Poverty depletes brain capacity, study finds - New York News

Poverty depletes brain capacity, study finds

Updated:

By: Emmilie Buchanan-Whitlock, Deseret News

People in poverty may have to work harder to pool their resources together - not just monetarily speaking.

New research shows that the wide-sweeping effects of poverty, such as financial strain, living paycheck to paycheck and a lack of resources, may be overly taxing to the brain.

"It sucks up so much mental bandwidth … that the poor have fewer cognitive resources left over to succeed at parenting, education, or work," according to an article in The Atlantic Cities.

Research released in August supports this information, stating that those living in poverty may not have the mental ability to alter their living conditions.

"Poverty imposes such a massive cognitive load on the poor that they have little bandwidth left over to do many of the things that might lift them out of poverty - like go to night school, or search for a new job, or even remember to pay bills on time," according to a related article in The Atlantic Cities.

According to the article, research at universities like Princeton and Harvard showed that the proverbial cognitive gap between impoverished and non-impoverished individuals is equivalent to the difference between chronic alcoholics and normal adults.

It also includes a gap in intelligence.

"The condition of poverty imposed a mental burden akin to losing 13 IQ points," the Atlantic Cities reported.

According to the first article, scientists also hypothesize that the effects of poverty continue to affect people throughout the years.

"Live in poverty for years, or even generations, and its effects grow more insidious. Live in poverty as a child, and it affects you as an adult, too," the article reports.

Additional research in a similar vein supports this theory.

Several major universities, including the University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Michigan and University of Denver, conducted a longitudinal study of 9-year-old children into their early 20s.

"Those who grew up poor later had impaired brain function as adults - a disadvantage researchers could literally see in the activity of the amygdala and prefrontal cortex on an fMRI scan," according to the article.

Essentially, it was harder for children from low-economic backgrounds to regulate their emotions.

According to the article, "These same patterns of 'dysregulation' in the brain have been observed in people with depression, anxiety disorders, aggression and post-traumatic stress disorders."


Original Post

Copyright 2013 Deseret Digital Media, Inc.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Record stores survive and thrive in Brooklyn

    Record stores survive and thrive in Brooklyn

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:59 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:59:51 GMT
    When you hear about a place that still sells records, located in a hip neighborhood in the borough of Brooklyn, you enter that store with certain expectations. One of them being: you hope the guy behind the counter talks about music the way Cory Fierman does."I think it's just like the most important thing to you," he says. "I don't know how to describe it. It's the most important thing to me. It's like another language."Cory manages Greenpoint's Academy Records Annex, where they want you ...
    When you hear about a place that still sells records, located in a hip neighborhood in the borough of Brooklyn, you enter that store with certain expectations. One of them being: you hope the guy behind the counter talks about music the way Cory Fierman does."I think it's just like the most important thing to you," he says. "I don't know how to describe it. It's the most important thing to me. It's like another language."Cory manages Greenpoint's Academy Records Annex, where they want you ...
  • Queens Beer Week kicks off

    Queens Beer Week kicks off

    Friday, April 18 2014 10:19 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:19:20 GMT
    Queens wants to be known as New York City's beer capital. Queens Beer Week kicked off on Friday to celebrate the borough's crafty breweries and the more than 60 venues that serve their beer. Dan Bronson of Crescent and Vine in Astoria is the bearded brains behind the inaugural Queens Beer Week. He organized it all. The nine-day celebration of beers brewed in Queens.
    Queens wants to be known as New York City's beer capital. Queens Beer Week kicked off on Friday to celebrate the borough's crafty breweries and the more than 60 venues that serve their beer. Dan Bronson of Crescent and Vine in Astoria is the bearded brains behind the inaugural Queens Beer Week. He organized it all. The nine-day celebration of beers brewed in Queens.
  • Woman wanted for baby snatch attempt in custody

    Woman wanted for baby snatch attempt in custody

    Friday, April 18 2014 9:57 PM EDT2014-04-19 01:57:17 GMT
    Police have taken into custody the woman believed to have tried to push a stroller with a baby inside away from a nanny in Chelsea. Tara Anne McDonald, 46, was being evaluated at a hospital Friday night. The attempted kidnapping occurred on 8th Ave. and 17th St. at about 3:45 p.m. on Thursday, police said.
    Police have taken into custody the woman believed to have tried to push a stroller with a baby inside away from a nanny in Chelsea. Tara Anne McDonald, 46, was being evaluated at a hospital Friday night. The attempted kidnapping occurred on 8th Ave. and 17th St. at about 3:45 p.m. on Thursday, police said.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices