The hypothalamus is an important endocrine gland located within the human brain. Amongst the many functions controlled by this gland are the regulation of appetite and metabolic activities in the body. Since the onset of 2010, researchers have been involved in studying the relationship between this gland and maintenance of weight.
Malfunctioning of the hypothalamus is often seen to result in weight related disorders such as hypothyroidism and decreased adrenal functioning. Both these disorders are triggered by insufficient levels of hormones secreted by the thyroid and adrenal glands respectively. Diagnosis of these ailments is conducted via examination of the urine that aids in evaluating the quantity of hormone being secreted by the glands. The functioning of the hypothalamus can also suffer irregularities in event of the development of tumors. Hypothalamic obesity is one consequence of this development. Such type of tumors can only be detected through an MRI.
Most of the working disabilities of the hypothalamus are treated by reinstating the insufficient hormone instead of treating the gland. Some of the methods through which hypothalamic obesity has been cured include replacement of hormones, utilization of caffeine and ephedrine, and gastric by-pass surgery. A recent development in this domain is adopting an HCG diet program that involves the administration of HCG, which is a pregnancy hormone accompanied by the intake of a diet low in calories. This program aimed at re-instating the potential of the hypothalamus was put forth in the decade of the 1950s by a German physician. However, the authenticity of this diet still stands controversial as many experts in the field opine that the intake of the HCG hormone could lead to the development of tumors.
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