A person’s immune system could stop functioning properly if they eat or drink high amounts fructose, even for a short period of time.
According to a study, high fructose diets promote inflammation and damage the immune system leading to different diseases.
Sugary drinks such as soft drinks, sports drinks, and energy drinks, processed foods, cakes, and sweets contain fructose.
High fructose corn syrup alone, which is used in many beverages and processed foods, accounts for 10 percent of calories of a typical American.
High fructose intake has been linked to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, obesity and type 2 diabetes.
However, until now there has been little research related to the negative effects of fructose on the immune system.
This new research shows that fructose‐rich diets cause the immune cells to produce inflammatory responses (pro-inflammatory cytokines).
Through this process more reactive oxygen species are produced.
These molecules play a key role in the development of inflammatory disorders.
This kind of inflammation can damage cells and stop organs and our body systems, such as the cardiovascular and respiratory systems, from working normally.
In addition, the study gives a better understanding of how consumption of fructose can increase the risk of diabetes and obesity.
This is because chronic inflammation or a long-term low level of inflammation throughout the body is frequently linked to obesity.
Dr Nicholas Jones, the study’s first author, said:
“Research into different components of our diet can help us understand what might contribute to inflammation and disease and what could be best harnessed to improve health and wellbeing.”
The study was published in the journal Nature Communications (Jones et al., 2021).