Researchers at the University of Washington School of Medicine (USA) have proven that a Western diet high in sugar and fat weakens the immune system and increases the risk of infection.
About your findings Reported in “Cell Host & Microbe”.
This study was conducted in mice and humans. This shows that a diet high in sugar and fat can cause damage to the cells of the pancreas. These help control the cells and inflammation located in the gut that are involved in immune processes (intestinal defense and microbial phagocytosis). When pancreatic cells fail to function properly, the immune system in the intestinal tract becomes overly inflamed, which leads to inflammation of the intestines and reduces effective control of pathogens.
– Inflammatory bowel disease has been a problem in the past mainly in western countries like USA, but now they are increasing in other parts of the world as more and more people are adopting western lifestyle – explains the study by its principal author, Professor Ta-Chiang Liu.
Meanwhile, prolonged consumption of foods high in fat and sugar affects the function of the immune cells in the gut, which promotes inflammation and exacerbates infection.
The scientist explains that the inability of Paneth’s cells is a key feature of IPD. For example, people with Crohn’s disease, which is characterized by abdominal pain, diarrhea, anemia and fatigue, often have completely defective pancreatic cells.
Liu and his team studied the statistics and clinical data of 400 adults. They also had information on the status of each Panet cell. They found that the high body mass index (BMI) was closely related to these cells – translated as an abnormal image under the obesity microscope. – And a person’s BMI was high and their pancreas cells were bad – says the professor. Liu.
To better understand this relationship, the researchers tested two strains of mice genetically predisposed to obesity. Such animals consistently overeat because they have mutations that disrupt the sense of wholeness.
However, to everyone’s surprise, Panet’s cells were normally visible from obese mice.
Since obesity in humans is often the result of an inadequate diet, i.e. one that is high in fat and sugar, the scientists decided to change the diet of rats similar to the human Western diet: 40 percent. All the calories they consume came from fat or sugar.
Two months after this feeding, healthy mice became obese and their pancreas cells became abnormal.
“So obesity is not the only problem,” says Liu. – Excessive intake of healthy things did not affect the pancreas cells, however it led to overweight. Foods high in fat and high in sugar only became an issue.
When the animals were transferred to a healthy diet, their pancreas cells returned to normal within four weeks. So, can people who eat Western food improve their immunity by changing their diet?
– Our experiment was short-lived and we only ran it for eight weeks – says the scientist.
– In humans, obesity does not appear overnight or even within eight weeks. People lead a sedentary lifestyle for 20 or 30 years before becoming obese. So, if you follow the western diet for so long, you will not be able to come back and the panacea cells will not be able to recover. Changing your diet won’t even help. The professor concluded that we need to do more research before we can say whether this process is adapting to humans as well. Liu.