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2016-03-08

Women go to BAT

I've been so busy recently that this is the first post is about 3 weeks... AND during that hiatus, this blog's 5-year anniversary came and went without any fanfare. It's hard to believe it's been 5 years already, and I look back at all the posts, studies, rants, videos and other extra-curricular goodies that has allowed this blog to grow and spread the message of natural health.

I have to thank everyone of you, all my subscribers, as well as those just stopping by, for helping me make this blog a success...well, at least to me.  :)

To kick things off again, on this International Women's Day, I'm going to quickly discuss a new study on brown adipose tissue (BAT), also known as "brown fat." If you are new to this term, click HERE as I've discussed this a few times before.


BAT is a specific type of fat that can generate heat by burning fatty acids, a process mediated by uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1). As mentioned in other posts previously ,white adipose tissue (WAT) depots can gain BAT-like properties.

Various studies have suggested that females have more active BAT or BAT-like WAT, and so the researchers behind this new study looked at sex differences in BAT-like properties of human perirenal adipose tissue.

Perirenal and subcutaneous adipose tissue was obtained from 20 male and 24 female healthy live kidney donors. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), adipocyte precursor cells, were isolated from these depots to study whether intrinsic factors control BAT-like properties of the adipose tissue depots.

When average outside temperature a week before harvesting was below 11°C, brown-like adipocytes expressing UCP1 were present in perirenal adipose tissue of women, but not of men. MSCs derived from perirenal adipose tissue expressed significantly more UCP1 when from female origin compared to male origin. However, UCP1 protein content and oxygen consumption rate did not differ between adipocytes derived from male and female perirenal MSCs.

The researchers conclude, "Female perirenal adipose tissue has a higher potency to gain BAT-like properties than male perirenal adipose tissue. The degree of gaining BAT-like properties depends on sex-specific intrinsic factors and environmental triggers such as temperature."

I thought this was appropriate to discuss before the global-warming makes cold weather exposure a thing of the past. This really is the best way to build BAT, which has all sorts of health benefits. In the Toronto area, we're expecting a high of 15 or 16°C tomororow, so don't think I'll be building much brown fat anytime soon.  :(

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Source: Women have more potential to induce browning of perirenal adipose tissue than men.

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