Researchers from The Journal of Neuroscience recently discovered that obesity can break down the blood-brain barrier. That barrier is what keeps the brain’s blood vessels (i.e., capillaries) and cells and other brain tissue regions separated. This separation protects your brain from potential toxins or pathogens that might circulate through your blood while still allowing nutrients to pass through the barrier to nourish the brain. However, if you are dealing with obesity, you lose out on that protection.
Without that protective barrier, your brain is more vulnerable, enabling obesity to lead to a poorer bodily environment for both your brain and you.
Enough excess weight can result in a less healthy environment for your brain.
While obesity by itself is already an unhealthy disease, causing a number of bodily health concerns, including the aforementioned weak blood-brain barrier, it also poses a negative effect on your cognitive ability. For instance, the scientific news site, ScienceDaily, notes that as people with obesity and diabetes age, their rate for cognitive impairment increases. Unfortunately, that impairment is typically found in the hippocampus area of the brain, which deals with the brain’s ability to learn and remember. Consequently, obesity can lead to learning and memory disabilities over time.
Well, to find out, The Journal of Neuroscience studied what happened to young mice on a high-fat diet. After 16 weeks, the mice were obese and insulin resistant, and that seemed to make their blood-brain barrier more penetrable. As a result, molecules like fluorophore and Evans blue were able to reach through the blood-brain barrier. Eventually, this new access altered the brain’s landscape. Researchers were seeing that the mice’s diabetes promoted holes in certain cells and even higher levels of the chemical adenosine. All of which led to an inflamed blood-brain barrier.
Luckily, the researchers discovered that blocking Adora2a (a receptor in the brain that’s activated by adenosine) in mice, they could stop the mice’s blood-brain barrier from weakening. And this may prove to be just as effective on humans.
To avoid the damage, consider treating your obesity as soon as you can.
For the time being, however, you’re better off avoiding obesity and its consequences if you can. So if you have the condition or feel like you might be getting it, talk to your doctor as soon as you’re able to. As a health-care professional, your doctor will be able to recommend you, potential treatments for minimizing any obesity problems you might encounter.
One such treatment may include weight-loss medication like alli®, which can seem expensive. But you can buy generic orlistat and ship it straight to your home for less when you use a pharmacy referral site like Canada Drug Warehouse, where you can access affordable medications from International pharmacies and fulfillment centers.
However you treat your obesity concerns, don’t overly worry about the speed at which they move. Treatment will always take time to work effectively, and your risk for obesity side effects will not increase overnight.
Bo has over six years experience as a teacher, advocate and speaker. He has a B.S. from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. in Human rights from Harvard University Graduate School.