A high-fat diet could disrupt your internal clock - and therefore your metabolism

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Circadian rhythms affect everything from your hormone balance to your disease resistance ‐ they're the internal time-tracking systems that help your body know how to function properly.

And now, researchers at UC Irvine have found that a high-fat diet can affect the mechanisms that control your internal clock and, therefore, the metabolic functions of your liver. As a result, poor nutrition can trigger upsets in circadian rhythms that result in conditions like diabetes, obesity or high blood pressure.

Nutrition leads to reprogramming

Paolo Sassone-Corsi, one of the world's leading researchers on the genetics of circadian rhythms, led the study, which was published in the journal Cell.

He found that while a high-fat diet can disrupt circadian rhythms, a low-fat, balanced diet can effectively "reprogram" the internal clock back to a healthy state. This means that circadian rhythms automatically adjust accordingly depending on the nutritional content of your diet.

"Changes to these rhythms can profoundly influence human health," a press release on the study stated. "Up to 15 percent of people's genes are regulated by the day-night pattern of circadian rhythms, including those involved with metabolic pathways in the liver."

Since the body is able to reprogram these rhythms regardless of weight, the findings are positive in that they suggest a person can support a "working" circadian clock by paying attention to caloric and fat intake.

The authors plan to extend their research to analyze how high-fat diets affect other parts of the body, including muscle mass, fat and blood plasma.

Source: Science Daily

 
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