All You Need To Know About Leptin
One of the greatest medical problems facing the 21st-century global population is obesity. Even among children, this pandemic is on the rise, and there is no sign of a cure. The increase in weight gain is due to a plethora of reasons ranging from lack of exercise to the high sugar and fat intake as part of our processed diets. Irrespective of the causes of weight gain, one common factor is that the increased body fat can contribute to hormonal issues and physical illnesses. This article will examine one of the hormones in the body connected to obesity, the hormone known as leptin.
What Exactly Is Leptin?
This compound is a hormone that is released from fat cells in the body and located in the adipose tissues. Its primary function is to send signals to a part of the brain known as the hypothalamus which influences the regulation of food intake and energy expenditure. As part of this, the hormone helps to maintain the body’s optimal weight level over a long-term period.
Unfortunately, due to it being released from the fat cells, the amount of this hormone is directly related to the individual’s overall amount of body fat. This means that a fluctuation in the body fat will influence the levels of this hormone; therefore, if the body fat percentage increases, the body fat amount will increase as well.
Known as the satiety or starvation hormone, one of the functions of this compound is to reduce hunger while regulating energy; therefore, it is responsible for the avoidance of hunger responses when the body does not need energy. When levels of this hormone decrease, which occurs when an individual loses weight, the reduced levels can trigger cravings and increased appetite. This, ironically, can contribute to weight gain and can make weight loss challenging.
What Are The Problems With This Hormone?
When the human body is functioning effectively, the excess fat cells will produce this hormone; thus, triggering a reduction in appetite and regulation of energy. If, however, the individual is obese, the person will have too much of the satiety hormone present in their blood, and this will result in a non-responsive effect. The obese individual will have too much of this hormone in their blood and will become resistant as their fat cells produce higher quantities, leading to increased but ineffective levels.
Lower levels of the satiety hormone are rare, but they do appear among patients with certain medical conditions. Individuals suffering from a condition known as congenital leptin deficiency will present with low levels as their body is unable to produce this hormone. Without the hormone, the body assumes it does not have any body fat and signals an intense, uncontrollable sensation of hunger. This condition often contributes to severe childhood obesity and cases of delayed puberty. The most common treatment for the condition is leptin injections.
Final Words On The Matter
The human body is a complicated item, and there are several factors that need to be considered to remain healthy. It is highly recommended you use the information above to speak with a medical doctor about possible problems regarding your leptin hormone levels.