Leptin: Feel Full Hormone | 8 Ways To Fight Leptin Resistance
8 Ways To Fight Leptin Resistance while on a Diet for Weight Loss
Leptin, often referred to as satiety hormone or starvation hormone, is produced by the body’s fat cells. Its main role is to give a signal to the brain that enough fat is stored and extra energy is not needed. In simple terms, it regulates how many calories we eat and burn, as well as the amount of fat in our bodies.
As the fat content in the body increases the levels of leptin also increase and it triggers the brain to eat less and burn more calories. Similarly when body fat levels go down leptin levels also decline and the brain triggers signal to eat more.
People who are obese have high body fat and as a result they also have high levels of leptin. So as per the mechanism of leptin these people should be eating very less, right? But life is not that simple. Here’s what actually happens.
Many a times, the brain is unable to detect the high levels of leptin and therefore the feeling of satiety is not registered. When the brain doesn’t receive the leptin signal, it erroneously thinks that the body is starving leading to over eating, even though it has more than enough energy stored. This condition is called Leptin Resistance and is one of the causes for obesity.
So eating more and exercising less is not always the cause of weight gain, sometimes it is induced by conditions such as leptin resistance which is a hormonal defect. Leptin resistance is induced by many cellular and physiological factors which include:
- Inflammation in the brain: Especially the hypothalamus can interfere or misinterpret the signals
- Free fatty acids: An increase in their level in the bloodstream may increase fat metabolites in the brain and interfere with leptin signaling
- Having high leptin: Having elevated levels of leptin is the very reason that causes leptin resistance
Read our blog on Managing Protein Intake On a Vegetarian Diet
Leptin supplements are also available in the market as an effective mechanism to fight obesity. However, supplemental leptin is not required for two main reasons:
- Leptin taken in supplemental form will be digested by the body as any other protein without being absorbed
- Our body produces enough leptin so that our energy thermostat balanced. The actual problem is the leptin resistance where our brain can’t process the leptin
Along with following a diet for weight loss and regular exercise schedule follow these few simple tips to help reduce Leptin resistance:
- Eat small meals:
The basic rule while on a diet for weight loss is eating small frequent and healthy meals. Keep a watch out for the portion size and eat less so there is less fat storage and hence reduced leptin levels.
- Lower your triglycerides:
High blood triglycerides stop leptin from reaching the brain. The best way to lower triglycerides is to reduce carbohydrate intake especially of refined products and sugar.
- Go high on proteins:
Eating plenty of protein promotes weight loss and also improves leptin sensitivity as one of its mechanisms.
- Fill up with fiber:
Eating soluble fiber can help improve the gut health and protect against obesity by promoting satiety, control sugar levels and lower levels of triglycerides and free fatty acids.
- Avoid processed foods:
As they are high in sugar and salt and also promote weight gain.
- Cut down on fat:
Fried foods, high fat foods increases free fatty acid levels in the body which interferes with leptin signaling. Instead, eat healthy fats like omega 3.
- Exercise regularly:
Physical activity and staying lean and fit helps to reverse leptin resistance.
- Sleep well:
Level of leptin gets balanced with a good night’s sleep. So go ahead and have a proper peaceful sleep.
Leptin is one of the primary hormones that regulates hunger and plays an important role in your metabolism and overall well being. Following a good diet for weight loss and exercise is the best way to keep your leptin levels in check and to stay on top of your health.
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