Spinach extract reduces cravings and increases weight loss, according to a recent study by Sweden’s Lund University. Drinks containing thylakoids, green leaf membranes derived from the spinach extract, reduces hedonic hunger up to 95 percent and boosts weight loss by 43 percent.
Spinach extract suppresses cravings
In many cases, unhealthy eating habits and obesity are attributed to poor food choices people make due to hedonic hunger, or in other words, cravings. In an attempt to satisfy their hunger, many people eat unhealthy foods, like fast foods and sweets.
This recent study shows that consuming thylakoid, a compound found in spinach extract restrains cravings, as a result of the extract’s capability of reinforcing satiety hormone production in the body. This leads to increased weight loss, healthier eating habits, and better appetite management.
According to Lund University’s Professor of Medicine and Physiological Chemistry, Charlotte Erlanson-Albertsson, “Our analyses show that having a drink containing thylakoids before breakfast reduces cravings and keeps you feeling more satisfied all day. In the study, the control group lost an average of 3.5 kg while the group that was given thylakoids lost 5 kg. The thylakoid group also found that it was easier to stick to three meals a day – and they did not experience any cravings.”
How to stop craving and lose weight
Humans experience different hunger sensations. For instance, hedonic hunger is different from homeostatic hunger. Hedonic hunger deals with how people crave for food, whereas homeostatic hunger is the need to consume food in order to acquire energy and grow.
A basic description on how cravings work involves the timing in which the human body’s intestinal hormones break down processed or fast-food, as opposed to the digestive timing process of healthier, more satisfying foods.
The digestion method of processing modern food is substantially faster than when a person consumes food with ingredients found in a nutritional diet. Satiety signals sent to the brain slow down indicators that suppress cravings, causing many people to crave more food to satisfy their hunger.
In essence, the speed in which the digestive system processes unhealthy foods is faster than the brain can handle; therefore signals that tell the brain “I’m satisfied” are slowed down and practically nonexistent.
On the other hand, the thylakoid compound found in the spinach extract slows down the digestive process, freeing intestinal hormones to communicate to the brain that we are satisfied.
The desired effect
Professor Charlotte Erlanson-Albertsson explains, “It is about making use of the time it takes to digest our food. There is nothing wrong with our digestive system, but it doesn’t work well with the modern ‘pre-chewed’ food. The thylakoids extend digestion, producing a feeling of satiety. This means that we are able to stick to the diet we are meant for without snacks and unnecessary foods like sweets, crisps, and such.”
Eating spinach will not offer the same effect of the spinach extract. Spinach has to be crushed, and go through a filtration and centrifuge process in order to free the thylakoid compound from the spinach plant cells.
According to the research, the desired effect can only be derived by consuming the spinach extract to slow down our digestion of fat, triggering the release of the satiety hormone.
Daily consumption of spinach extract is one more way in reducing weight and satisfying hunger. Nonetheless, healthcare professionals adamantly suggest exercise and a moderately proportioned and balanced, nutritional diet are essential in acquiring and maintaining a healthy mind and body.