Not too long ago, research studies revealed some rather convincing evidence confirming the harmful effects of sugar. As it turned out, one of the sweet culprits was fructose—the sugar found in fruit. Well, unfortunately, fructose has now been linked to a pre-obesity disease known as Leptin Resistance. And what is worse is that this condition can develop without any symptoms, but there is still a lot you can do to protect yourself.
Don’t stop eating fruit!Researchers say that many of today’s foods are unhealthy because they contain large amounts of sugar and high-fructose corn syrup. And since fructose makes up 50% of sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, it has been implicated; but, that is not entirely fair. In reality, it is the consumption of fructose along with an unhealthy diet that can make you leptin resistant. Although fructose is the sugar found in fruit, eating fruit will not give you leptin resistance. As a matter of fact, replacing certain unhealthy foods in your diet with fruit will most likely help reduce your chances of developing leptin resistance.
What is this “resistance” business?Resistance is another way of saying unresponsive. When it comes to the human body, especially with hormones such as leptin, the brain and its systems must be able to recognize and respond to certain signals in order to function properly. Consequently, when your brain or body becomes resistant to a signal, your overall health and balance is compromised.
Insulin Resistance vs. Leptin ResistanceYou may be more familiar with the term “insulin resistance” and its connection to Type II diabetes. However, insulin also helps to determine how your body stores and burns fat. This is why insulin resistance easily causes obesity or consistent problems with weight loss. Additionally, a hormone produced by fat cells called leptin works with insulin to maintain the speed of your metabolism—how fast or slow you burn fat for energy. Leptin specialises in telling your brain when you are hungry or full. So, with leptin resistance, the brain cannot figure out when you should stop eating, and again, obesity develops.
Leptin Resistance is reversibleFortunately, like many other health conditions, leptin resistance can be reduced or eliminated by making simple adjustments in your diet and lifestyle. These include:
- Exercising—exercising speeds up your metabolism and helps you maintain your weight
- Eating whole foods—limit your consumption of processed foods which are loaded with sugar
- Avoiding excess sugar and fructose—read the label because sugar is almost everywhere
- Seeking out good fats—saturated fats, like omega-3 from krill oil, are necessary for good health
- Managing stress—often overlooked as a cause of obesity, there is nothing healthy about stress