Thursday January 23, 2020

Lead Intake Promotes Accumulation of Fat in Liver which Can Cause Obesity

And the actual number could be higher as the condition often goes undiagnosed

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Epidemiological studies have shown that this affects nine to 32 per cent of the Indian population. Pixabay

Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology, Mandi have shown how lead intake promotes accumulation of fat in the liver which can cause obesity.

The scientists have unravelled the mechanism by which lead salt can promote fat accumulation in the liver.

Epidemiological studies have shown that this affects nine to 32 per cent of the Indian population. And the actual number could be higher as the condition often goes undiagnosed.

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a dangerous epidemic of this generation and is a rapidly growing health problem intimately related to the metabolic group of diseases such as obesity and diabetes, among others.

Lead, Fat, Obesity
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology, Mandi have shown how lead intake promotes accumulation of fat in the liver which can cause obesity. Pixabay

It is a conditioAlson wherein there is excessive fat accumulation in the liver.

While obesity has been known to be the leading cause for NAFLD, recent observations have shown that even thin people can be metabolically ‘obese’ and have NAFLD.

Their research work was performed in collaboration with researchers from the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Indian Institute of Toxicology Research in Lucknow and School of Chemical and Life Sciences in Jamia Hamdard in New Delhi.

This research work has recently been published in a reputed peer-reviewed journal “FEBS Letters”.

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Prosenjit Mondal, Assistant Professor, School of Basic Sciences, IIT Mandi, who has uncovered the pathway by which lead promotes NAFLD, said: “While the connection between lead and fatty liver disease has been known for a while, the actual mechanism by which lead worsens this condition has hitherto remained unknown.”

NAFLD and most metabolic group of diseases are often caused by the poor regulation of De novo lipogenesis, a complex process in which carbohydrates circulating in the blood are converted into fat.

The poor regulation of De novo lipogenesis leads to abnormal production of fat, which settles in the liver and other internal organs as visceral fat.

It has been found that the metal lead, which is a serious environmental toxin, can lead to poor regulation of fat formation and deposition in the liver.

Lead, Fat, Obesity
The scientists have unravelled the mechanism by which lead salt can promote fat accumulation in the liver. Pixabay

Lead toxicity is a serious concern in India and the use of lead containing paints, pesticides, packaging and even beer contributes towards high exposure of Indians to this toxic metal and its salts.

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Lead salts absorbed by the human body is stored in soft tissues, and autopsy studies have shown that the liver hoards almost 33 per cent of the total lead cruising in the body. (IANS)

Next Story

Lower Physical Activity in Adulthood Leads to Obesity: Study

Adulthood linked to lower amount of physical activity

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Leaving school and getting a job both lead to a drop in the amount of physical activity. Pixabay

Leaving school and getting a job both lead to a drop in the amount of physical activity and may lead to an unhealthy lifestyle, while becoming a mother is linked to increased weight gain, researchers have found.

Many people tend to put on weight as they leave adolescence and move into adulthood and this is the age when the levels of obesity increase the fastest, the study said.

This weight gain is related to changes in diet and physical activity behaviour across the life events of early adulthood, including the move from school to further education and employment, starting new relationships and having children.

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Many people tend to put on weight as they leave adolescence and move into adulthood due to less physical activity. Pixabay

“This evidence suggests that the pressures of university, employment and childcare drive changes in behaviour which are likely to be bad for long-term health,” said study researcher Eleanor Winpenny from University of Cambridge in the US.

For the study, published in the journal Obesity Reviews, researchers looked at changes in physical activity, diet and body weight as young adults move from education into employment and to becoming a parent.

To do this, they carried out systematic reviews and meta-analyses of existing scientific literature.

In the first of the two studies, the research team looked at the evidence relating to the transition from high school into higher education or employment and how this affects body weight, diet and physical activity.

In total, they found 19 studies covering ages 15-35 years, of which 17 assessed changes in physical activity, three body weight, and five diet or eating behaviours.

The team found that leaving high school was associated with a decrease of seven minutes per day of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.

The decrease was larger for males than it was for females (a decrease of 16.4 minutes per day for men compared to 6.7 minutes per day for women).

Physical activity
According to the researchers, most studies including physical activity showed a greater decline in parents versus non-parents. Pixabay

More detailed analysis revealed that the change is largest when people go to university, with overall levels of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity falling by 11.4 minutes per day.

In the second study, the team looked at the impact of becoming a parent on weight, diet and physical activity.

A meta-analysis of six studies found the difference in change in body mass index (BMI) between remaining without children and becoming a parent was 17 per cent: a woman of average height (164 cm) who had no children gained around 7.5 kg over five to six years, while a mother of the same height would gain an additional 1.3 kg.

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These equate to increases in BMI of 2.8 versus 3.3. According to the researchers, most studies including physical activity showed a greater decline in parents versus non-parents.

The research team found limited evidence for diet, which did not seem to differ between parents and non-parents. (IANS)