Diets play a fundamental role in maintaining health. Researchers have declared that without diet, a person cannot lose weight or even lead a healthful life even if he goes to the gym on a daily basis. There are many reasons for this, the main one being how diet is the primary source of nutrients the body is unable to produce on its own.
This is why many people are not able to gain muscle mass regardless of spending hours in the gym. A balanced, protein-rich diet is needed to do so and without the proper nutrients, a person cannot become muscular.
On the contrast, if a person does not take a balanced diet, he may be putting himself on a higher risk of developing many different health conditions especially during the process of aging.
Recently, a new study also looks at the effects of a high-fat diet on the health of the heart while a person is growing old.
Previously, it was known that there is a connection between diet filled with fats such as Omega-6 fatty acids and the development of chronic health conditions such as heart failure and diabetes but the explanation behind this was not clear.
Consequently, Ganesh Halade, Ph.D., along with a team of researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and other institutions observed how Omega-6 fatty acids and aging collectively impact the function and structure of spleen, gut microbiota, and immune response to a heart attack using a mouse model.
Read the study here.
What Did the Study Show?
Reporting their findings in the FASEB Journal, the team concluded that a high-calorie, high-fat diet that is bound to lead to obesity affected the composition of the gut bacteria which in turn caused inflammation leading to acute heart failure.
In addition, such a diet also impacted the immune cell profile such as the neutrophil-leukocyte ratio in the body.
Studies in the past had already shown how the diet of a person may affect the gut microflora and ultimately the body’s immune defense capacity. Precisely, this very phenomenon was studied further by the team while also looking at factors such as high-fat intake and aging.
After observing the effects of all factors, the team noted that bacteria belonging to the genus Allobaculum, phylum Firmicutes were majorly impacted by a high-fat diet. Secondly, a diet that is bound to cause obesity also increased the level of neutrophils in the blood of the mice.
Furthermore, neutrophil swarming and an altered leukocyte profile were also seen in people after having a heart attack. This also came with splenic CD169-positive macrophages and splenic structural deformities.
Another significant observation was that in the young mice, inflammation linked to heart-related conditions was resolved after having a heart attack. However, in the case of older mice, the case was different.
What Does This Mean?
Though the link between high-fat diets and heart-related conditions was already known, the study cleared the explanation for it and also highlighted new sides to the problem.
For instance, it showed how a high-fat diet leads to inflammation which then increases with the process of aging. Hence, diet and age both are important factors that have different effects with age.
Additionally, the study also showed the inter-communication between the organs heart and the spleen and how both of them play a fundamental role in the immune defense system.
For the general people, this study may suggest adopting diets containing low-carbs and high-fat diets with caution for any purpose especially in older ages as it may be harmful in the long run and lead to the development of irreversible health issues and even death.