Researchers have probably found why the protein rich Atkins diet is so successful in reducing weight. Rachel Batterham from the University College of London and colleagues found that a hormone called PYY is responsible for signaling the brain that hunger has been overcome after a meal rich in proteins.
''People on the Atkins diet don't feel as hungry - that's how it works,'' Batterham said. The researchers also investigated in mice and genetically modified them to inhibit PYY production. They found that these mice ate more and grew fat.
''No medical person is going to tell you to have all that saturated fat in your diet and no carbohydrates,'' Batterham said of Atkins' diet. But she added that more studies needed to be done before making any sure recommendations.
The study is published in the journal Cell Metabolism.