Your Hunger Hormones Guide

When leptin and ghrelin are out of whack, it could cause you to overeat and affect your metabolism.

Your Hunger Hormones Guide

You’ve probably experienced a day or two when you felt like nothing would satisfy your hunger and you never truly felt “full.” While you may have wondered what was going on with your body, it could have been that your body’s hunger hormones—leptin and ghrelin—weren’t functioning optimally.

Leptin is produced by your fat cells and is responsible for keeping your food intake at normal levels. This hormone will keep you from overeating and experiencing that bloated, uncomfortable feeling after a meal. Leptin tells your brain, “I’ve had enough.” This hunger hormone aids in keeping you at a normal body weight while also helping you increase the rate at which you burn calories during workouts and rest.

How Do These Hormones Impact Eating?

Overweight people can be “leptin resistant.” This means that the signal to the brain that tells us, “I’m full” gets disrupted so they don’t realize it’s time to stop eating. They continue to overindulge and experience a decrease in energy levels resulting in weight gain.  

Ghrelin is the exact opposite of leptin. Ghrelin is an appetite-inducing hormone released by the lining of the stomach. There have been studies done that say suppressing this hormone may help stimulate weight loss and increase energy output.