When it comes to avocados, millennials may have it right.
Because the bright green fruit works in the same way as miraculous weight loss jab Wegovy, according to an expert.
Semaglutide – also branded as Ozempic – has ushered in a new era in the war on obesity.
Hollywood’s favorite treatment stimulates weight loss by mimicking the action of a hormone released in the gut after eating (GLP-1).
The GLP-1 hormone not only tells the pancreas to make more insulin, but also feeds it back to the brain and makes us feel full.
According to Dr Emma Beckett, senior lecturer in food science and human nutrition at Newcastle University, certain foods high in GLP-1-stimulating nutrients can raise GLP-1 levels, with the same effect as the jab. In The Conversation, she wrote, “This could be foods with good fats, like avocado or nuts, or lean sources of protein like eggs.”
Fat-melting semaglutide injections like Wegovy and Ozempic have been heralded as the start of a new era in the war on obesity. Now experts have discovered that the drugs may have other benefits, namely restoring the body’s ability to defend itself against cancer
As a result, semaglutide may prevent users from overeating.
However, it is not without side effects: users often complain of nausea, constipation and diarrhea after taking the medication.
Dr. Emma Beckett, a senior lecturer in food science and human nutrition at the University of Newcastle in Australia, said certain foods “can do the same thing – without the side effects.”
WHAT SHOULD A BALANCED DIET LOOK LIKE?
Meals should be based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally whole grains, according to the NHS
• Eat at least 5 servings of different fruits and vegetables every day. All fresh, frozen, dried and canned fruit and vegetables count
• Basic meals based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, preferably whole grains
• 30 grams of fiber per day: This is equivalent to eating all of the following: 5 servings of fruits and vegetables, 2 whole-wheat muesli biscuits, 2 thick slices of whole-wheat bread, and a large baked potato with skin
• Provide dairy or dairy alternatives (such as soy drinks) and choose lower-fat, lower-sugar options
• Eat some beans, legumes, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins (including 2 servings of fish per week, one of which is fatty)
• Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and consume in small quantities
• Drink 6-8 cups/glasses of water per day
• Adults should have less than 6 g of salt and 20 g of saturated fat for women or 30 g for men per day
Source: NHS Eatwell Guide
Explain her logic in The conversationshe said, “The nutrients that trigger GLP-1 secretion are macronutrients.”
These include simple sugars (monosaccharides), but also peptides and amino acids (from proteins) and short-chain fatty acids (from fats).
“There is some evidence that choosing foods rich in these nutrients can increase GLP-1 levels,” she said.
This means that a healthy diet rich in GLP-1-stimulating nutrients can increase GLP-1 levels.
“These can be foods with good fats, like avocado or nuts, or lean protein sources like eggs.”
“And foods high in fermentable fiber, such as vegetables and whole grains, feed our gut bacteria, which then produce short-chain fatty acids that can trigger GLP-1 secretion.”
The weight loss drug is already prescribed in lower doses to treat patients with type 2 diabetes, under the brand name Ozempic.
Patients can also get it privately to help them lose weight.
It has led Elon Musk and Jeremy Clarkson to publicly credit it for helping them move the pounds.
Meanwhile, Kim Kardashian was rumored to have used it to quickly lose 7.3kg to fit into Marilyn Monroe’s iconic ‘Happy Birthday Mr President’ dress at the 2022 Met Gala.
It is also known to make food less appealing, potentially ruining the enjoyment of eating altogether.
Wegovy was approved as a weight-loss drug in the US in 2021 after clinical trials showed that, in addition to diet and exercise, it can help a person lose 15 percent of their weight in 68 weeks.
In March this year, NHS watchdog NICE also gave the green light to the UK’s weekly weight-loss jab.
Wegovy will soon be available to people with a BMI of 35 or more – a classification that means they are morbidly obese.
Patients must also have at least one weight-related comorbidity, such as type 2 diabetes, to be eligible.
“Diet and medication solutions often focus on the individual making changes to improve health outcomes,” said Dr. Beckett.
“But systemic changes, which reduce the pressures and barriers that make healthy eating difficult — such as shortening work weeks or raising the minimum wage — are likely to make a difference.”
She added, “It’s also important to remember that weight is only one part of the health equation.
Wegovy, which mimics glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) and is produced by Danish company Novo Nordisk, has been shown to help people lose 10.8% of their body fat over 68 weeks. Other weight loss medications include tirzepatide, liraglutide, and orlistat. The latter two are already available on the NHS
Wegovy and Ozempic work by prompting the body to produce a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 that is naturally released from the gut after meals
“If you suppress your appetite but maintain a diet full of ultra-processed foods and low in micronutrients, you can lose weight but not eat more.
“So support to improve dietary choices is needed, regardless of medication use or weight loss, for real health improvements.”
The latest NHS data shows that 26 per cent of adults in England are obese and a further 38 per cent are overweight but not obese. One third of Americans are overweight, while four in ten are obese.
Obesity rates have been rising for decades, with experts blaming sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy diets.
They are also rising in children, with a quarter of children in shelters in England now considered overweight and one in ten obese.
A landmark study last month also revealed that the UK’s bulging waistline takes billions of pounds off the cramped NHS each year, spending twice as much on obese patients as on those of a healthy weight.