In India, prevalence of obesity and overweight is elevating quicker than the world average. It can be inferred from the prevalence of overweight that increased from 8.5% to 17.5% between 2000 and 2020 and the prevalence of obesity that increased from 2.5% to 6.5% over the same period. Apart from other causes like genetic and endocrine disorders, such increasing rates mostly correlate to diets loaded with saturated fats. Apart from Indian diets being supersized, lack of physical exercise is another factor contributing it cardinally. Recently a number of studies have revealed the impact of obesity on the functioning of immune system. It is innate immune arm of our benign immune system that is adversely influenced. Innate immune system is a versatile system of sensory and response molecules that is initially ready to take a note of invasion by foreign microbes. Binding of microbial conserved motifs termed Microbe associated molecular patterns (MAMP’s) for example, LPS, lipoteichoic acid, peptidoglycan, mannose-rich glycans and host cell damage products termed Damage associated molecular patterns ( DAMP’s) to Pattern recognition receptors (PRR’s) for example toll like and NOD like receptors that are present on the main player cells of innate immune system (e.g. Macrophages, Dendritic cells, Neutrophils) triggers the gene activation in them to code inflammatory mediators so as to upregulate the inflammatory process. The main signaling molecules among them are cytokines that signals and alerts the whole immune system to recruit army of cells and proteins for combating the foreign invader. Scientists from Batson to Tokyo revealed a series of papers which tell the amazing story of how the elegant system of detecting MAMP’s and DAMP’s by phagocyte cell PRR’s get upset when we ‘Supersize’.
Visceral (belly) fat originally regarded simply as an energy reserve, is actually a specified tissue having macrophages, innate lymphoid cells, preadipocytes and other related cells held in a net of matrix proteins extracellularly along with lipid-laden adipocytes (fat cells). Normally adipocytes prepare pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines to maintain a balance between rival inflammatory functions to keep a homeostasis which is prerequisite for tissue repair and regeneration functions. However, now studies have revealed a concreate correlation between elevating visceral fat (adipose) as seen in obese conditions and enhanced serum level of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines (adipokines). This is because visceral adipocytes along with their associated macrophages recognize saturated fatty acids as DAMP’s. This disturbs the normal inflammatory process which leads to elevation of one of the pro-inflammatory adipokine, interleukin (IL) 18 and macrophage marker of inflammation, C- reactive protein (CRP) in obese persons. This in turn leads to low grade systemic and chronic inflammation which can pose a threat to cardiovascular system which in turn become main cause of cardiovascular accidents like heart attack. Understanding the mechanism of how systemic inflammation is triggered and regulated by MAMP’s and DAMP’s offers an insight of how human diseases and disorders reflect lifestyle choices. Fortunately, it is feasible to reverse the effect of visceral fat on innate immune cell pattern recognition and it is only possible through losing weight by diurnal exercise. In general, physical exercise and antioxidant rich low-fat diet intake plays a cardinal role to maintain a leaner mass that is all the way beneficial for supporting sound health. Then according to this immunological concept, leaner body mass means readiness of body to tackle all kinds of foreign invasions more efficiently.
Physical activity or exercise improves overall health and minimize the risk of developing severe diseases like type 2 diabetes, cancer and currently prevailing cardiovascular diseases. Performing cardio exercises a minimum of 30 minutes a day can reduce the incidence of cardiovascular accidents that had presently wreaked havoc in people. Being physically fit can have immediate and long-term health benefits as well as can improve quality of life. That means if you remain regularly physically active, you may:
- Minimize your risk of cardiovascular accidents like heart attack, stroke etc.
- Have a lower bad fat level.
- Lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
- Lower the risk of developing some types of cancers.
- Lower the risk of developing hypo- and hypertension.
- Have strong muscles, bones and joints (lower risk of developing osteoporosis).
- Feel motivated, with a better mood and high energy, feel highly relaxed and sleep better.