(HealthDay News) – In older adults (aged 60–≤70 years), obesity and high visceral adiposity are associated with poor cognitive function.

To investigate the correlation between total and regional adiposity and cognitive performance in older adults, Dae Hyun Yoon, of Seoul National University Hospital Healthcare System Gangam Center in Korea, and colleagues studied 250 adults (aged >60 years) who underwent anthropometric measurements, abdominal computed tomography, and cognitive testing. Adiposity measures included body mass index, waist circumference, and visceral and subcutaneous adiposity. Cognitive performance was measured using the Mini-Mental State Examination scale, with a score <1 standard deviation of normative values for age, sex, and education indicating poor performance.

The researchers found that, in individuals <70 years, both obesity and being in the top tertile of the visceral adiposity area were significantly associated with poor cognitive performance (odds ratio, 2.61 and 2.58, respectively), but these associations were not seen for those aged >70 years.

“High adiposity, particularly visceral adiposity, was associated with poor cognitive functioning in younger elderly persons,” the authors write.

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