New research has revealed exactly what happens to your body when you eat fast food and it’s liable to put you off burgers, kebabs and pizzas for life.
The study, conducted by researchers from the University of Bonn in Germany, looked at the way high-fat diets can affect the immune system.
What they found was that eating fast food was essentially akin to giving your body a bacterial infection. That doesn’t sound good.
Mice were put on a regimen of high-fat, high-calorie foods as part of something the researchers labelled the “Western diet”.
They found that the diet soon induced something called “induced systemic inflammation@ that continues even after they were put back on a more balanced diet.
The foods in the diet contained high amounts of fat and sugar and little in the way of sugar. When the mice ate them, their immune systems experienced an inflammatory response similar to the kind that would occur in a bacterial infection.
“The unhealthy diet led to an unexpected increase in the number of certain immune cells in the blood of the mice,” researcher Anette Christ explained in a statement.
Although the inflammation did eventually disaapate once a standard diet was resumed, the genetic changes linked to an aggressive immune response remained. Which sounds bad.
This kind of “memory” is not uncommon in cases of infections and the like. Often when a dangerous pathogen comes along, the body’s innune system unlocks memories to help fight a problem faster.
“Fast food thus causes the body to quickly recruit a huge and powerful army,” the university noted.
All of which can spell bad news later down the line, with problems including heart issues and diabetes.
“The foundations of a healthy diet need to become a much more prominent part of education than they are at present,” researcher Eicke Latz added in the statement.
“Only in this way can we immunize children at an early stage against the temptations of the food industry. Children have a choice of what they eat every day. We should enable them to make conscious decisions regarding their dietary habits.”
Stay away from the bad stuff, people.
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Loaded staff writer Jack Beresford has produced content for Lad Bible, Axonn Media and a variety of online sports and news media outlets.