Obesity in middle age associated with faster decline in mental abilities

The Wall Street Journal reports that middle-aged people who suffer from obesity and hypertension, along with other metabolic issues, may have an increased risk for faster decline in their cognitive faculties as they age, compared with their counterparts of normal weight, according to a study published in the journal Neurology.

HealthDay reports that after following some 6,400 adults ranging in age from 39 to 63 for an entire decade, researchers also found that “even obese people without these physical conditions experienced a faster decline in functions, such as memory.”

Richard Lipton, MD, of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, who was not involved in the study, said that “this study suggests that taking the steps recommended to prevent heart attack and stroke in midlife, including controlling body weight, high blood pressure, diabetes and lipid profiles, may also have a beneficial effect on cognitive function late in life.”

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