Washington D.C.: If you are blessed with brains, you are more likely to be healthier than those with a lower IQ, a new study has suggested.
The University of Edinburgh scientists discovered that the same gene variants that make people intelligent also protect against illness.
People who performed best in memory, verbal reasoning and reaction tests were less likely to have the genes that predispose people to high blood pressure, to diseases such as Alzheimer's and diabetes or to poor overall health. They were also likely to be taller and to have larger brains.
The only medical conditions that intelligence appeared to make more likely were schizophrenia, autism and bipolar disorder.
The study supports an existing theory, which says that those with better overall health are likely to have higher levels of intelligence, said Saskia Hagenaars.
Stuart Ritchie said that they found that there are many overlaps: to take one example, genes related to being taller are also related to obtaining a college or university degree.
Those "super" genes were also linked to having a larger brain, the study found.
The research is published in the journal Molecular Science.