What’s Leptin? Leptin a hormone produced by your body fat that is used by the brain to regulate hunger, the metabolism, and stress hormones.
The amount of leptin in the body is determined by how much body fat you have. More body fat equals more leptin.
When you are leptin sensitive, where the brain ‘sees’ the leptin, this process works correctly.
When there is excess fat on the body, the brain will raise the metabolism and lower hunger to reduce the amount of stored energy to the ‘normal’ level.
It’s the feedback loop your body uses to tell you that there is enough stored energy and that you don’t need to keep eating.
Unless of course you’re leptin resistant.
Leptin resistance is when there is a large amount of fat and subsequently a high amount of leptin in the body for a long time like in my case, the brain doesn’t ‘see’ the leptin so it doesn’t raise the metabolism and reduce hunger like it should.
Well that’s a bummer isn’t it?
When the brain is leptin resistant, it thinks that you’re starving and lowers the metabolism and raises your hunger even though there is a lot of stored energy to make use of.
What’s even worse, is that because the brain thinks that you’re starving, it raises the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline so that you are able to try to find food as fast as possible. Not good.
So we can say that leptin resistance = starvation mode.
The only other way that your body will go into starvation mode besides leptin resistance, is when the leptin levels in the body actually are extremely low and that only happens when body fat is extremely low; like when you’re actually starving.
So, if we have broken feedback loop from the amount of fat we have on our bodies that tells our brain that we’re in starvation mode, and the brain in response lowers our metabolism, cranks up our stress and hunger hormones, we don’t stand a chance in the toe to toe fight against food. This explains a lot.
The only thing that will fix the feed back loop is to reduce the amount of fat which reduces the leptin. What a conundrum.
They very thing that causes us to stay fat, is the fat itself. How poetic.
There’s some good news at least.
We know that fasting works really well at burning fat because it doesn’t tank the metabolism. We actually don’t know why this is at the moment, but it is being studied so that we have a greater understanding in the future.
When you start fasting, the metabolism usually goes up a small amount and then normalizes. After about 48 hours insulin and glycogen stores will be low and energy from the fat cells will start to be used a much higher rate.
If you can hold out another 24 hours you’ll get in a decent amount of fat burning before not eating drives you crazy. (See the additional notes about fasting)
This 72 hour fasting cycle (or how ever long works for you) can be repeated until the body can regulate the fat levels on it own again.
Additional Notes about fasting
Getting over the habit of eating at the same time every day and possibly the sugar addiction and flu like symptoms that come with initially starting fasting can be a lot to deal with all at once.
I didn’t do anything for an entire week except hangout at home because of this. The first 3 days were pretty rough, but after that, wow. I felt really good.
At the end of the fast I was being consumed by my food thoughts and I don’t think I could have gone much longer. It takes a lot of mental toughness to beat the cravings.
I think it’s time for another round of fasting.
No weight changes to report yesterday.
At The Gym
This was an excellent start to the week. After a quick warm up and stretch, here’s what we did for chest and back today.
- Single Arm Row (machine), 3 x 15, 45 lbs.
- Single Arm Cable Lat Pull Down, 3 x 15, 35 lbs.
- Super Set 3 x 12
- Inclined Single Arm Dumbbell Press, 30 lbs – 35 lbs – 40 lbs.
- Inclined Dumbbell Flyes, 15 lbs.
- Seated Single Arm Chest Flyes (machine), 3 x 15, 25 lbs.
- Standing Cable Chest Press, 50 reps to failure, 35 lbs each cable.
The Next Meal
I’ve been eating a 3-egg omelette some some cheese and bacon along with a coffee or two each morning and then meat and veggies in the late afternoon to carry me through.
For I tried reintroducing steel cut oats yesterday. I got a good amount of energy from it, but today I’m sadly left with the headache and the digestive stress that it normally brings. So grains is still a nope. Ahh well.
Steak, bacon, eggs, asparagus, and an acorn squash is what’s on deck for the next few meals.
Thanks for reading (or listening) and have a great day!
P.S. If you enjoy reading my content you can subscribe to the email list to get notified every time I publish new stuff on the blog.
Check out some of the awesome books below to dive deep into the science of what causes obesity, and how a fasting regimen and a proper diet can help.*
I am not a medical professional and I don’t claim to be. Any health-related things that I write or talk about in my blogs, emails or how ever else you get the information from me should NOT be taken as medical advice. Make sure you check with your health-care provider that whatever it is that you want to do, is safe for you. Any health-related information is intended for entertainment purposes only. Use at your own risk.