Cholecystokinin (CKK) | Cortisol

Role of Hormones in weight gain & loss & how to control it?

If you are putting on weight in a short time and it is very hard to control or lose, either you follow strict exercise or eat a plan, but it doesn't change anything, it causes frustration. You know it might be some imbalancing of hormones.

Hormone are chemicals that send messages to the brain and control body functionality. 

Here is list 9 hormones that control your weight gain & loss


When We are talking about the role of hormones in weight management then insulin is the main hormone. Insulin is released by beta cells of pancreas, it's released throughout the day but secretion increases after meals.

It allows body cells to take in blood sugar for energy or storage, depending on what is needed at the time. It promotes fat deposition and stops fat breakdown into sugar.

When cells are insulin resistant, it increases glucose and insulin level in blood. Hyperinsulinemia* causes many health problems including obesity, metabolic disorders.

It's well known that insulin has a role in weight management, either gain or loss.

How to manage it?

  1. Reduce sugar intake
  2. Eat protein diet
  3. Reduce carbohydrate intake
  4. Excise regularly 
  5. Include magnesium intake 
  6. Drink green tea
  7. Drink apple cider vinegar


Ghrelin released by the stomach, also known as hunger hormone.  Ghrelin level is high when stomach is empty, and low when stomach is full. Empty stomach release Ghrelin and send messages to hypothalamus, that you are hungry. When we eat more sugar  or carbohydrate, it enables us to eat more and lead to obesity, as ghrelin, don’t understand and send signals for hunger.

How to manage it?

  • Reduce sugar intake
  • Eat protein diet


Cortisol is a stress hormone, released by adrenal glands. Cortisol is involved in weight and hunger signals. One of the most influential on setpoint and weight is cortisol. Unfortunately Insulin & Cortisol are best and bad buddies. Chronically elevated cortisol level leads to overeating and weight gain.

Chronically elevated cortisol leads to increased insulin, insulin resistance, sugar and starch cravings, even more insulin, even more intense cravings, an elevated setpoint, weight gain, prediabetes, and then type 2 diabetes.

How to manage it?

  • Meditation & Yoga
  • Balanced diet
  • Sound Sleep
  • Listen music or Go for family trip


Estrogen is female sex hormone, produced by ovary and regulate reproductive system. Obese female is having high estrogen level but it not proved that estrogen high level cause obesity. But estrogen high level or low level may cause weight gain depending on age, action of other hormones, and overall state of health.

During menopause, estrogen less is produced in the ovaries, the site for fat storage shifts from the hips and thighs to visceral fat in the abdomen. 

How to control it?

  • Lifestyle and nutrition can control it. 
  • Cruciferous vegetables
  • Exercise
  • Flax seeds
  • Fiber


Leptin is a polypeptide hormone product of the ob gene that is produced and secreted by adipocytes (Fat). The amount of leptin produced is directly proportionate to the triglyceride content of adipocytes (i.e., the size of the fat cells). Leptin is a crucial link in the signaling process between changes in body fat and control of energy balance.

Leptin is a signaling hormone which communicates with hypothalamus, hypothalamus, regulates appetite and food intake.

Leptin is higher almost 4 time in obese people compare to normal weight people.

Impairment of leptin signaling leads to miss sending a message to hypothalamus to stop eating and informing that you already have enough energy stored.

Two well known potential causes of leptin resistance

  • Inflammation in hypothalamus
  • Chronically elevated insulin level
How to control it?
  • Get enough sleep
  • Avoid eating inflammatory foods, i.e trans fat, Sugary drinks
  • Eat anti inflammatory food like fatty fish
  • Get sound sleep
  • Exercise regularly 

Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 (GLP-1)

When nutrients reach the intestine , it produces GLP-1 hormone. GLP-1 plays a role in managing blood sugar level, and also makes you feel full.

Researchers believe the decrease in appetite that occurs immediately after weight loss surgery is partly due to increased production of GLP-1

How to improve GLP- level?
    • Eat leafy vegetables
    • Include Probiotics in diet
    • Eat plenty of proteins
    • Eat Anti Inflammatory food

    Peptide YY (PYY)

    Peptide YY (PYY) is a gut hormone released by the intestine and colon. Peptide YY (PYY) controls appetite and plays an important role in managing weight loss.

    How to improve it ?
    • Protein
    • Fiber
    • Low Carbohydrate diet

    Cholecystokinin (CKK)

    High amounts of CCK reduce food intake in both lean and obese people. CCK is satiety hormone produced by the gut, same as GLP-1.

    How to improve CCK?

    • Healthy fat
    • Fiber
    • Protein

    Neuropeptide Y (NPY)

    NPY is produced by cells in the brain & nervous system, which stimulate appetite particularly during periods of fasting or food deprivation.

    During Stress also NPY levels increased which can lead to overeating and abdominal fat gain.

    How to control it?
    • Don’t fast for too long
    • Eat plenty of soluble fibers
    • Eat enough protein

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