Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

'Healthier hormones' through diet and exercise

Date:
March 7, 2013
Source:
German Cancer Research Center
Summary:
Weight loss -- by dietary changes alone or combined with physical exercise -- has a positive impact on the production of adipose tissue hormones: Adipose tissue produces less leptin but, instead, more adiponectin, which counteracts diabetes and cancer. This explains, at a molecular level, the health-promoting effect of physical exercise and dietary changes, according to researchers.

Weight loss -- by dietary changes alone or combined with physical exercise -- has a positive impact on the production of adipose tissue hormones: Adipose tissue produces less leptin but, instead, more adiponectin, which counteracts diabetes and cancer. This explains, at a molecular level, the health-promoting effect of physical exercise and dietary changes, according to researchers.
Credit: Media Center of Heidelberg University

Overweight couch potatoes live a dangerous life: Epidemiologists estimate that about 80 percent of the most common diseases are linked to severe overweight and obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. Obese people are at an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases, vascular diseases, hypertension, diabetes and cancer. This lowers their life expectancy. Weight loss and physical activity help to counteract this. Women who lose weight lower their breast cancer risk. Regular physical activity lowers the risk of developing breast, colorectal and cervical cancers.

The links between body weight, lifestyle and the risks of developing cancer and other chronic diseases are not yet understood in every detail. However, changes in hormonal signaling are believed to be among the culprits of these processes. "Adipose tissue produces various hormones which have a great impact on metabolism," says Prof. Dr. Cornelia Ulrich. "The important ones are anti-inflammatory adiponectin, which increases the effect of insulin, and leptin, which can promote tumor cell growth.

Do body weight and exercise also affect production of these key adipose tissue hormones? Cornelia Ulrich, departmental head at DKFZ and director of the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg, analyzed this in a randomized controlled study with 439 overweight postmenopausal women (> 50 years). Study participants were divided into three "intervention groups" (diet; exercise; diet+exercise) as well as a control group. These groups were watched intensively over a period of one year so that the results obtained are particularly valuable.

"Our hypothesis was that particularly a combination of physical activity and weight loss should result in a more favorable relation of the two hormone levels," said Cornelia Ulrich. Leptin production decreased in all three intervention groups, most noticeably (up to 40 percent) in the diet+exercise group. By contrast, adiponectin production increased most in women who were on a reduced calorie diet only.

Irrespective of the type of intervention, the positive effect on hormone production was dependent on the degree of weight loss: The more kilos a study participant had lost, the more her adiponectin levels increased and the more her leptin levels decreased. "We observed the greatest changes in women who had lost ten percent of their initial body weight," says Dr. Clare Abbenhardt, first author of the study. "Some of these participants reached a 20 percent increase in adiponectin levels and their leptin decreased by more than 50 percent."

Leptin production appears to be influenced by mere changes of body composition, because in the exercise intervention group, participants gained muscle mass also without losing weight.

"We now have a better understanding of the mechanisms by which weight loss and training protect from chronic diseases. The health-promoting effect of adiponectin is regarded as established by numerous studies now. Lower leptin levels, on the other hand, offer less growth incentives for tumor cells. Therefore, we are now able to give well-founded recommendations to women how they can positively influence these two important metabolic regulators," says Cornelia Ulrich, "by keeping a healthy body weight and getting more exercise!"

The research was undertaken in collaboration with scientists from several U.S. universities at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, U.S.A.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by German Cancer Research Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Clare Abbenhardt, Anne McTiernan, Catherine M. Alfano, Mark H. Wener, Kristin L. Campbell, Catherine Duggan, Karen E. Foster-Schubert, Angela Kong, Adetunji T Toriola, John D. Potter, Caitlin Mason, Liren Xiao, George L. Blackburn, Carolyn Bain and Cornelia M. Ulrich. Effects of individual and combined dietary weight loss and exercise interventions in postmenopausal women on adiponectin and leptin levels. Journal of Internal Medicine, 2013; DOI: 10.1111/joim.12062

Cite This Page:

German Cancer Research Center. "'Healthier hormones' through diet and exercise." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 March 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130307110639.htm>.
German Cancer Research Center. (2013, March 7). 'Healthier hormones' through diet and exercise. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130307110639.htm
German Cancer Research Center. "'Healthier hormones' through diet and exercise." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130307110639.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 29, 2014) Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, cut full-year revenue forecasts because generics could cut into sales of its anti-arthritis drug, Celebrex. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins