This type of body fat is particularly good for you, NEW study reveals
(NaturalHealth365) To a certain extent, body fat is good for you. It helps keep you warm, regulate your blood sugar levels, support reproductive health, balance hormones, and more. It’s only when you start to pile up too much body fat that chronic health problems can begin to pile up, too.
While this might sound like common knowledge, you might be surprised to know that you actually have more than one type of fat in your body. One type, in particular, called brown fat, appears to be particularly health-protective (and even something as simple as a daily cold shower could help you get more of it).
One specific type of body fat offers unexpected health benefits, according to large-scale study
Brown fat (also called brown adipose tissue) gets its color from its high density of iron-rich mitochondria. In adults, brown fat tends to be stored in small areas throughout the body, including near the neck and shoulder blades and around the kidneys and spinal cord.
A brand new study published in Nature Medicine retrospectively assessed health data of roughly 52,000 participants who had previously undergone positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET) scans in order to diagnose, treat, or monitor cancer. The researchers collected these PET scan images and used them to measure the levels of brown fat.
The researchers discovered that the people who had the highest levels of brown fat were the least likely to have chronic diseases including congestive heart failure, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, coronary artery disease, and cerebrovascular disease. These benefits were “more pronounced in individuals with overweight or obesity,” suggesting that brown fat may help offset some of the damaging impact of obesity on the body.
There are lots to learn still about brown fat. But researchers suspect that brown fat’s dense concentration of mitochondria and its use of glucose for fuel may help explain why the tissue appears to be so beneficial to overall health.
Want to optimize the amount of brown fat in your body? Here are three simple techniques you can use
Let’s face it: you can’t “life hack” your way to better health without also following some basic principles like sound nutrition and regular exercise. But thanks to expanding research, many people are using unique lifestyle strategies to enhance their overall well-being.
Strategies to promote the growth of brown fat in the body is a perfect example of this. For example, research suggests that exposing yourself to cold temperatures more often may promote brown fat development in your body. This makes sense since one of brown fat’s primary roles is to help regulate your body temperature. Try lowering the temperature in your home, spending time outside in cold weather, or spending a few minutes under cold water at the end of your shower.
Not a fan of the cold? Two other research-backed ways to boost brown fat in the body include regular exercise and intermittent fasting. And even though more research is needed to clarify exactly how effective these strategies are at promoting brown fat production, cold exposure, exercise, and intermittent fasting are all known to offer other health benefits anyway, so they can still be helpful tools to use.
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