Did you know that there is not only white and brown fat, but also beige fat?

What is the dif­fer­ence between brown fat and white fat and how does fat help us lose weight and even build mus­cle? Why is going on a low-fat diet a very bad idea? How many calo­ries does one kilo­gram of excess fat “weigh” and how to lose it as quick­ly as pos­si­ble? We tell you the most impor­tant things that every­one who cares not only about their shape, but also about their health needs to know.

Fat is vital for us

One of the impor­tant func­tions of fat deposits is to pro­tect vital inter­nal organs. In addi­tion, fat helps main­tain a healthy body tem­per­a­ture and lit­er­al­ly keeps us warm dur­ing the cold sea­son. Anoth­er impor­tant func­tion of fat is to accu­mu­late ener­gy reserves in case of lack of suf­fi­cient food.

Fat comes in different forms

The most com­mon type of fat is white. It is this that is the repos­i­to­ry of stored ener­gy, and it is its excess that we spend when we go on a diet. In addi­tion, it is white fat cells that pro­duce the hor­mones lep­tin and adiponectin. Adiponectin improves the body’s sen­si­tiv­i­ty to insulin, which pro­tects against type 2 dia­betes, and lep­tin is a hor­mone that reg­u­lates appetite and is respon­si­ble for the feel­ing of full­ness.

The sec­ond type of fat is brown or brown, most of it in the neck area. Brown fat cells do not store ener­gy, but rather burn it — after all, it is brown fat that helps reg­u­late our body tem­per­a­ture. The old­er we get, the less brown fat we have in our bod­ies — and this is one of the rea­sons that it is eas­i­er for us to gain excess weight. Mean­while, if you increase the per­cent­age of brown fat in the body, you can lose weight eas­i­er: it will lit­er­al­ly “pull out” stored ener­gy.

We can increase the proportion of “healthy fat”

Research con­firms that we can increase not only the per­cent­age of brown fat in the body, but also its activ­i­ty. Sleep­ing in a cool room (no high­er than 19 degrees Cel­sius) and drink­ing cof­fee are the sim­plest of them.

Brown fat may prevent type 2 diabetes

Anoth­er impor­tant func­tion of brown fat is to con­trol blood sug­ar lev­els. A 2016 study found that the high­er the per­cent­age of such body fat, the low­er the fluc­tu­a­tions in blood sug­ar lev­els and, accord­ing­ly, the low­er the risk of dia­betes.

There is a third, “intermediate” type of fat

The so-called beige fat is a type of fat cells that are obtained after the sym­pa­thet­ic ner­vous sys­tem con­verts white fat cells. Sci­en­tists have just begun to study the trans­for­ma­tion process and prop­er­ties of this “third” fat, but they are already sure that beige fat also helps us burn extra calo­ries.

The location of the fat is also important

The most dan­ger­ous fat is the one that accu­mu­lates in the abdom­i­nal area. The fact is that the fat cells that “hug” our inter­nal organs have the great­est meta­bol­ic activ­i­ty and there­fore release more inflam­ma­to­ry chem­i­cals, which increase the risk of heart dis­ease, liv­er dis­ease, dia­betes and oth­ers. But fat deposits on the hips, arms or legs are prac­ti­cal­ly harm­less.

Fat and depression are closely linked

Every 10 kilo­grams of excess weight sig­nif­i­cant­ly increas­es the risk of devel­op­ing depres­sion, say researchers from Aarhus Uni­ver­si­ty and Aarhus Uni­ver­si­ty Hos­pi­tal in Den­mark. In this case, the loca­tion of fat deposits does not mat­ter. Sci­en­tists can­not yet explain the rea­sons for this rela­tion­ship, but they con­firm that peo­ple who man­aged to lose excess weight end­ed up report­ing a sig­nif­i­cant improve­ment in the symp­toms of depres­sion.

The amount of fat affects brain health

The wider our waist, the less gray mat­ter in our brain — unfor­tu­nate­ly, this is not an idle stereo­type, but a result con­firmed by research. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, a high BMI is inverse­ly pro­por­tion­al to IQ.

Myths about fat that you should stop believing long ago

Still think that skim milk and a meat­less diet are the best choice? Then we come to you — and bring a selec­tion of myths about fat, believ­ing in which is harm­ful to both health and shape.

Myth 1: All fatty foods are bad for you

One gram of any fat “weighs” 9 calo­ries, but it is impor­tant to remem­ber that dif­fer­ent types of fats have dif­fer­ent chem­i­cal struc­tures and, accord­ing­ly, have dif­fer­ent effects on our health. There are three types of fats: trans fats, sat­u­rat­ed and unsat­u­rat­ed. The first type is real­ly harm­ful to health, but unsat­u­rat­ed fats, which are abun­dant in veg­etable oils, nuts, fish and avo­ca­dos, are nec­es­sary for the suc­cess­ful absorp­tion of many vit­a­mins (includ­ing vit­a­min D), and also help fight heart and vas­cu­lar dis­eases.

Myth 2: All fat needs to be “burned off”

The fat that our body stores is essen­tial for health and it is nec­es­sary to main­tain a cer­tain per­cent­age of adi­pose tis­sue in the body in order for all its sys­tems to func­tion nor­mal­ly. It is impor­tant to remem­ber that the real dan­ger is vis­cer­al fat, which envelops the inter­nal organs: it can cause meta­bol­ic dis­or­ders and increase insulin resis­tance. But sub­cu­ta­neous fat, espe­cial­ly brown fat, is not dan­ger­ous.

Myth 3: Belly fat is almost impossible to get rid of.

The eas­i­est way to get rid of waist fat is to stick to a calo­rie deficit. First of all, you should take care of your diet and start eat­ing a bal­anced diet, as well as reduce your stress lev­els as much as pos­si­ble.

Myth 4: The more fat you eat, the fatter you will become.

Odd­ly enough, the oppo­site is actu­al­ly true: the more healthy, monoun­sat­u­rat­ed fats we eat, the faster our metab­o­lism and, accord­ing­ly, the more active­ly our body con­verts incom­ing calo­ries into ener­gy.

Myth 5: When we lose fat, it is always visible on the scale.

For our health, it is much more impor­tant to lose vol­ume, not kilo­grams: when your waist becomes thin­ner, it means that you are los­ing the dan­ger­ous vis­cer­al fat that envelops your inter­nal organs. Most like­ly, this achieve­ment will have almost no effect on the scale, but it will make you much health­i­er.

Myth 6: A low-fat diet is the most effective

In fact, it’s the worst thing you can think of — giv­ing up fat-con­tain­ing foods com­plete­ly in order to lose weight. Veg­etable fats, milk fat, oth­er types of unsat­u­rat­ed fats — with­out them, our health will lit­er­al­ly be at risk. And the body, which does not receive the nec­es­sary ben­e­fi­cial ele­ments, will try to extract them from oth­er foods — and force you to eat again and again. Very bad weight loss strat­e­gy!

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