In a recent study presented at the annual meeting of the Society of Neuroscience, researchers discovered that an individual who eats a high-fat diet over a long period of time may cause irreversible changes to occur in his brain.
For the research, scientists from the University of Pennsylvania fed mice a high-fat diet for six months. Previous studies have shown that fatty foods triggered the pleasure centers of the animals' brains, which is the same area associated with the internal chemical reactions related to drugs such as cocaine.
In their findings, the researchers noted that the genes involved with reward were permanently altered in the subjects' brain chemistry and that these changes could lead to other serious problems, which could include obesity.
Teresa Reyes, senior author of the study, said that "these results provide further insight into the health consequences of long-term, high-fat diets, and suggest one explanation for why some people face such difficulty in the path to weight loss and eating healthier."
Aside from maintaining a healthy diet to lose weight, individuals can engage in regular exercise and balance the number of calories that are consumed each day, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.