March 12, 2017
We’ve all heard about the negative health risks that being overweight has on your health, such as increasing your risk for heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers. A recent study found that extra pounds in middle age may also have an effect on your brain — aging it by as much as 10 years.
The researchers looked at the brains of 527 people, ages 20 to 87. They found that starting at about age 40, the brains of those who were overweight had lost more white matter, the part of the brain that communicates information, than their lean counterparts. However, it didn’t appear to affect cognitive skills.
“As our population ages, we need to learn more about how obesity affects overall health,” says Lisa Tank, M.D., FACP, of Hackensack University Medical Center.