Fast Food Affect The Health of Our Great-Grandchildren! (+Video)
A study in rats suggests that eating fast food during pregnancy could make diabetic children, grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren!
During pregnancy, consumption of alcohol or tobacco (2), diet (3,4), and even physical activity and stress (5) are all factors that influence birth weight, blood pressure, the risk of diabetes or the risk of cardiovascular disease of children.
But this study goes further than showing a simple transmission of diabetes, it suggests that not only an unbalanced diet of the mother would induce diabetes in well-nourished children, but that the effect would last at least 3 generations.
The study was published in the journal Cell Reports, and was led by Dr. Kelle Moley of the Washington University of Medicine.
Material and Methods
His team fed female mice with a diet rich in sugar and fat (60% of calories from fats and 20% from sugars), in order to imitate an unbalanced western diet. ” Basically, it’s like eating fast food every day, ” says Dr. Moley. Then, the next generations were fed a standard diet relatively low in fats and sugars, and high in protein.
Even though the next generations are well fed, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren have developed insulin resistance (diabetes) and other metabolic problems. The researchers also noted that the mitochondria of generations 1, 2 and 3 had abnormal functioning. This abnormal function of the mitochondria would explain the transmission of the metabolic syndrome from the mother to the offspring.
The mitochondria are like the energy plants of the cells. In the presence of oxygen they can oxidize the carbon (which comes from the food) into energy, and release carbon dioxide. They are therefore of major importance in energy metabolism. In addition, they have their own DNA, transmitted by the mother, the father transmitting only nuclear DNA. This is why mitochondrial diseases such as Leigh syndrome are transmitted only by the mother.
Although women are not mere mice, the authors suggest that these results could not only be generalizable to our species but could even be amplified in our country because the parents’ poor eating habits are largely transmitted to children.
Researchers are continuing their research by trying to ” see if doing sports or having a healthy diet during pregnancy could reverse the trend. Unfortunately, our preliminary results are not promising. “
We advise future mothers to take care of their diet and lifestyle during pregnancy (but do not get upset!). But future dads must also watch over their food. Having a poor diet and demethyl lifestyle sperm DNA, which is passed on to children.
(1) Jessica L. Saben, Anna L. Boudoures, Zeenat Asghar, Alysha Thompson, Andrea Drury, Wendy Zhang, Maggie Chi, Andrew Cusumano, Suzanne Scheaffer, Kelle H. Moley. Maternal Metabolic Syndrome Programs Mitochondrial Dysfunction via Germline Changes across Three Generations. Cell Reports, June 2016 DOI: 10.1016/j.celrep.2016.05.065
(3) Graham C. Burdge , Jo Slater-Jefferies, Christopher Torrens, Emma S. Phillips, Mark A. Hanson and Karen A. Lillycrop. “Dietary protein restriction of pregnant rats in the F0 generation induces altered methylation of hepatic gene promoters in the adult male offspring in the F1 and F2 generations.” Bristish Journal of Nutrition. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0007114507352392
(4) Gregory A. Dunn, and Tracy L. Bale.Endocrine Society. “Maternal High-Fat Diet Effects on Third-Generation Female Body Size via the Paternal Lineage”. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/en.2010-1461.
(5) Christine Dunkel Schetter and Lynlee Tanner. “Anxiety, depression and stress in pregnancy: implications for mothers, children, research, and practice.” Curr Opin Psychiatry. 2012 Mar; 25(2): 141–148. doi: 10.1097/YCO.0b013e3283503680. PMCID: PMC4447112. NIHMSID: NIHMS693331