Navigation Links
Think what you eat: Studies point to cellular factors linking diet and behavior
Date:10/20/2009

New research released today is affirming a long-held maxim: you are what you eat and, more to the point, what you eat has a profound influence on the brain. The findings offer insight into the neurobiological factors behind the obesity epidemic in the United States and other developed countries. The findings exposed changes in brain chemistry due to diet and weight gain, and were reported at Neuroscience 2009, the Society for Neuroscience's annual meeting and the world's largest source of emerging news about brain science and health.

Obesity has been linked to rises in diabetes, stroke, and heart attacks, among other disorders. In the past decade alone, medical spending for obesity is estimated to have increased 87 percent in the United States reaching $147 billion in 2008 according to a study funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new research adds another dimension to understanding how obesity rates have more than doubled in the past 30 years.

The new findings show that:

  • Disruptions in the sleep/wake cycle lead to weight gain, impulsivity, slower thinking, and other physiological and behavioral changes. These findings may be particularly important for people who do shift work (Ilia Karatsoreos, PhD, abstract 471.1, see attached summary).

  • Pregnant mice fed a high-fat diet produced pups that were longer, weighed more, and had reduced insulin sensitivity factors that indicate a predisposition toward obesity and diabetes. In addition, despite no further exposure to a high-fat diet, these pups passed on those same traits to their offspring (Tracy Bale, PhD, abstract 666.21, see attached summary).

  • Feeding high-fat food to pregnant mice can affect the brain development of their offspring, causing the pups to be more vulnerable to obesity and to engaging in addictive-like behaviors in adulthood (Teresa Reyes, PhD, abstract 87.1, see attached summary).

  • Brain pleasure centers became progressively less responsive in rats fed a diet of high-fat, high-calorie food changes previously seen in rats as they became addicted to cocaine or heroin. Furthermore, the animals became less likely to eat a well-balanced, nutritious diet even when the less-palatable healthy food was all that was available. The finding may have implications for humans, as the diets were similar to those in developed countries (Paul J. Kenny, PhD, abstract 550.1, see attached summary).

Other research findings being discussed at the meeting show:

  • There is considerable evidence that body weight and fat mass are highly heritable traits and have strong genetic determinants. This offers the potential to identify specific brain-derived factors contributing to obesity, eating behavior, and responses to food (Sadaf Farooqi, PhD, see attached speaker's summary).

"The brain is the foundation of all behavior, including eating," said press conference moderator Ralph DiLeone, PhD, of Yale University School of Medicine, an expert on the neural mechanisms of food intake and behavior. "With the growing rates of obesity in industrialized nations, brain research is important to understanding the underlying neurobiological responses to high-fat diet."


'/>"/>

Contact: Kat Snodgrass
ksnodgrass@sfn.org
202-637-4090
Society for Neuroscience
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Scientists urge EPA to adopt systems thinking
2. Nanotechnology and synthetic biology: What does the American public think?
3. Help students think like soil scientists
4. Rethinking Alzheimers disease and its treatment targets
5. Hot microbes cause groundwater cleanup rethink
6. Think zinc: Molecular sensor could reveal zincs role in diseases
7. MSU discoveries upend traditional thinking about how plants make certain compounds
8. 100 reasons to change the way we think about genetics
9. After a few drinks, older adults more impaired than they think
10. Stress disrupts human thinking, but the brain can bounce back
11. Rethinking the genetic theory of inheritance
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/29/2017)... the health IT company that operates the largest health ... today announced a Series B investment from BlueCross BlueShield ... investment and acquisition accelerates higi,s strategy to create the ... activities through the collection and workflow integration of ambient ... secures data today on behalf of over 36 million ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... -- The Controller General of Immigration from Maldives Mr. ... have received the prestigious international IAIR Award for the most innovative high ... ... Maldives Immigration Controller ... (small picture on the right) have received the IAIR award for the ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... Mar. 23, 2017 Research and Markets has ... Analysis & Trends - Industry Forecast to 2025" report to ... ... a CAGR of around 8.8% over the next decade to reach ... analyzes the market estimates and forecasts for all the given segments ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... 27, 2017 , ... During the course of this webinar, ... 1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D can enhance clinical practice. Participants will learn the medical indications and ... Dr. Gregory Plotnikoff, senior consultant with Minnesota Personalized Medicine, will be the speaker ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... The Council for Agricultural Science ... Jayson Lusk, a consummate communicator who promotes agricultural science and technology in the ... he explains how innovation and growth in agriculture are critical for food security ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... Beach, SC (PRWEB) , ... April 26, 2017 ... ... the mind, has teamed up with NASA to showcase the future of deep ... Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft and includes a guest appearance ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... Hong Kong (PRWEB) , ... April 26, 2017 ... ... be hosted in EMEA and North America this May ... from May 16-18 , Donald H. Taylor, Chairman of the Learning and Performance ...
Breaking Biology Technology: