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Eat Fat, Get Slim

December 28, 2008 Written by JP    [Font too small?]

A few weeks ago, I presented some information about how to strategically use exercise to manage out-of-control hunger. Now, I’d like to discuss another approach to tame a beastly appetite.

Recent research published in the journal Cell Metabolism suggests that a particular form of unsaturated fat called oleic acid may be an additional key in the appetite-puzzle.

Oleic acid is found in various nuts and seeds and fruits like avocados and olives (and olive oil, of course). It’s a common fat in “the Mediterranean diet” but is much rarer in most modern diets that contain an abundance of processed foods.

Sunflower SeedsOA for Overeaters Anonymous

Oleic acid appears to convert into a hormone called OEA in the small intestine. OEA helps to communicate satiety signals (the messages that tell your brain you’re full). The end result is a decrease in hunger.

This is an exciting discovery because it may be the first time a food or dietary ingredient has been found to directly affect the manufacture of a hormone.

In previous animal research, OEA has been found to:

  • Slow “gastric emptying”. This slows the rate by which food passes through the stomach and allows us to feel fuller longer.
  • May alter the way fat is digested and utilized. This may also play a role in the weight-reducing effect of this interesting hormone.

Dr. Daniele Piomelli, the lead scientist for the study, stated that other research showed that increasing OEA may not only reduce appetite and promote weight loss but it could also help to lower cholesterol and triglycerides. Both of these effects could provide an additional benefit with regard to heart health. This would be in addition to the positive health effects of eating less and losing excess poundage.

What this research tells me is this: We need to learn how to eat in our own best interest. For instance, if you need to lose weight then you might want to increase your intake of foods that are rich in oleic acid. If on the other hand you would like to gain weight, then those very same foods may be counterproductive.

One last note: The next time someone tells you that fatty foods make you fat, tell them about this research. You just might surprise them!

Be well!

Referenced Material

Link – Article: Nuts and Avocados Satisfy Hunger

Link – UC Irvine Press Release about Oleic Acid Research

Link – Study Abstract: OEA and Gastric Emptying

Link – Study Abstract: OEA and Fat Metabolism

Posted in Diet and Weight Loss

2 Comments & Updates to “Eat Fat, Get Slim”

  1. Glenn Fernandes Says:

    Nice research!! I am planning to lose weight but in a healthy manner and I think eating food rich in oleic acid will really work for me. Will definitely start eating avocados and olives so that I look slim and fit.

  2. JP Says:

    Thanks, Glenn.

    I’m continuing to lose weight and I eat avocados several days a week. They’re not the only secret to my success but I think they’re a healthy part of my diet.

    Good luck with your goal!

    Be well,


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