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Higher BMI can result in impaired cognitive function

If you thought a higher BMI could only affect your heart, you're mistaken. Here's a study that says it could affect your brain health too.

People with a higher BMI or Body Mass Index may exhibit reduced cognitive functions once they grow older. This association could be explained by an increased secretion of inflammatory markers by belly fat, which has been previously associated with a higher risk of impaired cognition. "While we have known for some time that obesity is associated with negative health consequences, our study adds to emerging evidence suggesting that obesity and where we deposit our excess weight could influence our brain health. This has significant public health implications," said Conal Cunningham from Trinity College Dublin in Ireland. This study was published in the British Journal of Nutrition. Reducing obesity could offer a cost-effective public health strategy for the prevention of cognitive decline, the researchers noted.

According to another study named, 'Overweight and Cognitive Performance: High Body Mass Index Is Associated with Impairment in Reactive Control during Task Switching' published in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition, "There is growing evidence that high body mass index (BMI) is associated with frontal lobe dysfunction and deficits in cognitive control. The present study aims to clarify the association between weight status and the degree of impairment in cognitive flexibility, i.e., the ability to efficiently switch from one task to another, by disentangling the preparatory and residual domains of task switching. "

These studies suggest that having a higher BMI could affect you in many ways. Here are 4 things to keep in mind while you try to reduce your BMI naturally:

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  1. Calories do matter- If you simply increase your activity level, you would be able to shed those extra kilos. However, understand that eating less doesn't mean you will cut down on your weight.
  2. Portion size matters- What you eat and how much you eat is important. Remember that the tricky to reduce your BMI is not to skip meals but include foods in your meals that keep you full for longer.
  3. Fruits and veggies are very important- You should ideally aim for at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day. The more colours of veggies and fruits you add to your diet, the better it is, for you.
  4. Exercising is the way- Do we really have to tell you that exercising is important? But for those who still feel the pinch while waking up to exercise, let's tell you this. Exercising will help you to burn more calories, while helping you to lose weight. Regular exercise, besides keeps you fit and healthy.

(with inputs from IANS)

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