Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Shivering could burn body fat by stimulating hormones

5 February 2014

Shivering against the cold may have the added benefit of burning body fat, a new study led by a University of Queensland researcher has found.

The study, which determined the role of hormones in regulating how humans respond to cold, showed that shivering caused the body to secrete hormones that transform ordinary white fat into fat-burning brown fat.

Dr Paul Lee, who led the study, is a UQ/National Health and Medical Research Council-funded endocrinologist and visiting fellow at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States.

“Unlike ordinary white fat, which primarily stores excess calories, brown fat may actually help the body burn calories when activated,” Dr Lee said.

Healthy volunteers were exposed to cold temperatures until they shivered and researchers collected blood samples during cooling to measure levels of different hormones.

“We found that the hormones irisin and FGF21 were released when the subjects grew cold, irisin from shivering muscle and FGF21 from activated brown fat,” Dr Lee said.

The team then treated human white fat cells with the two hormones in the laboratory and observed that treated fat cells took on the characteristics of heat-producing and energy-burning brown fat cells.

Previous studies have shown that people who are lean tend to have more brown fat than people who are overweight.

“Further research will establish whether these two hormones may be targeted to help the body produce more brown fat, which may benefit metabolism and weight control,” Dr Lee said.

The study was conducted at and supported by the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at the NIH.

Dr Lee’s role in the study was also supported by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council Early Career Fellowship, the Royal Australasian College of Physicians Foundation Diabetes Australia Fellowship, the Bushell Fellowship, and the School of Medicine at The University of Queensland.

Full study findings appear in the journal, published on 4 February 2014.

END

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: Fletcher To Close Its Christchurch Insulation Plant, Cut 29 Jobs

Fletcher Building, New Zealand’s largest listed company, will close its Christchurch insulation factory, as it consolidates its Tasman Insulations operations in a “highly competitive market”. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Novartis Adds Nine New Treatments Under Pharmac Deal

Novartis New Zealand, the local unit of the global pharmaceuticals firm, has added nine new treatments in a far-ranging agreement with government drug buying agency, Pharmac. More>>

ALSO:

Crown Accounts: English Wary On Tax Take, Could Threaten Surplus

Finance Minister Bill English is warning the tax take may come in below forecast in the current financial year, as figures released today confirm it was short by nearly $1 billion in the year to June 30 and English warned of the potential impact of slumping receipts from agricultural exports. More>>

ALSO:

Auckland Outage: Power Mostly Restored Overnight

Vector wishes to advise that all but 324 customers have been restored overnight. These customers are spread throughout the network in small pockets. The main St Johns feeder was restored around midnight allowing most of the customers in all affected areas to have power this morning. More>>

ALSO:

Half Empty: Dairy Prices Drop To Lowest Since August 2009

Dairy product prices fell to the lowest level in more than five years in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, led by declines in butter milk powder and whole milk powder. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand

Mosh Social Media
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news