Brain Functions Reveal The Risk Of Developing Obesity, Study Finds

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Brain News – New study found that obesity risk factors of family background are associated with changes in the brain function. The results show that the function of neural networks regulating satiety and appetite is altered already before a person develops obesity.

In a new study, researchers at the University of Turku examined 41 young men with a varying number of obesity risk factors to investigate changes in the brain in pre-obesity. They also studied the insulin, opioid, cannabinoid function with the help of PET imaging.

According to the research result, family-related risk factors, including parents’ obesity or diabetes were interconnected with altered insulin signalling in the subject’s brain as well as reduced function of the opioid and cannabinoid systems. Obesity is linked to changes in brain insulin sensitivity and neurotransmitter function.The study findings showed that all these changes in the brain may cause increased appetite and overeating.

“Disturbance in the neural networks controlling satiation and appetite can therefore be observed already before a person develops obesity, and these brain changes are connected to family-related risk factors of obesity,” said Tatu Kantonen, Doctor Candidate of the University of Turku. He later mentioned that the findings may have implications for the development of prevention and treatment interventions for obesity.

To Know More You May Refer To:

Kantonen, T., Pekkarinen, L., Karjalainen, T. et al. Obesity risk is associated with altered cerebral glucose metabolism and decreased μ-opioid and CB1 receptor availability. Int J Obes (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41366-021-00996-y

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