Your Teenage Kid Can't Give Up Fast Food? It May be a Brain Impairment

A new study published in the Journal NeuroImage stated that teenagers hooked to high calorie food may be unable to control the urge for burgers, French fries and pizzas due to an impairment in the brain region linked to self-regulation

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Your Teenage Kid Can't Give Up Fast Food? It May be a Brain Impairment
If you have been blaming your adolescent child for eating too much high-calorie food, then you may have to re-consider your thoughts. A new study published in the Journal NeuroImage stated that teenagers hooked to high calorie food may be unable to control the urge for burgers, French fries and pizzas due to an impairment in the brain region linked to self-regulation. The findings have revealed that teenagers who are at an increased risk of obesity, have progressively less neural activity in circuits of the brain that support attention and self-regulation.

"The study establishes that risk for obesity isn't driven exclusively by the absence or presence of urges to eat high-calorie foods, but also, and perhaps most importantly, by the ability to control those urges," said Bradley Peterson, professor at the University of Southern California.

The team of researchers used Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to observe the relationship between neurological activity and risk of obesity in overweight as compared with lean teenagers.

In teenage kids who were obese or who were lean but at high familial risk for obesity, they observed less activation in attention and self-regulation circuits. Brain circuits that support self-regulation and attention showed the greatest activation in lean or low-risk adolescents, less activity in lean or high-risk participants and least activation in the overweight or obese group.

Childhood obesity can have a harmful effect on the body in a variety of ways. Obese children are more likely to have high blood pressure, increased risk of impaired glucose tolerance, breathing problems, joint problems, fatty liver disease and many others.

With Inputs from IANS

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