Brown fat is used to burn calories in order to generate heat. This is the reason brown fat is known as the “good” fat, as it helps to burn, not store, calories. Brown fat is derived from muscle tissue and is mostly found in hibernating animals and newborn babies. As you get older, the quantity of brown fat significantly decreases. Adults who have comparatively more brown fat tend to be younger and slender and have normal blood sugar levels.
Brown fat is generated by: exercising, which converts white-yellow fat to the ‘good’ brown fat; getting enough high-quality sleep, as melatonin production influences the production of brown fat; and exposing yourself to the cold regularly. This can include exercising outdoors in the wintertime or in a cold room. Turning off the heat in your living or working space can also promote brown fat generation.
At the end of of all this….Brown fat is what you want/need more of.
To be fair, White fat has many useful purposes. It offers a massive energy reserve in the body. It acts as a thermal insulator and also works as protection for our internal organs. It is a major endocrine organ, producing one form of estrogen as well as leptin, a hormone that helps regulate appetite and hunger. It’s also got receptors for insulin, growth hormone, adrenaline, and cortisol (stress hormone). White fat is actually a very important component of your body’s composition.
In women, excess fat accumulates around the hips, thighs, buttocks, and breasts until perimenopause (the 40s), when fat is redistributed to the abdomen as well. Men tend to gather excess fat primarily in the belly region most of their lives.
An excess of white fat inside the belly (visceral fat) is associated with metabolic syndrome—a group of symptoms that signal an increased risk for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Excess white fat throughout the body is associated with an increased risk of many different types of cancer, such as breast, colon, gall bladder, and pancreatic. It can also be associated with sleep deprivation and arthritis of the knee.
What body fat% should you be??
Men’s body fat range is 15 to 25 percent; women’s is 15 to 30 percent. One pound of stored fat contains roughly 4,000 calories, so 20 pounds has 80,000 calories of energy storage. That’s a lot!!! For example, if you were stranded without food, you would have enough energy reserve to last 40 days.
White fat is generated by eating an excessive amount of calories, which, if not burned off, get stored in all the places you don’t want it to be.
White fat is very important to our survival. It’s a matter of how much and where it’s located. You want to aim control your visceral fat level, so keeping your waist circumference to less than 35 inches if you’re a woman, and to less than 40 inches if you’re a man. Also try to keep your body fat % within the ranges stated above.
To cap off, try not to consume too many calories as this will be stored within the body, and inhibits the effectiveness of the ‘good’ brown fat.