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Thread: Food poisoning; Can it actually indicate the metabolism of a group of people?

  1. #1 Food poisoning; Can it actually indicate the metabolism of a group of people? 
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Hey people, I have some questions.

    Food that enters the stomach sack (not sure what the english word is exactly), is this not taken into the bloodstream yet? Does the food have to enter the intestines first?

    This story from the army is what got me wondering. Me and my army bros was eating at the barracks. Without our knowledge the food had turned bad.
    So we set out on a recon mission. I cant remember how long it took but I was the first to get sick. Diarhea and such (nasty stuff). However the other guys were just having a laugh and were seemingly unaffected. It took about 5 minutes after I got sick until we stopped. And after I was done getting it all out of my system maybe about 20 minutes had passed.

    So we drive on, and then maybe 30 minutes after that again another guy got sick so we stopped again.
    10 minutes or so later the third guy gets sick. And then another 5-10 minutes the fourth and last guy got sick.

    So:

    X minutes and Im sick.
    X + 50 minutes and 2nd gets sick.
    X + 60
    X + 65-70´sh

    Now. Ive always been skinny and claimed to have a high metabolism (Though people love to argue Im just not eating enough). But I got sick almost an hour before person B, and person C and D both got sick 10-15 minutes after that.

    We ate at the same time.
    We were doing exactly the same amount of physical exertion afterwards.
    We ate the same food.
    We all had the exact amount of food (Due to limitations in rations)
    We had the exact same previous food intakes the last few days (Again due to rations)

    So here we almost have a completely legitimate test group right?

    What other factors than metabolism could there be? Does weight have a say?

    Im wondering if this experience actually showed our metabolism rate. If so Im wondering if I should be concerned, because it seems abnormal that I would feel the effects of the poisoned food almost an hour before the other three, while they all felt the effects within a 20 minute timezone almost an hour after me.


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    Forum Masters Degree mat5592's Avatar
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    First, very few things are absorbed in the stomach. Aspirin and alcohol are two of the very few examples I know about. This just sounds like the food is reaching your intestines faster than the others, so it might not be an issue of metabolism/catabolism but rather gastric emptying.

    The rate of gastric emptying is largely mediated by the release of cholecystokinin (CCK), which in turn is controlled by the duodenal contents. The characteristics of the duodenal contents, such as amount of fat, acidity, and distension influence the release of CCK. For example, if I ate a pound of bananas and you ate a pound of lard, we could expect your gastric motility to be much less than mine. But since you had all eaten the same things and amounts prior and during, I am not sure if this would apply.

    In addition to food, though, hydration has been observed to affect gastric emptying. So, perhaps your friends were more dehydrated than you. Or, maybe you just naturally release less CCK than they do, I don't really know.


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    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mat5592 View Post
    First, very few things are absorbed in the stomach. Aspirin and alcohol are two of the very few examples I know about. This just sounds like the food is reaching your intestines faster than the others, so it might not be an issue of metabolism/catabolism but rather gastric emptying.

    The rate of gastric emptying is largely mediated by the release of cholecystokinin (CCK), which in turn is controlled by the duodenal contents. The characteristics of the duodenal contents, such as amount of fat, acidity, and distension influence the release of CCK. For example, if I ate a pound of bananas and you ate a pound of lard, we could expect your gastric motility to be much less than mine. But since you had all eaten the same things and amounts prior and during, I am not sure if this would apply.

    In addition to food, though, hydration has been observed to affect gastric emptying. So, perhaps your friends were more dehydrated than you. Or, maybe you just naturally release less CCK than they do, I don't really know.

    Thanks for a very informative reply Mat! Are you aware of any diseases that might affect CCK?
    Im trying to think of other factors. I always drank alot of soda in the army, but Im not sure of what degree it affects the acid level of the stomach if any.

    I always thought this scenario was a pure example of measuring metabolism, I didnt realize it could be other factors like this. Then again I may be under the misconception of what metabolism is. I always tthought it was "The speed at which nutritions from food are assimilated into the body and processed".

    (Sorry for spelling errors, non-native language)
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    Forum Masters Degree mat5592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mat5592 View Post
    First, very few things are absorbed in the stomach. Aspirin and alcohol are two of the very few examples I know about. This just sounds like the food is reaching your intestines faster than the others, so it might not be an issue of metabolism/catabolism but rather gastric emptying.

    The rate of gastric emptying is largely mediated by the release of cholecystokinin (CCK), which in turn is controlled by the duodenal contents. The characteristics of the duodenal contents, such as amount of fat, acidity, and distension influence the release of CCK. For example, if I ate a pound of bananas and you ate a pound of lard, we could expect your gastric motility to be much less than mine. But since you had all eaten the same things and amounts prior and during, I am not sure if this would apply.

    In addition to food, though, hydration has been observed to affect gastric emptying. So, perhaps your friends were more dehydrated than you. Or, maybe you just naturally release less CCK than they do, I don't really know.

    Thanks for a very informative reply Mat! Are you aware of any diseases that might affect CCK?
    Im trying to think of other factors. I always drank alot of soda in the army, but Im not sure of what degree it affects the acid level of the stomach if any.

    I always thought this scenario was a pure example of measuring metabolism, I didnt realize it could be other factors like this. Then again I may be under the misconception of what metabolism is. I always tthought it was "The speed at which nutritions from food are assimilated into the body and processed".

    (Sorry for spelling errors, non-native language)
    Nope, I am not aware of any problems associated with CCK hypo/hypersecretion, I was just throwing it out there. Even if someone did have a slight hyposecretion of CCK, there would probably be no issues that ever needed addressed. Drinking soda would not have an effect on this example unless it was consumed very recently before your meal, but you have already indicated that you all had the same things. Plus, soda would most likely only slow gastric emptying, not increase it. Metabolism encompasses a lot more than digestion, but yes people often use the word to describe that process.

    Ultimately, I am not sure why you experienced the symptoms faster than the others, I was just giving some ideas
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    Forum Professor Zwolver's Avatar
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    Well..The first thing i thought was, there was no way you could keep metabolism apart from people by judging how quickly they respond to food poisoning. But then i thought, what if you could control as many other factors as possible, then there are just a few factors left you could not control, then if you can take an average of as many people as possible, i think you could get into quite a high probability of telling their actual speed of digestion and metabolism.

    But, before you may or may not want to research this, i would suggest mice, and measure heart rate of these mice, usually if mice are less comfortable their heart beats faster. Or use a IR camera to look at the temperatures. So what kind of goal do you have in mind? A medicinal timetable per patient?
    Growing up, i marveled at star-trek's science, and ignored the perfect society. Now, i try to ignore their science, and marvel at the society.

    Imagine, being able to create matter out of thin air, and not coming up with using drones for boarding hostile ships. Or using drones to defend your own ship. Heck, using drones to block energy attacks, counterattack or for surveillance. Unless, of course, they are nano-machines in your blood, which is a billion times more complex..
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    Forum Masters Degree DianeG's Avatar
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    I've always wondered how my dog could dig up a dead ground hog he burried, start gnawing on it, and not get sick. Of course he is a different species. Never the less, the extent to which your system is tolerant of certain toxins or bacteria, or responds quickly and violently, might have something to do with either genetic or acquired immunity.
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    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DianeG View Post
    I've always wondered how my dog could dig up a dead ground hog he burried, start gnawing on it, and not get sick. Of course he is a different species. Never the less, the extent to which your system is tolerant of certain toxins or bacteria, or responds quickly and violently, might have something to do with either genetic or acquired immunity.
    So, me having a quicker reaction to the poisoned food would imply that I have a worse immunity, not a better one? And metabolism does not add in as a factor at all? Or does the fact that I reacted to it quicker - mean that my body "discovered" it quicker to remove it? *Confused*
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    Forum Masters Degree mat5592's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DianeG View Post
    I've always wondered how my dog could dig up a dead ground hog he burried, start gnawing on it, and not get sick. Of course he is a different species. Never the less, the extent to which your system is tolerant of certain toxins or bacteria, or responds quickly and violently, might have something to do with either genetic or acquired immunity.
    So, me having a quicker reaction to the poisoned food would imply that I have a worse immunity, not a better one? And metabolism does not add in as a factor at all? Or does the fact that I reacted to it quicker - mean that my body "discovered" it quicker to remove it? *Confused*
    Again, it could just mean it got to that part of the body faster. It could also mean that your immune response was faster, or maybe even a combination of both. Some types of food poisoning, such as those caused by staphylococcal enterotoxin B, will sort of over stimulate your immune system. It causes proliferation of your T cells as well as an increased release of cytokines, resulting in a "cytokine storm" effect. Basically, the symptoms you experience are a direct result of your overreactive immune response.
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    Forum Masters Degree DianeG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DianeG View Post
    I've always wondered how my dog could dig up a dead ground hog he burried, start gnawing on it, and not get sick. Of course he is a different species. Never the less, the extent to which your system is tolerant of certain toxins or bacteria, or responds quickly and violently, might have something to do with either genetic or acquired immunity.
    So, me having a quicker reaction to the poisoned food would imply that I have a worse immunity, not a better one? And metabolism does not add in as a factor at all? Or does the fact that I reacted to it quicker - mean that my body "discovered" it quicker to remove it? *Confused*
    It's all about balance in the immune system. A "good" immune system is one that reacts to foreign substances that may cause harm. If the immune system is too sensitive, it responds to foreign substances that aren't harmful, or even mistakes your own tissues as foreign. An immune system that isn't sensitive enough misses potential threats. The same is true of the non-specific inflammatory response. A little inflammation dilates capillaries and brings additional oxygen, nutrients and white blood cells to the site of injury. Pain from swelling and stimulation of nerve endings by inflammatory chemicals keeps you from using that part of the body until it is healed. But too much inflammation can damage the tissues and swelling may even restrict blood supply.
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