Exercise Ghrelin & FTO

exercise FTO & Ghrelin

Ghrelin is a hormone produced by cells in your stomach. High levels of Ghrelin increases your appetite and is associated with feeling hungry. [1] Normally, levels of Ghrelin decrease after you eat a meal, so that you feel full.  Remember, that gene variations in one location in the FTO gene can affect how a person responds to exercise.  People who are TT at this location tend to be normal weight whether or not they exercise.[2] The Ghrelin levels of people who are TT decrease normally after they eat, making them feel full.[3]  AA individuals, on the other hand, who do not exercise tend to be overweight and their Ghrelin levels don’t typically decrease after they eat.  Exercise, however, can decrease Ghrelin levels and aerobic exercise seems to decrease Ghrelin levels more than strength training .[4]   What that means is exercise, especially aerobic exercise, may decrease the Ghrelin levels of AA people, helping them overcome their cravings and restore a normal appetite and ultimately decrease their weight.  Go Back.


[1] Karra E et al. A link between FTO, ghrelin, and impaired brain food-cue responsivity.  J Clin Invest. 2013 Aug 1;123(8):3539-51.

[2] Andreasen CH  et al. Low physical activity accentuates the effect of the FTO rs9939609 polymorphism on body fat accumulation. Diabetes. 2008 Jan;57(1):95-101.

[3] Karra E et al. A link between FTO, ghrelin, and impaired brain food-cue responsivity.  J Clin Invest. 2013 Aug 1;123(8):3539-51.

[4] Broom DR et al. Influence of resistance and aerobic exercise on hunger, circulating levels of acylated ghrelin, and peptide YY in healthy males. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2009 Jan;296(1):R29-35.