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Having the munchies constantly doesn’t seem to qualify as being a great idea for a diet. However, scientists may have found a means to allow people to eat as a much as they want without gaining weight, LiveScience reports.
A new research places an emphasis on brain chemicals that influence how quickly people burn fat. Scientist used lab mice to down brain levels of endocannabinoids, a group of neuromodulatory lipids and their receptors that are involved in a variety of physiological processes including appetite, pain-sensation, mood, and memory.
They are similar in molecular structure to the active ingredients in marijuana, according to LiveScience.
“We discovered that these mice were resistant to obesity because they burned fat calories much more efficiently than normal mice do,” study researcher Daniele Piomelli, a professor at the University of California, Irvine, told LiveScience. “We had known that endocannabinoids play a critical role in cell energy regulation, but this is the first time we found a target where this occurs.”
In their study, scientists blocked the activity of endocannabinoids in mice and found they consumed energy at a high rate.