Navigation Links
Happy holidays from the groaning board; Western diets turn on fat genes
Date:11/30/2009

Those extra helpings of gravy and dessert at the holiday table are even less of a help to your waistline than previously thought. According to a new research report recently appearing online in The FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org), a diet that is high in fat and in sugar actually switches on genes that ultimately cause our bodies to store too much fat. This means these foods hit you with a double-whammy as the already difficult task of converting high-fat and high-sugar foods to energy is made even harder because these foods also turn our bodies into "supersized fat-storing" machines.

In the research report, scientists show that foods high in fat and sugar stimulate a known opioid receptor, called the kappa opioid receptor, which plays a role in fat metabolism. When this receptor is stimulated, it causes our bodies to hold on to far more fat than our bodies would do otherwise.

According to Traci Ann Czyzyk-Morgan, one of the researchers involved in the work, "the data presented here support the hypothesis that overactivation of kappa opioid receptors contribute to the development of obesity specifically during prolonged consumption of high-fat, calorically dense diets."

To make this discovery, Czyzyk-Morgan and her colleagues conducted tests in two groups of mice. One group had the kappa opioid receptor genetically deactivated ("knocked out") and the other group was normal. Both groups were given a high fat, high sucrose, energy dense diet for 16 weeks. While the control group of mice gained significant weight and fat mass on this diet, the mice with the deactivated receptor remained lean. In addition to having reduced fat stores, the mice with the deactivated receptor also showed a reduced ability to store incoming nutrients.

Although more work is necessary to examine what the exact effects would be in humans, this research may help address the growing obesity problem worldwide in both the short-term and long-term. Most immediately, this research provides more proof that high-fat and high-sugar diets should be avoided. In the long-term, however, this research is even more significant, as it provides a new drug target for developing therapies for preventing obesity and helping obese people slim down.

"In times when food was scarce and starvation an ever-present threat, an adaptation that allows our bodies to store as much energy as possible during plentiful times was probably a lifesaver," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal. "By taking that opioid receptor off the table, researchers may have found a way to keep us from eating ourselves to death."


'/>"/>

Contact: Cody Mooneyhan
cmooneyhan@faseb.org
301-634-7104
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Happy flies look for a place like home
2. A happy new year for penguins
3. Genes hold the key to how happy we are, scientists say
4. Wolves find happy hunting grounds in Yellowstone National Park
5. Seeing family for the holidays? Scientists discover how the stress might kill you
6. UT Southwestern scientist begins to unravel what makes pandemic H1N1 tick
7. UT Southwestern receives $42 million in Recovery Act stimulus funding
8. UT Southwestern researchers use drug-radiation combo to eradicate lung cancer
9. UT Southwestern patient first in North Texas to receive newest-generation heart failure device
10. ICU patients on ventilators flex and stretch in study at Case Western Reserve University
11. Science wins fight over evolution in schools, says Case Western Reserve University author
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/28/2016)... , April 28, 2016 First quarter ... (139.9), up 966% compared with the first quarter of 2015 ... totaled SEK 589.1 M (loss: 18.8) and the operating margin was ... (loss: 0.32) Cash flow from operations was SEK 249.9 ... 2016 revenue guidance is unchanged, SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The ...
(Date:4/15/2016)... April 15, 2016 Research ... Gait Biometrics Market 2016-2020,"  report to their offering.  ... ) , ,The global gait biometrics market is ... during the period 2016-2020. Gait analysis ... can be used to compute factors that are ...
(Date:3/29/2016)... 2016 LegacyXChange, Inc. (OTC: ... SelectaDNA/CSI Protect are pleased to announce our successful effort ... variety of writing instruments, ensuring athletes signatures against counterfeiting ... from athletes on LegacyXChange will be assured of ongoing ... Bill Bollander , CEO states, "By ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  The Biodesign Challenge (BDC), a university competition ... harness living systems and biotechnology, announced its winning teams ... New York City . The ... projects at MoMA,s Celeste Bartos Theater during the daylong ... senior curator of architecture and design, and Suzanne ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS DNA Inc., ... Leader at the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as a Field ... DNA team,” said Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In further expanding ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016  Blueprint Bio, a company dedicated to ... medical community, has closed its Series A funding round, ... "We have received a commitment from Forentis ... need to meet our current goals," stated Matthew ... runway to complete validation on the current projects in ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 23, 2016 , ... ClinCapture, the only free validated electronic ... showcase its product’s latest features from June 26 to June 30, 2016 for ... Disrupting Clinical Trials in The Cloud during the conference. DIA (Drug Information ...
Breaking Biology Technology: