Women who are obese throughout their life are more likely to lose brain tissue, researchers have found.

This loss is one of the first indications a person is going to develop dementia.

Carrying extra weight was a risk even if other factors, such as diabetes, were taken into account.

The research, from the Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Goteborg, Sweden, is published in the journal Neurology.

Whether or not a person is of a healthy weight is determined by their BMI, or body mass index.

This can be calculated by dividing the square of your height in metres by your weight in kilograms.

A BMI of over 25 is classed as overweight, and over 30 as obese.

Just under 300 women aged between 46 and 60 were studied over 24 years.

Every six years, researchers carried out computer tomography (CT) scans to study their brain tissue and calculated their BMI.

The study found that the higher the women’s BMI, the greater the chance they would experience brain tissue loss, known as cerebral atrophy.

More here.