Over recent years the hormone leptin has been under the spotlight.
The role it plays in regulating appetite and fat metabolism may be a key in managing weight.
Byron Richards addresses leptin imbalances in his book Mastering Leptin.
Diet Blog reader Dr R. Smith was able to provide me with a brief rundown of the diet (which he currently follows).
The 5 Basic Rules of the Leptin Diet
- Never eat after dinner
Never go to bed on a full stomach – leaving a gap of 11-12 hours between dinner and breakfast. This apparently allows enough time for optimum fat burning.
- Eat 3 meals per day
In stark contrast to those programs that advocate eating 5-6 times a day, the leptin diet calls for a gap of 5 hours between eating. During the first 3 hours after a meal, the hormone insulin will be storing the energy from food – and our bodies are not fat-burning mode.
- Do not eat large meals
Regular large meals leads to leptin and insulin resistance.
- Eat a high-protein breakfast
This supports blood sugar levels throughout the day. Late afternoon energy crashes are often due to eating a breakfast high in carbohydrates and little protein. A high carbohydrate breakfast, combined with leptin resistance can lead to overeating.
- Reduce the amount and glycemic index of carbohydrates consumed
This is not implying cutting out all carbs, but reducing, in particular starchy carbs. Top check whether too many carbs were eaten weigh yourself in the morning and at bedtime. If bedtime weight is more than 2 pounds over morning weight (and other rules) followed, then too many carbs were consumed.
I certainly concur with rule 4. This has been a key for me – particularly in managing hypoglycemic symptoms. However, when it comes to any diet I strongly advocate learning as much possible before applying any major changes into your lifestyle.
In many respects leptin research is still in it’s infancy – however the Rosedale diet is also based around the concept of correcting leptin imbalances (and uses similar concepts to Mastering Leptin).
In normal weight people, leptin tells them when to “stop eating”. As people gain more fat, their body may stop listening to the leptin signal, and even more leptin is produced, and an imbalance is created.
A diet rich in fish may also help to lower leptin levels (see study).