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Curcumin Found in Turmeric May Help Fight Leptin Resistance

Curcumin and Leptin Resistance

Curcumin is best known as the primary active ingredient in turmeric root (though there are also a few other sources of curcumin). In fact, most of the much-touted health benefits of turmeric root, or Curcuma longa as it is known in scientific circles, have been attributed to the presence of curcumin in turmeric. And now research suggests we might soon be able to add yet another item to the already long list of turmeric's health benefits: improved leptin sensitivity. But before we explore this in detail, let's take a step back and go over some background first:

What is Leptin?

Secreted by your body's fat cells, leptin is an important hormone that plays a key role in regulating the amount of energy your body stores as fat. If your leptin signaling is working properly, an increase in food intake causes leptin to tell the hypothalamus in your brain that there is plenty of energy available and that you can stop feeling hungry and your body can stop storing fat.

However if your body is exposed to too much leptin over time, you may become leptin resistant. In people with leptin resistance, leptin levels are high, but the hormone cannot reach the hypothalamus. As a result, your brain thinks your leptin levels are too low and that you may be starving. It therefore begins to send signals to the body to increase food intake and store fat, which in turn leads to weight gain. In addition to being linked with obesity, leptin resistance appears to be associated with conditions like metabolic syndrome, psoriasis, infertility, insulin resistance and cardiovascular disease.

To reverse leptin resistance, experts like Dr. Leo Galland believe that you have to improve leptin sensitivity through diet and lifestyle changes so that your brain can once again hear the signals leptin is sending. In his famous book The Fat Resistance Diet: Unlock the Secret of the Hormone Leptin, Dr. Galland describes his breakthrough program designed to make leptin work properly and help people lose weight. If you are familiar with the book, you may already know that Dr. Galland lists turmeric as one of the top 40 superfoods that can help heal inflammation and restore your sensitivity to leptin. Below, we take a look at some studies that seem to support the reputation of turmeric as a leptin resistance fighting superfood.

Curcumin – A Boon for People with Leptin Resistance?

In an intriguing study published in the journal Hepatology, administration of curcumin was found to significantly improve both insulin sensitivity and leptin sensitivity in fructose-fed rats. In another study, published in the Chinese Journal of Preventive Medicine, similar effects were observed in rats that had been fed a high-fat diet.

In yet another study, published in the European Journal of Nutrition, a team of researchers led by Adeeb Shehzad from Kyungpook National University in Korea investigated the role of curcumin in obesity and metabolic diseases. They found that curcumin downregulates leptin and upregulates adiponectin, a beneficial protein hormone that modulates a number of metabolic processes including glucose regulation and fatty acid oxidation. Based on these and other findings, the researchers concluded that curcumin might hold promise as a treatment for obesity-related chronic diseases.

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Book You May Like
Fat Resistance Book The Fat Resistance Diet: Unlock the Secret of the Hormone Leptin. In this nearly 400-page volume, Leo Galland, M.D., teaches you how you can make the hormone leptin work to your advantage. Specifically designed to fight leptin resistance, Galland's eating plan draws on the power of anti-inflammatory and hormone-balancing foods, which you can easily incorporate into your diet with the help of the over 100 delicious recipes included in this compelling book. To learn more, or order a copy, head to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.ca.