Obesity Linked to Mental Decline
People who are obese suffer from mental decline even if they don’t have health problems like heart disease and diabetes, a new study has found. And the same is true for obese people who do have those health concerns.
Experts at INSERM, a research institute based in Paris and London, followed for ten years more than 6,000 British civil servants who were divided into three categories: those who were of normal weight, those who were obese and those who had metabolic syndrome (obesity plus two health problems such as high blood sugar, high cholesterol and high blood pressure). At the beginning of the study, the investigators recorded the subjects’ weight and health problems. Throughout the decade following, the subjects were tested three times for memory, reason and mental function.
Those who had metabolic syndrome saw their mental abilities decline 22.5 percent faster than those who didn’t. And those who were obese showed a faster decline than those of normal weight.
Lead researcher Archana Singh-Maloux said the results indicated a pressing need to focus on obesity, which affected 400 million adults worldwide in 2005. That number is expected to jump to 700 million in 2015.
The results of the study were reported in the journal “Neurology.”