Carry That WeightJanuary 9, 2010 at 6:09 PM | Posted in diet | Leave a comment
Tags: diet, supplements, weight loss
Not long ago, I came across a study by researchers at the Gladstone Institutes in San Francisco that showed that mice lacking MGAT2, an enzyme involved in fat absorption produced in the intestines, can eat a high fat diet without putting on weight while otherwise similar mice that have the enzyme pack on the pounds (ounces?). I immediately searched PubMed for effective, readily available inhibitors of this enzyme. After all, to effectively squelch MGAT2 activity, the inhibitor need only traverse the stomach; no need to worry about it crossing the blood-brain barrier or being rapidly broken down by hepatic enzymes. I quickly discovered that MGAT2 is readily inhibited by two well known fatty acids: sphingosine and oleic acid. For a number of reasons, sphingosine is not really an ideal solution (it’s mitogenic for one), on the other hand, oleic acid is found in quite a few commonly used food products, including olive oil. Acai berries are another rich source of oleic acid. Of course, I knew that acai berries are one of the most hyped weight loss supplements of recent years. What I didn’t know until recently was that another well publicized weight loss plan, first presented in The Shangri La Diet, basically boils down to downing a couple of well-timed tablespoons of extra light olive oil every day.