Obesity and the Brain!

(CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) Dividing cells showing chromosomes (purple) and cell skeleton (green) Photo By: Zeiss Microscopy

I came across an interesting article that I wanted to elaborate and share with my followers. I found it through Medical News Today. Scientists have found a linkage to obesity and the brain! Scientist have just started to study the relationship between the brain and obesity through neuronal circuits and lower gray matter volume. The discussion of obesity begins with specifically the stomach area correlating with brain size.

            One of the findings was involving the brain’s prefrontal cortex (the area that is important for complex thinking, planning, and self-control). This cortex was less active in people who overeat or are less active, which lead to obesity.  On the other hand scientist found there are an array of neurons that can curb overeating when they become active. Dr. Dekkers from the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands reported smaller gray matter volumes in people with obesity.  They examined over 12,000 people in order to study the participants’ gray and white matter. After reviewing, they found that it differed between men and women. This helped them determine that gender is huge modifier of the linkage between fat percentage and size of brain structures. Even though, gender mattered, their overall conclusion was there is a correlation between a larger amount of body fat and the chance of small changes in the brains white matter.  By using MRI’s they studied the communication between white matter and neuron actions.

            After reading this, I started to think about my eating habits and how they might be affecting my brain function. It is so interesting to me how our fat levels relate to our brain activity. This makes me think of how complex the human body truly is and that this is just the beginning of research on this topic. I find it most interesting that stomach fat is the most effective for brain circulation. Maybe it is because it is around the core of your body or maybe because it is linked to certain diseases? This is such an interesting article for me and I am glad I was able to share it with everyone. I have learned that in order to be most energized, well rested, and on top of it, I have to monitor my fat intake.  Brain activity is so important and truly controls the body. Stay healthy and stay active!



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