hero image

Poor eating habits at any age pose a great danger to our health. It is particularly the case for children who grow up with little control over the type of food they eat, and as such, many of them eat foods with extremely high sugar and fat content. Such foods threaten gut health, and a new scientific study suggests that the damage might be irreversible in adulthood.

The conclusion is courtesy of a study conducted by University of California-Riverside researchers. They conducted a mice study through which they observed mice fed on a high fat and sugar content equivalent to a child growing up on a Western diet. Such diets negatively affect gut microbiome.

The research findings revealed that juveniles on high-fat diets have less diverse gut bacteria, thus posing a problem because such bacteria are beneficial to our health. The bacteria play an important role such as synthesizing vitamins, breaking down foods, and immune system stimulation.  Healthy individuals with a healthy balance of the good and bad bacteria are able to fight off disease more effectively.

Juveniles on extremely high sugar and fat diets have gut problems that may prevail six years after hitting puberty. This means they are more susceptible to illnesses than their counterparts who grew up on healthier diets. Unfortunately, the damage caused by high sugar and fat diets might be irreversible.

The right diet is superior to exercise

Researchers also conducted experiments to determine if exercise has an impact on healthy levels of gut bacteria. They found that exercise impacted the level of Muribaculum intestinal bacteria in mice on healthy diets when they exercised on a running wheel vs. when they did not exercise. However, no changes in the level of Muribaculum intestine were observed in mice on high fat and sugar diets.

The scientists concluded that exercise does not contribute to reversing the damage that high fat and sugar foods cause to the gut. The study findings underscore the value of carefully overseeing children’s diet in the interest of their health when they are young and when they grow older. Implementing healthier diets for children is one way that parents can contribute to healthy longevity for their children.