Obesity is linked with metabolic syndrome, a cluster of conditions that include hypertension, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal triglyceride or cholesterol levels.
As obesity rates continue to soar, understanding how these conditions work together and what can be done to prevent them is more pressing than ever.
Metabolic syndrome is now considered to be a chronic inflammatory disease, involving altered relationships between gut bacteria and the gut.
Western society has experienced a huge shift in eating habits in recent decades; there is now a much greater emphasis on processed foods, which, notably, lack fiber. This has had an impact on gut bacteria and, according to some, could help explain the increased prevalence of metabolic syndrome.
A diet lacking fiber alters the composition of gut bacteria, lowering numbers overall and changing the ratios of species. Also, low-fiber diets increase bacteria’s ability to encroach upon the gut’s epithelial cells; this provokes an inflammatory response.
As Western society struggles under the weight of an obesity epidemic, any study that gives new insight into obesity and metabolic disorders is important.
Researchers are gradually delving deeper into the relationships between gut bacteria, diet, and inflammation, and the picture is growing ever clearer.