Immunity and High-Fat Diets
We all know that eating too many fatty foods can promote obesity and drive up cholesterol levels in kids and adults. The results of a new study suggest that a high-fat diet may undermine our health in other ways: by weakening the immune system and increasing the risk of infection.
Researchers at the University of Gothenburg compared the health of mice on high-fat diets to those on low-fat diets. As expected, the mice on the high-fat diet gained weight. An unexpected finding was that their immune systems became significantly less active. The white blood cells of the mice on the diet were less effective at attacking and destroying disease-causing bacteria in the bloodstream.
The researchers explained that obesity and high-fat diets are associated with chronic inflammation and continual activation of the immune system. This may end up weakening the immune system, making it difficult to mount a full-fledged attack against infection-causing bacteria.
Now there’s another good reason to steer clear of junk foods and fast foods that are high in fat: It may help protect you and your children from infection by keeping your immune systems strong and healthy.