About a week ago a Food and Drug Administration advisory committee recommended that a new weight loss prescription drug be approved. The name of the drug is Qnexa. It has been over 12 years since such a weight loss pill came out on the market but it seems like we'll have another one not too far down the road.
In the Review section of this weekend's Wall Street Journal dated March 3–4, Jonah Lehrer writes an he interesting article titled "A Chill Pill for Food's Thrill?" In his column, titled Head Case, Lehrer talks about recent research in the arena of obesity and eating. He cites a study conducted at the Oregon Research Institute where the researchers documented that obese people receive less pleasure from food than normal weight people. According to the researchers, this is one explanation why obese people find it so difficult in losing weight. Lehrer finishes his column with the following paragraphs:
"Such research helps explain why it's important to use every possible tool against the obesity epidemic make, including drugs. Because Qnexa seems to increase activity in the dopamine reward pathway, it allows dieters to squeeze more satisfaction from every bite."
"Besides, we need all the help we can get, as Americans keep on gaining weight. At base, obesity is the fault of biology, which has programmed us to derive primal pleasure from food."
"But that doesn't mean there's nothing we can do. This latest study also offers a modest suggestion for dieters: Because people quickly adapt to the pleasure of any single food, it's important to seek pleasure from many sources. Variety really is the spice of life."
I totally agree with Lehrer's statement that it's important to use every possible tool against the obesity epidemic. But, I disagree that one of those tools should be drugs. I would suggest that the most effective tool that individuals can use in their fight against obesity is their faith. Yes, we all need food as a source of energy and for fuel for our bodies to function. And although God did wire us to enjoy the taste of all types of foods, he also wired us in such a way that we long for a relationship with Him more than He wired us to be in relationship with food.
Lehrer also suggests that it's important to seek pleasure from many sources and not just any single food. I would also agree that it's important to seek pleasure from sources other than food. A particular Scripture from the Bible comes to mind where the author is writing to God "You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy." Psalm 63:5
We don't need another weight loss drug in America. What we need is a greater hunger for God... and the pleasure, satisfaction, power and self control that stems from a personal relationship with Him.