Brain responses uncover secret to bariatric surgery success

robina-weermeijer-3KGF9R_0oHs-unsplash (1)

In a small study, NIHR Imperial BRC Metabolic Medicine & Endocrinology Theme researcher Tricia Tan and colleagues looked at the brain activity of sixteen people with type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes who underwent weight loss surgery. The brain activity was measured using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans that detected the blood flow through different areas of the brain. They found that there were three distinct types of responses in areas of the brain that control hunger, appetite and food intake which were different from a separate group of people who had used a very low calorie diet to lose weight.

The researchers believe that these changes in brain activity after weight loss surgery can help explain why people who undergo this type of treatment have successful and long term weight loss, in comparison with those who have followed a very low calorie diet, where very often there is a regain of weight.

This research was possible with infrastructure support from the NIHR Imperial BRC.

More information and the full story can be found here, written by Maxine Myers. © Imperial College London

Photo by Robina Weermeijer on Unsplash