Weight Loss, Dieting & Obesity
© Copyright 2004 - 2011 , Trevor Johnson.
Genetics & Hormones Related to Obesity, Weight Gain and Weight Loss - Part One.
You've seen it with your own eyes. Maybe you've even experienced it. It is not at all unusual to see people's body shape change dramatically during times of hormonal change - usually with weight gains.
Puberty is one such time affecting males and females. Body shapes change, and for some it is the beginning of a lifetime of genetic weight disorders. For some it may be anorexia, for others it may be unweildy hormone dictated weight gain.
Menopause weight gain is another issue for females. The "middle aged spread" is not at all unusual at this time of hormonal change.
"Middle age spread" is not confined to females, either. Although far more controversial a topic and not universally accepted as fact, a so-called male menopause known as Andropause is believed by some experts to be another time of hormonal change that often results in weight gain in mid life for men. In andropause, the natural, gradual age related reduction in male hormones sometimes accelerates. A man experiences this sudden decline in male hormones and weight gain sadly happens.
Many women even report significant monthly weight fluctuations related to their menstrual cycles.
Clearly and undoubtedly, genetics tells at least a part of the causes of obesity. Genes create hormones and as we have seen in the examples above, hormonal influences in the human body are integrally related to body weight. Hormones and obesity, hormones and weight gain, are inextricably connected.
That said, that is about all that can be said with any degree of accuracy at this point of knowedge in the scientific community. Much research is being done into the role of hormones in weight gain and obesity along with genetic predisposition to obesity and we are sure to all learn much more over the next few years.
A number of hormones have already been identified as being in some way related to body weight. Given, though, that scientists are discovering 'new' hormones in the human body quite regularly, there is clearly alot more to learn yet.
For instance, what conclusions can be reached by the fact that obesity in men is closely correlated with low testosterone levels? Do the low testosterone levels cause the obesity or weight gain, or does the excess weight result in reduced testosterone levels? The old adages about "cart before the horse" and "cat chasing it's own tail" spring readily to mind.
What we can say is that some, but unlikely to be all, of the hormones related to body weight have been identified, and some are understood while others are merely observed and in need of ongoing research.
In Part Two of this article, we'll look at some of the natural human hormones known to be related to weight gain / loss and obesity issues.
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