fishandchipsNew research suggests that even eating a high-fat diet just for one week may cause behavioural changes that link to learning disabilities and the hyperactivity disorder ADHD.

Researchers from the University of Illinois found that mice fed a high-fat diet (60 per cent of calories from fat) versus a low fat diet (10 per cent) behaved very differently. A typical Western diet contains between 35 and 45 per cent fat.

“We found that a high-fat diet rapidly affected the metabolism of dopamine — a chemical with a key role in regulating mood — in the brains of juvenile mice, triggering anxious behaviours and learning deficiencies,” said Gregory Freund, a professor in the university’s Division of Nutritional Sciences.

Whilst switching mice from a high-fat to a low-fat diet restored memory in one week, Freund added that the effects may be more long-lasting in children.

However, I do think the type of fat is important as we do need the essential Omega 3 fats in our diet and less of the bad transfat ones found in processed foods and ‘junk’ food.