How to Tackle the Relationship between Autoimmune Diseases and Diet: Well Begun Is Half-Done

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Journal: Nutrients
Publication Date: 11/2021
Summary: Nutrition and immunity are closely related, and the immune system is composed of the most highly energy-consuming cells in the body. Much of the immune system is located within the GI tract, since it must deal with the huge antigenic load introduced with food. Moreover, the incidence of immune-mediated diseases is elevated in Westernized countries, where “transition nutrition” prevails, owing to the shift from traditional dietary patterns towards Westernized patterns. This ecological correlation has fostered increasing attempts to find evidence to support nutritional interventions aimed at managing and reducing the risk of immune-mediated diseases. Recent studies have described the impacts of single nutrients on markers of immune function, but the knowledge currently available is not sufficient to demonstrate the impact of specific dietary patterns on immune-mediated clinical disease endpoints. If nutritional scientists are to conduct quality research, one of many challenges facing them, in studying the complex interactions between the immune system and diet, is to develop improved tools for investigating eating habits in the context of immunomediated diseases.

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