Excess body weight may result in impaired cognitive abilities and mental fatigue, according to a recent study publicized in The FASEB Journal.
Obesity is one of the most common preventable diseases, affecting nearly 13 percent of the global adult population. The condition is generally associated with an increased risk of high blood glucose, often progressing into a more severe metabolic disorder with no treatment intervention.
In the new research, a team at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville placed a dire focus on the physical and psychological impacts of obesity. The research team conducted examinations on two groups of rodents, one of which was fed a high-fat diet and the other a standard diet for two months and a half.
Each week, the rodents received two separate tests to measure weight, blood glucose, and ketone levels. Upon reaching the fifth week, aerobic endurance tests were administered to report any instance of physical exhaustion. In the last week of experimentation, the rodents received a novel object recognition test to determine levels of mental exhaustion.
According to researchers, although both groups exhibited an increase in body weight, with the high-fat diet group showing fluctuations in blood glucose levels, poor performance on the novel recognition test was clearly more evident among consumers of a high-fat diet.
As researchers noted, the findings indicate that a high-fat diet may result in decreased cognitive function and mental fatigue.
“One message from this study is to avoid [a] high-fat diet, which not only makes one become obese, but also has consequences on cognitive capability,” according to a statement by the research team.