After ingesting the compound, called exendin-4, the rats lost their cravings for both food and chocolate, the researchers said. Their study will be published in the April 4th issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.
“The implications of the findings are significant,” study researcher Suzanne Dickson, of the University of Gothenburg, said in a statement. “Most dieting fails because we are obsessed with the desire to eat, especially tempting foods like sweets. As exendin-4 suppresses the cravings for food, it can help obese people to take control of their weight.”
In the study they found that the compound makes eating less rewarding in the brain, a reaction that can get out of control in obese people, who keep eating in search of more rewarding activity in the brain and often become addicted to eating.