Thursday, November 27, 2008

Not All Fat is Bad

When people say fat, they usually start thinking of oily, greasy foods. But not all fat is bad for the body. True that it may not be the safest of food choices, but foods rich in unsaturated fat like avocados, olive oil, and nuts have been found to play and important part in sending a vital message to your brain – “you're full, stop eating.”

A recent study suggests that the above-mentioned healthy oils trigger the production chemical compounds in the small intestine that helps curb hunger pang. According to researchers, this new discovery could well point the way towards new approaches in treating obesity as well as other eating disorders.

Daniele Piomelli, chairperson in Neurosciences for Louise Turner Arnold, and his colleagues observed how oleoylethanolamide (OEA) controls hunger and body weight. In the same study, the group found out that an unsaturated fatty acid called oleic acid triggers OEA production that helps decrease appetite.

Oleic acid is converted into OE by cells in the upper portion of the small intestines. OEA then stimulates nerve endings specifically designed to send hunger-curbing messages to the brain. From there, it triggers a brain circuit that creates a feeling of fullness. Aside from these findings, previous studies have also shown that increasing OEA levels can reduce appetite, aid in weight loss, and lower blood cholesterol levels and triglyceride levels.

Piomelli is hopeful that OEA could soon be used in a variety of medications because it will serve as a key to unlocking how the body naturally processes fatty foods and how it regulates eating and body weight.

The study group excitedly explains that OEA activates cell receptors that have already been the subject of a lot of successful drug development. According to Piomelli, this new discovery is enough to spark hope for a new class of anti-obesity medications which will be based on the use of natural substances and mechanisms to control our appetite.

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a big chunk of the United States, 30 percent to be more accurate, is obese. And if you look through the steady climb of the country's obesity rate, you'll find that the occurrence of obesity has increased by roughly 60 percent since 1991. It continues to greatly increase the risks of premature deaths, diabetes, heart ailments, stroke, and certain types of cancer. This new information will be quite helpful for obese individuals who wish to turn over a new leaf and start losing weight.

Resource Box : The writer, Abbey Grace Yap, is an active advocate for health consciousness and disease awareness. She possesses a deep passion in discovering new health-related information and sharing it to her readers.

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