Gut Check: Making simple sense out of life
By Lenore Skomal Erie Times-News staff blogger
Lenore Skomal is an award-winning author and veteran journalist in all forms of media. She is a weekly columnist and daily blogger for the Erie Times-News. She’s authored 17 published books, including an anthology of her columns, Burnt Toast available on her website www.lenoreskomal.net.   Read more about this blog.
Posted: May 20th, 2013
Changes in the brain cause obesity

According to research released in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Brown University and Lifespan “researchers show that in the brain cells of rats, obesity impedes the production of a hormone that curbs appetite and inspires calorie burning. The root cause appears to be a breakdown in the protein-processing mechanism of the cells.”

If the research proves to be true for humans, it would mean that the obese would suffer from a vicious cycle, prompted by the change in their brain chemistry, that undermined their ability to suppress appetite and to increase calorie burning. In other words, the very condition of being overweight keeps one overweight, which might add credence to the statements that many obese people make that they can’t lose weight.

Researchers said that the change in brain chemistry could be battled with drugs, but they are not readily applicable as medicines for treating obesity in humans.

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