During early childhood, the brain uses about half of the body’s energy, which could have huge consequences for children at risk for obesity. A new study from Northwestern University links brain energy demand to weight gain and proposes that variation in energy needs for brain development could influence energy expenditure and weight gain patterns.
"We all know that how much energy our bodies burn is an important influence on weight gain," said coauthor Christopher Kuzawa, professor of anthropology in Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.
"When kids are 5, their brains use almost half of their bodies’ energy. And yet, we have no idea how much the brain’s energy expenditure varies between kids. This is a huge hole in our understanding of energy expenditure."
Prior to this study, Kuzawa and his colleagues discovered that when the brain’s need for energy increases, the risk of weight gain decreases, and vice versa.
expenditure：名詞，（錢、時間、努力等）開支、耗費。例句：We should reduce expenditure on our vacation.（我們應該減少度假開支。）
vary：動詞，差異，改變。例句：Prices of the same product varied greatly from store to store.（同一種產品的價格在各家店差異甚大。）
vice versa：副詞，情況反過來也成立。例句：I don’t like you, and vice versa.（我不喜歡你，你也不喜歡我。）