What urine exposes about weight problems



Let’s face it: Weight problems’s not difficult to detect. It’s easily finished with a scale, a tape measure and (if you do not want to do the mathematics yourself), a body-mass index (BMI) calculator. Or you could go old-school, and use your eyes.

So, when researchers set out to explore “biomarkers” for weight problems– in this case, quantifiable chemical byproducts in urine– they had more in mind than finding a simpler method to diagnose the condition. The undertaking was meant to obtain understanding on the links between obesity and the many ills that frequently come with it, from type-2 diabetes and heart disease to gall bladder disease and arthritis.

Much better insight on those connections might cause more effective prevention methods, and to treatments that break the bonds in between obesity and disease. A panel of weight problems biomarkers might be able to determine people at risk of obesity, or to caution individuals who are thin that they are prone to developing metabolic conditions or other diseases connected to obesity.

Their findings were published Wednesday in the journal Science Translational Medication.

To obtain that insight, researchers sifted through the urine samples of 2,195 males and females (ages 40 to 59) who ranged throughout the weight spectrum for the obvious metabolites of obesity. In all, they discovered 29 chemical metabolites– the by-products of physiological procedures that continue unseen inside the body– whose levels variously fluctuated with people’s BMI.

The result is a “network map” which could work as a “metabolic signature” for the contemporary obesity epidemic, the authors stated. To the uninitiated, the network map looks like an air traffic controller’s worst headache: a tangle of hundreds of chemicals that interact with one another in myriad methods. But to those creating methods to secure the overweight from the health effects of their condition, any of those overlapping nodes could contain the secret passageway to success.

Amongst the most significant metabolites they found linked to obesity were those produced by bacteria that colonize the digestive tract, the latest in a flurry of research study findings that implicate the gut’s microbiome to in obesity and metabolic disease. Other metabolites recommend that the skeletal muscle of overweight people utilizes energy in a different way than does that of individuals of normal healthy weight.

“Our findings reveal several connections between numerous metabolic compartments and pathways,” the authors wrote, “and provide possible starting points for new techniques to prevention and treatment, for example, functional microbiome modulation and stimulation of skeletal muscle mitochondrial metabolism.”.

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