The Connection Between OSA and Weight Gain

The Connection Between OSA and Weight Gain by Bonner Springs, KS sleep expert Dr. Thomas Drake.

Video Transcript

The Connection Between OSA and Weight Gain

Hi I am Dr. Tom and today I would like to talk to you about the relationship between OSA and weight gain.

The number of Americans who are becoming obese continues to increase at an alarming rate.

Because fat gets deposited in the tongue and neck, this causes people to have narrow and narrow airways, leading to the condition of obstructive sleep apnea.

A 10% weight gain translates into a 32% increase in a person’s AHI ( which is the average # of times a person stops breathing per hour).

There are two main hormones that deal with telling the brain when you are hungry and when you are full.

These are Ghrelin and Leptin. They are the theromostat. Ghrelin is produced in the stomach and makes you feel hungry. Leptin is produced in the fat cells and tells the body it has plenty of stored energy so you feel full not hungry.

However, as a person becomes more and more overweight , the fat cells are still pumping out Leptin but the brain stops recognizing the high leptin levels and keeps on producing more ghrelin so the body continues to overeat.

Sleep Apnea has shown to decrease leptin levels and thereby make it difficult to lose weight. Treating Sleep Apnea can help restore a better balance between ghrelin and leptin.

If you are having trouble losing weight, you may want to get tested for sleep apnea as it may be a contributing factor.