Five high-fat days are too much

Even short periods of greasy nutrition affect the metabolism of the muscles

Greasy food affects the metabolism after a few days. © freeimages
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Less strict diet on vacation? Just five days of extra greasy food is enough to throw the sugar balance off our muscles, as US researchers have discovered. Accordingly, the metabolism reacts much faster than previously thought to such a change. In addition, the level of certain toxins in the blood, which could cause obesity and diabetes, apparently increases, the researchers write in the magazine "Obesity".

After eating, the blood sugar level rises - this is important for our muscles to be supplied with the important energy source glucose. Muscles account for about 30 percent of total body weight and are the largest consumer of glucose. If the way the muscles process or store this sugar changes, it can affect the whole body's metabolism. Diseases such as insulin resistance and diabetes are closely linked to the glucose balance.

Sausages, cheese and a lot of butter

The role of diet and especially high fat in food for this part of the metabolism has now been studied by scientists working with Matt Hulver of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). For this purpose, they provided their study participants with greasy food for five days: the students were given plenty of sausages, cheese-baked noodles, bread with plenty of butter and the like. However, the amount of calories consumed was identical to the control diet before the start of the study.

Before and after each of the five greasy days, the researchers took muscle samples from the participants. They checked how the muscles processed glucose. It turned out: Only five days with high-fat food are enough to change the metabolism of the muscles. The muscles responded less to the sugar and less of it. The crucial genes in the muscle cells were also less active.

Long-term damage from endotoxins?

However, the researchers found another dramatic difference: After the high-fat diet, the subjects had elevated levels of so-called endotoxins in the blood. Certain bacteria are known to be the source of these inflammatory agents. Some strains of the intestinal bacterium Escherichia coli also produce these endotoxins. Previous studies have already shown an association with overweight and insulin resistance. display

Resistance to insulin was not detected by the researchers in the subjects. The body weight or the fat content did not increase in the five days either. However, because of the increased endotoxin levels, Hulver and colleagues believe it is well possible that such serious health problems could occur in the long term. The scientists want to explore the long-term effects of Hulver now more accurate. They also want to know how long the damages already found and whether they can be withdrawn.

"Most people think they can greas and eat greasy food for a few days, " says Hulver. "But it takes just five days for the muscles to start protesting." Hulver stresses that five days are only a very short time. Many people pay attention during or after vacation On holidays such as Easter and Christmas less on their diet. However, such periods of time seem to be sufficient to impair the metabolism. (Obesity, 2015; doi: 10.1002 / oby.21031)

(Virginia Tech, 20.04.2015 - AKR)