Thinking Too Hard Makes You Fat

Don't think too hard ... it can make you fat! A new study led by Angelo Tremblay of Laval University, Quebec, suggests that people tend to overeat after an onerous mental activity:

Jean-Philippe Chaput, the study's main author, said: "These fluctuations may be caused by the stress of intellectual work, or also reflect a biological adaptation during glucose combustion."

The body could be reacting to these fluctuations by spurring food intake in order to restore its glucose balance, the only fuel used by the brain.

Mr Chaput added: "Caloric overcompensation following intellectual work, combined with the fact we are less physically active when doing intellectual tasks, could contribute to the obesity epidemic currently observed in industrialised countries.

"This is a factor that should not be ignored, considering that more and more people hold jobs of an intellectual nature."


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That is a ridiculous way to interpret and package this study. The headline is incendiary, designed to grab attention. Thinking does not make you fat, and it really doesn't read like that's what they were even trying to study. How much you think might be related to how much you eat, but there's no reason that would make you fat. Lack of exercise and food choices make a difference, among other things. The way scientific studies are presented in the media is usually faulty. What do you want to bet that the Telegraph doesn't have a science editor on staff?
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I tend to agree that being obese has nothing to do with being intellectual...yes, after a long period of hard thinking you can feel very hungry, and yes a lot of people work "intellectual" jobs, but intelligence should extend beyond the workplace.
I myself am fairly overweight (though nowhere near that photo, thank God), and know it has nothing to do with the fact that I'm going to school in a difficult field. Saying that "Oh, I get hungry because I study so much, and because I study so much I have no time to work out!" would be so much easier, and it's what most people do. Sure, I have limited free time, and I choose to use that time being with friends instead of at the gym, and it's why I'm overweight.

What I really don't understand is why everyone keeps searching for more and more excuses for obesity when although there are genetic predispositions, the vast majority of obese people are simply sedentary over-eaters. Spend the money getting good habits kicked into kids at a young age instead of finding more excuses for perfectly cognizant adults who should know better!
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