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Profe Claudio Nieto: The Hypothalamus and Its Relationship with Fat

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  • Profe Claudio Nieto talks about the hypothalamus and its relationship with body fat.
  • Losing weight is sometimes a priority, but what role does this region play in it?
  • This is important to have more tools to achieve a healthier weight.

Losing weight, fat, meals, etc. All of this seems to be of interest to many people, but there’s another factor to consider that isn’t very popular when it comes to weight loss… the hypothalamus.

What is the hypothalamus? The hypothalamus is a small region of the brain that measures just four cubic centimeters and weighs between 5 and 8 grams.

Despite its size, it plays a crucial role in regulating your body fat percentage and other vital aspects of your body.

Its primary function is to maintain certain values within healthy ranges, known as homeostasis.

Examples of Homeostasis

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The pH of the blood should be kept between 7.35 and 7.45 to avoid health problems. The brain part steps in to balance the pH if it becomes too sour or bitter.

Body temperature stays around 36-37 degrees Celsius. The brain part controls the temperature, making us sweat or shake to stay in that range.

How does the brain part affect fat loss? The brain part also controls body fat amount, but unlike temperature or pH, this number isn’t fixed.

The brain part changes your «set point» for body fat based on where you live and what you do. If you try to lose fat fast with a strict diet, the brain part acts in different ways:

Functions of the Hypothalamus

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Makes more of the hunger hormone, making you want to eat more and not good food.

Makes you feel hungry even after eating because of the fullness hormone.

Lowers how much energy you’re burning and makes you not want to move.

The Rebound Effect: When you try to lose weight quickly, your hypothalamus panics and works to restore your old body fat set point.

The rebound effect

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This is called the «rebound effect.» You might lose weight temporarily, but your hypothalamus will do everything possible to get you back to your old weight, even if it means regaining the lost weight and then some.

The Solution: The best way to not bounce back is to make lasting changes in your life and not just go on super strict diets.

Your hypothalamus needs time to adapt to a new body fat set point, and this is achieved through gradual and sustainable changes in nutrition, sleep, exercise, and other aspects of your lifestyle.

Understanding how it works and how it responds to extreme diets is essential for effective and sustainable weight loss. Profe Claudio signs off and hopes this helps you with your health. Until next time!

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