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Heart rhythm problems such as hypertension are treated with beta blockers and one of the possible side effects associated with them is the increase of body mass. In the following text, we will see if this is true.

How Do They Work?

Beta receptors are blocked by the beta blockers. The B1, B2 and B3 are three types of beta receptors and they are located in muscles, digestive tract, kidneys, fat cells, lungs, heart and many other body areas. They have great influence on the heart, which is their most responsible function. The human body produces epinephrine and norepinephrine hormones, which bind with the B1 heart receptors and this leads to increased force of the contraction and makes the heart beat faster. The effect of these hormones can be blocked by beta blockers, which reduces the blood pressure and slows the heart rate. Many other tissues with receptors are effected with beta-blockers, as well. The clamping down of the lung airways can happen due to the B2 receptors and all of this can lead to asthma problems aggravation. But this effect can be more selective because there are beta blockers that bind more with B1 than with B3 and B2 receptors.

Weight Gain

Only one hypothesis is available as the explanation of this side effect. It says that the fat breakdown can happen when the fatty tissue B3 receptors and norepinephrine and epinephrine bind. The B3 receptors are blocked by the three beta receptor types, and this is an effect of the nonselective and older beta blockers, which leads to less broken down fat. The increase of body mass is greatest during the few initial months, after which it levels off with weight gain usually in the region from 2 to 7 pounds. Some beta blockers can cause excessive weight gain, so see a doctor before using them and you will probably be given new beta blockers that cause less weight gain.

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