“Beige Fat” Burns Calories Instead of Storing Them
For years, doctors have believed there are two kinds of fat.
“White” fat is what we carry around on our waists and – to a lesser extent – under our skin. White fat is like a warehouse for extra calories. When we over-eat, a lot of the extra winds up stored in our white fat… making us bulgier.
“Brown” fat was discovered in rodents. It’s mostly for insulation. It generates heat – which means brown fat burns calories, rather than stores them. Human babies have it, but there’s very little in adults.
Activating a fat that burns calories has been a tantalizing goal for some scientists. And now we may be getting close – but the answer wasn’t where anyone expected to find it.
Last year, researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute identified a third kind of fat. Adults carry small deposits of this fat, which can be stimulated to burn a remarkable number of calories.
Beige fat is genetically different from brown fat. Brown fat is closely related to muscle cells and it’s most easily stimulated into action by exposure to cold.
Beige fat, on the other hand, is closely related to white fat. Like brown fat, cold triggers it into action. But the Dana-Farber team found that a hormone – called irisin – also sets beige cells to burning extra calories.
You can naturally kick beige fat into gear with exercise, which releases irisin.
But there’s another way to get the benefit of beige fat cells. Researchers, led by the University of Granada, recently discovered a second hormone that affects beige fat. But this hormone doesn’t just kick-start beige cells into action. It tells your body to make more of them.
The hormone is melatonin.
That’s right, the same hormone that can help you get a good night’s sleep may also help you control your weight.
The Granada study was done with animals. But the study’s authors believe it points to an effective way to fight a growing waistline. Best of all, we already know melatonin is safe.
I’ll keep you posted on any more news about these exciting discoveries. Meanwhile, here’s more news on staying slimmer and sexier…
If you think working out just burns calories, Swedish researchers will disagree. In a brand-new study, they’ve shown working out regularly makes changes on a genetic level.
The scientists had a group of sedentary men work out three times a week for six months. Exercise triggered changes in almost 18,000 genes – causing them to “express” differently. Most of the changes were small, but 236 changes were big ones.
Of those big changes, 18 were in genes linked to obesity… and 21 in genes linked to metabolic problems like blood sugar control.
In other words, working out – even just a few times a week – doesn’t just trim fat. It promotes better health all the way down to the genetic level.
Yours in continued good health,
Best Life Herbals Wellness Team
1 “Newly Isolated ‘Beige Fat’ Cells Could Help Fight Obesity,” ScienceDaily. Jul 12, 2012.
2 “Melatonin Helps Control Weight Gain as It Stimulates the Appearance of ‘beige Fat’ That Can Burn Calories Instead of Storing Them, Study Suggests,” ScienceDaily. Sep 25, 2013.
3 Fiore, K., “Exercise Alters Gene Expression in Fat Tissue,” MedPage Today. Sep 27, 2013
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