What if we could create our bodies and change them as we wish to improve our physical nature.If we would make it easier to loose pound of fat and keep the weight out of our bodies.Beyond this wish the truth is that the human body has a complex system of hormones that interacts in countless ways.Therefore we are not likely to find a simple one- to- one relationship between this hormones and weight.Considering the challenges of obesity we should be aware of specially two important hormones which plays the main role in weight loss game.In fact in real life,this two hormones appear to be direct in their action on eating and weight.The first one is Ghrelin (grell+in),which is also called the “Hunger hormone” or the “Go” hormone and the other one is Leptin,which is also called the “Stop appetite” hormone or the “Stop” hormone.Many believe that the action of these “Go and Stop” appetite hormones are very straightforward,and that one is bad and the other one is good hormone.They have a major influence on energy balance.
Ghrelin: This appetite increasing hormone is released primarily in the stomach and is thought to signal hunger to the brain.You would expect the body to increase ghrelin level if a person is undereating and decrease if he or she is overeating.
German researchers have suggested that Ghrelin levels play a big role in determining how quickly hunger comes bake after a person takes his meal.Normally ghrelin levels go up dramatically before you eat.Then they go down for three hours after the meal.Actually this hunger stimulating hormone tells us when to eat.As the hunger hormone some of you may be ready to make ghrelin out to be a villain.Obesity and weight loss are complicated,so we should focus on this hunger stimulating hormone that causes us to gain weight.
Ghrelin was discovered in 1999,it is released primarily from the ghrelin cells of the gastrointestinal tract and the stomach and travels to the brain.There it interacts with both hypothalamus ( Brain’s physiological eating center),and the brain’s pleasure centers to arouse hunger.
Throughout the course of a day,ghrelin level naturally change dramatically,rising steeply before a meal and then plummeting after meal.Ghrelin stimulates the brain,which leads to an increase in appetite and it slows metabolism and decreases the body’s ability to burn fat.Ghrelin also favors the amassing of adipose tissue (fatty tissue) in the abdominal area.
Like many things in life it is not as apparent as it seems that ghrelin is a hunger hormone and therefore bad.Some findings are opposite to expectations that obesity would be due to excess levels of the hunger hormone.It has also been discovered that individuals suffering from anorexia have high blood levels of ghrelin compared to both the thin and normal weight controls.
The findings suggest that ghrelin is inversely related to calorie intake.Other studies have found that individuals who loose weight and try to keep it off make more ghrelin than they did before loosing weight,as if their bodies are fighting to regain the lost fat.An explanation of this findings is that excess weight may increase sensitivity to ghrelin.For example there may be more receptors in those affected by obesity for the hormone.So not as much ghrelin is required to stimulate hunger.
Leptin: The opposite hormone to ghrelin is the “Stop appetite” hormone Leptin.Leptin is a hormone produced in the fat cells of human body.The main role of this “stop appetite” hormone is to regulate body weight by signaling the brain to reduce appetite and burn more calories.Leptin is a primary modulator of body weight and metabolism,and it mediates weight loss by decreasing appetite and food consumption and increasing energy expenditure.Some studies have shown that loosing weight causes a marked decrease in leptin levels,which may in turn increase appetite.
Counter to what would be anticipated,obesity is linked to unusually high concentration of leptin.Some research suggests that these high concentrations make the receptors for leptin inactive and impair the mechanism that should eliminate excess fat.Then although plenty of leptin is produced,the body’s appetite suppressing system is unable to function properly.Though leptin helps signal the brain that the body have enough energy stores such as body fat.But many obese people don’t respond to leptin signals though they have higher levels of leptin.In general the more fat you have, the more leptin is in your blood.But the level varies depending on many factors including when you last ate and your sleeping patterns.
Ghrelin blockers in weight loss treatment: If ghrelin stimulates hunger,wouldn’t a ghrelin inhibitor (antagonist) be effective in helping people loose weight?Several pharmaceutical companies have or are conducting research on such a compound.The Scripps research institute in California in 2006 successfully developed an anti obesity ghrelin vaccine that significantly slowed weight gain and reduced body fat in animals.It is possible that in the near future there will be a ghrelin blocking medication.But since ghrelin also makes eating food pleasurable,a drug blocking the brain’s pleasure centers might create side effects associated to mood regulation,that could include the potential for severe depression sometimes leading to suicide.This drug was not approved due to these side effects.
Remember these two hormones play a vital role in weight management.So when ever you plan to start weight loss don’t forget about these “Go and Stop” hormones.And make your diet plan accordingly.