I just finished reading a news report about some Australian scientists who have made a discovery regarding the human brain and appetite. They have found that by using a molecule (named MIC-1) that specifically targets the part of the brain that regulates appetite, that they can essentially turn hunger off. They’ve learned that MIC-1 is a molecule that is produced by certain cancers, which turns off those appetite receptors in the brain. However, when using the antibody to MIC-1, they can turn the appetite back on.

They are proposing treating severely obese individuals with MIC-1 so that they won’t be hungry, will stop eating and lose weight, and on the other side, giving the antibody to MIC-1 to cancer patients to prevent them from wasting away from weight loss.

After reading this, I immediately thought about the fact that most emotional eaters (and I think that a large number of obese people are emotional eaters) don’t eat when hungry! I’m an emotional eater, and I can say that majority of the time that I’ve eaten over emotions, I wasn’t hungry. So, when the scientists are thinking that by simply injecting an obese person with MIC-1 and switching off their hunger that they will stop eating and will therefore lose weight, I’m thinking that they don’t really understand the reason that many people overeat.

I can see how this could help overweight individuals if they are only eating when hungry and stopping when full, but are only eating the wrong types of food (greasy, fatty, non-nutritious fast and/or processed foods), but I just don’t think it would help emotional eaters. I do see how it could help cancer patients if they stop eating because they aren’t hungry, but then you’re also looking at people who may or may not even be overweight to begin with.

What about you? If you are an emotional eater, do you only eat when you are hungry? If you are an emotional eater and opted for injections of MIC-1 to turn off your hunger, would you truly stop overeating and lose weight, or would you still overeat?