What is brown fat and why should you care?Health Fitness
Do you realize that we have different types of fat in our body and each one has different properties? White fat, which is what tends to stretch pants to the limit and spills over the waist, stores energy. It is not surprising. It also has some brown fat, which gets its color from its iron content. Brown fat also contains more mitochondria, which are known as “the cell’s energy source.” You can think of them as the “engines” of brown fat that burn calories and generate heat.
So while the white fat becomes a kind of insulation, the brown fat is active. Babies have a lot of brown fat. Most adults have varying amounts, but not quite as much. Thinner people tend to have a higher amount than heavier people, but it is not known if that is genetic or not.
According to one study, 15 minutes in the cold could be the metabolic equivalent of an hour of exercise. The researchers, in this study, observed healthy men and women as they exercised in a 65 ° F laboratory. Later, those same study participants lay down on a bed when the temperature dropped to 53 ° F. In both tests, These people’s muscles contracted (they were shaking!) and released the hormone irisin, which is produced in skeletal muscle. This hormone increases body heat and creates brown fat cells from existing white fat cells.
This finding puzzled the researchers. They speculated that since the ancient biological survival mechanism of chills, which are caused by cold, helps us maintain our core temperature, preventing hypothermia, perhaps it would stimulate the release of irisin. They designed tests to find out if chills rather than exercise were the main driver of irisin secretion. It turns out that irisin is produced by muscle contractions. So whether it’s exercising or shaking, it doesn’t really matter. Once produced, it circulates through the blood turning white blood cells into brown.
What is encouraging about this information is that the researchers found that the response to cold exposure can be activated even with minimal changes in temperature. In this study, they showed that just turning the thermostat from 74 ° F to 68 ° F was enough to generate a measurable increase in energy use. Thirty seconds of cold water on your upper back and neck after a hot shower, if you don’t have heart problems, is an easy way to do that too.
Or maybe you just keep getting active and exercising, turn the thermostat down a bit and go for a little walk each day in the cool winter weather (dressed appropriately, of course) to benefit from a little cooler air and hopefully, some sun. well.
Another study found that curcumin, the active compound in turmeric, is capable of inducing the browning of white blood cells. In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, this research indicates that curcumin appears to be an anti-obesity agent due to its ability to maintain brown fat and reduce inflammation, which is implicated in obesity, as well as diabetes and heart disease. This is a great find.
There are numerous ways to add turmeric to your meals, as well as take it in supplement form or even drink it as a tea, thus taking advantage of its many benefits, including the stimulation of brown fat.
Here are some simple ways to stimulate and support the activation of fat burning brown fat. Choose the method that’s right for you, and reap these health benefits in the process.