ISLAMABAD: A team of Australian researchers has found a link between junk food and memory loss.
The researchers from the University of New South Wales placed rats on a diet high in sugar and fat and compared their performance with rodents on a healthy diet.
Lead researcher Margaret Morris said rats on the poor diet developed an impaired memory after just six days.
“Poor diet was associated with a cognitive decline that happened very quickly. So within six days of the diet, the animals performed less well on a spatial memory task. We were surprised at how fast it was,” she said, ABC news reported.
It was found that the animals being fed a poor diet also showed inflammation in the brain’s hippocampus region, the part of the brain that is involved in memory forming and storing.
Morris said the memory issues became apparent well before the animals showed any physical symptoms.
“The animals of course weren’t obese after just six days on the diet.
So the changes in cognition, the loss of memory, happened well before there was any weight change,” she said.
“It’s hard of course to extrapolate to humans. But there is data in human volunteers fed a poor junk diet for just five days, that there was a loss of executive function,” she said.