Experts reveal ‘high-fat diet slows metabolism’ | Inquirer Business
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Experts reveal ‘high-fat diet slows metabolism’

/ 02:23 AM April 25, 2015
ASIDE FROM making you out of shape, high-fat diets are bad for the heart and other vital organs.

ASIDE FROM making you out of shape, high-fat diets are bad for the heart and other vital organs.

Often, the slowdown of the body’s metabolism has been blamed on inactivity or a sedentary lifestyle. Proof of this lies when the body does the opposite. Health experts have pointed out that increasing physical activity not only helps control stress and food cravings, but also speeds up metabolism.

And a slow metabolism doesn’t necessarily target only middle-aged people and older. It has been pointed out that lower metabolism combined with the unregulated consumption of high-fat snacks (unregulated meaning not keeping count of the amounts being consumed—for example, when consumption is done while being engrossed with watching TV) places children at high risk for obesity. And obese children are more likely to become overweight or obese adults.

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“To further compound matters, obesity in adults increases the risk of sleep apnea, with its frontal lobe and overall brain impairment,” said Neil Nedley, MD, author of “Proof Positive.”

Metabolism refers to the chemical processes that occur in our bodies in order to maintain life.

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Processing of nutrients

The Washington, DC-based Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) issued an April 15 report citing a study published in Obesity that says a high-fat diet may change how your body processes nutrients. Researchers at Virginia Tech put 12 college-aged men on either a standard diet or a diet high in saturated fat for five days. Muscle biopsies were used to assess changes in insulin sensitivity. Those who consumed the high-fat diet experienced an almost three-fold increase in endotoxins one hour after their meal and lost some ability to metabolize glucose.

The study added that muscles’ ability to metabolize glucose is central to metabolism, insulin sensitivity and diabetes. This study builds on research which has linked fat inside muscle cells and high-fat diets to insulin resistance, which over time can lead to type 2 diabetes.

PCRM, in a related article, said that by avoiding animal products (pork, beef, chicken, fish, cow’s milk, eggs, cheese) and added oils, one would be able to keep total fat intake around 20 grams per day. To help meet this, PCRM advised the public to consume foods that have no more than 2 to 3 grams of fat per serving.

PCRM further recommends the links “Vegan Diet: How-to Guide for Diabetes” and “Vegetarian Starter Kit” (which explains the four new food groups, and offers useful tips, the “whys” and “hows” of a healthier diet, and easy-to-make recipes). Vegan diets, which contain no animal products (meat, dairy, eggs, and fish), contain no cholesterol and have less fat, saturated fat, and calories than meat-based diets or ovo-lacto vegetarian diets. Scientific research shows that health benefits increase as the amount of food from animal sources in the diet decreases, making vegan diets the most healthful overall.

“Some people imagine that pasta, bread, potatoes and rice are fattening, but the opposite is actually true. Carbohydrate-rich foods are helpful for permanent weight control because they contain less than half the calories of fat, which means that replacing fatty foods with complex carbohydrates automatically cuts calories. It’s important to remember to eat healthful carbohydrates, such as whole grains, pasta, brown rice and sweet potatoes. Processed carbohydrates, such as white bread and white rice, are not as healthful a choice because they have lost much of their fiber and other nutrients and tend to have a higher glycemic index,” said PCRM in its article “Frequently Asked Questions About Diabetes.”

Studies cited were: Anderson AS, Haynie KR, McMillan RP, et al. Early skeletal muscle adaptations to short-term high-fat diet in humans before changes in insulin sensitivity. Obesity. 2015;23:720-724; Petersen KF, Dufour S, Befroy D, Garcia R, Shulman GI. Impaired mitochondrial activity in the insulin-resistant offspring of patients with type 2 diabetes. N Engl J Med. 2004;350:664–671.

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TAGS: health and wellness, high-fat diet, metabolism, nutrition
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