Metabolic Hormones 101: Ghrelin

Ghrelin is our body’s hunger hormone. Ghrelin is secreted by the stomach, and causes the physical belly sensations of hunger. When ghrelin levels are high, we eat more food, naturally. In addition to increasing our intake, Ghrelin also suppresses the breakdown of fat from our fat stores, making it hard to lose weight when ghrelin levels are high.  

Two things that can elevate ghrelin levels are:

  • having a poor night’s sleep
  • not eating adequate protein to meet minimum needs

Three things that research show lower ghrelin levels are:

  • savoring your food and eating more mindfully (and slowly!)
  • following a ketogenic meal plan
  • weight loss surgeries including Sleeve Gastrectomy and Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass (1)
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