Obesity

Sunday, 1 January
2012

Leptin Resistance – The New Weight Loss Dilemma

As if insulin resistance wasn’t enough, now you can make room for Leptin resistance.

Leptin resistance is emerging as a leading cause of obesity, weight loss difficulty and age related weight gain. Under the category of things we didn’t know  that we are starting to figure out about life long weight loss and weight management, it turns out that prolonged and chronic elevated leptin from being overweight and eating high density foods create leptin resistance, which in turns predisposes you towards weight gain, premature aging and obesity.

WHAT IS LEPTIN?
Leptin is one of the key hormones involved in hunger, metabolism and the control of how energy from fats and carbs get stored and utilized. Not coincidentally, it is derived from the Greek word ‘leptos’ meaning thin. Here are a few of the things that Leptin does

-Leptin is perhaps the key signaling hormone circulating in your blood that signals your hypothalamus you have eaten enough and need to start burning fat. In simplest terms, your hypothalamus is the control center for fullness and fat storage, and circulating leptin in your blood is the key signal for your hypothalamus in this regard.

-Leptin production by fat cells signals your hypothalamus that you need more or less body fat.

-The rate of production of leptin directly correlates with weight loss or weight gain. (Women have significantly higher circulating leptin than men)

WHAT IS LEPTIN RESISTANCE?
Leptin resistance is very similar conceptually to insulin resistance. With insulin resistance, chronic elevated levels of insulin make your muscle and fat cells more resistance to the action of insulin. Leptin resistance is very similar. Chronic elevated levels of leptin decrease the hypothalamus sensitivity to leptin.

To put it plainly, if your hypothalamus is resistant to leptin signaling, you tend to eat way too much. This also makes weight loss much more difficult because it makes dieting and restricting food something your body does not want to do.

What you need to understand about leptin resistance is that it is progressive. Once you become resistant to leptin, it leads to more eating, which leads to elevated leptin, which leads to more eating, which makes weight loss very difficult. This is why obesity research is now turning to leptin signaling as a potential causal agent in obesity. It’s that powerful a process.

HOW CAN YOU AVOID LEPTIN RESISTANCE?
There are a few basic things you can do to mitigate becoming leptin resistant.

AVOID HIGH DENSITY FOOD – Foods that are highly caloric promote elevated leptin. What do I mean by high-density food?  In short, foods that have a very high ratio of calories and energy to their total volume. Think processed foods – fried foods, cheesecake, pizza, concentrated sugar drinks.

If you think we are just rehashing old ground with the ‘crap foods to avoid’ list, you must consider your own hunger and appetite patterns.  If you have chronic appetite problems the thing we must now consider in light of the new information on leptin resistance is how this problem is progressive. It only gets worse and makes weight loss more difficult.

BALANCE YOUR FATS AND SUGARS – High sugar and low essential fat intake causes hunger. Good essential fat intake combined with heavy fibrous carbs for volume tends to make you full.

AVOID CHRONIC HUNGER VIA MORE MEALS: The current trend in the weight loss and medical community of medicating hunger is something I totally disagree with.  Hunger should be dealt with through food, not drugs. So much to do with hunger can be mediated with volume foods, good fats and frequent meals. This really becomes a tactical problem. The reality for most of us is too many tasks, too much pressure, and too little time to eat right. Fortunately, there are more solutions than ever. There are fantastic meal delivery services, healthier menus, better salads, meal replacements and weight loss meal services that are available to us. We will be putting together a directory of such services probably next month.

LOSE WEIGHT: While this seems like a catch-22, that’s exactly what leptin resistance is, a catch 22. The fact is, being overweight goes hand in hand with elevated leptin. You HAVE to lose the weight to really get control of this.

In summary, leptin resistance is no joke. It’s real and we want to avoid becoming leptin resistant at all costs. We will stay on this topic as more develops

Reference:

Jaquier: Leptin Signaling, adiposity and energy balance.
Ingvartsen, Boisclair: Leptin and the regulation of food intake, energy homeostasis and immunity with special focus on periparturient ruminants
Williams, Bing, Harrold, King, Liu: The hypothalamus and the control of energy homeostasis: different circuits, different purposes
Scarpace PJ, Zhang Y Elevated leptin: consequence or cause of obesity?
Zhang, Scarpace PJ: The role of leptin in leptin resistance and obesity

Monday, 10 October
2011

Deceptive Fat Loss Products

1. Vitamin Water

  • There is no natural vitamins in vitamin water (it is too expensive); synthetic form of vitamins are utilized.
  • 13g of sugar per serving ( about 8 teaspoons of sugars)
  • Note: As little of 3 teaspoons of sugar is enough to suppress your immune system for 4-6hours.

2. Ensure

  • 23g of sugars (6 teaspoons of sugar)
  • Includes ingredients: sugar, corn maltodextrin, soy ingredient, canola oil
  • Note: All the ingredients listed cause havoc to the digestive system, and canola oil is genetically modified.

3. Yoplait yogurt

  • 7g of sugar (8 teaspoon of sugar)
  • note: sugar kills the good bacteria

4.Zone bar (most protein bars)

  • soy ingredient (bad)
  • note:unfermented soy reduces thyroid function, also reduces the body ability to breakdown protein.

5. Slim fast

  • Ingredients corn syrup, hyrdogenated oils, etc…
  • Note: All the ingredients listed cause havoc to the digestive system

These are only a few so called weight loss healthy products that have been listed. The weight loss industry is a billion, if not trillion dollar industry. Don’t believe the Hype! Make sure you do your homework on the products you invest in for your health and not just feed into the advertisements.

Wednesday, 5 October
2011

Seminar Report – Weight Loss: The Answer

Seminar Report

The seminar was presented by Pamela W. Smith, M.D., MPH. The focus was how to lose weight and keep it off.

 Summary- Causes of obesity are Physiological & Psychological

  • Certain foods have mild opiate effects which causes addiction
  • Chocolate has opiate effects which release chemicals that encourage addiction.
  • Cheese and dairy has mild opiate effects released during digestion
  • Wheat protein(gluten) breaks apart in the digestive process and the breaking down of the compounds has mild opiate effects
  • Overweight patients have fewer dopamine receptor sites, so this causes them to eat more to experience the mild opiate effects (euphoric feeling) released by certain foods
    • Exercise releases dopamine
    • Healthy foods can turn on dopamine
  • Men whom avoid dairy has a 30% reduction in prostate cancer
    • Dairy consumption suppresses Vitamin D activation
      • Deficient in Vitamin D causes issues in breast cancer, prostate cancer, MS, depression, colon cancer, back pain, etc…
  • Sugar causes the release of opiates in the brain
  • Serotonin in the brain has a considerable affect in eating behavior
    • Carbohydrate rich foods boosts serotonin
    • Diets low in tryptophan tend to decrease serotonin levels which causes people to never feel satiate
    • Serotonin levels decrease when dieting (restriction…cookie cutter diets)
      • Restrictive diets affect neurotransmitters (must consume an array of whole foods)
  • Secrets to Losing Weight and Keeping it off
    • Need to eat Breakfast
      • Body makes insulin at 10a and 5pm, so we must utilize the release of insulin in those hours
      • No breakfast and release of insulin at 10a will raise triglycerides and make it harder to lose weight
    • Choose foods that hold blood sugar steady
      • Note: Cortisol is a major issue of why people don’t lose weight and keep it off.
  • Add fiber to meals
    • Help stay satiated
    • Decreases calorie intake by 10% if an additional of 14grams are added per day
  • Boost Leptin
    • Dieting (calorie restriction/cookie cutter) decreasing leptin
    • Leptin is a hormone that helps tame your appetite
    • Leptin also boosts metabolism
    • High bad fats interfere with leptin
    • Exercise increases leptin sensitivity
    • * Do not diet, eat enough calories to not impair leptin system
      • Dieting causes body to go into flight and fight response (stress) preventing effective fat loss
        • Example: Consuming as low as 800 calories makes the body think it’s in the state of emergency…releasing cortisol, which causes the body to store everything in the fat cells.
  • Exercise is essential
    • Exercise increases insulin sensitivity and mitochondria function
      • Increases in mitochondria activity has to be there to make fat burning effective
  • Stress Management
    • Elevated stress increases cortisol levels
  • Sleep
    • Releases growth hormone which aides in fat loss
  • Vitamins
    • People need to be nutritional sound (vitamin, minerals, enzymes)
      • *All patients should be on a good multivitamin and fish oil
        • Obesity is an inflammatory response, and must be treated with fish oil and other anti-inflammatories
  • Supplements
    • CLA – helps insulin work more effectively in the body
      • *Best for plateau stages – suggested 3-4,000mg daily
    • L-Carnitine – helps with fat loss
      • *Best for plateau stages – suggested 3-4,000mg daily

Note:

  • Patient losing or gaining more than 20lbs will experience a change in their hormonal status (re-balancing of the hormones is essential)
  • Suggest 40%Protein, 40%Carbs, 20%Good Fats
  • Never consume Carbs by itself
  • Add shakes to meals of those that are addicted to food
  • Add shakes and bars to assist those that complain about convenience
  • Depending on how quickly the patient wants to lose weight depends on what program they should be put on.
  • Allergy with foods can cause a patient not to lose weight
    • Start with an allergy elimination diet (note: people crave foods that they are allergic too)

In Conclusion: To lose weight and keep it off, patients need to be:

  • Hormonally sound (female & male hormones, insulin, thyroid, melatonin, cortisol,etc..)
  • Nutritionally sound (not lacking in co-factors and enzymes)
  • Neurotransmitters (serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine, GABA, histamine, etc..) have to be normal
  • Eliminate allergies
  • Decrease inflammation
  • Detoxification