How Prednisone Could Be Effective In Combating Obesity

According to the experts at Medical News Today, a recently released study has found that a weekly dose of prednisone may be effective in combating obesity. Prednisone is a corticosteroid or a cortisone-type steroid that is used to treat various conditions, such as allergies, arthritis, inflammation, kidney issues, and stomach and bowel issues, among many others. Generally, prednisone works on your immune system to alleviate redness, swelling, and allergic reactions (via Mayo Clinic). While prednisone treatment is known to be an effective remedy for many health conditions, one of the side effects for those who need to take prednisone on a regular basis can be significant weight gain.

To find a way to address this, researchers at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine conducted a pilot study involving mice. The results showed that a weekly dose of prednisone in mice did not appear to cause obesity, unlike the daily dose. The study can be found in the Journal of Experimental Medicine (via Medical News Today).

How to avoid weight gain while on prednisone

Given that the research results are preliminary, researchers piloting the study stress that if you are suffering from a condition that requires you to take prednisone, you may still need to continue taking your daily dose. So how can you control weight gain in the meantime? According to the experts at Healthline, if your doctor is unable to recommend a different dosing schedule, there are some strategies you can employ, such as eating six small meals a day rather than the standard three meals a day. They also advise filling up on low-calorie foods like fruits and vegetables, as well as making sure you include protein in all of your meals. Drinking water can also fill you up while burning calories. And, of course, exercise is always a good way to manage weight gain.

While the results of the study are promising, Mattia Quattrocelli, Ph.D., who launched the research while a professor at Northwestern, points out that there are differences between mice and humans — including social behaviors, metabolic stress, and muscle composition — when it comes to obesity (via Medical News Today). In addition, it is unclear whether a weekly dose of prednisone would prevent weight gain and obesity in healthy people. Yet, despite the questions that remain, health experts agree that the study raises an intriguing approach that warrants further exploration.