Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Memory and Weight

Are you aware that overweight and obesity are linked with more than 50 diseases—including memory loss? This doesn’t just appear out of a vacuum. Typically, obesity reflects one’s lifestyle choices. The overweight and obese (especially those with high amounts of belly fat) are more than three times likely to develop memory loss and dementia later in life. A study done by researchers at Rush University and published in the journal Cell Reports indicates that the liver uses a protein known as PPAR-alpha: interestingly, the same protein the brain uses for memory functions. In bodies with a lot of belly fat the liver must work extra hard, which depletes the PPAR-alpha. The liver then turns to other parts of the body to locate another source. As the liver steals PPAR-alpha from your brain, the hippocampus (the brain's “search engine”) starves, triggering potential memory loss. Eventually, you may not know a cauliflower from a computer or a cat from a caftan!  Memory loss and dementia are devastating—both for those who have it and their loved ones. Bottom line? Maintaining an optimum weight through diet and exercise is more than worth the work. (Better you than your liver!)  

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