Scientists Talk About The Effect Of Fast Food On The Brain

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Scientists Talk About The Effect Of Fast Food On The Brain
Scientists Talk About The Effect Of Fast Food On The Brain

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Video: How the food you eat affects your brain - Mia Nacamulli 2023, February
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Scientists talk about the effect of fast food on the brain

People who follow the Western diet for at least one week may experience changes in brain function. Scientists have found that they have impaired appetite regulation and cognitive decline.

Scientists talk about the effect of fast food on the brain
Scientists talk about the effect of fast food on the brain

Photo: CC BY-SA 2.0 /

People who follow the Western diet for at least one week may experience changes in brain function. Scientists have found that they have impaired appetite regulation and cognitive decline. New research published in Royal Society Open Science

In their experiment, scientists divided 110 healthy people aged 20-23 into two groups: for a week, some had to adhere to a healthy diet, others switched to a "Western diet" (for this they offered fast food and Belgian waffles). Prior to the study, all participants ate predominantly healthy foods.

The "Western Diet," "Western Style Diet," or "Standard American Diet" refers to a diet high in added sugar. It can include fast food, red meat, fatty dairy products, refined grains, sugary drinks.

After completing the experiment, it turned out that study participants who ate the "American diet" found junk food with a lot of "empty calories" attractive, even on a full stomach. They also performed worse on memory tests than before the study.

The study authors believe that the "Western diet" disrupts appetite regulation in a part of the brain called the hippocampus.

Previously, an animal experiment showed that such food affects the hippocampus. One theory is that this part of the brain normally blocks or dampens food memories when we are full. Therefore, for example, if after eating a person looks at a piece of cake, he does not get hung up on how tasty it is.

“When the hippocampus is less efficient, you get these food memories and the food starts to look more inviting,” says new study co-author Richard Stevenson of Macquarie University in Australia.

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