Obesity is bad for your brain as well
A recent study published in the journal Human Brain Mapping compared the brains of obese, overweight and normal weight individuals. To define between the categories, scientists used BMI, or Body Mass Index, to establish that normal weight people had a BMI between 18.5 and 25, overweight from 25 to 30, and obese over 30. Scientists discovered that obese individuals had 8% less brain tissue than normal weight people, and overweight people showed a brain tissue loss of 4%. Furthermore, when they compared both grey and white matter, obese people had lost more brain tissue in the frontal and temporal lobes, those critical for memory and planning. Also compromised were the anterior cingulated gyrus (attention and executive functions), basal ganglia (movement), and the hippocampus (long term memory). Overweight individuals had loss mostly in the basal ganglia and parietal lobe, the sensory lobe.
The scientists also noted that the brains of obese people looked 16 years older than leaner people, and the overweight brains appeared to be 8 years older. This loss of tissue depletes cognitive reserves and put a person at greater risk for Alzheimer’s. This risk can be reduced by maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle.
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