Texas A&M expert proves nutrition can reduce mortality in older adults
Nutrition is often regarded as helpful, but it is not always a physician’s first defense in fighting disease.
Clinical nutrition expert Dr. Nicolaas Deutz, Ph.D., M.D. proved that nutrition is key in extending the lifespan of older patients with cardiovascular and pulmonary disease.
“I am such a believer in nutrition, and now we finally have a study that confirms the notion that it really makes a difference,” Deutz said.
Deutz and his co-researcher’s study included 600 patients admitted to the hospital for either a COPD exacerbation or chronic heart failure exacerbation. They began administering specialized oral supplements containing protein and HMB.
HMB is a compound that bodies produce naturally from an amino acid, but not enough to make a difference for older patients with cardiovascular and pulmonary disease.
“We found that just by giving this oral nutrition in a placebo double-blind randomized controlled trial fashion actually improved their survival substantially,” Deutz said.
Deutz and his team analyzed the data further and found that they even reduced mortality by more than 70% for patients with COPD exacerbation. Deutz calculated that the findings translate to a one-year life extension, which he said is huge.
“It really shows that nutrition is very effective in this situation and can have an effect that is larger than many other medical interventions,” Deutz said. “Nutrition should be part of our regular care.”
Even for older adults without disease, Deutz encourages appropriate nutrition and exercise. He hopes to continue research in this area to show that nutrition is key in extending the lifespan for all older adults.
“Nutrition is not some kind of expensive drug, it is very simple and cost effective, but it has such a major effect,” Deutz said.
About the Writer
Heather is responsible for news coverage in the Department of Health and Kinesiology, as well as the Department of Educational Administration and Human Resource Development.Articles by Heather
For media inquiries, contact our Media Relations Coordinator, Ashley Green
School of Education and Human Development Partners with St. Joseph to Provide Sensory Bags at Graduation Ceremonies
TAMU School of Education and Human Development partners with St. Joseph to provide sensory bags at graduation ceremonies.
School of Education and Human Development among Top 15% in Graduate School Rankings
TAMU School of Education and Human Development is among the top 15% of the U.S. News and World Report’s Best Graduate School Rankings.
School of Education and Human Development Hosts Two Renowned Experts in Teacher Education
The TAMU School of Education and Human Development hosted a conversation on teacher education featuring two renowned experts in the field.
Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development Professor Named Finalist for National Teaching Award
Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development Professor Dr. Claire Katz is a finalist for a national teaching award.
Texas A&M Launches State’s Most Comprehensive Institute For Early Childhood Development & Education
Texas A&M University has launched its Institute for Early Childhood Development & Education, which will be housed in the School of Education and Human Development.
Texas A&M Hosts Two Giants of Education Addressing Topics Affecting Teachers
The Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development will host a meeting of two renowned and respected minds in teacher education with a combined 90+ years of experience.
Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development Celebrates Black Excellence in Education and Research
The Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development announces its annual Carter-Larke Black History and Education Lecture.
Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development Awarded Federal Grant to Help Turn Around Schools
Faculty in the Texas A&M School of Education and Human Development (SEHD) were awarded a $15 million federal grant in their efforts to help turn around high-needs schools and better prepare principals in Texas and beyond.
School of Education and Human Development Remains a Premier National Online Graduate Program
The School of Education and Human Development (SEHD) is number 10 overall on U.S. News and World Report’s list of 2023 Best Online Master’s in Education Programs.
Texas A&M SEHD Awarded New Education Grant to Support Texas Teachers of English Learners
A new federal grant will bolster the Texas A&M University School of Education and Human Development’s (SEHD) goal of helping Pre K-12 teachers of English learner (EL) students in Texas.