Buffing the gut: This could cause your brain to shrink – Video

Excess pounds on the belly is unhealthy. This is not new. Now, researchers have found, however, that belly fat could be a risk for the brain. Their study shows an exciting connection.

In people with Obesity, the brain can be shrunk in certain areas. The researchers in the Online edition of the magazine “Neurology”. They showed in their study that the effect is observed especially in people that accumulate to the centre of the body a lot of fat.

It is, however, not yet clear whether the excess weight trigger the changes in the Brain or a change in the brain, favoring the development of Obesity. Also, the question is, what are the consequences of the identified changes in the Brain, the researchers examined.

Like pounds of the body damage

That Obesity can be a precursor for many illnesses, is out of the question. On the list of diseases, Diabetes, joint damage, cardiovascular disease and respiratory complaints. It is unclear yet whether – and if so, to what extent excess pounds also is a risk for the brain.

Evidence found by researchers in the past in several studies. So in 2017, revealed a study by the Max-Planck-Institute for human cognitive and brain Sciences in Leipzig, the that obesity important brain affect networks and the Alzheimer’s disease-may increase risk. Already in 2010, a US study had shown that obesity accelerates the biological aging of the brain.

Overweight and Gray mass hang together

British researchers from the sports medicine Mark Hamer, from Loughborough University, studied how Obesity, specifically, on the so-called Grey matter in the brain affects. This “Substantia grisea” consists mainly of nerve cell bodies and is an essential component of the Central nervous system. In contrast, the White matter consists of nerve fibers that connect the different areas of the brain to each other.

“The research has brought about a shrinkage of the brain with a deterioration of memory and increased risk for dementia,” summarizes Hamer in a study published communication. “It was not clear yet whether additional body fat protects the brain size or damage.”

There fat pad damage

For the study, the researchers evaluated data from 9652 people with an average age of 55 years. They calculated the Body Mass Index (BMI) of the participants, i.e. the ratio of body weight to body size. Of the participants, almost 19 percent were obese – they had a BMI of 30 and more. However, the BMI has come in recent years in the criticism, since even people with a lot of muscle mass or higher bone density due to the pure focus on weight can have a very high BMI.

The British physician, a relative, therefore, in addition to the body fat percentage and waist-to-hip quotients (THQ) in their analysis. In women, a THQ of 0.8 or less regarded as healthy, for men, the value is 0.9 or below. The Quotient is also true a statement about whether one is more of a Apfeltyp, the body fat, so for the most part, around the waist, or a Birnentyp with fat deposits mainly around the waist, buttocks and thighs: Apple types of disorders have a significantly increased risk for hypertension, Diabetes, and heart and circulatory.

Furthermore, the participants were asked about their health. By magnetic resonance imaging, the researchers determined the brain volumes for Gray and White matter and a relative here also factors that impact on the brain can take a volume, such as the age, physical activity, Smoking, and high blood pressure.

The Central result is:

People who had both a high BMI and a high THQ, had a lower volume of Grey matter than those with a normal THQ. Specifically, the researchers found that the 1291 patients with a high BMI and a high THQ, with an average of 786 cubic centimeters, the lowest volume of Gray matter. In comparison, this value was in the 3025 people with a normal weight of 798 cubic centimeters. The 514 participants with a high BMI, but a normal THQ had an average of about 793 cubic centimeters of Gray matter. In the White matter, no differences were detectable.

Similar results were published by a Japanese physician in the past year, which had focused in their work, however, on the effects of mild Obesity.

The Chicken-And-Egg Question

“Although our study has found that obesity, especially in the center of the body, depends on with a lower volume of Grey matter in the brain, it remains unclear whether Abnormalities in brain structure lead to obesity or whether obesity causes these changes in the brain”, limit, Mark Hamer, author of the current article.

A drawback of their study is that only five percent of the invitees had participated in the investigation – and these were on average healthier than those that chose not to participate.