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Preference for Fatty Foods Increases after Middle Age

overweight man with visceral fatGot bigger love handles and squishier arms with every passing year?

National Institutes of Health researchers say that middle-aged people carrying a defective pro-obesity gene have weaker impulse control and eat more “bad” foods, leading to weight gain.

People with obesity-associated variants of the FTO gene have reduced brain function in the area that controls impulsivity and perception of food texture and taste, the researchers say. Middle-aged and older people carrying the gene tend to eat more high-calorie or fatty food, increasing their chances of developing obesity.

The study, published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, tracked 700 people, including 69 people who received yearly brain scans.

The genetic risks for obesity are well-documented. Elevated risk for obesity also increases a person’s risk for diabetes.

Remember: Although a person can be predisposed to obesity, an active lifestyle and nutrient-rich diet can help reduce one’s risk for obesity as well as diabetes.

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