Empty Sella Syndrome (ESS) is a condition that causes the Sella Turcica, or pituitary gland, to become flattened. This can lead to a number of symptoms, and hormonal imbalances including headache, weight gain, and fatigue. If you are suffering from ESS and obesity, in this article, we’ll discuss how to lose weight with empty sella syndrome.
Sella turcica is a bony, saddle-like structure at the base of your brain to protect your pituitary gland. The pituitary gland is responsible for producing hormones that regulate your body’s growth, metabolism, and reproduction. When the sella turcica becomes flattened or disordered, it can cause the pituitary gland to become prolapsed or herniated. This can lead to a number of symptoms, including:
- Chronic headache
- Vision problem
- Decreased desire for sex
- Hormonal imbalances
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Can Empty Sella Syndrome Cause Weight Gain?
Empty sella syndrome is a condition that is caused by a reduction in the volume of fluid in the space above the pituitary gland, also known as the sella turcica. This reduction in fluid volume is thought to be due to changes in pressure within the skull, which can cause increased levels of weight gain.
Although the specific mechanisms that lead to weight gain in people with empty sella syndrome are not fully understood, there are several factors that are believed to play a role. These include;
- Changes in hormone levels
- Metabolic dysfunction
- Reduced physical activity
- Changes in eating behaviors
Genetic factors may also play a role, as some studies have linked the condition to polymorphisms in certain genes associated with body weight regulation. Also, some medications commonly prescribed to individuals with empty sella syndrome can also cause weight gain.
Ultimately, gaining weight with empty sella syndrome can have a negative impact on overall health, increasing the risk for chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease.
In some rare cases, the empty sella syndrome can further lead to hypopituitarism, a condition which relates to deficiency of pituitary hormone – again leading to disturbing body routine function, which could result in weight gain
Nevertheless, with careful management and lifestyle changes, it is possible to manage symptoms and prevent further weight gain.
How To Lose Weight With Empty Sella Syndrome
If you are suffering from ESS and obesity, there are a few things you can do to lose weight with pituitary issues:
1. Engage In Regular Physical Activity:
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to lose weight and keep it off. It helps to burn calories, make your muscles strong and active, improve insulin sensitivity, and reduce stress levels.
It is advised to make a habit of exercising 4 to 5 times a week, especially in the morning when you are suffering from empty sella syndrome. Why the first thing in the morning? Because we intend to lose more weight in the morning hours.
Trainers recommend combining cardio and resistance training, to build muscles and burn calories even while you are resting. The most effective fat-burning exercises are HIIT, running, and elliptical trainers.
2. Follow A Healthy Diet:
Diet is essential for weight management. One should eat a healthy diet that is rich in nutrients and low in calories when suffering from empty sella syndrome.
Healthy foods include lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, whole grains for fiber, and healthy fats. Avoid processed foods, sugary drinks, and refined carbs as much as possible.
The best schedule would be to eat several small meals throughout the day, rather than two or three large ones. Since the empty sella syndrome affects your eating behavior, this will help with managing it along with improving your metabolism.
Here are the foods that burn belly fat overnight.
3. Manage Stress Levels:
As we mentioned above, empty sella syndrome causes hormonal imbalances, and so does stress. Stress can lead to weight gain by triggering the release of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol is a stress hormone that increases appetite and cravings for unhealthy foods. It can also lead to overeating and weight gain.
Therefore, it is important to manage stress levels by incorporating relaxation techniques into your daily routine. This can include yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises.
4. Get Enough Sleep:
Sleep is important for overall health and well-being. It helps to regulate hormones, metabolism, and appetite. Research has shown that people who sleep less than 7 hours per night are more likely to be obese.
People with empty sella syndrome often have trouble sleeping due to the increased pressure on the brain. This can lead to fatigue and daytime sleepiness. It is important to get enough sleep to lose weight and prevent further weight gain.
5. Take Medications As Prescribed:
One potential cause of weight gain in people with empty sella syndrome is the use of certain medications. These include corticosteroids (prednisone or dexamethasone) and antipsychotics (olanzapine or clozapinethese), these drugs may disrupt normal hormonal balance, leading to increased hunger and weight gain.
If you are taking any of these medications, be sure to follow the dosage directions carefully and talk to your doctor about any concerns.
Note: please consult with your doctor before taking any medication, especially for birth control – because they are also linked with headaches and hormonal change.
Is Partial Empty Sella Dangerous?
Partial empty sella is a condition that refers to a small pit in the sphenoid bone at the base of the brain. The pit, also known as an encephalocele or skull defect, may be filled with fluid or CSF, resulting in a partial empty sella. While this condition itself is generally not dangerous and does not usually cause issues, it may be associated with certain diseases and disorders that can lead to weight gain.
For example, insulin resistance, hypothyroidism, and depression have all been linked to partial empty sella and may contribute to increased weight in some individuals.
Depending on the underlying cause of this condition and the severity of its symptoms, it may be possible to manage or even prevent any associated weight gain or other negative effects.
Overall, though the condition itself is rarely problematic for most people, it is important to be aware of possible health complications associated with it and to discuss concerns with a medical professional if needed.
Empty sella syndrome can lead to weight gain. However, with careful management and lifestyle changes, it is possible to lose weight and prevent further weight gain.
Exercise, healthy eating, stress management, adequate sleep, and taking medications as prescribed are all important factors in achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. If you are struggling to lose weight with empty sella syndrome, talk to your doctor about other treatment options that may be available to you.
Frequently Asked Questions; (FAQs)
Can partially empty sella cause weight gain?
Yes, partially empty sella can cause weight gain. This is because the condition leads to an increase in the release of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol is a stress hormone that increases appetite and cravings for unhealthy foods. It can also lead to overeating and weight gain.
How do I fix empty sella?
There is no cure for empty sella, but treatment can help to manage the symptoms. Treatment options include medication, surgery, and lifestyle changes. Medications can be used to control hormone levels and reduce pressure on the brain. Surgery can be used to repair a leak in the pituitary gland or to remove a tumor. Lifestyle changes such as exercise, stress management, and healthy eating can also help to manage the symptoms of empty sella.
Does empty sella syndrome qualify for disability?
Empty sella syndrome does not automatically qualify for disability. However, if the condition is severe and prevents you from working, you may be eligible for disability benefits. To qualify for disability, you must be unable to work for a continuous period of at least 12 months. You will need to provide medical evidence to support your claim. Your doctor can help you to gather the necessary documentation.
What hormones are affected by empty sella syndrome?
Empty sella syndrome can affect the levels of several hormones in the body, including cortisol, growth hormone, and prolactin. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can increase appetite and cravings for unhealthy foods. Growth hormone helps to regulate metabolism and control body weight. Prolactin is a hormone that is involved in milk production. Empty sella syndrome can also lead to changes in blood sugar levels and increased appetite. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to talk to your doctor.