A study carried out at Universite Laval in Quebec has found that heavy thinking requires calories. Though the difference in caloric need was negligible between rest periods and study periods, the study periods resulted in much higher fluctuations in glucose and insulin levels. Glucose is brain food.
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.”
Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to go feed my brain!