Improved Brain Function After Weight Loss
Why would body weight have anything to do with brain function? It turns out that obesity works on a number of different metabolic pathways that can affect the way our brains process and operate. A growing body of evidence has suggested that obesity is linked to cognitive deficits as well as being a known risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and stroke. A study performed by UCLA discovered that obese individuals have 8% less brain tissue than people of normal weight and those individuals that are overweight have 4% less brain tissue. According to a professor of neurology at UCLA, this represents severe brain degeneration putting obese individuals at a much greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s and other diseases that attack the brain, but you can greatly reduce your risk for Alzheimer’s, if you eat healthy and keep your weight under control. According to a recent study from the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM.) research showed that losing weight comes with a host of health benefits, one of which is improved brain function. There findings suggest that some of the obesity-associated impairments of the brain can be reversible with the achievement of weight loss. Memory, attention, coordination, and other executive functions of the brain have all been shown to improve after weight loss.
A proper diet is also essential in the process of losing weight which is another way to help sharpen the brain or mind. You may not think it, but the foods that we consume have the ability to affect our brain’s function. Many of the healthy foods we eat that help aid in weight loss are the foods suitable for good brain power. Fish, fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are all important components of a healthy well balanced diet. These foods contain vital nutrients and ingredients that are necessary for proper brain chemistry to occur. Specifically after weight loss surgery taking the proper amounts of vitamins is also very important because without adequate amounts of certain vitamins, minerals and other substances in your body, your brain will literally not have the tools that it needs in order to properly work as it should.
Exercise has also been shown to help improve brain function. Exercise is a form of physical activity that helps assist patients in the weight loss process. It helps improve our brain’s ability to focus because when you exercise or work out your brain secretes opiates, which also control vital roles such as hunger, thirst, mood, and immune responses. Exercise changes the molecular performance of your brain. There is increasing evidence indicating the improvement of mental well-being from exercising. The research from the Canadian Institute of Health feels that exercise or working out is a natural remedy that helps improve cognitive abilities as well as physical performance.
By carrying excess weight on the body it affects not only your heart, lungs, bones, and joints but your brain as well. There is nothing more important than having a healthy brain working at its best. The brain operates at its most optimal level when individuals are at a healthy normal weight, therefore if an individual is overweight or obese weight loss can help improve cognitive function (memory, attention, coordination) as well as exercise, a proper diet with healthy food choices, and an adequate intake of vitamins.