There are an uncountable number of things that may contribute to obesity. We also don’t have a good understanding of the causes of metabolic syndrome and why some people develop it and others don’t.
In this study of a small number of women (20 in the lean group, 20 in the obese group), there was increased intestinal permeability in the obese women.
Note that this study shows correlation, not causation. That is, this does not indicate whether:
- obesity increases the chance of developing higher intestinal permeability
- higher intestinal permeability increases the chance of becoming or remaining obese, or
- these two things happen together from some common cause.
In addition, the study showed that those with higher intestinal permeability tended to be those with indicators of metabolic syndrome. Again, this study reports correlation and does not provide insight on causation.
We demonstrated that intestinal permeability parameters in obese women are positively correlated with anthropometric measurements and metabolic variables. Therapeutic interventions focused on intestine health and the modulation of intestinal permeability should be explored in the context of obesity.
Teixeira TF, Souza NC, Chiarello PG, Franceschini SC, Bressan J, Ferreira CL, Peluzio MD. Clin Nutr. 2012 Mar 21. [Epub ahead of print]
NOTE: I did not read the full article (it is not open access).