The holidays may have ruined your weight-perhaps you've gained a couple of pounds or even more-but don't worry there are many ways to get rid of that extra fat. One of the things you can do is to go outside and enjoy the cold weather!
According to a new study conducted by University of California-Berkeley researchers led by Sook Sul, the cold temperature can increase the production of Zfp516. It is a transcription factor and a type of protein that has a part in forming brown fat.
Brown fat is the kind of fat you want to have in your body. Unlike white fat, this one burns more calories. High levels of this protein can help white fat act like brown fat, so even if it doesn't convert into brown fat, white fat starts consuming more calories. Brown fat is also responsible for helping regulate both metabolism and insulin. It may even significantly reduce the risk of insulin resistance, which is one of the first warning signs of a metabolic syndrome.
For the study the mice were provided with high levels of this protein. Those that received it weighed 30% less than those that didn't even if they had a high-fat diet.
Since the tests have just been tested on mice, the study still requires more investigation, especially on how it affects humans. Learning about the transcription factor, however, is a great reward since it can be the first step to finding perhaps medications or treatments to increase brown fat in the body.
If you need some assurance, though, you simply have to look at the Finnish people who usually have to live in the frigid temperatures. Their outdoor workers registered a lot of brown fat. However, to produce brown fat, you have to be out-that is, air-conditioned environments don't work. The brown fat of these Finnish workers was compared to those who worked indoors.