01 October 2008

Excess carbohydrates destroy neurons that regulate appetite

Scientists at Monash University, working under the guidance of Dr. Zane Andrews, have found that brain cells that play a key role in regulating appetite degenerate over time, which is a possible cause of increased appetite and the appearance of excess weight with aging.

The authors found that immediately after eating, appetite-suppressing neurons increase their activity, which leads to increased synthesis of free radicals. The resulting cell degeneration is most pronounced when eating foods rich in carbohydrates.

According to Andrews, the destruction of appetite-controlling neurons creates an imbalance at the cellular level between a person's need for food and informing the brain about the need to stop eating.

People aged 25-50 years are most at risk, because it is in this age period that neurons that prevent overeating die.

The receptors of an empty stomach trigger the synthesis of the hormone ghrelin, which notifies the brain that the body needs food. When the stomach is filled, pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons are activated, which are subject to the destructive action of free radicals formed in the body. As a result, premature degeneration of neurons occurs, which can affect a person's ability to adequately feel hunger and satiety.

Free radicals also attack hunger-signaling neurons, but they are protected by uncoupling protein-2 (uncoupling protein 2, UCP2).

The authors believe that the death of appetite-suppressing cells may partially explain the triggering of complex mechanisms of age-associated obesity.

Andrews plans to continue the work, the aim of the next stage of which will be to find out other possible effects on the brain of a carbohydrate-rich diet, such as increasing the likelihood of developing neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease. This study is extremely important, because over the past 20-30 years carbohydrates have become the predominant component of the diet of the population of developed countries.

Portal "Eternal youth" www.vechnayamolodost.ru Based on ScienceDaily – Killer Carbs: Scientist Finds Key To Overeating As We Age


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