On the verge of summer, most of us are already on a diet and doing more sport than usual to show off our bodies on the beach.
Unfortunately, more than often, it seems impossible to get rid of some stubborn fat deposits, and it is easy to lose spirit and give up.
To help you understand how localized fat works and keep it under control, we have decided to get to the very root of the problem, where everything starts, the adipocytes.
Adipocytes, also known as fat cells, are cells specialized in storing energy. They are the main component of the adipose tissue or fatty tissue and play a crucial role in fat metabolization.
HOW MANY ADIPOCYTES DO WE HAVE?
An average of between 25 and 35 billion, though these figures are approximative and may vary in every person. It has been found that the number of adipocytes can increase during childhood but remains relatively stable in adult life.
According to that, people who have been overweight in childhood have a higher number of adipocytes and are more prone to weight gain. On the other hand, weight gain in adulthood implies an increase in the size of the existing adipocytes but not an increase in the number of fat cells. Also, the proportion of white and brown adipocytes is determinant in fat accumulation, being white fat the main responsible for weight gain.
TYPES OF ADIPOCYTES
The adipose or fatty tissue is the energy reservoir of the human body and its thermoregulator. It is composed of two main types of adipocytes, white and brown (white fat and brown fat).
They are the most abundant in humans. They accumulate lipids, primarily triglycerides, in a single droplet. Their main function is to store fat for use in times of scarcity. They could get quite large compared to brown adipocytes.
Brown adipocytes are composed of several tiny lipid droplets. Their main function is to maintain the body temperature during cold exposure and burn energy when needed. For that, they contain a specific protein, uncoupling protein 1, that mediates thermogenesis.
When losing weight, brown adipocytes are the ones that help to burn fat. White fat cells are the ones that we need to shrink or transform into brown ones – a process called browning.
TURNING WHITE FAT INTO BROWN FAT
Subjects with higher rates of brown fat have less risk of obesity or overweight. Therefore, the higher the number of brown adipocytes you have, the easiest the task of losing weight. You obviously cannot modify your constitutive brown fat, that is, the percentage of brown fat cells you were born with, but you can promote the browning of your white fat.
Recent discoveries have found new methods to induce the transformation of white adipocytes into brown ones.
Here we list some tips to induce browning of white fat. They can help to improve fat metabolism and lose some extra pounds.
DO SOME SPORT
Physical activity releases a peptide called irisin that acts as a biomarker to induce the browning of fat cells. If your doctor’s advice of doing some workouts is not enough to convince you, bear in mind that now scientists claim that it also has metabolic implications.
Turning down the temperature a little activates thermoregulation carried out by brown fat cells. Intermittent exposure to cold or cool environments (no need to freeze nor suffer) activates those brown adipocytes, eventually making your organism recruit more from the white counterpart and turning them into brown ones. Turning a little down your home thermostat or taking cool showers are good techniques that show results with time.
EAT UNPEELED APPLES
Besides its antioxidant properties, apple skin contains an organic compound called apple polyphenols which have been shown to induce browning of white tissue.
STIMULATE MELATONIN PRODUCTION
Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone known for regulating the sleep cycle. Nowadays, we also know that, in addition, it helps to regulate fat metabolism and induce browning.
You can promote melatonin production easily; by avoiding screen time before going to bed, enjoying physical activity and sunlight during the day, practicing relaxation techniques, or eating melatonin-rich foods (cherries, bananas, tomatoes, nuts, milk, and so many others). You will know when you are producing more melatonin because it will make you sleep better. There are also melatonin supplements, but only take these if you are having real sleeping problems (not only for the browning implications) and for a short period because it is much healthier to let your body produce it on its own.
SPECIFIC SLIMMING PRODUCTS
INNO-TDS® slimming products have been designed to shrink white adipocytes, and promote the browning of white fat, flush away toxins, and reduce water retention.
We hope that these tips, accompanied by a healthy weight-loss diet, will help you achieve your goals for this summer!