Saturday, February 4, 2012

Fat Intake and Your Brain

Do you think you can eat fatty foods and just compensate with physical exercise? Think again! Studies in rats and humans at Cambridge University in Britain have shown that high-fat foods appear to have an almost immediate negative impact on both short-term memory and exercise performance. The short-term decline in cognitive function may be because a high-fat diet can trigger insulin resistance, which means the body becomes less efficient at using the glucose, which is so important to brain function. A short-term negative effect on exercise performance may be because the body reacts to high fat content in the blood by releasing specific proteins that essentially make the metabolism less efficient (e.g., muscles are less efficient at using oxygen and fuel to make the energy needed to exercise). Ouch!

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