslaat het hele spectrum: van alfa, gamma en bèta tot leven en medische wetenschappen.
Aan de VU studeren ruim 23.000 studenten en werken ruim 4.500 medewerkers. De uitstekend bereikbare VU-campus is gevestigd in het hart van de Amsterdamse Zuidas, een inspirerende omgeving voor onderwijs en onderzoek.
Faculteit der Bètawetenschappen
De Faculteit der Bètawetenschappen inspireert wetenschappers en studenten om duurzame oplossingen te vinden voor complexe maatschappelijke vraagstukken. Van bosbranden tot big data, van obesitas tot geneesmiddelen en van molecuul tot de maan: ons onderwijs en onderzoek beslaan de volle breedte van de bètawetenschappen. Nationaal en internationaal delen wij kennis en ervaring met vooraanstaande wetenschappelijke instituten en het bedrijfsleven.
Werken bij Bètawetenschappen is samenwerken met studenten, promovendi en wetenschappers met focus op hun vak én een brede blik op de wereld. De faculteit telt ongeveer 5.750 studenten en er werken ruim 1.250 medewerkers.
De sectie Voeding en Gezondheid van de afdeling Gezondheidswetenschappen, Faculteit der Aard- en Levenswetenschappen leidt onder meer het Europese project PRevention Of Malnutrition In Senior Subjects in the EU (PROMISS) (https://www.promiss-vu.eu/). PROMISS heeft als doel om ondervoeding bij ouderen te begrijpen en uiteindelijk te voorkomen en gezond ouder worden te bevorderen. In oktober 2018 is er een langlopende interventiestudie gestart waarbij het effect van een voeding op gezond ouder worden onderzocht wordt.
Diversiteit is een kernwaarde van de VU. Wij staan voor een inclusieve gemeenschap en geloven dat diversiteit en internationalisering bijdragen aan de kwaliteit van onderwijs en onderzoek. We zijn dan ook voortdurend op zoek naar mensen die door hun achtergrond en ervaring bijdragen aan de diversiteit van onze campus.
Ben jij geïnteresseerd in deze functie? Stuur dan een e-mail met jouw curriculum vitae en motivatiebrief vóór 7 februari 2019 onder vermelding van vacature ONDERZOEKSMEDEWERKER t.a.v.
Naam: Ilse Reinders
Functie: Postdoc onderzoeker
Voor vragen over de vacature kun je contact opnemen met:
Naam: Ilse Reinders
Functie: Postdoc onderzoeker
E-mail: email@example.com of firstname.lastname@example.org
Acquisitie naar aanleiding van deze advertentie wordt niet op prijs gesteld.
Protein shakes don’t count: Why older adults should eat real food
NBC News publishes an article on protein mentioning the results of the study performed by PROMISS researcher Nuno Mendonca.
“Older adults need to eat more protein-rich foods when they’re trying to lose weight, dealing with a chronic or acute illness, or facing a hospitalization, according to a growing consensus among scientists.”
The article mentions the results of a study published in 2017 by PROMISS researcher Nuno Mendonca and followed nearly 2,000 older adults over six years: “People who consumed the least amount of protein were almost twice as likely to have difficulty walking or climbing steps as those who ate the most, after adjusting for health behaviors, chronic conditions and other factors.”
The article can be found here: https://www.nbcnews.com/health/aging/protein-shakes-don-t-count-why-older-adults-should-eat-n959926
The whole PROMISS scientific article can be found here: https://promiss-vu.eu/wp-content/uploads/Mendon-a_et_al-2019-Journal_of_the_American_Geriatrics_Society.pdf
Save the date for the #EFADConference organised by the PROMISS_VU project partner EFAD. The conference is taking place in #Berlin on 1 & 2 November 2019. The theme this year is ‘Breaking Professional Boundaries’. Preliminary programmes for this event will be available 1 March. Details at: https://efadconference.com/
You can now contribute to ESPEN 2019 by submitting your research in the field of clinical nutrition and metabolism.
Be sure to read the submission guidelines carefully to ensure that your abstract complies with the guidelines set out by the Abstract Grading Committee.
Take a look the abstract topics available.
We are delighted to inform that the PROMISS project has been included as good practice to the “Optimal Nutritional Care for All” (ONCA) website. This confirms that our project is a pioneering innovative to improve nutritional care and screening across Europe.
A comprehensive study on the long-term (cost)effectiveness of solutions for tackling malnutrition in older age has started.
Under the aegis of WP8 leaders, participants are currently recruited in the Netherlands and in Finland.
If you wish to join in and contribute to the study, click on the respective following links to find additional information regarding Dutch and Finnish respectively:
[DUTCH] Wilt u meer informatie over het PROMISS onderzoek, klik hier.
[FINNISH] Lisätietoja PROMISS-tutkimuksesta saat napsauttamalla tätä.
We hope to have you on board and do not hesitate to spread the word !
Thank you very much in advance !
The Department of Agricultural Economics of the Faculty of Bioscience Engineering of the Ghent University is looking for a highly motivated full‐time PhD student to work on the topic “Food and Physical Activity Preferences of Older Adults with Low Protein Intake” in a two-year appointment, which may be renewed, depending on future research grants.
The PhD research will be related to consumer behaviour and supervised by Prof. Wim Verbeke and Dr. Christine Yung Hung.
The research work is part of the project – PROMISS – Prevention of malnutrition in senior subjects in the EU, funded by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme. The aim of this project is to contribute and improve active and healthy ageing. The collaboration with an international team within and beyond the project consortium will expand the professional network of the appointed PhD, who will also receive the opportunity to present its work at (inter)national congresses and meetings and publish its results in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
Please find more information in https://www.ugent.be/en/work/vacancies/scientific/phd-student-yimgo.
PROMISS is participating in the 14th International Congress of the EuGMS, to be held from the 10th to the 12th of October 2018 in Berlin, Germany.
The congress theme is “Advancing Geriatric Medicine in a Modern World”.
Partners of the PROMISS project will receive you at at booth #06 and are also presenting two posters P434 andresearch by Linda Hengeveld.
Nutritioninsight spoke with Dr. Christine Yung Hung of the Department of Agricultural Economics at Ghent University about protein intake preferences among elderly adults.
She presented on her research on agro-food marketing and consumer behaviour at the 40th European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) Congress, held in Madrid.
Have a look at the interview in this video.
With the theme “Nutrition without borders” the ESPEN Congress 2018 (1-4 September 2018, Madrid, Spain) intends to explore new topics in clinical nutrition, in different clinical settings, besides the multidisciplinary and worldwide environment of the Congress.
Working in close collaboration with the ESPEN Committee Members, an attractive program represents an opportunity for physicians, dietitians, pharmacists, nutritionists, scientists and nurses involved in the field of nutrition and metabolism to meet and discuss cutting edge science in an informal atmosphere, strengthening old and sparkling new collaborations.
PROMISS will be displayed there, thanks to the direct participation of ESPEN as a partner, and VUA as coordinator.
Come and visit us on Booth no. 71 in the Exhibition Hall!
For more information, please contact email@example.com
Hanneke A.H. Wijnhoven, Liset E.M. Elstgeest, Henrica C.W de Vet, Mary Nicolaou, Marieke B. Snijder, Marjolein Visser, May 2018
In order to preserve muscle mass and physical function, it is important to consume a sufficient amount of protein with food. However, research shows that around 50% of adults aged 65 years and older consume less than 1.0 gram/kg body weight of protein per day.
The practical question is how to calculate if you fall in this case?
PROMISS researchers set up a short food questionnaire, named the Protein Screener 55+ or Pro55+ to provide you with the probability for low protein intake in community-dwelling older people.
The Pro55+ finally consists of questions on weight and height, and the consumption (amount on average day or frequency in 4 weeks) of: slices of bread (number); glasses of milk (number); meat with warm meal (portion size); cheese (amount and frequency); dairy products (like yoghurt) (frequency); egg(s) (frequency); pasta/noodles (frequency); fish (frequency); and nuts/peanuts (frequency).
Validation tests proved that the Pro55+performs well in discrimination persons with a low and high protein intake.
Our conclusion is that the Pro55+ can be used to validly screen for protein intake below 1.0 gram/kg body weight of protein per day in community-dwelling older adults.
Available in English, its online version can be found at www.proteinscreener.nl.
PROMISS encourages such tool to be up-taken and used in other countries, and in other languages as well.
Publication in: PLOS ONE, May 23, 2018, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0196406
The EFAD conference will be on stage on September 28th and 29th in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
The meeting place with dietitians from all over Europe is the World Trade Centre in Rotterdam.
Researchers are warmly encouraged to the inform and disseminate about their projects and results, by submitting abstract and present at the Conference.
Where are you on the 28th and 29th of September 2018? At the EFAD Conference in ! Now is your chance to meet dietitians from all over Europe!
The deadline for submitting abstracts of original research is 1 June 2018.
More information at the EFAD website.
The world is facing a situation without precedent: we will soon have more older people than children, and more people at very
old age than ever before. When looking at nutrition in old age, it strikes that more than 90 % of older people in Europe are living at home, and a very poor appetite is reported by 10–15 % of them, which, consequentially, causes malnutrition, and a ‘cascade’ of deteriorated body functions and illnesses; muscle loss, cognitive decline, weak immune systems and slowed wound healing.
The PROMISS project intends to tackle malnutrition, and Professor Marjolein Visser from Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam explains that, in order to design concrete and tailored solutions, optimal protein intake combined with physical activity at certain time points release extra positive effects on ageing. We should however not be left alone in improving our nutrition: the support by healthcare professionals is key.
Discover more in the extensive article, appeared in the BIOECONOMY INNOVATION – COMMBEBIZ MAGAZINE 2017-2018
Across Europe, one out of five older adults living at home is malnourished, or at risk of protein-energy malnutrition. Improving protein intake might prevent malnutrition.
Many older persons today do not meet the current Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of protein intake, which may lead to mobility limitations, loss of muscle strength, and increases the risks of chronic protein-energy malnutrition. There is increasing evidence that adequate protein intake is crucial in old age, which makes recognition of low protein intake key, and interventions to prevent malnutrition essential.
These are the issues at the core of the PROMISS research, and you can read about this in our first press release.
PROMISS and the Health ABC Study
The Health, Aging and Body Composition (Health ABC) Study is one of the longitudinal studies contributing to work package 1 of PROMISS. The Health ABC cohort consists of 3,075 black and white US older adults aged 70 years and over, who were generally well-functioning at baseline. The main focus of the Health ABC study is to determine risk factors for functional decline and loss of independence in healthier older people.
Since the start of PROMISS in April 2016, several researchers have used the Health ABC data to investigate associations of dietary intake with appetite, malnutrition and mobility limitation in US older adults. In the first paper, entitled “Protein intake and mobility limitation in community-dwelling older adults: the Health ABC Study”, it was hypothesized that older adults with low protein intake would have a greater risk of developing mobility limitations than those with higher protein intake. The results confirmed the hypothesis: it was shown that older adults with a lower protein intake (<0.7 and 0.7-<1.0 kg/kg body weight/d) had a higher risk of developing mobility limitations in the following 6 years compared to older adults with the highest protein intake (≥1.0 g/kg body weight/d).
The second paper, entitled “Poor appetite and dietary intake in community-dwelling older adults”, focused on differences in food intake in community-dwelling older adults with different appetite levels. This study showed that 21.8% of the participants had a poor appetite. Those participants consumed less protein, dietary fiber, whole grains, fruits and vegetables, but consumed more dairy foods, fats, sweets and sodas compared to the participants with a very good appetite.
The association between diet quality and protein-energy malnutrition was investigated in the third paper, entitled “Prospective associations of poor diet quality with long-term incidence of protein-energy malnutrition in community-dwelling older adults: the Health, Aging and Body Composition Study.” This study showed that the majority of the participants consumed a diet of insufficient quality and that 40% of the participants had a protein intake below the recommended daily intake. Furthermore, in 4 years almost 25% of the participants developed protein-energy malnutrition. It was observed that a higher protein intake may reduce the risk of developing persistent protein-energy malnutrition.
Researchers of work package 1 of PROMISS are currently working on a two other studies by using data from the Health ABC Study. In the first one, those data will be used in a multi-cohort paper on determining the prevalence of low protein intake in community-dwelling older adults. In a second paper, the association between poor diet quality and the risk of developing frailty in (initially non-frail) community-dwelling older adults will be investigated.
Combining physical activity and functional tasks in older age
Part of the work carried out in the PROMISS project is based on the HANC study. HANC is an ongoing large-scale European project between 8 Danish and German entities. Currently, 560 older adults (average 82.7 years old) with mobility impairment have a baseline assessment from 12 different domains (e.g. physical activity and sedentariness, sleep, muscle function, environmental characteristics). Assessment involve 7-day measurement by wrist-worn accelerometers, which contributes especially to PROMISS WP2 on reporting physical activity, sedentary behavior in older adults and can be compared with other cohorts in the PROMISS consortium.
Li-Tang Tsai and Paolo Caserotti, from the University of Southern Denmark, have reported preliminary results of accelerometer data from 2 cohorts: data from HANC suggested that older people with a combination of low activity count and low variability of activity throughout the week (meaning their activity level is stable throughout the weak) performed worst in functional tasks (SPPB: walking speed, chair stand, balance test) while those with high activity count and high variability of activity throughout the week performed best in the same tasks.
The team is currently working on a manuscript which will describe and compare accelerometer data from 5 cohorts within PROMISS consortium. This work will be an input to the symposium on “The impact of appetite, low protein, and physical activity on function: the PROMISS study” in the 24th Nordic Congress of Gerontology on 2-4 May in Oslo, reporting on “Associations between accelerometer-assessed physical activity, sedentary behavior, and handgrip strength among older adults across Europe and USA”.
Kristina S. Fluitman, Madelief Wijdeveld, Max Nieuwdorp, Richard G IJzerman Gut.
2018 Jan 30. pii: gutjnl-2017-315543. doi: 10.1136/gutjnl-2017-315543. [Epub ahead of print]
Various issues influence our appetite and metabolism, and gut bacteria have a role to play in there. A previous research project focused on one of the substances made by gut bacteria, namely butyrate, which is thought to improve body weight, appetite, and glucose- and fat-metabolism.
The project demonstrated in mice that most effects of butyrate on body weight and metabolism were actually not caused by butyrate directly. Rather, butyrate caused a decrease in appetite and food intake, which in turn caused the improvements in body weight and metabolism. Because of its effects on appetite, the researchers concluded that butyrate might potentially be used as weight-losing drug.
PROMISS would like more research to be carried out. The fact that that project was performed in mice, not in human beings, cannot make us jump to the conclusions that their results would be similar in human beings. The PROMISS experience is that effects in mice (promising as they might be) are often not as remarkable in humans. Furthermore, even if butyrate would work as effective in humans as it does in mice, we think that it might only work in specific individuals.
Read the whole scientific paper here: “Potential of butyrate to influence food intake in mice and men”.
Malnutrition is a critical issue, with a direct impact on older people’s quality of life. In Europe alone, about one out of 5 older people living at home is malnourished or at risk of malnutrition.
Preventing malnutrition is urgent for the whole society, for older generations of today as well as those of tomorrow.
- A sneak peek of PROMISS research (pages 2-5):
- The power of microbiota
- The work on the accelerometer
- Findings of the most prominent longitudinal ageing studies in the field of nutrition
- Nutrition and appetite in older people (page 6):
- Preliminary research results show what is relevant for seniors
- What comes next? (page 7)
- Read about what keeps our team busy in the coming months
Join the Council for Responsible Nutrition-International (CRN-I) in Berlin for its 8th annual Scientific Symposium—convenient to the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) meeting taking place 4–8 December in Berlin.
Healthy Aging, the Natural Consequences of Good Nutrition
Saturday, 2 December, 0800 – 1700
Sunday, 3 December, 1830 – 2100
H4 Hotel Berlin Alexanderplatz (the CCNFSDU host hotel)
See the CRN-I website for agenda and registration details.
During the 19th and 20th of September 2017, a PROMISS Consortium Meeting has been hosted at the premises of the Hôtel Novotel Nice Centre Vieux in Nice, France. All project partners where represented by experts in the fields of epidemiology, clinical trials, geriatrics, nutrition, physical activity, microbiomics, and behaviour, consumer, sensory and computer sciences, as well as industry, SMEs, European stakeholder organisations and representatives of older adults themselves.
The meeting consisted of a set of plenary sessions with topics ranging from reports from the project work packages and the second General Assembly, as well as a set of parallel breakout group sessions, which results where shared in a plenary session. All in one, the result was a very fruitful Consortium Meeting.
In addition to the working sessions, the group also had the opportunity to participate in a social program, including a visit to Saint Paul de Vence and a dinner in a restaurant of this beautiful village which medieval walls encircle pitoresque narrow streets.
At the very well attended PROMISS symposium, which took place during the 39th ESPEN congress, our researchers presented their work on potential dietary risk factors for the development of malnutrition and on nutritional interventions to prevent malnutrition in community-dwelling older adults.
The PROMISS leaflet is meant to introduce the audience to PROMISS activities and ambition, and let it become familiar with its content and visual identity. It is distributed during every relevant event organised by PROMISS partners, such as the EUGMS Congress, the EFAD conference, the ESPEN Conference, the AGE Platform Europe’s Annual Conference, and during external events where PROMISS is represented.
You can find it here.
Do not hesitate to share it as well!
Last 6 and 7 June 2016, PROMISS partners gathered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, to officially kick-off the project.
It was the occasion for partners to meet, exchange their views on PROMISS activities and officially start the work towards the first PROMISS deliverables.
We look forward to seeing PROMISS reach tangible results on how to prevent malnutrition among community-dwelling older adults. Keep an eye on the website and PROMISS social media accounts to learn about the project’s developments, and subscribe to the newsletters to directly receive regular updates.
Last February 2016, the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP AHA) opened new calls inviting organisations to get involved in developing, promoting or deploying innovative solutions and ecosystems for active and healthy ageing. The Call for Commitments targeted innovative solutions for active and healthy ageing.
The call received a strong support. The European Commission has recorded over 850 commitments from 28 Member States (and beyond) while 78 Reference Site applications (from 22 Member States) were submitted, representing regional and national alliances of stakeholders invested in the scaling up of innovation for active and healthy ageing.
We are very happy that the commitment submitted by PROMISS has been accepted, letting us become one of the official members of the EIP AHA, and more precisely of the A3 action group on Functional decline and frailty.