Junk food linked to arthritis: The glitches in your intestine could be to blame for joint ache, research determines

  • Previously it was believed osteoarthritis was driven by stress on the joints from being overweight
  • The new analyse, published today by the University of Rochester Medical Center, been shown that gut bacteria- not weight- is the culprit
  • Balancing the microbiome with a prebiotic supplement reversed the symptoms
  • Junk food exacerbates arthritis and joint ache, new research has received .
  • The study shows that bacteria in the gut appears to be the driving force behind inflammation that leads to painful ‘ wear and tear’ of the bones in overweight people.

    Osteoarthritis was long assumed to simply be a consequence of undue stress on the joints, and that losing weight could avoid the condition.

    But the new analyse, published today by the University of Rochester Medical Center, been shown that balancing gut bacteria with a prebiotic supplement reversed the symptoms in mice- even if their weight stayed the same.

    Study leader Associate Professor Michael Zuscik said:’ Cartilage is both a cushion and lubricant, supporting friction-free joint movements.

    ‘When you lose that, it’s bone on bone, boulder on stone. It’s the end of the line and you have to replace the whole joint.

    ‘Preventing that from happening is what we, as osteoarthritis researchers, strive to do- to maintain that cartilage.’

    The researchers fed mice a high fat diet akin to a Western’ cheeseburger and milkshake’ diet.

    Just 12 weeks of the high fat diets made mice obese and diabetic, virtually doubling their body fat percentage compared to mouse fed a low fat, healthy diet.

    Their colons were’ dominated’ by pro-inflammatory bacteria, and almost completely lacked certain beneficial, probiotic bacteria, such as the common yogurt additive Bifidobateria.

    The changes in the gut microbiomes of the mouse coincided with signs of body-wide rednes, including in their knees where the researchers induced osteoarthritis with a meniscal tear, a common athletic trauma known to cause osteoarthritis.

    Compared to lean mouse, the findings showed that osteoarthritis progressed much more quickly in the obese mouse, with nearly all of their cartilage disappearing within 12 weeks of the tear.

    Surprisingly, the researchers found that the effects of obesity on intestine bacteria, rednes, and osteoarthritis were completely prevented when the high fat diet of obese mice was supplemented with a common prebiotic, called oligofructose.

    The knee cartilage of obese mice who eat the oligofructose supplement was indistinguishable from that of the lean mice.

    Prebiotics, such as oligofructose, cannot be digested by rodents or humans, but they are welcome treats for certain types of beneficial intestine bacteria, such as Bifidobacteria.

    Colonies of those bacteria chowed down and grew, taking over the guts of obese mice and mobbing out bad actors, such as pro-inflammatory bacteria.

    That, in turn, decreased systemic rednes and slackened cartilage breakdown in the mice’s osteoarthritic knees.

    Oligofructose even stimulated the obese mouse less diabetic, but there was one thing the dietary supplement didn’t change: body weight.

    Obese mice devoted oligofructose remained obese, bearing the same loading on their joints, yet their joints were healthier.

    Just reducing rednes was enough to protect joint cartilage from degeneration, supporting the idea that inflammation- not biomechanical forces-out- drive osteoarthritis and joint degeneration.

    Study co-author Professor Robert Mooney said:’ That strengthens the idea that osteoarthritis is another secondary complication of obesity- just like diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, which all have inflammation as part of their cause.

    ‘Perhaps, they all share a similar root, and the microbiome might be that common root.’

    Though there are parallels between mouse and human microbiomes, the researchers said that the bacteria that protected mouse from obesity-related osteoarthritis may differ from the bacteria that could help humans.

    Now they plan to continue the research in humans.

    The team hopes to compare older people who have obesity-related osteoarthritis to those who don’t to further identify the connections between intestine microbes and joints.

    They also hope to test whether prebiotic or probiotic supplements that shape the intestine microbiome can have similar effects in older people suffering from osteoarthritis as they did in mice.

    Study first author Dr Eric Schott, added:’ There are no therapies that can slow progression of osteoarthritis- and definitely nothing reverses it.

    ‘But this study defines the stage to develop therapies that target the microbiome and actually treat the disease.’

    Source: Daily Mail

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