Monday, March 12, 2012

Increasing pleasure to reduce weight

Apparently it is a myth that overeaters obtain more pleasure from eating than non over eaters. Does that second piece of pie taste better than the first?  How about the third piece?  Does it taste better?

Recent research has found the opposite to be true. Food is a drug to overeaters that one develops tolerance for.  More and more food is needed to obtain the same amount of pleasure. Neurochemical pathways are involved particularly the dopamine ones. Recently a drug has been developed that increases the pleasure derived from eating by activating the dopamergic neurons. It is not a wonder drug as patients only lost 11% of their body weight. What is not mentioned in the WSJ article are the possible side effects.
In my former life as a medicinal chemist, I spent much of my time on various antipsychotic projects in most cases trying to decrease dopamergic activity. It is true that weight gain is a very common side effect    of antipsychotics. Will the converse be true? You'll be skinnier but crazy?

I seem to like food too much. I noticed this as a child  when I was going trick or treating. My friends did not seem all that thrilled about all the free candy and were content to collect it at a too leisurely pace for me. Time was candy! My children thankfully were similarly disinterested. After being a too chubby kid, I carefully controlled my eating (most of the time) as a teenager. As an adult, training for marathons and triathlons kept me at a normal weight. All hell broke loose when I was pregnant though. Various medical challenges (hello steroids in my chemo) in the past 5 years have made exercising difficult Though I run for a total  of 5 hours a week, I am still fat, firm fat, but fat. Like my yums way too much! But am I willing to alter my brain chemistry? No.

Baby Girl is still chillax' in utero.  We took the boys to the 'new'zoo(new to them) yesterday. Best exhibit: the gibbon family with a cute 7 month baby exploring his brachiating skills.

1 comment:

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