Obesity Is Not Only Caused By Overeating

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Worms feedingThis article from the University of California in San Francisco talks about a study that shows that obesity is not only caused by overeating. Serotonin ALSO creates fat tissue in the body of worms irregardless of what is eaten.

You can see the whole article here:

The summary is pretty straightforward:

Obesity and thinness are not solely determined by feeding behavior. Rather, feeding behavior and fat metabolism are coordinated but independent responses of the nervous system to the perception of nutrient availability.

So, what does that mean to me? I can’t control how much weight I’m going to lose or gain because my serotonin levels are mixed up? Can that be true? Is it really out of my hands?

They don’t know yet. Since this study is so preliminary and it was done on WORMS, they really don’t know how that transfers to the human body. They DO know that low serotonin levels cause weight gain, so what are some ways to increase your serotonin levels?

  • Drugs: The pharmaceutical companies are quick to promote their medications for serotonin balance. With drugs, however, are the side effects. Just a few of those side effects are: nausea, insomnia, problems with ejaculation, somnolence (prolonged drowsiness or sleepiness), increased sweating, fatigue, decreased libido, and anorgasmia (inability of a person to ever achieve an orgasm while having sexual intercourse). If that doesn’t sound appealing to you, then popping anti-depressants to lose weight is not an option.

  • Alternative Therapies: 5-HTP is supposed to naturally raise your serotonin levels, but there are no proven studies of this. If it WERE approved, the FDA would be recommending it along with the non-alternative drugs. Considering the KNOWN side effects of the FDA approved drugs, I am even MORE unwilling to use something that hasn’t been fully tested.

  • BlueMax 70w Full Spectrum Dimmable Desk Lamp at Amazon.comSunlight: This method of raising your serotonin levels is FREE and has been shown in study after study to improve serotonin levels. Make sure you spend time outside or get a sunlamp. I use this Blue Max Desk Lamp every morning for at least thirty minutes, but sunlight is FREE. Get outside. Open your blinds and curtains. Take a walk. If you see the sun peek out from the clouds, immediately take a break outside for a few moments.

  • Eat Right: The jury is still out on how to eat right for your serotonin levels. Your neurotransmitters are made from protein, so one would think that eating a lot of protein should help with serotonin. Carbohydrates also raise serotonin levels when eaten, which is part of the reason it feels so good to eat. Fats are also necessary to keep the brain functioning well. Science hasn’t issued a perfect percentage of protein, fats and carbohydrates for serotonin health, so we are left with common sense. Eating a wide variety of whole foods is going to help you A LOT more than eating highly processed foods, especially if you’re trying to raise your serotonin levels to lose weight.

  • Exercise: There have been several studies showing that exercise increases serotonin production. The studies have different ideas of the kinds of exercise. Some of them say that the intensity level needs to be high for a sustained amount of time to increase production. Others say that low-level exercise EVERY day helps. Until the medical community figures out what is best, it’s probably a good idea to exercise every day and get your heart rate up.

In the end, the news that my body shape isn’t entirely a result of the food I put in my mouth is both a blessing and a curse. It feels a little bit discouraging to know that no matter how little I eat, I might still be resistant to losing weight because of my serotonin levels. It also feels a little justifying. Whenever I notice how little I eat compared to thin people, I now know that it might be because their serotonin levels are different than mine. Additionally, I can do everything in my power to make sure I get enough sunshine and healthy food to make that chemical makeup in my body better. They say that knowledge is power and I choose to believe them. Knowing what’s going on is half the battle.

Via: Eating Habits Not Sole Cause of Thinness or Obesity – US News and World Report


One Response to “Obesity Is Not Only Caused By Overeating”

  1. Ellie Says:

    FDA testing is very expensive, so something such as 5-HTP that can’t be patented is unlikely to make it through the process. I’ve had pretty good luck managing depression using amino acids and 5-HTP. Of course, exercise is even more powerful. It really works for me!

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