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UK experiment: hormone reduced hunger in overweight people

Yuval Dror, Haaretz, voila!

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British researchers claim that the hormone PYY suppresses the feeling of hunger and resulted in a decrease in the amount of food consumed by study participants. As far as is known, this is the first time an experiment has been done on humans to test the effects of the hormone on feelings of hunger and satiety.

The researchers, from Hammersmith Hospital in London, tested two groups: one of overweight people and the other of those with a thin body structure. Each group consisted of 12 subjects and a control group. About two hours after the subjects received experimental injections, they were invited to an "eat as much as you can" style meal.
The results, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, show that among the oily group there was a 30% decrease in the amount of food consumed and among the lean people who received the hormone there was a 31% decrease. The effect of the hormone faded after more than 12 hours.

The editor of the study, Dr. Steven Bloom, points out that among overweight people, there is a decrease in the hormone that increases the feeling of hunger, and hence giving the hormone in larger doses will balance this feeling. According to him, the injection had no side effects. Bloom estimated that it will take about 5 years until a commercial injection is developed and about 15 years until the hormone is introduced into the pill.

Researchers in the field of nutrition claim that the finding on the effect of PYY is important, but point out that the study is preliminary. Among other things, researchers note the fact that the number of participants in the study is too small to draw sweeping conclusions. In addition, researchers claim that the human body contains an elaborate system of hormones that affect the feeling of hunger and satiety, and that it is likely that the hormone PYY is not a "magic drug" capable of alleviating the feeling of hunger.

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