Impaired Thinking Ability Due to Food Intake

Posted on June 26, 2015

Photo: flickr

Ever wondered what affected your ability to react on the spot? A new study finds that this could be due to a high-fat, high-sugar diet, which causes significant damage to cognitive flexibility. Cognitive flexibility is the ability to adjust and adapt to changing situations.

A high-sugar diet was most damaging based on the research they found on mice. It causes impairments in both long- and short-term memory. This shows one of the potentially dramatic effects of diet on mental performance.

The impairment of cognitive flexibility in this study is found to be significant. For instance, if the usual route that you take home is closed for a day out of the sudden, you would have to find a new route home. The lower cognitive flexibility affects the adaptation to such changes.
However, it is not clear about how such damaging effects were caused. It is found that our gut bacteria, or microbiota, can communicate with the human brain. Bacteria can release compounds that act as neurotransmitters, stimulate sensory nerves or the immune system, and affect a wide range of biological functions. The message content cannot be uncoded at the moment, however the research time is tracking down the pathways and the effects

The research was carried out on laboratory mice.They were given either a normal diet, a high-fat diet or a high-sugar diet.
After four weeks the mental and physical performance of mice on the high-fat or high-sugar diet began to suffer.
The purpose of the research is to bring attention to one’s diet. Even though we are aware that fats and sugar are not healthy food, it could alter our healthy bacterial systems at the same time. Thus, there is an interaction between food and microbial changes, which affects our brain.

Category(s):Health / Illness / Medical Issues, Health Psychology

Source material from PsyBlog