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Leptin, Why It’s The Most Important Hormone

8/17 14:35:00

Leptin, Why It’s the Most Important Hormone

A common problem with people who diet for fat loss, is hitting that level where it seems that no matter what they do, the body will not allow them to lose those ‘stubborn pounds.’ This is known as the ‘set point.’

The important hormone Leptin, plays a large part in this process. Leptin is a powerful appetite suppressant that sends feedback to the brain about levels of body fat and helps regulates your metabolism rate. In short, it tells you when you are full and controls your appetite.

When you diet, leptin levels drop (by as much as 50% in the first week) sending a signal to the brain that you are hungry and not consuming enough calories, which in turn slows your metabolism. This results in your body burning less body fat and an increase in appetite, which is detrimental to your weight loss plans!

In fact, overweight people tend to have higher levels of leptin (which carry obesity and cardiovascular health risks). Higher levels of leptin suppress the appetite, while falling levels stimulate it. As you lose bodyweight, typically leptin levels fall.

But there are ways in which you can follow your healthy lifestyle plans and control your leptin levels.

Regular exercise, as a commitment to long term lifestyle change, is the most important factor to help improve your metabolism. Keeping active has a number of health benefits.

Exercise has been shown to increase sensitivity of leptin levels, which is important in regulating our natural energy. Experts believe that interval training in particular has a strong impact on leptin levels. A moderate workout with short bursts of high intensity exercise, such as cross training, has positive, long-term effects on the likes of leptin and insulin hormones.

Daily exercise will help you ‘listen’ to your leptin signals. It has been proven that fat-burning exercises, specifically, aerobic exercise for long intervals at medium to high intensity, such as using kettlebells or X-training, helps control leptin levels.

As well as aiding fat loss, exercising daily can also help you manage stress levels which keep your hormones in check. So whether it is in a gym or outdoor fitness, just a session a day or a few times a week, can aid your healthy eating plans and help you move past the ‘set point’ mentioned earlier.

In addition to exercise, a diet that is low in sugars and getting sufficient sleep also help you to avoid that dreaded ‘brick wall’ when following your weight loss regime.

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