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The new slimming ‘game changer’ quenches hunger and lasts longer than Ozempic


An experimental new weight-loss procedure that ‘silences’ hunger hormones by burning away part of the stomach is seen as a game-changer in obesity treatment.

Doctors in North Carolina have found that a technique that involves a small incision in the stomach can help patients lose up to 26 pounds in just six months.

The surgery reduces stomach capacity by 42 percent, resulting in a 30 percent decrease in feelings of hunger.

Experts say that destroying part of the hunger lining reduces the body’s production of the hunger hormone ghrelin, which helps them lose almost a tenth of their body weight.

Some patients reported a change in food preferences after the procedure, the desire for chocolate was replaced by a desire for salads and vegetables.

It is also less intensive than other weight loss surgeries such as gastric bypass or gastric sleeve and has long-term effects unlike the successful weight loss drug Ozempic.

Doctors in North Carolina performed an experimental procedure in which a camera is inserted into the stomach, a fluid is injected into the area to protect the tissues, while the upper layer of the stomach lining, where the hunger hormone is produced, is burned.

Brooke Nelson was one of 10 people who underwent the minimally invasive procedure and said she lost 26 pounds in six months, bringing her weight to 183 pounds.

Brooke Nelson was one of 10 people who underwent the minimally invasive procedure and said she lost 26 pounds in six months, bringing her weight to 183 pounds.

One patient, who went from 209 pounds to 183 in just six months after the procedure, also noted that her food preferences had changed.

«The constant craving for food has decreased drastically,» she said. «There are still times when I want a chocolate chip cookie, but there are a lot more times when I find myself wanting something like green.»

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Obesity is a major public health threat in the US, affecting approximately 40 percent of Americans, dramatically increasing the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

Despite new treatments such as the injectable drugs Ozempic and Wego, doctors say other options are still needed because these drugs have side effects and are rare.

The new procedure, known as endoscopic mucosal ablation, targets the hunger hormone ghrelin, which stimulates appetite, causing overeating in some people.

The experimental technique reduced patients’ ghrelin levels by up to 40 percent, and the number of patients dropped by 7.7 percent a year after the procedure.

When people lose weight, the body senses an energy deficit and prompts the rest of the hormones, such as ghrelin, to increase appetite and store more food as fat.

Doctors at True You Weight Loss, a clinic based in North Carolina, said the ablation begins when doctors insert a camera into the stomach and inject fluid into it to protect the stomach tissues.

He then uses a small device to remove — or burn — the lining of the upper part of the stomach, known as the gastric fundus, which produces ghrelin.

Dr Christopher McGowan, founder of True You Weight Loss, told Good Morning America: “We have patients who are a year or more after their initial procedure and we see that they continue to have less and less hunger. , continue to report greater control over eating.”

The procedure does not require large incisions or deep penetration into the body, making it a powerful, minimally invasive outpatient alternative to gastric sleeve surgery.

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In gastric sleeve surgery, a large part of the stomach is surgically removed, leaving a smaller sleeve-shaped stomach.

In gastric bypass surgery, doctors create a small pouch in the upper part of the stomach and connect it directly to the small intestine.

This bypasses part of the stomach and the first part of the small intestine (duodenum), limiting the absorption of calories and nutrients.

Currently, there are no drug options to reduce the hunger hormone ghrelin.  If this procedure became mainstream, it would give people a non-surgical alternative to gastric sleeve or bypass surgery

Currently, there are no drug options to reduce the hunger hormone ghrelin. If this procedure became mainstream, it would give people a non-surgical alternative to gastric sleeve or bypass surgery

Dr. Christopher McGowan, founder of True You Weight Loss in North Carolina, hopes the success of his experimental procedure will lead to FDA approval that could help millions of people who can't get obesity drugs like Ozempic and Wego.

Dr. Christopher McGowan, founder of True You Weight Loss in North Carolina, hopes the success of his experimental procedure will lead to FDA approval that could help millions of people who can’t get obesity drugs like Ozempic and Wego.

Brooke Nelson was one of 10 women involved in the trial and lost 26 pounds. She said the results were remarkable.

“The constant craving for food has drastically reduced. There are still times when I want a chocolate chip cookie, but there are a lot more times when I want something green.”

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The goal of most weight loss interventions is to reduce appetite, and reduced stomach capacity means that one must eat much smaller portions.

Sudden cravings for healthy foods over sugary treats may be a function of an overall disruption in hormone levels that could alter food preferences.

And ghrelin isn’t the only hunger hormone. Another is GLP-1, the one the Wegos and Ozemic mimic to suppress appetite. However, there are currently no drugs that reduce ghrelin.

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That the patients maintained their weight loss and reduced appetite for a full year after the procedure indicates a possible benefit over using Wegova and Ozempic.

These drugs are thought to work only as long as a person takes them, with many people who stop taking them after a while reporting that they regain all the weight they lost. Studies are underway on the long-term effects of the drugs, such as whether a person will have to take them indefinitely.

The surgery will need to be repeated in more patients before it can be approved by the FDA as a safe and effective treatment for obesity.

Little is known about long-term safety or whether the procedure would need to be repeated multiple times to maintain weight loss.

Dr. McGowan said: “This is just the beginning. The first question was whether we could reduce hunger and ghrelin endoscopically. The answer is: yes, we can.»



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