Some more obvious factors intervene to achieve a healthy body weight such as eating well through a healthy, varied and balanced diet or exercising and leading an active life. But the truth is that in this process of achieving the most suitable weight for our health, a series of internal processes in the body that must be known and in which certain hormones play a major role, also become important.
This time we are not going to talk about the importance of ghrelin (also known as the hunger hormone) in controlling appetite, but about leptin and how its increase is directly related to losing weight naturally. Is. Below, we’ll explain how this hormone is involved in regulating energy consumed and expended and how you can stimulate it to reach a healthy weight.
What is leptin?
Leptin is known to be a hormone that is primarily released from adipose tissue and is associated with the regulation of appetite and the percentage of body fat in your body. Its function is to act as a type of lipostat, released into the bloodstream when the amount of fat stored in adipose tissue increases. By performing this function, it informs the hypothalamus to activate the endocrine system thereby reducing appetite, inducing satiety and hence helping in maintaining body weight. On the other hand, it also increases caloric and metabolic expenditure due to its action on thermogenesis.
Due to its ability to reduce or increase energy expenditure, and to generate satiety signals in the brain, it is essential to ensure that levels of this hormone are adequate.
6 Ways to Control It
Before detailing ways to control leptin levels, it is necessary to understand that leptin is a complex hormone that can help us lose weight, but only as long as we do not resist its action, as in obesity. Or may be in cases of overweight. Those whose circulating leptin levels are particularly high, but do not respond as well to its effects. It is also important to highlight the importance of being clear that losing weight does not always mean a healthy weight, but it is important that the decrease or increase in body weight is always related to the specific physiological needs of our body, as well as With the advice of an expert nutritionist or doctor.
- Avoid fasting and strict diets: Strict diets and prolonged fasting can cause a drop in the level of leptin in the body, so they will not help you lose weight. This, along with the fact that this type of diet that is very low in calories or prolonged fasting (more than 12 hours) can cause a rebound effect in the body, leading to a greater feeling of hunger.
- Use leptin boosting foods: This doesn’t mean that there are foods that contain leptin, but it does mean that there are some that can help activate the body’s natural production of this hormone. In this list of associated foods we find almonds, fish, broccoli, oranges, spinach or carrots, etc.
- exercise regularly: Of course, regular physical exercise cannot be left out in this process of achieving a healthy body weight. And is that not only does it help burn calories, but it can also help reduce the amount of fat in our bodies and trigger a drop in leptin in the long term.
- avoid stress: Stress has many negative effects on our daily lives, but it can also be one of the reasons for uncontrolled weight gain. One of the main reasons for this is the close relationship between leptin and cortisol, as the latter can reduce the release of leptin and vice versa. On the other hand, stress can also damage the proper functioning of cells and lead to long-term resistance to leptin.
- Make sure to have a good rest: Ensuring good sleep and good rest helps avoid hormonal changes that can lead us to overeat and reduce satiety. This, along with the fact that less sleep increases cortisol levels and promotes stress, as we mentioned earlier, is one of the main enemies of maintaining the right levels of leptin in the body.
- Avoid consumption of alcohol: Avoiding alcohol consumption can help our health in many different ways and one of them is avoiding its empty calories, which can lead to reduced body fat. Abstaining from alcohol can also help curb food cravings due to changes in hormones (such as leptin and ghrelin) that, as you may already know, control eating behavior in the body.