If you’ve been feeling like you forget things easily these days, it might not be your imagination. A recent study of obese people who were considering the gastric band or other weight loss surgery revealed that prior to surgery many overweight people had slightly lower than normal cognitive abilities than expected.
One hundred fifty people were included in the study. Of these, 109 were planning weight loss surgery and the other 41 were obese people who were included as a control group. Twelve weeks after surgery, the participants who had weight loss surgery showed improvements in memory and cognitive ability. The researchers said that they chose weight loss surgery patients because this is a group that generally loses weight quickly. This rapid change allowed doctors to study how weight loss affects cognitive function. They will continue to study the participants, checking back at the one year and two year points to see their progress.
The researchers believe that the health problems that can come along with obesity, such as high blood pressure and type-2 diabetes, can also cause problems with memory and cognitive function. Weight loss surgeries such as the lap band procedure, have been shown to improve diabetes and high blood pressure, so it made sense that losing weight could help with memory, as well.
The doctors are also planning to see whether patients who lose weight through medically supervised behavioral weight loss programs also see an improvement in memory and cognitive ability. The doctors are hopeful that they will see positive results in those who are able to take off excess weight in that way as well.
If you feel that your weight is affecting your health and well-being, talk to a Carrollton area bariatric surgeon to find out if weight loss surgery is appropriate for you.