|Can cooling down the inflammation make your belly grow!?|
Findings like these don't just conflict with common sense, they are also in opposition to the still prominent free radical theory of aging and it's central message: Oxidation and inflammation are bad for you! No matter what!
Too little is just as bad as too much
Most of you will remember one of my previous articles on (mito-)hormesis - if if that's not the case, I'd recommend you start with the "Inflammation is a True Fat Burner" article (read it!), because it (a) contains a lot of links and references to previous articles and (b) discusses a topic that is directly related to the study at hand. Whence you've refreshed your memories, you should actually be able to tell that it may not be a total idiotic undertaking to ...
"[...] evaluate the long-term consequences of TNFα-inhibitors on body composition, especially on the android/visceral region, in patients with RA [rheumatoid arthritis] or AS [ankylosing spondylitis]." (Toussirot. 2013)Ok, rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis, that's not you. I understand that, but it's neither a rodent nor a nematode study and despite the fact that the patients in the study suffer from chronic inflammation the data Toussirot et al. collected can provide us with a glimpse on what could happen to any of us, if we subscribe to the "the-less-inflammation-the-better" hypothesis and consume high amounts of drugs or natural substances to suppress cachexin (aka TNF-alpha), of which the corresponding Wikepedia entry tells you that it is "an adipokine involved in systemic inflammation and is a member of a group of cytokines that stimulate the acute phase reaction." (wikipedia)
|Figure 1: Markers of inflammation, health and joint function after 24 months treatment in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and ankylosing spondylitis (AS) patients (Toussirot. 2013)|
Weight gain right due to the absence of inflammation?!
Contrary to the previous post on IL-6 we are not dealing with muscle hypertrophy, here. The thing that's growing is the belly - the android fat mass, visceral fat and total BMI of the study participants in both groups and and additional significant increase in total (subcutaneous + visceral) fat mass in the ankylosing spondylitis patients (see Figure 2).
|Figure 2: Changes in body composition after 24 months (Toussirot. 2013)|
"[...] a significant increase inbody weight (+1.9 %; p=0.003), body mass index (+2.5 %; p=0.004), total fat mass (+11.1 %; p=0.007), and fat in the android region (+18.3 %; p=0.02) [...]" (Toussirot. 2013)... when they calculated the mean changes in body composition for both groups. In this context, it's probably worth mentioning that the success of a few outliers who managed to keep the visceral fat off, masquerades the "substantial, albeit nonsignificant" (Toussirot. 2013) +24.3% increases in visceral fat and thus diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk among the rest of the study participants.
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