There are two hormones responsible for the start and stop signals within all of us. The
two hormones, discovered just in the 1990’s are the messages the infant feels to make the decision to start and stop eating.
The leptin hormone, discovered in 1994, is produced in the fat cells and travels to the brain to stop hunger and signal satisfaction. The ghrelin hormone, discovered in 1999, is produced in the stomach and travels to the brain to start hunger. Yes, the hormone, ghrelin, that instructs you to start eating is located in your stomach – your gut. Did you know there was a brain in your gut?
It is called the Enteric Brain – Enteric Nervous System or simply the gut brain. Your gut brain is located in the tissues lining the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, and colon. We now know about this brain through the work of Dr. Michael Gershon. When, 50 years ago as a young physician, Gershon decided to study the gut brain, only one other physician in the world focused on it! Today there are hundreds and they are all on the cutting edge of science. Dr. Gershon has proven that there are 100 million neurons in the small intestine. With esophagus, stomach, and large intestine the gut has at least as many neurons as the spinal cord.
So now you understand the importance of ‘listening to the wisdom of your body!’ It contains the information on when to start and stop eating!