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Fibre Helps Curb Appetite

Naturally promoting weight loss

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Fibre Helps Curb Appetite

Appetite reflects a very complex system that has evolved to help humans deal with food shortages. As a result, it is extremely biased toward weight gain. The solution to combat the tendency to eat more than we require is to accentuate the normal physiological processes that curb the appetite.

Appetite reflects a very complex system that has evolved to help humans deal with food shortages. As a result, it is extremely biased toward weight gain. The solution to combat the tendency to eat more than we require is to accentuate the normal physiological processes that curb the appetite.

Where do Appetite Signals Come From?

Most of the stronger triggers of appetite originate from hormones secreted by fat cells and from the gastrointestinal tract. For example, there is a growing list of gut-derived hormones and peptides such as neuropeptide PYY, ghrelin, and cholecystokinin that play a role in appetite control. There is also promising research on manipulating the levels of these compounds and the effect of doing so on weight loss. For example, in September 2003 the New England Journal of Medicine reported that peptide YY 3-36 (PYY) dramatically reduced appetite in both obese and normal weight individuals. Unlike PYY, the stomach-derived hormone ghrelin increases appetite. Ghrelinlevels are highest when the stomach is empty and during calorie restriction. Obese individuals tend to have elevated ghrelin levels, and when they try to lose weight ghrelin levels increase.

Fibre Diminishes Appetite Signals

The evaluation of viscous soluble fibres as a way to help curb obesity, diabetes, and heart disease has been spearheaded by scientific research at the University of Toronto, led by Dr. Vladimir Vuksan. The researchers have discovered that by combining various soluble fibres in specific ratios, the viscosity of the fibre is amplified greatly. Clinical studies conducted by Dr. Vuksan and his colleagues have repeatedly shown that the physiological benefits produced by soluble fibres, including promotion of weight loss, diminished appetite, and improved insulin sensitivity, are related to the viscosity of the dietary fibre.

A viscous soluble fibre blend was shown to produce significant weight-loss-promoting effects in a small clinical trial conducted at the Canadian Center of Functional Medicine under the direction of Dr. Michael Lyon. Weight loss was experienced in all 14 test subjects, and all participants reported a drop in appetite. The actual weight loss varied from subject to subject, from a few kilograms to more than 10 kg within the three-month study.

Based on these recent findings, a larger, longer-term clinical study has been initiated at the University of Toronto to further evaluate the effects of this viscous soluble fibre on appetite and weight loss. Researchers will investigate whether the fibre blend may also help reduce compounds that stimulate appetite, while increasing the levels of regulatory compounds that block the appetite.

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