Many factors play their roles in contributing to obesity, together with an unhealthy diet, chronic disorders, lifestyle issues, stress, insomnia, and more. Nevertheless, hormonal imbalance, especially in the case of leptin, is quite common and leads to an unhealthy weight control mechanism.
Leptin and Leptin Resistance
Leptin is a naturally-produced hormone in your body that tells your body whether it should store or burn fat. When the fat stored in your body increases, it increases the level of leptin flowing in your blood. So obviously, many individuals who suffer from obesity have an increased level of leptin in their bodies because of excess fat. If your body is working healthily as it should, the increased level of leptin will tell the body not to store fat.
On the other hand, when leptin levels stay high for a longer period, it can lead to leptin resistance in the body. Thus, your body weight will increase.
In the same way, when levels of leptin start reducing, the hypothalamus (a small region of the brain) starts thinking that the body needs more fat. This leads to the release of many hormones that obstruct the proper utilization of fat, increase fat storage levels, and increase appetite. Fat will continue to amass in your body and the leptin resistance will become worse.
What Causes Leptin Resistance?
Obesity is one of the leading causes of leptin resistance. Some studies suggest that many overweight people and those who suffer from obesity have some level of leptin resistance. Along with excess fat, other factors such as eating a lot of grains, processed foods, sugars, inflammatory foods, poor sleep, increased anxiety, overeating, too much workout, etc. increase the release of leptin from fat cells and can result in leptin resistance.
How to Fix Leptin Resistance?
There are many things that you can do to fix leptin resistance in your body, including:
- Lower your sugar intake– It would be better to very little sugar. You can avoid eating foods such as simple starches, processed foods, fructose, and other artificial sweeteners. Instead, add quality carbs and vegetables in your diet.
- Eat good protein– You should have enough protein in your diet. By consuming a lot of protein and healthy fats in the morning when you wake up, you can satiate your hunger and provide your body with the necessary fuel to make hormones.
- Get regular and proper sleep– Lack of proper sleep is never good for body and mind. So to fix your leptin resistance situation, get good and regular sleep for at least 6-8 hours every day. It will also help in managing stress in a better way.
- Spend some time in sunlight– You can go out for some walk during the day. By exposing your skin to the sun, you can feel improved results in your body.
- Avoid constant eating– When you are constantly eating, even if the stuff is in small amounts, it means your liver would be working almost non-stop. As a result, your hormones would also be performing their roles. Instead try to keep some space between every meal, maybe around 4 hours. Also, don’t go to bed immediately after eating. Give it at least 3-4 hours before sleeping.
- Avoid working out – Now, if your body is suffering from leptin resistance, it would be better if you don’t do any workout initially. It can put more strain on your body. First, allow your body to heal a bit and then you can add exercise to your routine.
- Change your exercise routine– Whenever you decide to add exercises to your routine, you can do weight lifting, walking, swimming, and other similar exercises, and do them in the evening instead of morning. However, don’t do cardio as it can stress out your body. Instead, by doing high-intensity workouts, your body can manage hormones in a better way without the added stress of cardio.
- Increase intake of omega-3 – You should add omega-3 food in your diet such as fish, chia seeds, etc. Also, reduce the intake of omega-6 foods in your daily diets such as vegetable oils, grains, conventional meats, grains, and more. It will ultimately help your body reduce the effects of inflammation and keep a healthy level of leptins in the body.