Fat and Life

The Basic.

When we eat, we stash the calories we don’t use in tiny storage containers called fat cells, which was very handy back when food wasn’t available 24/7. “A healthy-weight woman can survive for a month just by drawing on the energy in her fat cells.” says an endocrinologist who studies body fat distribution. But thanks to our desk jobs and uber eats, our fat cells tend to stockpile extra calories, which means they may start bursting at their seams. This is when the problems start. Not only do overly puffed-up fat cells puff us up, but they also begin to malfunction. Fat cells help regulate hormones and immunity, but when they are too big, they react differently, disrupting insulin regulation (leading to type 2 diabetes) and causing chronic inflammation (tied to heart disease and cancer). And when the cells are at max capacity, fat collects in and around our internal organs, causing major issues.

But fear not:” while it can take a while to get rid of excess fat, you can make it happen,” says a Ph. D of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at the National Institute of Health. Here’s the deal with body fat and the best ways to scale back your stores if you feel the need to.

1 White Fat:

This is the vast majority of body fat, mostly stored right under skin (subcutaneous fat). In addition to giving, you your sexy curves, it produces a hormone called adiponectin, which has anti-inflammatory properties and helps insulin balance your blood sugar, says a Ph. Dat Obesity Research Cluster at Texas Tech University. The smaller or normal-size fat cells you have, the more responsive to insulin they are and the more anti-inflammatory hormones and substances they’ll produce and release. The bigger those fat cells get, the less of these they produce, putting you at risk for serious health conditions.

2 Visceral Fat:

Once your subcutaneous fat cells are full, white fat accumulates deep inside your body, first around your intestines, then in your liver, around your heart and in your blood vessels. Fat in these areas, called visceral fat, has been linked to high cholesterol, insulin resistance, heart disease, and more.

3 Brown and Beige fats:

Brown fat is the “good fat” that burns stored fat for energy. Babies and children have more of it than adults, because it produces heat to keep little ones warm; adults who have more brown fat tend to be leaner. Scientists are trying to figure out how to boost brown fat, but theirs is also another fat-factor to consider. “In some parts of the body, white fat can convert to brown-like fat, which we call beige.” This is promising because converting even a portion of white fat to beige can make a big impact on keeping fat cells at an optimal size.

4 Cellulite:

This is simply white fat that’s developed scar-like tissue, which gives it a lumpy, uneven appearance. Cellulite can be genetic, or as a result of inflammation that accumulates between layers of fat cells that have become too big. “Cellulite is no different than white fat, except for how it looks. However, its nothing to worry about from a health perspective.

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