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Obesity May Accelerate Brain Aging

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the to-be-aware-of dept.

Medicine 289

natehoy writes "According to the US News and World Report, a recent study has shown a link between obesity and the loss of neurological tissue. The brains of elderly patients who were obese had on average 8% less tissue than their trimmer counterparts. Overweight patients had brains lighter by about 4%. This could have implications for the onset of dementia illnesses such as Alzheimer's. Just one more risk factor to add to the growing body (no pun intended) of reasons to try and stay trim."

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289 comments

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FAT FUCKS (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206723)

Get on your bikes and ride!

Also, first GNAA.

I also noticed a link (4, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206755)

Between Obesity and the loss of food in my kitchen.

But seriously - this seems like its leading to a "Overweight people aren't smart enough to care about their health" kind of thing.

Re:I also noticed a link (1, Insightful)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207057)

This study is such absolute balls. Like the "gamers are depressed loners" study that popped up on here last week, it's another flawed study.

Seriously, Slashdot needs to stop promoting these ridiculous studies. Fully expect the "sugar is bad" one from a day or two back to turn up on here soon.

A study, with so much bluster, and they studied just 94 people.

Chuck a couple of zeros on that, then perhaps you have the makings of a worthwhile study and not just an anecdote.

There is increasing evidence that obesity is not the death sentence so many seem to claim. There is also more and more evidence proving the BMI that determines if you are obese is absolute garbage.

Re:I also noticed a link (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207115)

No. Statistical analyses work just fine with 94 people if the effect size is strong.

Re:I also noticed a link (1, Flamebait)

Rei (128717) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207303)

it's another flawed study.

I don't know... it seems to explain Limbaugh.

Re:I also noticed a link (3, Informative)

Entropius (188861) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207487)

You can do perfectly good statistics on 94 people.

Any good scientific study includes both the effect ("8% brain loss") alongside an estimation of the error ("8% +/- 4%"). Over in the life sciences, when comparing the results from two groups (fat/normal, say) they like to give the probability that any difference they saw was due to chance, with suitably small values of this probability meaning that the result is considered "statistically significant".

Having a limited sample size makes it less likely that a small effect will be above this threshhold for significance (since you can't distinguish it from the noise), but it does nothing to impair the validity of the statistics themselves, so long as all the errors are estimated correctly (which they should be, if you do your math honestly).

Now, of course, the article linked in the summary doesn't actually give the significance level or the error estimates or any of those other things that are crucial to a scientific result actually meaning anything. But this is a condemnation of the shitty state of science reporting, not of the study itself.

Re:I also noticed a link (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207797)

I'm going to guess that you're a fatass and that's why your post is so emotionally charged. You are simply trying to defend/justify your lazy, food driven, mouth breathing, two seat taking, muumuu wearing, reduced brain capacity lifestyle.

Re:I also noticed a link (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207079)

But seriously - this seems like its leading to a "Overweight people aren't smart enough to care about their health" kind of thing.

The fact that overweight people aren't rational enough to care about their own health, appearance, or comfort is something which is rather obvious to the rest of us. Most of us are just too polite to go around pointing it out in polite conversation.

Re:I also noticed a link (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207655)

The fact that overweight people aren't rational enough to care about their own health, appearance, or comfort

Oh to be young, dumb and thin again. Life and its solutions were just so easy.

Re:I also noticed a link (3, Funny)

eln (21727) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207197)

No, actually I think this study might have some merit. You see, fat people tend to have fat, stubby fingers. It is very difficult to play the Nintendo DS, with its small buttons and tiny touch screen, with fingers that resemble sausages. Even the Wii is difficult to play for morbidly obese people, since its buttons are also small, and the physical movement required is beyond the capability of those whose couches have become permanent parts of their anatomy.

What does this have to do with brain aging, you might ask. Elementary, my dear lardass. Without the Nintendo Brain Age series of games, how can we possibly keep our brains from aging? They're like steroids for your brain, except the link between the games and shrinking testicles has not yet been firmly established. So, unless we can come up with a good way for fat people to play these Brain Age games without causing them to sweat even more profusely than they already do, I'm afraid they're all doomed to early-onset Alzheimer's.

It's basic common sense, really.

That's because this is nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207221)

I admit, I'm overwheight. And uhh ..... uhh .....

What were we talking about again?

Interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206757)

I'm going to go chew the fat about this with my doctor.

These morally chiding "correlation" studies (4, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206781)

Do they even TRY to adjust for the fact that fat people avoid getting health care most of their lives (because they're more likely to get tired of getting harassed by their doctor about their weight every time they go in for even a flu shot), drink more than thin people (getting shit on regularly can have that effect on people), and have crappier jobs than their normal-sized counterparts with the consequent lower incomes and inferior health care (because it's a lot harder to get hired)?

I'm not pretending that obesity has no effect on someone's health. But it just irks the hell out of me that these sensational studies always fail to adjust for these sorts of related factors in favor of the sensational (and grant whoring) headline of "Obesity correlates with such-and-such other calamity." I'm sure you could produce a study arguing that obesity makes you stupid too, by simply failing to adjust for the fact that the obese are often geographically concentrated in areas (like the American South) where public education is shit and poverty is high.

Why don't we just say that fat people are worse than Hitler and be done with it? You know, the way we've already done with anyone who dares smoke anything other than marijuana (which is somehow magically good for you), or who eats meat, or who drives an SUV (which some self-righteous asshole will probably link to sudden infant death syndrome in some future study), or any of the hundred other things that are going to kill us all any day now.

Is it any coincidence that the medical profession was once closely linked to the idea [thinkquest.org] that all illness was caused by immoral behavior?

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206921)

Because skipping a flu shot and having a few more drinks will cause you to lose 8% of your brain.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (5, Informative)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206949)

Is it any coincidence that the medical profession was once closely linked to the idea [thinkquest.org] that all illness was caused by immoral behavior?

Interestingly enough, in the Old Testament, Job's three friends made this mistake and were actually reprimanded for it. Calamity and "bad stuff" (including illness) does not, even in the Old Testament, mean judgment from God for immoral behavior.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207707)

Interestingly enough, in the Old Testament, Job's three friends made this mistake and were actually reprimanded for it. Calamity and "bad stuff" (including illness) does not, even in the Old Testament, mean judgment from God for immoral behavior.

Ssh. This is Slashdot! Christians are not allowed to contradict idiot atheist statements on here. It's against the TOS!

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206959)

I think that's a record for Godwin's law. One reply and BANG.

I guess now it'll have to be half a sentence.

"In all seriousness we need to consider what ramifications this might have regarding NAZI NAZI NAZI HITLER HITLER HILTER Doodle Doodle Dee Wubba Wubba Wubba Kplang!"

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1)

WindowlessView (703773) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207781)

"In all seriousness we need to consider what ramifications this might have regarding NAZI NAZI NAZI HITLER HITLER HILTER Doodle Doodle Dee Wubba Wubba Wubba Kplang!"

Sounds like what your imaginary girlfriend screams during the imaginary act.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (4, Informative)

b0ttle (1332811) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206969)

... the fact that the obese are often geographically concentrated in areas (like the American South) where public education is shit and poverty is high.

"American obesity rates are the highest in the world with 64% of adults being overweight or obese"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obesity_in_the_United_States

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1)

A. B3ttik (1344591) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207229)

Hey, if 64% are overweight... doesn't that REALLY mean that 34% of us are UNDERWEIGHT?

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (2, Funny)

A. B3ttik (1344591) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207237)

Ahem, 36%, excuse me.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207511)

Given that "overweight" means above the "ideal" weight range, "underweight" would be below said range... presumably the ideal weight range is not populated by zero people, and thus we can't predict how many people are underweight relative to how many are overweight.

Probably (IMO) there are relatively few underweight Americans - I'd guess at most 5% of the adult population.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1)

yabos (719499) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207717)

Nope. Obesity is not supposed to be normal and is unhealthy so being called overweight is correct. Normal healthy weight people are not underweight.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (2, Informative)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207469)

http://healthyamericans.org/reports/obesity2009/ [healthyamericans.org]

The most obese states are located in the south. Look at the childhood obesity too and you will find even a higher concentration in the south.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0, Troll)

buswolley (591500) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207715)

Republicans are fatter than democrats...and stupider.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207017)

Do they even TRY to adjust for the fact that fat people avoid getting health care most of their lives (because they're more likely to get tired of getting harassed by their doctor about their weight every time they go in for even a flu shot), drink more than thin people (getting shit on regularly can have that effect on people), and have crappier jobs than their normal-sized counterparts with the consequent lower incomes and inferior health care (because it's a lot harder to get hired)?

So, basically, what you're asking is "Was this study carried out in the USA, or a more civilized nation?"

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207181)

No, that goes without saying. The only way to find enough fat people to study is by starting out in the US.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207555)

This sounds like a stereotype, but it's really not.

I was recently in China for a conference. I'm a little guy (5'9" 145#) by US standards, but I was pretty big compared to the Chinese. I get on a plane back to the States, and was sort of shocked to see fat people again after not having seen many at all for two weeks. Upon returning I go to see my family in Alabama, with a connection in Denver.

The Tucson to Denver flight had some overweight people on it, but not too many ... but as soon as I got on the Denver to Huntsville flight, MAN THE HARPOONS. Seriously, the obesity rate on that plane was 40-50%.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207069)

You could have shortened your post considerably by saying "I, as a fat smoker who drives an SUV and eats a lot of meat, object to this study."

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (4, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207071)

drink more than thin people (getting shit on regularly can have that effect on people)

I haven't seen that to be the case; I don't see more fat people in bars than I do on the street. In fact, there are a higher percentage of fat people where I work than in my favorite bar, although that's probably because most of the people at work sit at a desk, while my favorite bar's clientelle is mostly construction workers.

and have crappier jobs than their normal-sized counterparts

The ones with the crappiest jobs usually are doing physical labor, and as such are generally a lot more fit than the average slashdotter, whether he's a skinny nerd or a fat nerd.

Why don't we just say that fat people are worse than Hitler and be done with it?

Gee, this early in the thread and Godwin has been invoked? I wish overweight people would be less self conscious about themselves. Except women -- "you're getting too skinny" can get you laid! I'm all for fat women, they're easier to seduce than hotties.

You know, the way we've already done with anyone who dares smoke anything other than marijuana (which is somehow magically good for you)

Actually, there have been studies showing benefits to potsmoking, including a greatly reduced risk of cancer among those who also smoke tobacco.

or who eats meat

Come on now, it's only a tiny but vocal minority against carnivorousness. Join PETA (People Eating Tasty Animals)

or who drives an SUV

OK, you got me there. Driving an SUV is an almost sure sign of a reduced intellect. They cost more to drive than any other class of vehicle, and more people die in them per passsenger mile than any other type of vehicle due to their poor handling and braking and high center of gravity and lack of crumple zones. SUV drivers drive badly not from lack of driving skill but because their vehicles suck. Plus, ask an SUV driver why they have it and they'll say "it carries so many passengers", but notice SUVs on the road and you'll see very few with more than the driver. If you carry passengers, get a minivan -- more passengers, better mileage, and they're the safest vehicles on the road.

But in the end, you have to die from something. When my grandmother was 95 she said to me "I don't know why people want to live to be a hindred, it ain't no fun bein' old!"

She was overweight when I was a kid, but when she reached her mid seventies or early eighties she started losing weight. Her mind was sharp as a tack until the day she died (at age 99).

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0, Troll)

blahbooboo (839709) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207501)

OK, you got me there. Driving an SUV is an almost sure sign of a reduced intellect. They cost more to drive than any other class of vehicle, and more people die in them per passsenger mile than any other type of vehicle due to their poor handling and braking and high center of gravity and lack of crumple zones. SUV drivers drive badly not from lack of driving skill but because their vehicles suck. Plus, ask an SUV driver why they have it and they'll say "it carries so many passengers", but notice SUVs on the road and you'll see very few with more than the driver. If you carry passengers, get a minivan -- more passengers, better mileage, and they're the safest vehicles on the road.

Interesting statements. Can you point me to the evidence on SUVs not having crumple zones and being more prone to accidents? Thanks!

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207801)

Actually, pickup trucks are the most prone to accidents, SUVs are second or third, but still quite bad.

There's a strong inverse correlation between handling and accident rate. This means a sporty sedan is more or less the sweet spot of accident avoidance. True sport cars have better handling, but are more likely to be driven in an unsafe manner, negating the benefit.

SUVs' size gives them a small advantage in a two car impact, but the advantage is far less than the disadvantage that they're so much more likely to be in an accident, and actually provides a disadvantage in a one car impact. Also, a raised bumper is a serious threat to drivers of cars with normal bumper heights.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (2, Informative)

SBrach (1073190) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207571)

I want to haul plywood, bags of cement, tile, etc from home depot when I work on my house, tow my trailer full of dirt bikes or quads when I go camping, go off-roading occasionally, carry many passangers occasionally, go on a cross country trip with my wife, kids, and 2 weeks worth of luggage and I can't afford to have multiple vehicles for every task. Which type of vehicle is versatile enough to suit my (and the average American family's) needs.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207677)

I haven't seen that to be the case; I don't see more fat people in bars than I do on the street. In fact, there are a higher percentage of fat people where I work than in my favorite bar, although that's probably because most of the people at work sit at a desk, while my favorite bar's clientelle is mostly construction workers.

Just because they aren't going to the bar doesn't mean they don't drink. Usually bars are social, a place to get together with "the guys" and try to pick up women. Now if a few fat guys are going together, why go to the bar where in general drinks are more expensive, you can't control the TV and your not going to pick up women at 400 pounds, when you can go to the liquor store and buy some cheap booze and go over to a friends house and catch the game or whatever?

The ones with the crappiest jobs usually are doing physical labor, and as such are generally a lot more fit than the average slashdotter, whether he's a skinny nerd or a fat nerd.

Depends on your view of crappy, sure, being a trashman or cleaning sewers is pretty much universally crappy. However a "better" job of shuffling papers all day similarly would be crappy because you don't really -do- anything and it kills your soul.

OK, you got me there. Driving an SUV is an almost sure sign of a reduced intellect. They cost more to drive than any other class of vehicle, and more people die in them per passsenger mile than any other type of vehicle due to their poor handling and braking and high center of gravity and lack of crumple zones. SUV drivers drive badly not from lack of driving skill but because their vehicles suck. Plus, ask an SUV driver why they have it and they'll say "it carries so many passengers", but notice SUVs on the road and you'll see very few with more than the driver. If you carry passengers, get a minivan -- more passengers, better mileage, and they're the safest vehicles on the road.

I drive an SUV and consider it to be a pretty good choice. The car itself was cheap ($5000) for being pretty much a fully loaded 97 Expedition (leather seats, power windows, power locks, all in very good condition). A few years later and no major repairs save for a belt that was slightly warn and was replaced as more of a preventive measure more than anything else. Sure, the gas mileage sucks, but honestly I don't drive it that much (walk to classes and really only use it to go about 15 miles to work part-time and to visit people). The handling isn't a huge deal as I'm usually almost always driving it on the interstate or well-known roads. Sure, I don't carry many people but its pretty nice all the crap that it can hold.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207185)

Here is a question -- should we care that these people are getting harassed by their doctors? If a diabetic keeps eating candy, should we feel that bad if it eventually messes him up? That is debatable. However the VAST majority of people are overweight/fat by their own choices. Is it any surprise these fatties tend to drink more? have worse employment and that which goes along with it?

How does one account for all of the factors that you have mentioned and find a causality? We may not need to find the root cause to start fixing the problem. When all you need is something that quacks, you don't have to make sure its a duck. Correlations may not be causation, but if we find enough compelling correlations that DO NOT EXIST in the opposite state, we may have just found something really worth knowing/fixing.

Also, lets stop pretending like lots of people have the "thyroid" problem that makes them fat. My uncle has that and is a bit overweight. I know what it takes to be a stud (former NCAA div 1) and a gross fatty (spinal injury + WoW + new bakery). I am now at a healthy weight because I didn't act like a giant pussy every time I felt bad (or was made to feel bad) about my weight -- and I gained 35lbs of fat in 4 months. Perhaps some of these fatties should feel pretty damn bad for not taking even the simplest, easiest, most basic steps to improve themselves.

Methinks elrous0 dost protest too much...?

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (2, Interesting)

Rich0 (548339) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207425)

Well, the danger of these kinds of correlation studies is that you have no idea what the relationship is.

Maybe people who have brain degeneration are prone to eating more food, thus becoming obese? In that case getting them to eat less won't fix their brains because you have it the wrong way around.

Likewise, just why is it that SO many people are overweight? Is the present generation just collectively lacking in willpower? Sure, you can shout at people to go on a diet, but they've been doing that for the last 20 years and I don't see much to show for it. There has to be an underlying cause. I don't pretend to know what it is - maybe it is high-fructose corn syrup, or maybe obesity is cross-linked to genes that give computer proficiency and we've been selecting for it. My point is that while it is true that eating more = weight gain, why is it that people are eating so much more today?

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1, Interesting)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207253)

Eh? I'm overweight and see my doctor regularly for various things. He has never once harassed me about my weight.

In fact only one Doctor ever has. Of course I didn't put much stock in his diagnosis when, after suffering flu like symptoms for a month, no appetite, fever etc... He said I just had a cold. Then prescribed antibiotics for said cold.

I've also had two alcoholic drinks in the last 18 months.

You're making an awful lot of generalizations there. And the overweight people I know do not fall into the "woe is me" category. In fact the only alcoholics I've ever known were thin people.

Of course I live in a country where how much money I make has no bearing on the quality of healthcare I receive.

I do agree with the rest though. I mean this week we've had this nonsense, with a whole 94 people studied to come to this grand conclusion that because I'm overweight my brain is going to fall apart. (To be honest I'd rather lose my memory and think it's the 1980's than be aware of my failing body and how all my friends are dead)

There's also the "SUGAR IS GOING TO KILL YOU" study from a day or two ago.

A week or two back it was gamers aren't adolescents but sad depressive loners in their 30's, a study which only surveyed people 19 years of age or older in the pacific northwest where, according to people I know who live there, it rains all the time and people tend to be miserable as sin.

Reminds me of the old adage: "Giving up smoking, drinking and eating bad food doesn't make you live longer. It just feels like it."

Mencken once said that puritanism is the fear that someone, somewhere, is happy. Instead of persecuting for sex like you said (immoral behavior) they now do it via health.

I've always said to people that my body is a temple... To a long dead religion.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (4, Insightful)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207343)

I think the study adjusts for those factors perfectly well, in fact you're introducing some interesting possibilities as to an explanation for the link. The study (which is small, so we should obviously be cautious about drawing too many conclusions from it) only states that people who are obese appear to have less brain function. A few theories were forwarded to explain the link, but your theory is just as sound, and doesn't disprove the possible link.

Let's follow your chain of events for a moment. John is obese. John avoids his doctor because he's tired of being hassled about his weight. Fair enough - that's pretty common.

John is now in a negative feedback loop. He's receiving almost no advice on his diet, no encouragement to exercise, and probably is understandably demoralized from being called "fatty" and getting unwelcome advice from health freakazoids that he's likely to give up on health maintenance entirely. Poorer nutrition and less exercise mean that John's entire body is going to suffer, including the brain.

It's actually as good a theory as any. Obesity would have a significant correlation with people who are not caring for their overall health properly, and obesity can be both cause and effect in this case. John isn't a bad guy, he's just stuck in a rut, and he's headed for possible trouble.

I know John's story.

I'm 6' 3" and used to weigh very close to 300 pounds. I avoided my doctor for over a decade for the same reason John might.

It's tough to get started losing weight, and having a bunch of skinnyminnies around you crybabying about how you should get off your very large posterior and do something is not, repeat not, helpful. It's demoralizing, and makes the task of getting started look all that much harder.

It took a health scare for me to start the very long, very hard trail, and I'm now down to 215 (still mildly overweight, but I can ride my bike 30 miles a day without any problems). I wish terribly that I had learned my lesson an easier way, but I didn't, and I'm sure being obese for as long as I was will have long-term consequences. But I was where I was, and I understand how very hard it is to get started, and how the general attitude of society toward the obese does not make them want to help themselves. I wanted to just curl up with my Ben and Jerry's and donuts and leave me the hell alone.

I've encouraged several friends over the years to get up and just take short walks with me, and started a couple of them on the road to weight loss, but you've got to approach that sort of overture carefully, and have a sense for when your friend is ready to start helping themselves, then offer them some encouragement.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207381)

Gee! Why not try some logic instead of thinking everything is a conspiracy to ridicule fat people. As your cells consume energy they produce reactive oxygen compounds that actually damage your DNA. Cells with damaged DNA are removed from your system by apoptosis (programmed cell death) lest they turn into cancer cells. Increased consumption of carbohydrates increases energy use, raising the level of these damaging oxygen compounds in your cells. Brain cells don't divide or propogate like normal cells, which is the time when DNA repair mechanisms can compare the strands and fix damage, so brain cells just accumulate DNA damage until they're destroyed.

It's been shown in the literature that insulin injected into the brain lowers glucose levels and increases neuron survival, minimizing cognitive decline. This is very well supported scientific data.

Posting "Anonymously" because I used my Mod Points to highlight quality information from other commenters -sonnejw0

you're absolutely right (1)

pastafazou (648001) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207491)

It should be....
Obesity leads to harassment by doctors, getting shit on regularly, drinking more, having crappier jobs, lower incomes, and inferior health care. Harassment by doctors, getting shit on regularly, drinking more, having crappier jobs, lower incomes, and inferior health care can cause the loss of neurological tissue and accelerate the aging of the brain.
better?

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (3, Insightful)

LrdDimwit (1133419) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207561)

So you 1) point out that correlation does not equal causation, then proceed to 2) say that it's likely that the obesity causes the brain aging seen in this study?

Because that is essentially your argument: that obesity directly causes a host of other factors, which collectively explain the observed correlation (brain aging). Therefore, obesity causes the mental decline, only indirectly. I fail to see any significant difference between the implication that obesity directly harms the brain, and that obesity, while not in itself injurious, causes people to behave in ways that are.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (1)

rve (4436) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207599)

Why don't we just say that fat people are worse than Hitler and be done with it?

Indeed, Hitler at least wasn't fat.

He cheated though, receiving daily amphetamine injections, so he may have been a porker inside, much in the way he claimed to be Aryan inside, despite his short stature and swarthy appearance.

Re:These morally chiding "correlation" studies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207809)

fat, smoking, SUV-driving Amerikkkan detected,.

Now I get it (5, Informative)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206783)

Fat women have always hit on me. Now I know why -- they're stupid!

However, from TFA:

Dr. Jonathan Friedman, an associate professor of surgery and neuroscience and experimental therapeutics at the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine noted that the causal relationship here is not clear.

Another possibility is that The brains of overweight people have more receptors for the neurotransmitter serotonin than those of people of normal weight, suggesting that being overweight may be down to more than just eating habits and may have an origin in brain chemistry. [newscientist.com] Clearly, more study is warranted.

From the New Scientist article on the ssubject of big people with little brains:

In an as yet unpublished study, Thompson's team has shown that exercise, which improves cardiovascular health and blood flow, protects the very brain regions that had shrunk in the current study. "The most strenuous kind of exercise can save about the same amount of brain tissue that is lost in the obese," he says. This indicates that it is blood flow that drives brain health, not the other way round. As these areas undergo the most remodelling throughout adult life, they may be more sensitive to any changes in oxygen supply and nutrients, Thompson suggests.

But Deborah Gustafson at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, who previously found that overweight women had less brain tissue than their leaner counterparts, questions whether obesity is driving brain atrophy or vice versa. She points out that brain atrophy in the frontal and temporal lobes, which also control eating behaviour and metabolism, could cause weight gain. "There are not enough longitudinal data available for us to know which is the chicken and which is the egg."

Re:Now I get it (1)

radtea (464814) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207803)

Fat women have always hit on me. Now I know why -- they're stupid!

Why do you think that? The article says absolutely nothing about intelligence. The gray matter in the cerebral cortex of educated people is THINNER than that in people without post-secondary educations. Do you think that makes educated people stupid? The current belief is that their brains are simply BETTER ORGANIZED and more efficient because of their continued intellectual growth in their late teens and early 20's.

People who think that "more brains is better brains" are either zombies, or the kind of brain-dead manager who thinks that having software developers work really long hours is a great idea, because surely "longer hours means shorter schedules" even though it doesn't.

What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206785)

I didn't follow that. Can you type more slowly this time.

I'M THO FUCKIN FAT-GUESS WHO (1)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206791)

I keep getting hungrier and hungrier, and my brain keeps gettting dimmer and dimmer! I was once a sex symbol; now, I am obese-demented superstar. I love stwawbewwy ice kweam and rubbing egg whites in my arm pits. Who am I?

Give up? I'm MARLON BRANDO! (Yes, I know I'm dead, but being dead gives one the amount of time to learn about technology, and then become interested in sites such as Slashdot. So what I'm saying is entirely plausible and you cannot dismiss it).

Cause? Effect? (0)

drdanny_orig (585847) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206809)

Couldn't it be that people who tend to be fat also tend to lose brain tissue as well? That is, I see nothing that indicates that dieting to stay slender would have any effect on brain tissue. (Um..or should I RTFA?) Please, I need more excuses why it's OK for me to eat ice cream whenever I want!

Re:Cause? Effect? (1)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207525)

That's quite possible. The article mentions some possible feedback loops, but the overall gist is that there is a correlation between being obese and losing brain function as you get older.

As someone tagged it, "correlation is not causation," and that's a fair accusation of both my choice of headlines and the that of the original article (though the article itself does mention a series of possible reasons for the link).

It could be that reduced brain function leads to overeating or poorer food choices, or a chemical imbalance does, which causes the obesity and the brain function loss.

Possible Viral Link (3, Informative)

TheNarrator (200498) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206821)

Perhaps this has something to do with the virus / obesity link: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/01/060130031548.htm [sciencedaily.com]

There is accumulating evidence that certain viruses may cause obesity, in essence making obesity contagious, according to Leah D. Whigham, the lead researcher in a new study, "Adipogenic potential of multiple human adenoviruses in vivo and in vitro in animals," in the January issue of the American Journal of Physiology-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology published by the American Physiological Society. The study, by Whigham, Barbara A. Israel and Richard L. Atkinson, of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, found that the human adenovirus Ad-37 causes obesity in chickens. This finding builds on studies that two related viruses, Ad-36 and Ad-5, also cause obesity in animals. Moreover, Ad-36 has been associated with human obesity, leading researchers to suspect that Ad-37 also may be implicated in human obesity. Whigham said more research is needed to find out if Ad-37 causes obesity in humans. One study was inconclusive, because only a handful of people showed evidence of infection with Ad-37 -- not enough people to draw any conclusions, she said. Ad-37, Ad-36 and Ad-5 are part of a family of approximately 50 viruses known as human adenoviruses.

Re:Possible Viral Link (1)

iJusten (1198359) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207745)

Any excuse not to hit the gym (or put any effort to stay in shape). "I can't help it, it's in the genes", "I can't help it, I'm sick"!

Maybe so, but eating two large pizzas for lunch isn't actually going to help.

Like they say on the net; if you're fat, don't try to sugarcoat it - because you'll just end up eating that too.

Bull (1)

Cro Magnon (467622) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206825)

I'm a heavy guy and my brain is as sharp as, um, what was I saying?

Re:Bull (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206939)

Something about pancakes I hope, I wasn't really paying attention either...oh look Twinkie, MINE! MINE! MINE!

The link between carbohydrate consumption and AGEs (4, Interesting)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206829)

This should be obvious. There is already a clear understanding of the cause of obesity via carbohydrate consumption, combined with the effects of said consumption on the production of advanced glycation endproducts [wikipedia.org] (AGEs) in the brain, and their effect on cognitive function.

Re:The link between carbohydrate consumption and A (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206995)

Mod parent up.

The first thing that came to mind from reading the article is that both obesity and reduced brain mass are caused by consumption of carbohydrates.

We can all thank the U.S. Government and the USDA [second-opinions.co.uk] for telling us to eat more carbohydrates, thereby making us obese, sick, and dumb!

Re:The link between carbohydrate consumption and A (1)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207453)

Wow, you obviously read that article with an enormous anti-carb agenda. As a carbon-based life form, your body craves carbohydrates to stay healthy and alive. They simply should not be the only type of energy you consume. Low carb diets are designed to trick the body into a starvation shock. Is the food pyramid carb-heavy? Yes, as the article says and dieticians agree. Should you eliminate carbs from your diet? If you like dying young, then go ahead.

WTF (4, Funny)

VisiX (765225) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207209)

It is not obvious to fat people you insensitive clod!

Re:WTF (1)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207477)

It is not obvious to fat people

Agreed, but that is what they get for trusting the AMA/AHA/NIH to provide advice grounded in solid science.

Re:The link between carbohydrate consumption and A (4, Informative)

dogmatixpsych (786818) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207291)

If I may offer my opinion as someone who researches cognitive aging and the brain, I think the link (without actually reading the article) is likely due to cerebrovascular factors. People who are overweight often have high or highly varying blood pressure. They also often have arterosclerosis and all sorts of plaque build-up in the blood vessels. Basically their cardiovascular systems in general do not work as efficiently.

The brain is very power hungry. It needs virtually uninterrupted blood flow to function well. People who have reduced blood flow (efficiency) could have lower blood perfusion in the brain. Their neurons may just be slowly starved of enough oxygen and nutrients. People who are overweight are at increased risk for developing strokes, particularly so-called "silent strokes" that might not have apparent effects at first but could over time.

I don't think it's the obesity as much as the cardiovascular issues that are associated with it. I've seen the brains of older adults who have (uncontrolled or long-term) high blood pressure and by and large, they are not pretty. Their white matter is often pretty messed up. They often have larger ventricles (more brain atrophy) and do worse on cognitive tests.

In any case, being overweight is one of the worst things you can do to your overall health. Maybe not now, but in old age overweight (particularly obese) people are going to have a lot of problems - physical and cognitive. Again, I deal not with individuals as much as with groups of people so everything I say should be taken as "on average."

Re:The link between carbohydrate consumption and A (1)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207565)

I don't think it's the obesity as much as the cardiovascular issues that are associated with it.

Well, if by "the obesity", you mean the fact that their body fat is a higher percentage of total body mass than normal, I think we all agree that that is not *the cause*. I also didn't make the claim that there is only one cause - there could be multiple.

Re:The link between carbohydrate consumption and A (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207751)

Mod Parent up Informative. The correlation between metabolism and oxidative stress is well known. It's obvious that the cells in the body that do not divide (have no opportunity for replicative damage repair) are hardest hit. Search for diabetic encephalopathy as well. I am a researcher in Neuroaging. (Posting anonymously to use my mod points) -sonnejw0

Re:The link between carbohydrate consumption and A (3, Insightful)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207819)

There is already a clear understanding of the cause of obesity via carbohydrate consumption, combined with the effects of said consumption on the production of advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs) in the brain, and their effect on cognitive function.

I'd be very cautious when using the words "clear understanding" with nearly anything in cognitive science. Scientists didn't even pay attention to neurotropic factors in the brain until relatively recently, and if you ignore factors that can cause neural growth (like... excercise - scientists are guessing that excercise is neurotropic since we need to often map out new areas when walking a lot) it's hard to make a statement that obsesity caused by eating too much is the cause of cognitive decline, as opposed to obesity caused by not exercising enough. In fact, I think that if you exercise a lot, obesity almost vanishes as a cause of a lot of problems.

You also have related issues like eating too much / not exercising enough contributes to diabetes, and having high blood glucose levels causes a wide variety of problems, such as damage to small blood vessels and a (likely related) decline in neural function.

But we're still in the stone age when it comes to all this kind of stuff.

Causality? (1)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206843)

Or, does brain atrophy cause obesity?

Or does lack of exercise in middle/old age cause both brain atrophy and obesity?

Or does a high fat diet cause both brain atrophy and obesity?

Etc., etc.

Re:Causality? (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206957)

The latter two make sense. #2 is obvious (exercise is known to improve brain function) and it is known that a high fat diet has an influence on the brain, e.g. promotes Alzheimer's.

Re:Causality? (1)

AlexBirch (1137019) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207043)

http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/abstract/116/4/641 [nutrition.org]

This shows how reduced dietary intake decreased ageing.
This would be consistent to support the hypothesis of increased calories would equate to increase ageing.

Re:Causality? (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207423)

Yep. That's the problem right there my friend. A survey of 94 people and they publish this nonsense when there are so many other factors probably at play.

The fact is in 100 years people will look back and see how backward we are medically. Over the last 8 or so years I've learned a lot about the medical profession etc... And it's left me with no faith at all in doctors. I know more and more people with medical issues doctors just can't fix. I have stuff that's been going on for years and doctors just throw up their hands and say "Damned if we know".

In short, the gods have been shown to be false gods. Studies like this prove it. 94 people is a statistical aberration. 94 people doesn't prove anything. Yet this study is getting play everywhere, and the thing is almost nobody will listen to the details.

I'm overweight. I exercise as much as I can (chronic back problems), I don't eat lots of sugary stuff. I don't drink soda. I don't eat junk food. (I can also claim it's glandular though, legitimately, as my thyroid is completely fucked. TSH should be around 4. Mine is in the 70 region).

I get extremely angry with the prejudice toward fat people that studies like this enforce as there are so many other factors going on. Of course abusing fat people is one of the last prejudices that's considered socially acceptable, and these idiots and their statistical aberration have now added another arrow to the quiver for assholes to fire at fat people.

Re:Causality? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207435)

Or does a high fat diet cause both brain atrophy and obesity?

No. [chicagotribune.com]

We've become a culture where a serving of fettuccine Alfredo is nicknamed " heart attack on a plate" and french fries are frequently mentioned with the prefix "artery-clogging."

"The results of cholesterol and heart disease research was not meant to be applied to healthy people or the world at large," said Dr. Donald McNamara, a cholesterol research scientist and director of Eggs for Health Consulting in Laurel, Md. He compares such an approach to "prescribing the same pair of glasses to everyone."

Few experts argue that for those with cholesterol levels outside the norm, or with high risk factors for cardiovascular disease, dietary change often can be a valid intervention. But when it comes to high-fat foods such as burgers, cheese, butter and cream being liberally shunned by those bent on lowering their cholesterol intake, it's time to lard the conversation with a little straightforward science on dietary fat and health.

Your body knows how to handle dietary fat, and if you're not overweight and have no other high-risk conditions, your risk of heart disease is probably low. That means even if you occasionally eat several slices of pizza with a Haagen-Dazs chaser, you needn't punish yourself with guilt and worry. The stress will probably do more damage than the Super Bowl special you just ate. According to Mark Anthony, nutrition science instructor at St. Edward's University, Austin, Texas, and author of "Gut Instinct: Diet's Missing Link," analysis of the research into cholesterol and disease is bearing this out.

Best Reason So Far (3, Interesting)

Metal_Demon (694989) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206859)

I have been overweight for over ten years now and this is the best reason to slim down I've heard yet. I take a great deal of pride in my intelligence, so anything that puts it at risk can not be tolerated.

Re:Best Reason So Far (1)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207395)

Whatever gets you started. :)

For me, it took a health scare. I hope your reasons are easier and less scary.

Re:Best Reason So Far (1)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207463)

You're going to choose to believe a study that involved a mere 94 people?

I take a great deal of pride in my intelligence. And I choose to think this study is absolute bollocks since it involved less people than went to my sister-in-laws wedding.

Rush... (0, Flamebait)

jeffshoaf (611794) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206867)

So, this finally explains Rush Limbaugh!

Re:Rush... (1)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206973)

Well, that and the drugs. As I understand it, after enrolling at Southeast Missouri State University, he dropped out after two semesters. Rumor has it that he "flunked everything", even a modern ballroom dancing class.
.
Maybe the small brain size thing preceded obesity in this case.

Re:Rush... (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207621)

I imagine he flunked ballroom dancing because he couldn't find anyone willing to dance with him.

Re:Rush... (1)

JumpDrive (1437895) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207031)

Not completely. You have to take a fat person and give them 20 oxycottons a day, to reach Rush's level of stupidity.

Re:Rush... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207579)

How many oxycottons per day does it take to reach your level of illiteracy?

Re:Rush... (1)

BlowHole666 (1152399) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207239)

Well I don't listen to Rush, dont care for the guy. But what does your comment say about you?
  • Rush probably makes more then you
  • He has his own radio show
  • Most people in the US know who he is

Of that list I bet you cannot check any of those off for yourself? So in other words if Rush Limbaugh is the bar to be above, since his is the center of your joke, you are below that bar.So how worthless are you? Maybe your brain has less tissue compared to Rush?

Re:Rush... (1)

jeffshoaf (611794) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207765)

Of course, the big question is whether you feel less worthless now that you've over-analyzed my admittedly bad and down-modded joke!
Slightly smaller questions:
o Are you below that bar?
o How worthless are you?
o And how does your brain tissue compare to Rush's?
o And what does the list you composed to measure "worth" say about you?

From.. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29206887)

the same people who found out ugly people are more prone to depression. How do they do it? And do it again?

This is contrary to my experience (1)

JumpDrive (1437895) | more than 5 years ago | (#29206997)

I know it's not scientific. But of the 30 + patients that I saw in my uncle's Alzheimers ward, only one was obese. Maybe by that stage they have all gotten thinner because they forgot to eat. But I really would like to know more about the cause and effect here.

Fat folks are obviously so hungry . . . (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207007)

. . . that they eat their own brains!

What a ironic twist on the classical Slashdot Zombie paradigm.

actual paper (3, Informative)

flynt (248848) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207021)

Here is a link to the actual publication.

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext/122539667/HTMLSTART [wiley.com]

It always bothers me that these aren't provided, we can read the the actual results and not the news version!

Re:actual paper (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207631)

Perhaps since you either have to have an account with Wiley-Interscience, be at a library that does or pay for the article. I suppose there should be a pro forma link but I don't think too many people are going to pony up.

This makes sense (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207063)

Look at the US. Most USians are so fucking fat and the US has the highest concentration of fuckwads on the planet. They consume more fucking food than all other countries put together. As a result the US will remain the dumbest country in the history of the world.

Sincerely
Signed,

The Rest of the World.

there's the link (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207077)

No wonder it's all fat people at the back of the town hall meetings acting like assholes, screaming out "facts" that have been proven wrong about health care reform.

posted as AC for obvious reasons...

Perhaps inactivity is the real problem (2, Insightful)

adewolf (524919) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207081)

Couch potatoism might be to blame. Our culture is based on watching TV and being on the computer (sniker) most of the time. Wanna help stem the bad health, go with your kids for a walk or hike. Walk the dog. Get offa the couch.

Re:Perhaps inactivity is the real problem (1)

King_TJ (85913) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207207)

Maybe it really has to do with MENTAL activity though? You could tell obese people to get off the couch and go for a walk all you like, but if the core problem is that they're mentally lazy, and prefer passive forms of entertainment (like television) to active problem-solving and deep thought, you probably haven't fixed anything for them.

In fact, I think it might be interesting to see if this claimed loss of brain function in obese people applies equally to obese people with a career in the computer field, working as a software developer or something along those lines?

Re:Perhaps inactivity is the real problem (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207689)

I've often wondered whether differential calorie consumption by the brain is responsible for differences in obesity? Do the brains of less intelligent people (or people who prefer intellectually-passive activities) consume less energy and thus make their owners more likely to gain weight?

Maybe there is something to this "fat, slow, and stupid" stereotype.

Re:Perhaps inactivity is the real problem (2, Insightful)

Ardaen (1099611) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207211)

Maybe just put a treadmill in front of the keyboard instead of a chair. A slow to moderate walking pace should be easy enough to adapt to for typing and would probably increase blood flow to the brain. I know going for short walks once or twice an hour improves my productivity (and creativity) while working on computers.

Re:Perhaps inactivity is the real problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207531)

True to some extent. The trouble is reactive oxygen species building up in the brain from metabolic processes that end up degrading and damaging the neurons, which have a decreased repair capability compared to other cells such as in the liver. With little activity, the blood vessels in your brain are more restricted and cannot clear these toxins. High blood glucose means high metabolism and high reactive oxygen species, meaning high damage. So eating a lot of carbohydrates is bad, and eating lots of fats and cholesterols damage your blood vessel walls. But if you're active, at least the toxins are flowing through your body instead of sitting in your head.

Posting anonymously to use my mod points -sonnejw0

Dogma (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207089)

By this point, the "correlationnotcausation" tag seems a lot more to me like a whole bunch of taggers are hoping blunt denial will make it so that correlation is not just weak, but completely and utterly worthless as a scientific tool so they don't need to change a thing about their lives.

Call it a hunch.

Sucks for Obese people (1)

gubers33 (1302099) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207119)

I mean they have a hard enough time finding a date being obese, but now it's out there that they are getting dumber faster as well that is extremely unfortunate.

Jethro Tull said it best (1)

Alarindris (1253418) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207323)

Dont want to be a fat man,
People would think that I was just good fun.
Would rather be a thin man,
I am so glad to go on being one.

Too much to carry around with you,
No chance of finding a woman who
Will love you in the morning and,
all the night time too.

Dont want to be a fat man,
Have not the patience to ignore all that.
Hate to admit to myself half of my problems
Came from being fat.


Wont waste my time feeling sorry for him,
I seen the other side to being thin.
Roll us both down a mountain
And Im sure the fat man would win.

Little Feat (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207535)

There's a fat man
In the bathtub
With the blues

I hear you moan
I hear you moan
I hear you moan

Re:Little Feat (1)

Alarindris (1253418) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207729)

Little Feat! :D

just a guess about levels of activity and weight (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207361)

it sure seems that those who are more active and "vibrant" are also much thinner than those who are much less active and generally overweight. That level of activity does not generally just relate to physical activity from what I've seen. There's far more mental stimulation going on along with that physical activity. So, are they just noticing that less mental stimulation means less brain mass?

LoB

Brings up interesting implications (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29207389)

This brings up several complex issues in regards to thought-experiments related to Zombies and zombification.

As we all know, zombies prefer to consume human brain matter. This article informs us that obese people tend to have less brain matter. At the same time, obese people tend to be the lowest-hanging-fruit for Romero-style zombies to eat (Ignore for the moment, if you will, the tendency of african-americans, teenagers, and people who either do drugs or engage in sex as prime targets for being killed in horror movies).

If a zombie had to decide to Skinny McBrain matter, a fast-running, hard to catch but delicious to eat human and Fatty McFatFat, overweight, brain matter lacking flubberking... Which will it go with?

Could we see a pandemic of malnourished zombies? Or perhaps the dynamics of zombie movies needs to be reworked.

One of the most traditional ways to survive a zombie attack is to outlast the zombies. Some zombies (i.e. 28 days later style) have a finite time of existence, until their biological processes break down. Having an extra storage of calories could surely help in a zombie attack. A loss of higher intelligence might actually assist in surviving the attack.

So, to sum it up, being obese will not only make you a less appealing meal in a zombie attack, it might go so far as ensuring that you survive the entire ordeal.

Omega 3 / Omega 6 Balance (1)

lobiusmoop (305328) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207547)

I wonder if this is related to the effects on the brain of the balance between Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids [wikipedia.org] in the diet. (high-fat Western meat-based diets usually contain more Omega 6, whereas low-far fish based Eastern diets tend to have more Omega 3). I've seen studies that have shown that increasing Omega 3 in the diet (via cod liver oil pills) in school kids can improve their school results - there is a lot of Omega 3 usage in the brain I believe.

Oh great. I'm fucked. (1)

Snarf You (1285360) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207595)

Subject says it all.

my opinion (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 5 years ago | (#29207703)

It's likely it's not the obesity itself, but rather the non-obese were probably somewhat more likely to exercise, which has positive neurological effects.
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