Background: The number of individuals with obesity is growing worldwide and this is a worrying
trend, as obesity has shown to cause pathophysiological changes, which result in the emergence of comorbidities
such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus type 2 and cancer. In addition, cognitive performance may be
compromised by immunometabolic deregulation of obesity. Although in more critical cases, the use of medications
is recommended, a physically active lifestyle is one of the main foundations for health maintenance, making
physical training an important tool to reduce the harmful effects of excessive fat accumulation.
Aim: The purpose of this review of the literature is to present the impact of immunometabolic alterations on cognitive
function in individuals with obesity, and the role of exercise training as a non-pharmacological approach to
improve the inflammatory profile, energy metabolism and neuroplasticity in obesity.
Method: An overview of the etiology and pathophysiology of obesity to establish a possible link with cognitive
performance in obese individuals, with the executive function being one of the most affected cognitive components.
In addition, the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) profile and its impact on cognition in obese
individuals are discussed. Lastly, studies showing regular resistance and/or aerobic training, which may be able to
improve the pathophysiological condition and cognitive performance through the improvement of the inflammatory
profile, decreased insulin resistance and higher BDNF production are discussed.
Conclusion: Exercise training is essential for reestablishment and maintenance of health by increasing energy
expenditure, insulin resistance reduction, anti-inflammatory proteins and neurotrophin production corroborating
to upregulation of body function.