ZOE study reveals new link between menopause and metabolic health

World’s Largest Comprehensive Nutrition Study Shows Women Can Reduce Weight Gain During Menopause

BOSTON, March 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Researchers from personalized nutrition company ZOE and world-renowned scientists from King’s College London, Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health and Massachusetts General Hospital, revealed that diet may be the key to reducing the adverse health changes associated with menopause. This is according to the largest study of its kind, published in preprint in The Lancetwhich explores how menopause affects day-to-day metabolism.

Menopause is defined as when a woman has not had a period for 12 months, usually occurring naturally, most often after age 45. Spending more than a third of their lives in a post-menopausal state, women going through this transition often make them more susceptible to changes in body composition, mood, sleep, inflammation, glycemic control and blood sugar levels. cholesterol, which contributes to an increased risk of heart disease and many other metabolic health problems.

dr. Sarah BerryThe study’s lead author, Senior Nutrition Researcher at ZOE and Associate Professor of Nutritional Sciences in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at King’s College London, said: “Menopause has always been vastly under-studied and women have been under-researched. represented in health research, particularly in relation to food and health. Our research shows that menopause is a time of major metabolic upheavals, which can have a significant impact on long-term health. These findings will allow us to provide simple yet more personalized nutrition and health advice that is more effective in reducing the health burden of menopause.”

The transition to menopause can add many complications to the way women eat, sleep and feel. ZOE researchers found key differences in inflammation and blood sugar levels after eating in post-menopausal women compared to pre-menopausal women. The adverse effect of menopause on blood sugar control, which is a key risk factor for cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, has been seen even in pre- and post-menopausal women of the same age (c that is, women of a similar age), showing, for the first time, that this decline in blood sugar control was not just an inevitable part of aging. Another new finding from this research was that the association between menopause with higher body fat and inflammation was partly mediated by poor diet and the microbiome. Since diet and microbiome composition are intertwined,* this points to the potential role of diet in modulating some of the adverse health effects of menopause.

The research team also found that post-menopausal women consumed higher intakes of dietary sugars and reported poorer sleep than pre-menopausal women, both of which are associated with an increased risk of type 1 diabetes and type 2, obesity and cardiovascular disease. These changes in diet and sleep, along with the decrease in physical activity reported in previous studies, are linked to lower estrogen and may act in concert to increase the risk of weight gain over time.

In addition, the study also observed differences in the abundance of bacterial species between pre- and post-menopausal women, including pro-inflammatory and obesogenic bacteria. The team’s previous research linked these species to adverse cardiometabolic health, diet, and inflammatory outcomes.*

“ZOE’s PREDICT study gives us the opportunity to study the nutrition and health of thousands of people on an unprecedented scale, breadth and depth,” noted Kate Bermingham, first author on the King’s College London paper. “Our insights are helping to untangle the complex links between lifestyle, hormones, metabolism and health in a way that was simply not possible before. Small changes in diet and lifestyle have the potential to make a big difference in how women manage their symptoms and improve this passage.”

“The good news is that what you eat can partially reduce the adverse health effects of menopause, either directly by reducing inflammation and blood sugar spikes, or indirectly by altering the microbiome into a more favorable composition,” a said Dr. Berry. “ZOE’s personalized nutrition program promotes a healthy gut microbiota and targets diet-induced inflammation, postprandial responses and body weight. We are committed to continuing to integrate our scientific knowledge of menopause into our program to better support women through menopause.

These latest findings underscore the need to develop more tailored nutritional and lifestyle advice for women at different life stages, taking into account their personal metabolic responses, changing microbiome and hormonal status. As more and more women go through menopause, it is essential that clinicians, researchers, the general public and policy makers encourage open and supportive discussions on this topic, pointing to research like ZOE’s, to enable science-based dietary and lifestyle advice that will effectively reduce the adverse effects of menopause on cardiometabolic risk.

Find out how ZOE empowers everyone to understand their body for long-term health at joinzoe.com.

Notes and resources:

  • Reference: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=4051462
  • The researchers involved in this study come from lund University, Sweden; University of California, Berkeley, United States; Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, United States; Tufts University, Boston, United States; IMDEA-Power Supply, Madrid, Spain; University of Nottingham, United Kingdom; University of Trento, Italy; European Institute of Oncology Scientific Institute for Research, Hospitalization and Health, Milan, Italy; Harvard Chan School Public Health, Boston, United States; king of college London, United Kingdom; Zoe Global.
  • *ZOE’s previous research on the link between gut microbiome and metabolic health: Asnicar, F., Berry, SE, Valdes, AM et al. Microbiome connections with host metabolism and habitual diet of 1,098 deeply phenotyped individuals. Nature Medicine 27, 321–332 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-020-01183-8
  • Find out how unhealthy metabolic responses after eating can contribute to health problems and weight gain joinzoe.com/whitepapers/dietary-inflammation
  • Learn more about the PREDICT research program: joinzoe.com/post/what-is-predict
  • Learn more about the science behind ZOE: joinzoe.com/whitepapers/overview
  • To learn more about the ZOE Home Testing and Nutrition Program, visit joinzoe.com

About ZOE

ZOE is a personalized nutrition company using data and science on a scale never before imagined to give everyone control of their health for life. ZOE is leading the world’s largest scientific nutrition study to understand the complex relationship between diet and health. The company’s science is rooted in the discovery that everyone reacts differently to the same food, and that their long-term health is deeply tied to their unique gut bacteria. By combining science with artificial intelligence, ZOE is making truly personalized nutrition a reality today.

Situated in London and BostonZOE was founded by Professor Tim Spector from King’s College London, Head of Data Science Jonathan Wolfand entrepreneur Georges Hadjigeorgiou. For more information on ZOE’s mission and science, visit joinzoe.com.


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