Is Fat On Your Hips Better for Your Brain than Fat On Your Belly?

New research suggests that women with an hourglass figure may on average be brighter and have more clever children.

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A study found that women with large hips and small waists tend to be more intelligent than those with either  apple-shaped  or linear bodies. Such women may also tend to give birth to more intelligent children. One possible reason is the greater percentage of omega 3 fats found on the hips.

The study examined 16,000 women and girls, and found that women with a greater difference between the waist and hips scored significantly higher on cognitive tests, as did their children. Those with a waist-to-hip ratio between 0.6 and 0.7 achieved the highest scores.

Fat around hips and thighs holds higher levels of omega 3 fats, which are essential for the growth of the brain during pregnancy. Fat around the waist may have higher levels of omega 6 fats acids, which are less well suited to brain growth. Waist fat is also more likely to be a contributory factor in diabetes and heart disease.

Sources:
Times Online November 11, 2007
Evolution and Human Behavior January 2008 Volume 29, Issue 1, Pages 26-34

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