NOV 15, 2017 7:40 AM PST

What Losing Weight Does to the Brain


Losing weight can be an ongoing struggle for some people. While maintaining overall health means staying at the best weight possible, it's not easy. In its purest form, losing weight is just about eating less and moving more. By decreasing the number of calories consumed and increasing the number of calories burned seems essential enough, after about the first week of a diet the brain has figured out what's going. In the body, fat cells release a hormone called leptin. This hormone is a signal to the brain that you are full and should stop eating.

When a person loses weight, there will be less fat cells, which means less of the hormone leptin. In brain scans of dieters who had lost 10% of their body weight, there was increased activity in the part of the brain that controls appetite. Lower levels of leptin mean feeling hungrier. The brain knows it needs that leptin and will signal a desire to go for high-fat foods like ice cream or pizza. Hanging in there, however, can be worth it not just for weight loss, but for brain wiring. In a study of patients who had lost weight and kept it off for almost a year, the activity in the reward region of the brain that processes cravings had gone down, and activity in the areas that rule impulse control had gone up. So stick with it and not only will your body look better, your brain will work more efficiently too.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
JUL 14, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Thermoluminescence Dating: How Heating Ancient Pots Can Help Determining Their Age
JUL 14, 2020
Thermoluminescence Dating: How Heating Ancient Pots Can Help Determining Their Age
Radiometric dating is an effective method for determining the age of the material, whether a mineral or a piece of organ ...
JUL 16, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Turbulence: A Treat for Both Eyes and Minds
JUL 16, 2020
Turbulence: A Treat for Both Eyes and Minds
What do the air inside your lung, the tap water in pipes, the Great Red Spot of Jupiter, and the hurricane over the Atla ...
AUG 22, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Are There More Rogue Planets than Stars?
AUG 22, 2020
Are There More Rogue Planets than Stars?
Researchers from Ohio State University have theorized that there may be more rogue planets (planets that don't orbit ...
AUG 24, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Asteroid May Collide With Earth in November
AUG 24, 2020
Asteroid May Collide With Earth in November
NASA has said that an asteroid known as 2018VP1 is heading towards Earth, and may potentially collide with our planet on ...
OCT 01, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Four Lakes Detected Under Martian Surface
OCT 01, 2020
Four Lakes Detected Under Martian Surface
  Researchers from Roma Tre University in Italy have confirmed the existence of four large lakes under the ice at M ...
OCT 09, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Ultra-hot Exoplanet Vaporizes Iron in its Atmosphere
OCT 09, 2020
Ultra-hot Exoplanet Vaporizes Iron in its Atmosphere
Researchers from the University of Bern in Germany have found that an exoplanet, known as WASP-121b, is so hot that it c ...
Loading Comments...