A study has revealed that a high sugar diet can result in a worse kind of colitis, which is a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Experts have fed mice with high sugar diets and found that they have developed a worse form of colitis. They have observed their large intestines where they have seen more of the bacteria, which can harm the protective mucus layer of the gut. The lead author of the study Dr. Hasan Zaki has said that colitis is a huge public health concern in the US and western countries. The findings of the study have been presented in the journal of Science Translational Medicine. Experts have informed that colitis can lead to persistent diarrhea, abdominal pain, and rectal bleeding.
The US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found that the number of people suffering from IBD in the US has gone up from 2 million in 1993 to 3 million in 2015. This data includes Crohn’s Disease as well. The more worrying part is that the disease (colitis) has started to affect children as well, who have not been diagnosed with the disease in the past. Colitis is highly rampant in western countries. Experts have observed the western diet style, which is usually full of high sugar, animal protein, and fat. It is a possible risk factor for the disease, said the lead author of the study Zaki. He has said that high sugar diets can trigger IBD whereas the role of sugar has been quite contentious. The author has noted that glucose found in high fructose corn syrups might be the prime reason for this disease. These syrups are used to sweeten soft drinks and other foods. The study has claimed that cases of IBD have increased among kids as well across these western countries.
Experts have given mice a water solution mixed with a 10 percent concentration of different dietary sugars such as glucose, fructose, and sucrose for seven days. The study has found that the solution has induced severe colitis in mice. Animals, that have been given sugar in the first place, have developed more fatal symptoms. To identify the types and frequency of bacteria in the large intestines of these animals after giving a sugar solution, experts have used gene-sequencing techniques. The study has found that mice have developed significant variations in the microbial population in the gut. Experts have said that bacteria, which are known to trigger mucus-degrading enzymes like Akkermansia, have been found in higher amounts in the gut. Lactobacillus, which is considered as good bacteria, has reduced at the same time.