Our body is made up of various hormones that are responsible for how we look, interact with people, digest food, how we feel throughout the day, and much more. Scientists study each hormone individually to see what its main job is and how to properly treat it, if it were to not function properly. While each hormone does serve its own purpose, some however, work together to produce a common effect.
A common hormone we all have heard about in some point in time, is cortisol. This hormone is produced when our body undergoes stress, this hormone counteracts it and tries to lower it. When stress becomes too overwhelming and immense levels of cortisol are being used, this can effect our body’s health and cause many problems. Other hormones like Leptin, feeling full and not hungry, are effected from stress as well.
The main reason doctors recommend less stress to patients who are trying to lose weight, is because the more stress you undergo, the more damage you do to your body. Stress effects many hormones that regulate weight and satiety, along with where fat is stored in the body. Granted, most fat storage for the body is genetic, too much or too little of a hormone can also displace fat in other areas. Here are my top hormones that cause weight gain, and where they cause fat storage within the body.
The first hormone is Leptin. This hormone helps with feeling full and satiated after a meal. That’s why its recommended to eat slower to feel fuller, because it takes a little time for the hormone to work, also why you may feel full 20 minutes after eating instead of right when you finish your meal. So it is common sense that when these levels are too low, your body will become ravenous, causing you to eat more and more. This could potentially cause you to overeat abundantly and gain weight all over, some to a point of obesity.
The next hormone is testosterone and human growth hormone, since they seem to cause similar problems when levels are low. Now this can also be useful for women too. Now testosterone is the hormone responsible for many male qualities ; deep voice, hairy, aggression, etc but mostly useful in this article for helping build muscle. When these levels are low, they can cause sagging of muscle in the chest and give the effect of having man boobs. Although prolactin which enlarges glands in the nipple area, producing milk, also can cause gyno in men if levels are very high (normally from steroid use). And human growth hormone is responsible for overall growth in the body, and muscle protein synthesis. When levels of this hormone are low, they can cause fat deposits in the back of the arms, causing them to look saggy, as well as the legs.
The next hormone is estrogen. Now this is the biggest reason fat is stored in the lower body, causing the “pear shaped figure” most women suffer from. The reason for this is that estrogen causes the increase of alpha adrenergic receptors in the lower body,slowing down the release of fat. Estrogen causes the body to become insulin resistant over as well.
The next one is insulin. This hormone is secreted by the pancreas to help absorb the sugar (glucose) from the bloodstream and deliver it to the cells for energy. If levels of this are too low, or you overeat , the body will try to take the glucose and store it is as fat. When overeating, this can cause resistance to insulin. Meaning, if youre cells already have glucose in them, and you keep eating, the insulin will try to take the glucose and give it tovthe cells, the cells will have too much glucose, causing the body to just store the glucose as fat for energy to be used later.
The last hormone, not many realize, is the thyroid hormones. These hormones are responsible for basic metabolism within the body. When these hormones are not functioning properly, they can cause the daily amount of calories needed to sustain weight to lower. Meaning, your body will require less food to maintain its current bodyweight. And if diet is not fixed, this will cause weight gain at a slow or fast pace depending on the severity and overall calories consumed. This causes fat deposits everywhere within the body, however belly and face seem to be the most common.
All the hormones that effect the body, should be checked yearly to make sure your body is at its fullest potential and healthiest. However, just because your hormones may be at perfect levels and ratios, does not mean to be lazy, disregard diet and just try to be less stressed out. Mainly, a smart well rounded diet and calorie/macro consumption will be where a majority of your weight is maintained/gained/lost. It is in the final stages of trying to get rid of stubborn body fat, that hormones should be taken into full consideration.