The Ins And Outs Of Dieting And What It Does To Your Body Reveal Why It's So Hard
It’s something fat people have heard countless days: lose weight isn’t that hard. Exercise some self-control. All you have to do is work out and stop eating as much.
What some may not realize is that dieting is an uphill battle, and more often than not, it isn’t effective on a long-term basis. Even people who are successful at losing the weight often put it back on — and then some — in the subsequent year. That’s because not only are some people genetically predisposed to becoming overweight, but their bodies react to weight loss in such a way that it constructs it even more difficult to keep it off.
Things are a little different for naturally thin people who’ve never fought with their weight. When they eat, they don’t get the same hurry-up of dopamine, the reward hormone, as, say, all persons addicted to fast food. They don’t notice or crave foods in the same route people who’ve dieted have. It’s easier for them to stop when they’re full and resist excess junk food.
Studies have shown that when people do lose weight, their bodies undergo metabolic and hormonal changes. For example, calorie deprivation actually increases the risk for binge feeing by making the brain notice food even more. Food also triggers an even bigger release of dopamine, giving more of a reward.
Levels of peptide YY and leptin, the hunger-suppressing hormones, have been found to be lower than expected in dieting patients, while ghrelin, the starvation hormone, get higher. “What we see here is a coordinated defence mechanism with multiple components all directed toward stimulating us put on weight, ” said Joseph Proietto, a physician at the University of Melbourne.
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