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News

Tricking the Brain to lose weight

Duke University Pratt School Of Engineering : 07 January, 2007  (Technical Article)
Researchers recently found that injections of a digestive hormone helped people lose weight quickly with no side effects. A Duke expert says this early research holds promise, but most successful, long-term weight loss also needs to include behavioral changes.
Researchers recently found that injections of a digestive hormone helped people lose weight quickly with no side effects. A Duke expert says this early research holds promise, but most successful, long-term weight loss also needs to include behavioral changes.

The search for a ‘miracle cure’ for obesity intensified recently, when a team of British researchers announced they may have found a new hormone treatment that controls appetite by alerting the brain that the stomach is full. Martin Binks, a clinical psychologist and director of behavioral health at the Duke Diet and Fitness Center, says this biological approach to weight loss works by, in effect, tricking the brain at the source of satiety signals: the stomach. “This line of research leads to the hope that we might be able to manipulate the levels of hunger and fullness that are experienced by a person. So the brain would actually believe the person is less hungry.” Binks says pharmaceutical treatments alone seldom yield long-term success and work best when used as a multi-disciplinary strategy. “Typically, in the pharmaceutical trials, you will see an initial weight loss over a six-month period and then a plateau-ing or a re-gain. There are studies on various types of pharmaceuticals that show that in combination with effective multi-dimensional lifestyle change, including good nutrition, exercise and behavioral intervention, that effect can be improved.” I’m Cabell Smith for MedMinute.
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