Published: Sat, January 12, 2019
Medical | By Vicki Mclaughlin

Belly fat 'linked to brain shrinkage' and could raise risk of Alzheimer's

Belly fat 'linked to brain shrinkage' and could raise risk of Alzheimer's

Researchers from Loughborough University found that people with ahigh body mass index (BMI) and high waist-to-hip ratio had brains 12 cubic centimetres smaller. Hamer's findings confirmed that trend, since he found that people with high BMI readings and lower waist-to-hip ratios showed similar grey matter volumes to people who were not obese.

Grey matter in the brain consists mostly of nerve cells while "white matter" is made up of connecting nerve fibres.

The study found that people with both a high BMI and high waist-to-hip ratio had the lowest brain volumes, compared with people who had just a high BMI (but not a high waist-to-hip ratio) and people of a healthy weight.

It was unclear whether obesity lead to brain structure abnormalities or the other way around, he said.

Scientists looked at a total of 9,652 people with an average age of 55. BMI is a formula involving a person's weight and height; a BMI score between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered healthy, while above 30 is considered obese. According to their findings, people with more excess fat around the middle appear to have a shrunken brain and less gray matter.

Researchers also used an MRI to scan participants' brain volume.

Woman Suffers Rare Medical Condition Rendering her Unable to Hear Men's Voices
Xiaoqing is unsure, but believes it was brought on by stress and long days of working. She recalled feeling nauseous the night before and having ringing in her ears.

Robert Mueller met with Trump's pollster
A jury convicted Manafort on eight counts of tax and bank-fraud in August during his trial in Alexandria, Virginia. Prosecutors alleged that Manafort lied about providing Kilimnik with the polling data.

Routine domestic inspections suspended by FDA
Sarah Sorscher, CSPI Deputy Director of Regulatory Affairs said in a statement, "That puts our food supply at risk". The agency pays for medical manufacturing and food safety inspections out of its own budget.

"Existing research has linked brain shrinkage to memory decline and a higher risk of dementia, but research on whether extra body fat is protective or detrimental to brain size has been inconclusive".

They found nearly 1,300 study participants were obese and apple-shaped, and that they had less grey matter, which is important for thinking skills. In the end they found that high BMI linked to smaller brain volume. Meanwhile, 3,025 people with overall healthy scores had an average gray matter volume of 798 cubic centimeters.

It could be that people with lower volumes of gray matter in certain brain areas are at a higher risk of obesity. White matter contains nerve fiber bundles that connect various regions of the brain.

He added: 'This will need further research but it may be possible that someday regularly measuring BMI and waist-to-hip ratio may help determine brain health'.

Though the study didn't look at potential mechanisms linking visceral fat and brain shrinkage, one hypothesis is that this type of fat is thought to produce inflammatory substances that may play a role in brain atrophy, the researchers said. "Brain gray matter shrinkage...seems to be associated with obesity and with increased visceral fat", she said.

Like this: