Middle age chronic inflammation can increase frailty later

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middle age inflammation can lead to old age weakness
Johns Hopkins University, Pixabay

Chronic inflammation in middle age may be linked to an increased risk of frailty and overall poorer health decades later, a new study suggests.

Overall for the study sample, each standard deviation of higher inflammation recorded in mid-life yielded a 39 per cent higher odds of frailty approximately 24 years later, the researchers said.

The prevalence of frailty in later life among people who had low levels of inflammation throughout mid-life was four to five per cent.

Chronic inflammation in mid-life
Representational Image- Old age pain, wikimedia commons

However, the prevalence of later life frailty among adults with high levels of inflammation during mid-life was nine per cent — approximately double.

“Middle adulthood may be an especially important period for poor health in older adults for multiple reasons. First, it is in middle age when the incidence of common chronic diseases, such as diabetes, begins to accelerate,” said lead author Keenan Walker, from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

“Second, compared to individuals who develop systemic disease and inflammation in later life, individuals who develop these conditions in mid-life may have a longer exposure and therefore are more susceptible to deleterious physiological effects,” Walker added.

For the study, published in The Journal of Gerontology, the research team analysed data from 5,760 adults in their 70s.

The participant’s health has been followed over the course of five medical examinations, starting in 1987-1989, when they were in their 40s and 50s.

The fifth and most recent medical visit and evaluation occurred in 2011-2013.

The investigators specifically examined measures of five markers of inflammation in the bloodstream collected during participant’s initial study visits.

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Inflammatory biomarker levels were combined to create an inflammation composite score, which was used as a marker of each participant’s overall level of inflammation.

Next, all participants who completed the fifth visit were categorised as frail, pre-frail or robust depending upon how many of the following attributes they had at the time — exhaustion, slowness, low physical activity, weakness and weight loss.

Those deemed frail met three or more of these criteria, while those categorised as pre-frail met one or two of the criteria, and those categorised as robust met none of the criteria. (IANS)

 

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A Blend of Spices May Help in Lowering Inflammation in the Body: Researchers

Researchers suggest that adding a blend of spices to your meal may help in reducing inflammation

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food-spices
Adding spices to your meal may increase its health benefits. Pixabay

Adding an array of spices to your meal is a surefire way to make it tastier and a part of Healthy Recipes, but it may increase its health benefits as well, say researchers, suggesting that a blend of spices may help in lowering inflammation in the body.

For the findings, published in the Journal of Nutrition, the research team used a blend of basil, bay leaf, black pepper, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, ginger, oregano, parsley, red pepper, rosemary, thyme and turmeric.

In a randomised, controlled feeding study, the researchers found that when participants ate a meal high in fat and carbohydrates with six grams of a spice blend added, the participants had lower inflammation markers compared to when they ate a meal with less or no spices. “If spices are palatable to you, they might be a way to make a high-fat or high-carb meal more healthful,” said study researcher Connie Rogers, Associate Professor at Penn State University in the US.

According to the researchers, previous research has linked a variety of different spices, like ginger and turmeric, with anti-inflammatory properties. For the current study, the researchers recruited 12 men between the ages of 40 and 65, with overweight or obesity, and at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease. In random order, each participant ate three versions of a meal high in saturated fat and carbohydrates on three separate days: one with no spices, one with two grams of the spice blend, and one with six grams of the spice blend. The researchers drew blood samples before and then after each meal hourly for four hours to measure inflammatory markers.

oregano spices
the research team used a blend of many spices including oregano. Pixabay

“Additionally, we cultured the white blood cells and stimulated them to get the cells to respond to an inflammatory stimulus, similar to what would happen while your body is fighting an infection,” Rogers said. “We think that’s important because it’s representative of what would happen in the body. Cells would encounter a pathogen and produce inflammatory cytokines,” Rogers added.

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After analysing the data, the findings showed that inflammatory cytokines were reduced following the meal containing six grams of spices compared to the meal containing two grams of spices or no spices.

While the researchers can’t be sure which spice or spices are contributing to the effect, or the precise mechanism in which the effect is created, the results suggest that the spices have anti-inflammatory properties that help offset inflammation caused by the high-carb and high-fat meal. (IANS)

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Isolation and Loneliness Can Lead to Body Inflammation: Study

Loneliness and social isolation may increase inflammation in body

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Loneliness
Researchers have found that social isolation and loneliness could be associated with increased inflammation in the body. Pixabay

Health researchers have found that social isolation and loneliness could be associated with increased inflammation in the body, though loneliness and isolation should neither be used interchangeably nor grouped together.

For arriving at the findings, published in the journal Neuroscience & Biobehavioural Reviews, researchers analysed 30 previous studies to investigate the link between social isolation and loneliness with inflammation in the body.

“Our results suggest social isolation is linked with different inflammatory markers. This shows how important it is to distinguish between loneliness and isolation, and that these terms should neither be used interchangeably nor grouped together,” said study researcher Christina Victor, Professor at Brunel University in UK.

According to the researchers, inflammation is the body’s way of signalling the immune system to heal and repair damaged tissue, as well as defending itself against viruses and bacteria. Inflammation can eventually start damaging healthy cells, tissues and organs and lead to an increased risk of developing non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease.

Loneliness
Loneliness and social isolation is associated with the presence of C-reactive protein, a protein substance released into the bloodstream within hours of a tissue injury. Pixabay

Researchers found that social isolation, the objective state of being isolated from other people, was associated with the presence of C-reactive protein, a protein substance released into the bloodstream within hours of a tissue injury, and increased levels of the glycoprotein fibrinogen, which is converted into fibrin-based blood clots.

Interestingly, researchers also identified that the link between social isolation and physical inflammation was more likely to be observed in males than females. Further work is needed to clarify why this might be, but previous work suggests that males and females might respond differently to social stressors, the said.

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“The evidence we examined suggests that social isolation may be linked with inflammation, but the results for a direct link between loneliness and inflammation were less convincing,” said study researcher Kimberley Smith, Professor at the University of Surrey in UK. “We believe these results are an important first step in helping us to better understand how loneliness and social isolation may be linked with health outcomes,” Smith added. (IANS)

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Here’s Why Vaping Can Make You More Prone To Inflammation and Infection

The predominance of these periodontal pathogens in the mouths of e-cigarette users and traditional smokers is a reflection of compromised periodontal health

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Vaping
While vaping has quickly grown in popularity in recent years, a growing number of people are falling ill or dying from vaping-related illnesses, the study said. Pixabay

Using e-cigarettes alters the mouth’s microbiome — the community of bacteria and other microorganisms — and makes users more prone to inflammation and infection, researchers have found.

While vaping has quickly grown in popularity in recent years, a growing number of people are falling ill or dying from vaping-related illnesses, the study said.

“Our study suggests that vaping electronic cigarettes causes shifts in the oral environment and highly influences the colonisation of complex microbial biofilms, which raises the risk for oral inflammation and infection,” said Indian-origin researcher and study co-author Deepak Saxena from the New York University in the US.

“Given the popularity of vaping, it is critical that we learn more about the effects of e-cigarette aerosols on the oral microbiome and host inflammatory responses in order to better understand the impact of vaping on human health,” said co-senior author Xin Li. For the study, published in the journal iScience, the research team examined e-cigarette vapour and its influence on the oral microbiome and immune health.

“The oral microbiome is of interest to us because research shows that changes in its microbial community as a result of environmental and host factors contribute to a range of health issues, including cavities, gum disease, halitosis, and medical conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancers,” Saxena said. They also evaluated how vaping influences infection efficiency of oral pathogens in cell lines using a novel e-cigarette aerosol generating machine and measured pro-inflammatory immune mediators.

Through oral exams and saliva samples, the researchers studied the oral microbiome of 119 human participants from three groups: e-cigarette users, regular cigarette smokers, and those who had never smoked. Gum disease or infection was significantly higher among cigarette smokers (72.5 per cent), followed by e-cigarette users (42.5 per cent) and non-smokers (28.2 per cent).

Using 16S rRNA high throughput sequencing, a technique used to profile microbial communities, the researchers observed different microorganisms in the saliva of e-cigarette users, cigarette smokers, and non-smokers. For instance, e-cigarette users had an abundance of Porphyromonas bacteria, while an increase in Veillonella bacteria was found in both e-cigarette and cigarette users.

Vaping
Using e-cigarettes alters the mouth’s microbiome — the community of bacteria and other microorganisms — and makes users more prone to inflammation and infection, researchers have found. Pixabay

“The predominance of these periodontal pathogens in the mouths of e-cigarette users and traditional smokers is a reflection of compromised periodontal health,” said Li.

The researchers also found that the altered microbiome in e-cigarette users influenced the local host immune environment compared to non-smokers and cigarette smokers. IL-6 and IL1ß — cytokines involved in inflammatory responses — were highly elevated in e-cigarette users. Cell studies also showed upregulation of IL-6 after exposure to e-cigarette aerosols, resulting in an elevated inflammatory response.

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Moreover, e-cigarette aerosols made cells prone to bacterial infection, which points to a greater risk for infection in e-cigarette users, the study said. (IANS)