Oxytocin is known as the 'love hormone' but now, it seems, that apart from inducing love it might also induce weight loss. Which might not be as weird as it sounds. If you've ever fallen helplessly in love you'll perhaps be familiar with all those feelings of excitement and being unable to eat? That's all to do with the Oxytocin.
Researchers in the US are currently carrying out a clinical trial and reckon that using the hormone as a spray could lead to a weight loss of around 17 kg a year! Yep, that's 17 kilos. This really interested our Leeds ladies who wondered if using the hormone in this way also induced all those feelings of being 'in love'.
So how does it work? Well all we can tell you at the moment is that in a previous smaller trial, three sprays of the hormone before a meal reduces the amount that people eat. Tested on 25 otherwise healthy men, using the hormone reduced their calorie intake by 122 calories and there fat intake by 9 g. Researchers say this would save around 366 calories a day and if sustained could lead to more that 17 kg over a year.
Oxytocin is produced in the brain during activities such as sex and kissing, as well as childbirth. Doctors believe that the hormone spray may be a safe way to help people lose weight. Their only problem at the moment is, they don't know why it works! Sadly it could be a while before the treatment is widely available as there's still a lot of research to go.
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