Metabolic Problems of Processed Foods 6 InflammationJuly 25, 2021
Metabolic Problems of Processed Food #6 Inflammation
About 70% of the volume of our immune system is around the gut. Its surface area is some 200 sq meters, much greater than our skin. Starting with the tonsils, there are millions of tiny white cell groupings in the gut that contain immune cells, watching to see what's coming down. The surface lining of our gut is only one cell layer thick, and those cells are maintained with only a few tight junctions. If I told you that wheat creates problems with "leaky gut" because of the production of zonulin, you might take pause. It should be no wonder that modern, processed foods are prone to increased inflammation. Many, many foods contain wheat.
But it's not just leaky gut that makes processed foods deadly. With over 60% of American foods containing extra sugar, we have way too much fructose coming into our systems. Fructose is a curious actor in your liver. We have no means of controlling its ingress into the liver cell, so it floods in. And it stimulates the production of palmitate or palmitic acid. Now, we have another inflammatory agent that is strongly correlated with many chronic diseases.
Now, add in the loss of fiber in processed foods and you are beginning to see a whole complex of problems. Fiber is what gets broken down and processed into beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) which is food for the enterocytes. BHB is also incredibly anti-inflammatory. The cross-talk between your biome living in your gut and your immune system is a whole course in biology. With inadequate fiber, your risk of many chronic diseases skyrockets. Processed food, almost by definition, is lacking in fiber.
We can't touch on these topics too long, because we haven't even gotten to artificial sweeteners, preservatives, residual pesticides and glyphosate, colorings, and antibiotics and you can discern the complexity of the topic. With leaky gut, you start getting LPS particles in your blood. They are inflammatory. With abnormal sweeteners, you start getting aberrant insulin secretion and larger, insulin-resistant fat cells. They are inflammatory.
Leave it at that. Processed foods just make for inflammation.
www.What will Work for me. We can measure inflammation with a CRP test, but that misses a lot. You can presume inflammation if you have chronic arthritis, high blood pressure, a bigger tummy, chronic fatigue, a whole raft of symptoms. Whole foods, you make from scratch, without added sugar is what human being needs. Feed the gut, protect the liver. More fiber, less sugar. That's Lustig's condensation of the wisdom in his book.
1. Processed food causes inflammation through what mechanisms? Answer: too much sugar, no fiber, wheat, just to name a few.
2. Wheat? Your kidding? How? Answer: Read the article by Fasano in PMC. And you can measure the antibodies if you want to order the blood test from Cyrex labs.Order their "array" #2 and #3. In my experience, some 50% of folks have antibodies to wheat and leaky gut. You are lucky if you don't. It's not, emphatically not, celiac disease. It's leaky gut, and that's something entirely different, except that it's still caused by wheat.
3. Fructose appears to be a special villain. Is it ok in fruit? Answer: Yes, in most fruits, fructose is in the range of 6% and comes with a bunch of fiber. In processed foods, say, apple juice, we have removed the fiber and increased the concentration of fructose by so doing. And you can drink a glass in 3 seconds. An apple takes 3 minutes. Some as simple as apple juice is "processed". OJ is maybe even worse because everyone believes it should be part of your breakfast.
4. And what does fructose do metabolically that makes inflammation? Answer: It pushes the production of the sugar palmitate that wreaks all sorts of havoc. There is tons of evidence out there that the consumption of fructose will cause metabolic syndrome in just a few weeks if you eat enough.
5. Ok, what is the easiest, most effective way to cut down on fructose? Answer: Don't drink it. Get rid of all sugar-laden drinks.