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Researchers Look for Link Between Obesity and Anorexia and Bulimia

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Hormones

In past years, researchers have connected three hormones to both obesity and eating disorders leptin, ghrelin, and the endocannabinoids. Leptin decreases food intake; ghrelin and the endocannabinoids increase a person’s food intake.

Obesity

Obese people have been found to have an abnormally high level of the hormone leptin in their bloodstream. People with anorexia nervosa or with bulimia nervosa have been found to have abnormally low concentrations of the hormone leptin in their bloodstream.

Anorexia & Bulimia

On the other hand people who suffer from anorexia nervosa, have abnormally high levels of the hormone ghrelin in their bloodstream. While people who suffer from bulimia nervosa have been found to have abnormally low levels of ghrelin in their bloodstream.

The Role of the Brain

“Circuits that play a key role in reward or pleasure in the brain may be where the pathology in anorexia and bulimia, and in obesity, ultimately lies.” States Walter Kayne, MD.

Source: Psychiatric News - http://pn.psychiatryonline.org/content/45/20/20.1.full