The Checkup: Obesity Linked to Poorer Academic Performance in Teens

Teens with metabolic syndrome suffer in the classroom, a study says.

• Just in time for back to school, research on teens, obesity and academic performance. In a study of 110 American teenagers, researchers linked metabolic syndrome—a condition that entails obesity, pre-diabetes, high blood pressure and triglyceride levels, and low good cholesterol—with poorer performance in the classroom, specifically worse grades on spelling and math tests and shorter attention spans, than metabolically healthier peers. And there’s more: Brain scans revealed smaller hippocampi (the brain region responsible for memory and learning) than the controls. Even though the study is small, it’s worrisome because an estimated one in 12 (!!) children and adolescents has metabolic syndrome. ABC News has more.

• Want to be better at multitasking? Try meditating, a study says.

• Uh-oh. Mitt Romney’s VEEP choice, Paul Ryan, is in hot water over claims that he ran a sub-3-hour marathon. Because, well, he didn’t. Not even close.