I finally reached my goal weight last month—I’m down 135 pounds! But I’m worried about gaining at all back—my appetite is out of control, and I’m tired of constantly denying myself. What do you recommend?

It sounds like you need to up your levels of leptin, a hunger-regulating hormone that’s produced and secreted by fat cells. The body’s output of this hormone naturally drops as you lose body fat—and when that happens, appetite increases.

The good news is that studies have identified two strategies that can boost leptin levels:
(1) Aim to eat three to four weekly servings of foods rich in omega-3s (like salmon, sardines, walnuts and flaxseeds). The healthy fats increase the body’s sensitivity to leptin, so feelings of fullness are enhanced.
(2) Supplement with 3 mg of melatonin 30 minutes before bed. This nutrient can help you sleep more soundly—another key factor in raising leptin levels.

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