When the guest post below popped into my inbox a couple of days ago I whooped with joy! For this is the theory that I relate most to in terms of obesity and as such have been doing a great deal of reading and research about. It has involved reading the latest book by David Ludwig ‘Always Hungry’ which is most persuasive with the argument about body weight set points and how they can be responsible for weight gain. I shall be reviewing the book next week and looking at the 3 stage plan that Ludwig recommends for dealing with obesity and changing this set point – a ‘reset’ if you like. The research below indicates that WLS can push this ‘rest’ button and that it operates beyond the ‘restriction and malabsorption’ effects we know about. Interesting and something I shall be following closely. In between time take a look here for the latest thoughts …
Looking for the Obesity Reset Button
The notion of a set point for body weight is a simple way of understanding what goes awry in obesity. Metabolic changes set in motion by weight gain establishes a new set point for fat storage and body weight that the body systematically defends. New evidence just published in Obesity describes how bariatric surgery might have the effect of pushing the obesity reset button and restoring a healthy metabolic set point.
Zheng Hao and colleagues from the Pennington Biomedical Research Center studied mice with varying degrees of obesity and given Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery (RYGB). They found that the surgery led to changes in weight regulation, unrelated to restricted food intake. They concluded:
The results provide additional evidence for reprogramming of a new defended body weight as an important principle by which RYGB lastingly suppresses body weight. RYGB appears to selectively abolish defense of a higher fat mass level, while remaining sensitive to the defense of lean mass.
For some time, popular culture — even popular medical thought — has regarded bariatric surgery as some sort of drastic “last resort” akin to wiring one’s mouth shut for a liquid diet. Knowledgeable clinicians, researchers, and patients have known this thinking is wrong. More fundamental changes are at work, correcting the metabolic defects caused by obesity.
In a companion editorial, Henriette Frikke-Schmidt and Randy Seeley comment:
Let’s hope this important work from Berthoud and colleagues can help us retire the words “restriction” and “malabsorption” from our descriptions of how bariatric surgeries wield their impressive effects.
Yes, we should.
Click here for the study
Feature courtesy of http://conscienhealth.org