People suffering from obesity may have reason to celebrate if recent research conducted on laboratory mice proves successful. According to the Washington Post, scientists have discovered a genetic switch that can cause the mice to become obese when stressed out and fed what passes for a rodent junk food diet.
This may be good news for the makers of Cortisol, who have been selling their expensive flat blocker pill on television for several years, but at least until very recently there was no science behind their claims, according to Dr. Dean Adell, nationally syndicated radio talk show host. While the research can produce a drug which does do the same thing that cortisol claims to do, it works on the way new fat cells are deposited and accumulated within the body.
Cortisol claims to block a hormone in the human body, but scientists have found a way to deactivate the gene in laboratory animals. Rob Stein, of the Washington posts, speculates that the study may show why obesity is common in Western countries.
“There is a lot of uncontrollable stress right now in our societies. There’s also a lot of inexpensive high-fat food,” said Mary F. Dallman of the University of California at San Francisco, who co-wrote a commentary accompanying the research. “This could help explain the obesity epidemic.”
The researchers, who have applied for the patent for the new technology are currently negotiating with drug companies. Such drugs will still need to be studied for application to humans as well as undergo the FDA approval process. Other findings of the study have more ready benefits for those trying to lose weight.
The researchers found that long term chronic stress in the mice contributed to weight gain. While short-term stress in extreme conditions can contribute to weight loss in humans, the same conditions can have the opposite effects for Homo Sapiens as it did with the mice. With worries over jobs, family, careers and junk-food readily available it may be no wonder Western cultures increasingly suffer from health conditions caused from being overweight, according to Zofia Zukowska, a professor for the University of Georgetown.
We may not see the drug for several years down, but it seems that the best advice for know which we have been told so often is to cut down on junkfood and try to relax more often. If a miracle weight loss drug does come out that will help me shed a lot of weight, I’ll probably be one of the first to obtain a prescription.