A new study has found that aerobics stimulate the release of a protein that may suppress appetite.
Researchers at the University of Chile Clinical Hospital in Santiago conducted a study in which they found that aerobic exercise decreases body fat and calorie intake in overweight and obese people.
They believe that this happens because exercise brings about changes to a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor, or BDNF, whose main role is promoting the growth and survival of nerve cells.
The boffins conducted the research over a three-month period during which they evaluated blood levels of BDNF in 15 overweight or obese men and women.
At the end of the study, it was noted that the participants had not only shed some of their weight, had decreased waist circumference, and blood pressure, but that they also consumed fewer calories than at the beginning of the study.
With exercise, it was found that BDNF levels greatly increased, which in turn led to less calorie intake and greater the weight loss, said lead author A. Veronica Araya, MD, assistant professor.
Based on the findings she said that it was thus "important to clarify the factors involved in the response to different weight loss therapies because we could find a marker to predict response to the intervention" as it might help healthcare providers select who will benefit from exercise.
The results will be presented at The Endocrine Society's 90th Annual Meeting in San Francisco.