Men Exposed to Cold Leads to Leaner Offspring
By Steve Blechman
An amazing new study released in the prestigious journal Nature, Medicine on July 9, 2018 showed that men exposed to cold temperatures could influence leaner offspring with more brown fat! What does this mean exactly? The body has two forms of fat – WHITE FAT and BROWN FAT. Brown fat burns calories. The more brown fat you have, the more calories you burn. The capability of harnessing one’s own brown fat for fat burning is revolutionary! The ability to get lean by producing extra brown fat and enhancing and activating existing brown fat (brown adipose tissue, BAT) represents a promising way to burn fat. Individuals born with more brown fat (usually found on the neck, scapula and collarbone) tend to be leaner and healthier.
The researchers studied both mice and humans. They found that the males, not the females, exposed to a cool environment before conception increased brown fat in offspring. The international team, led by ETH Professor Christian Wolfrum, shows that men “who spend time in low temperatures before mating will produce offspring with more active brown adipose tissue.” This is known as brown fat (BAT). What this means is that the environment the father experiences will have an impact on what is passed on to his offspring. According to the article published in Technology Networks on July 10, 2018, “Researchers at the University of Zurich analyzed computed tomography images of 8,400 patients. They found people born between July and November, which were probably conceived at the colder time of the year, have significantly more active brown adipose tissue than people born between January and June (who were conceived in the hotter half of the year).”
To follow up on this research, scientists conducted studies on mice. “The offspring of males kept in cool conditions were better protected against excess weight— they gained less weight on a high-fat diet— and against metabolic disorders.”
But before you go jump into a freezing pool of cold water, or take a long cold shower, keep in mind that the researchers noted, “…before we can give that kind of advice, we need to study the correlation in people more closely,” Dr. Wolfrum says. “…it is likely that the exposure to cold needs to persist over a longer period for it to have an effect on epigenetic programming.”
To follow up this study, scientists are planning a study that will “compare the epigenetic programming of human sperm in summer and winter.” For couples planning a family, other ways to increase cold exposure is to turn down the thermostat, keep the air conditioning at high levels during the summer, try swimming in a cold pool or the ocean, wear less clothing in the winter, and take cold baths/showers. For example, after a warm shower, place the showerhead on your neck and shoulders and turn on the cold water directly on your shoulder blades. This will activate BAT in the scapula region of the neck and shoulder blades. The cold will activate brown fat thermogenesis and energy expenditure. It’s quite invigorating, but only recommended in healthy individuals because cold exposure can induce sympathetic nervous system activity, cause vasoconstriction, raise blood pressure in susceptible individuals, and is not recommended for those with cardiovascular disease or hypertension.
In the wintertime, working out in the cold weather is a great way to enhance BAT and convert white fat to brown fat— since cold exposure is not practical for most people and is not tolerated well, especially with people that are not healthy or have cardiovascular disease. More heart attacks have been shown to occur in northern climates during cold exposure (winter) than in southern regions where the climate is warm, as seen with the “snowbirds” who travel from the cold weather to the warm weather in Florida.
The latest extreme cold exposure trend is “cryotherapy,” when you are encased below the neck in a tank that is minus 300 degrees Fahrenheit. These full-body cryotherapy chambers, as they are called, are thought to promote weight loss, pain recovery, mood enhancement and relieve muscle soreness. Cryotherapy centers are opening around the country.
However, there is no scientific evidence to show that cryotherapy increases brown adipose tissue (BAT), thermogenesis and weight loss. A six-month study of moderate aerobic activity combined with whole-body cryotherapy did not change body mass, fat or lean body mass percentages. The experiment was performed on 45 overweight and obese men.
Celebrity athletes like LeBron James and Shaquille O’Neal have touted their benefits. Cryotherapy operators are called “cryo-therapists.”
Some deaths have been reported from using cryotherapy, and while the reasons aren’t clear, the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) noted on June 5, 2016 in a report that while cryotherapy may be a “cool” trend, it poses risk. The FDA stated in their report that, “Given a growing interest from consumers in whole-body cryotherapy, the FDA has informally reviewed the medical literature available on this subject,” says Aron Yustein, M.D., a medical officer in the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health. “We found very little evidence about its safety or effectiveness in treating the conditions for which it is being promoted.”
Cold-water immersion is a popular strategy that is used by many athletes to recover from exercise. A study in the Journal of Physiology, published August 13, 2015 found that cold-water immersion prevented long-term gains in muscle mass and strength. It also inhibited the activation of key proteins and satellite cells that regulate muscle hypertrophy in skeletal muscle for two days after strength training exercise! This resulted in smaller long-term training gains and muscle hypertrophy (muscle growth). Strength-training individuals who want to improve athletic performance and muscle growth should think twice about using cold-water immersion as part of their training routine.
Because cold is not a practical approach for increasing BAT-induced thermogenesis and weight loss for most people, and it may not be pleasant or safe, diet, exercise and certain supplements would be a better approach then cold exposure!! Plus, cold-water immersion inhibits athletic performance, strength-training gains and muscle growth.
For more authoritative information on brown fat see ThermoHeat Weight Loss Revolution, by Michael J. Rudolph, Ph.D, including the foreword by Daniel L. Friedman, MD and Eugene B Friedman, MD. You can click the link to order or order on Amazon here The Thermo Heat Weight Loss Revolution is a groundbreaking scientific plan based on research involving brown fat (BAT.) The ThermoHeat Weight Loss Revolution offers its readers a brown fat, thermogenic and brown-fat-activating-diet supplements.
Additionally, a section of this book is devoted to appropriate brown fat-activating exercise programs and food choices, plus an easy-to-follow 30-day thermogenic, fat-burning meal plan. Followers of this scientifically developed program will find that they are able to harness the power of brown fat, maximize their energy expenditure, attain and then maintain their ideal weight, and achieve the reduction of body fat and preservation of lean muscle they are looking for.
Sun W et al.: Cold-induced epigenetic programming of the sperm enhances brown adipose tissue activity in the offspring, Nature Medicine, 9 July 2018, doi: 10.1038/s41591-018-0102-y.
Cold Leads to Slimmer Offspring by Fabio Bergamin ETHzurich https://www.ethz.ch/en/news-and-events/eth-news/news/2018/07/environmental-impact-passed-on-to-offspring.html
Environmental Conditions Impact Offspring Health, July 10, 2018 Technology Networks https://www.technologynetworks.com/applied-sciences/news/environmental-conditions-impact-offspring-health-306029
The New England Journal of Medicine July 20, 2017 by Wendy M. Kohrt, Ph.D., and Margaret E. Wierman, M.D. http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMcibr1704542
Cell Metabolism published online July 18, 2017 published in print Burning Fat and Building Bone August 1, 2017 http://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/fulltext/S1550-4131(17)30441-2?_returnURL=http%3A%2F%2Flinkinghub.elsevier.com%2Fretrieve%2Fpii%2FS1550413117304412%3Fshowall%3Dtrue
The New York Times August 7, 2018 Researchers Track an Unlikely Culprit in Weight Gain by Gina Kolata https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/07/health/fsh-hormone-weight-gain.html
Obesity Reviews May 25, 2017 published August 1, 2017 Non-shivering thermogenesis as a mechanism to facilitate sustainable weight loss http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/obr.12563/full
Obesity Reviews July 14, 2017 Human brown adipose tissue as a target for obesity management; beyond cold-induced thermogenesis http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/obr.12584/abstract
Obesity Reviews February 10, 2017 Factors involved in white-to-brown adipose tissue conversion and in thermogenesis: a review http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/obr.12520/full
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Whole Body Cryotherapy (WBC): A "Cool" Trend that Lacks Evidence, Poses Risks https://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm508739.htm
Peake, J. M., Roberts, L. A., Figueiredo, V. C., Egner, I., Krog, S., Aas, S. N., Suzuki, K., Markworth, J. F., Coombes, J. S., Cameron-Smith, D. and Raastad, T. (2017), The effects of cold water immersion and active recovery on inflammation and cell stress responses in human skeletal muscle after resistance exercise. J Physiol, 595: 695-711. doi:10.1113/JP272881
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ThermoHeat Weight Loss Revolution by Michael Rudolph, Ph.D, foreword by Daniel L. Friedman, MD and Eugene B Friedman, MD. http://store.advancedmolecularlabs.com/thermo-heat-weight-loss-revolution.html and Amazon http://a.co/99Ua5he