SLU Study Finds Possible Reason for Obesity
By Tom Weber, KWMU
St. Louis, MO – Researchers from Saint Louis University are claiming a breakthrough in understanding obesity.
Their new study in the journal Diabetes offers a reason for why some brains never get the message that it's time to stop eating.
SLU Professor William Banks says a hormone called leptin is responsible for telling the brain that the body is full. He says studies of mice found that a fat called triglyceride was blocking leptin in the obese ones.
"We need to do a lot more studies but eventually it might be by manipulating triglyceride levels, we'll be able to help people lose weight," Banks says. But the study may also result in a long-known solution for obesity. That's because Banks says the two best known ways to alter triglycerides is through better exercise and diet.
"When you start decreasing exercise or you're eating too much and you start on that obesity road, that's when the triglycerides start to go up."
Banks says the next step is to study whether there's any way manipulate triglycerides so the leptins can get to the brain.