Higher body mass index (BMI) linked to lower blood supply to the brain in large neuroimaging study

Fig­ure 6 from the study, show­ing 3‑D ren­der­ings of cere­bral per­fu­sion aver­aged across nor­mal BMI (23), over­weight (29), and obese (37) 40-year-old men

Body weight has sur­pris­ing, alarm­ing impact on brain func­tion (Sci­ence Daily):

As a per­son­’s weight goes up, all regions of the brain go down in activ­i­ty and blood flow, accord­ing to a new brain imag­ing study in the Jour­nal of Alzheimer’s Dis­ease … sci­en­tists ana­lyzed over 35,000 func­tion­al neu­roimag­ing scans using sin­gle-pho­ton emis­sion com­put­er­ized tomog­ra­phy (SPECT) from more than 17,000 indi­vid­u­als to mea­sure blood flow and brain activity.

Com­ment­ing on this study, George Per­ry, PhD, Edi­tor-in-Chief of the Jour­nal of Alzheimer’s Dis­ease and Semmes Foun­da­tion Dis­tin­guished Uni­ver­si­ty Chair in Neu­ro­bi­ol­o­gy at The Uni­ver­si­ty of Texas at San Anto­nio, stat­ed, “Accep­tance that Alzheimer’s dis­ease is a lifestyle dis­ease, lit­tle dif­fer­ent from oth­er age-relat­ed dis­eases, that is the sum of a life­time is the most impor­tant break­through of the decade. Dr. Amen and col­lab­o­ra­tors pro­vide com­pelling evi­dence that obe­si­ty alters blood sup­ply to the brain to shrink the brain and pro­mote Alzheimer’s dis­ease. This is a major advance because it direct­ly demon­strates how the brain responds to our body.”

The Study:

Pat­terns of Region­al Cere­bral Blood Flow as a Func­tion of Obe­si­ty in Adults (Jour­nal of Alzheimer’s Dis­ease). From the abstract:

  • Back­ground: While obe­si­ty has been shown to be a risk fac­tor for Alzheimer’s dis­ease, the poten­tial mech­a­nisms under­ly­ing this risk may be clar­i­fied with bet­ter under­stand­ing of under­ly­ing phys­i­ol­o­gy in obese persons.
  • Objec­tive: To iden­ti­fy pat­terns of cere­bral per­fu­sion abnor­mal­i­ty in adults as a func­tion of body mass index (BMI) defined weight cat­e­gories, includ­ing over­weight or obese status.
  • Results: Across adult­hood, high­er BMI cor­re­lat­ed with decreased per­fu­sion on both rest­ing and con­cen­tra­tion brain SPECT scans. These are seen in vir­tu­al­ly all brain regions, includ­ing those influ­enced by AD pathol­o­gy such as the hippocampus.
  • Con­clu­sion: Greater BMI is asso­ci­at­ed with cere­bral per­fu­sion decreas­es in both rest­ing and con­cen­tra­tion SPECT scans across adulthood.

News in Context:

About SharpBrains

SHARPBRAINS is an independent think-tank and consulting firm providing services at the frontier of applied neuroscience, health, leadership and innovation.
SHARPBRAINS es un think-tank y consultoría independiente proporcionando servicios para la neurociencia aplicada, salud, liderazgo e innovación.

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