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Leptin

Do you have trouble controling your appetite? You may have a leptin problem. When leptin was discovered in 1995, it was dubbed the “holy grail of weight loss.” Leptin manages how much fat is stored around the organs and under the skin.

About Leptin

Image courtesty Creative Commons

When fat cells are filled with an abundance of food, more leptin is secreted, and the leptin enters the brain to curb your appetite. As a result, you feel full and satisfied. If your leptin levels are too low all the time, you’re probably malnourished and have very little body fat. Or it may be a rare genetic inability to produce leptin.

Initially, scientists believed that if you gave leptin to overweight people, it would stimulate fat burning. Unfortunately, it had the opposite effect. When scientists measured leptin in overweight individuals, they were in for a big surprise. Overweight people are not leptin deficient; in fact, they produce too much leptin. It turns out that excessive levels of leptin often go hand in hand with high sugar and elevated insulin levels.

Food without nutritional value, such as refined carbohydrates, low-fat products, foods containing high-fructose corn syrup and trans fats, and other fake foods, send erroneous signals to the brain. The body interprets those signals as starvation, which makes the body burn fewer calories and store fat even in the presence of high leptin levels. When leptin is high because of all the fake food you eat, your satiety switch is broken. As a result, you gain weight, because you will be as hungry as a wolf and won't have control over your appetite.

If you have a high leptin level, that’s not a good thing. High leptin levels appear to be associated with high blood pressure, heart disease, strokes, and obesity. How can you fix your unbalanced leptin? Again, eat real food, including more natural fats, and fewer bad carbs.