Report

This Ingredient Eats Away at Your Memory

Trans fats were passé by the time the clock struck 2014, bumped out of the limelight by another villain: sugar and sugar substitutes. But a new study shows why trans fat is still a dietary danger: Turns out, it’s killing your brainpower.

Report

This Ingredient Eats Away at Your Memory

Trans fats were passé by the time the clock struck 2014, bumped out of the limelight by another villain: sugar and sugar substitutes. But a new study shows why trans fat is still a dietary danger: Turns out, it’s killing your brainpower.

A new study presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2014 links high trans fat consumption with diminished memory in—brace yourselves—adults under 45 years old. That hits a little close to home for those of you out building your careers and seeking the next big promotion.

Approximately 1,000 healthy men were surveyed about their diets and put to a simple word recall test. Despite correcting for factors like age, ethnicity and education, results show that participants who ate the most trans fat averaged a score 11 words (or about 10 percent) worse than those who reported consuming the least amount of the dangerous fat. Each additional gram per day was associated with a 0.76 word decrease in their scores.

The study, supported by The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, focused on men between the ages of 20 and 45 and postmenopausal women who had not been diagnosed with heart disease. More research needs to be done to see if this same effect is seen in working aged women, but the findings underscore the connection between mind and body as well as the multifaceted health benefits of working toward a healthy diet.

If you’re looking to make a change, cut back on processed foods like margarine, baked goods, frozen pizzas and coffee creamers that contain this particular kind of fat. You’ll remember to thank us later.

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