Controlling Leptin Levels through Diet

March 31st, 2008 by Paul Johnson

You may not have heard of leptin, but you probably have felt the power of Leptin trying to keep you from losing fat during dieting. Leptin is a type of chemical hormone called a cytokine, that controls your hunger and metabolism. Leptin plays it's biggest role during long term dieting. During a long diet, your leptin levels increase in order to slow your metabolism down and increase your cravings. This is a survival mechanism by the body, to try and keep you to hang onto as much fat as possible during times of starvation. Although, dieters are not usually "starving" when they diet, it's the bodies way of trying to stay in balance. Leptin is mainly released through the fat cells, so people who start a diet fatter will have a harder time controlling their appetite and will hit a fat losing plateau easier.

How to diet properly to lower leptin levels:

To help ward off a potential fat loss plateau, you can manipulate lower leptin levels while dieting. To do this is simple, Leptin is dependant on your glucose levels. If you have a large meal, high in carbs, your Leptin levels will drop. Not only that, but you get an extra benefit, your Testosterone, IGF-1, Growth hormone, and thyroid levels will skyrocket. All of these hormones help in fat loss and maintain your muscle.

You may be wondering how you can get away with these kinds of meals, if your goal is to lose fat. The answer is through cycling or some kind of "cheat meal". Every few days have one or 2 cheat meals. This will help temporarily ward off the long term trend to lower leptin levels.
Realize, this does not mean that you can diet indefinitely. While the high carb meals will give a temporary drop in Leptin levels, eventually you will plateau permanently. You can only push your body so much before it eventually stops losing fat. This is how all biological systems work as they are built to resist too much extreme change. These cheat meals are just a way to get more fat loss, before you reach the dreaded fat loss plateau.

  1. michael on December 1st, 2009

    hey guys,

    please help! Ive only heard about having a cheat day once a week and this is not working. I was wondering exactly how many days you should wait till you cheat to help lower your leptin and also how much you should cheat and even thought your cheating is there anything that you shouldnt touch.

    thanks so much for your time,