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The incredible benefit of brown fat that will make you want it

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Manish Saini
Manish works as a Journalist and writer at Revyuh.com. He has studied Political Science and graduated from Delhi University. He is a Political engineer, fascinated by politics, and traditional businesses. He is also attached to many NGO's in the country and helping poor children to get the basic education. Email: Manish (at) revyuh (dot) com

A new study endorses the benefits of this type of fat, such as protection against diseases, which could be the prelude to new treatments against obesity

Probably every time you hear the word ‘fat’, everything but some positive connotation comes to mind: cartridge belts, calories, curves or extra kilos … Well, a new finding can make you change your mentality and ask for more brown fat on your body.

As you know, in the body we have two types of adipose tissue: white fat and brown fat. Unlike the first, brown fat burns energy. Several scientific studies have shown this and, in fact, research continues to carry out treatments for obesity.

What was not clear was whether people with large amounts of brown fat are in better health. Until now, when a new study of Rockefeller University, published in Nature Medicine, has found the key and has evidence that people with oily detectable brown are less likely to suffer heart disease and metabolic disorders (from diabetes type 2 to coronary artery disease).

The results of this analysis, which had 52,000 participants, may be the prelude to new treatments for obesity, since for the first time there is talk of a lower risk of developing diseases. 

“These findings give us more confidence in the potential of targeting brown fat for therapeutic benefit,” explains one of the study’s lead authors, Paul Cohen, assistant professor and senior physician at Rockefeller University Hospital.

Protector of diseases

Of the 130,000 scans the study authors analyzed, they found brown fat in 10% of people. And it was shown how they had a lower risk of developing diseases such as diabetes or cholesterol. For example, only 4.6% had type 2 diabetes compared to 9.5% of people without detectable brown fat. And likewise, 18.9% had abnormal cholesterol, compared to 22.2% in those without brown fat.

But in addition to these diseases, the researchers found evidence of lower risk for three other conditions, including hypertension, congestive heart failure, and coronary artery disease. Something completely new.

In addition, the authors highlight another finding that they have found surprising and that is, brown fat can mitigate the negative effects of obesity on health. In other words, although obesity is directly related to the development of diseases, obese people with brown fat have the same prevalence of these conditions as non-obese people. As if brown grease acts as a protective shield against what white grease does.

Burning calories and blood glucose levels

Researchers have not been able to determine what are the mechanisms that cause brown fat to have these effects, but they have been able to deduce how it works. Brown fat cells are known to consume glucose to burn calories, and this may lower blood glucose levels (which is a risk factor for developing diabetes).

“We are considering the possibility that brown fat tissue does more than consume glucose and burn calories, and perhaps actually participates in hormone signaling to other organs,” says Cohen.

Now future research is focusing on looking for genetic variants of fats and explaining why some people have more brown fat than others, in order to develop ways to stimulate the activity of this fat and innovate in the treatment of obesity. If you are wondering what you can do to have more brown fat in the body, at the moment you will not be able to have that answer, it is the great unknown that researchers continue to study.

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