From Medical Xpress:

This figure presents the different connections found for the normal weight vs. obese children depending on smell: onion (1A), acetone (1B) and chocolate (1C). The red lines correspond to connections which were larger for normal weight vs. obese children. The blue lines correspond to stronger connections between the normal weight vs. obese children. Credit: Radiological Society of North America

The area of the brain associated with impulsivity and the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder is activated in obese children when introduced to food smells, according to a study being presented next week at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).

“In order to fight obesity, it is crucial to understand the brain mechanisms of odor stimulus,” said Pilar Dies-Suarez, M.D., chief radiologist at the Hospital Infantil de México Federico Gómez. “This study has given us a better understanding that obesity has a neurological disorder component, and the findings have the potential to affect treatment of .”

In the United States, nearly 12.7 million are obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These children are at a higher risk to develop , type 2 diabetes, and breathing and joint problems, among many other health issues. They are also more likely to become .

The researchers studied 30 children between the ages of 6 and 10 years old. Half of the children had a normal body mass index (BMI) between 19 and 24, and the other half exhibited…

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