Learning about Leptin

Take a toddler with a room stuffed with toys. She shows no interest in a toy until another toddler picks it up and plays with it. This is how I am with books. I didn’t get very far with Mastering Leptinwhen my friend gave it to me. I listed it on Trade Books for Free - PaperBack Swap. and the minute someone wanted it I had an overwhelming need to read it. I’m glad I did. The book has the feel of a self-published book—especially in layout and graphics—a hurdle to overcome when you care about such things.

Just what is leptin? First discovered in 1994,

Leptin is the hormone secreted by fat cells contained in white adipose tissue. It is the most significant hormone there is in understanding the function of the human body. p.4

Most overweight and fatigued people suffer from leptin resistance, a condition where the brain doesn’t receive the signal leptin sends to reduce the appetite. So this person feels hungry, particularly after dinner. Compulsive sweet cravings indicate leptin resistance.

DSC_2017Hormone management is complex because you can’t balance one in isolation from the others. With leptin resistance the brain can’t tell the pancreas to stop making insulin. Insulin stimulates leptin production. When a person is leptin resistant, he is probably insulin resistant and adrenaline resistant — when the fat cells can’t receive the signal to stimulate metabolism. Enter fatigue.

Expensive tests are not needed to prove there is a problem [of leptin resistance]. A person just has to look in the mirror and then take note of their level of energy. p.47

This book was never destined to be a best seller because there are no quick fixes, no pills that magically correct the metabolism. It comes back to those three ubiquitous words: diet and exercise.

Five Rules of Eating (The Leptin Diet)

1. Never eat after dinner.

2. Eat three meals a day.
3. Do not eat large meals.

4. Eat a high protein breakfast

5. Reduce the amount of carbohydrates.

Common sense, right? The most controversial is no snacking, making meals five to six hours apart. Richards maintains that frequent eating clogs the liver’s fuel system, that not eating between meals is good exercise for the liver. He likens frequent snacking to a repetitive strain injury to the pancreas.

Consistent exercise is the most important action I can take to correct leptin resistance.

Six Important Reasons to Exercise

1. Improve natural rhythm and pattern of fuel utilization.

2. Increase the parasympathetic tone of the nervous system.

3. Keep leptin food cravings and out-of-control behavior in check.

4. Enhance strength to stabilize leptin and insulin.

5. Improve muscle use of fatty acids so weight loss is easier.

6. Ensure adequate body heat, an important foundation for body rhythms and patterns.

Richards recommends a few supplements: Omega 3 oils, GLA, CLA, pantethine, and calcium. I’m not a big fan of supplements. I prefer to eat real food that contains what I need.

I plan to follow the five rules for at least six months and see what’s what. If you are interested in more information check out Wellness Resources.

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2 thoughts on “Learning about Leptin

  1. Does he say anything about when’s the best time to exercise? I’ve heard conflicting things about whether you should exercise first thing in the morning before breakfast (the idea is to convince your body that it can burn fat when you’re active too, not just when you’re sleeping), or that it’s best to eat first and wait an hour or so (so you’ve got plenty of fuel, obviously).

Comments are cinnamon on my oatmeal!

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