THE FAT-BURNING BROWN FAT REVOLUTION: 10 THERMOGENIC BROWN FAT ACTIVATORS
Posted on July 14 2020
By Steve Blechman
A true revolution absolutely requires a paradigm shift that fundamentally contradicts previously held notions. The wildly held belief that all body fat is bad is currently being heavily scrutinized, due to the recent discovery of a different type of fat in humans known as brown fat. This type of body fat can actually burn off energy in the form of heat by a process known as thermogenesis, which can ultimately reduce overall body fat. This discovery has provided the requisite paradigm shift spawning a new revolution in weight loss that is the primary focus of the book Thermo Heat™ Weight Loss Revolution by Michael J. Rudolph, Ph.D. that includes the foreword by Daniel L. Friedman, MD and Eugene B. Friedman, MD. You can click the link to order on Amazon here published by Advanced Research Media, Inc. You can also get a free PDF version here
The body has two forms of fat: white fat, or unwanted fat that can lie directly underneath the skin, and brown fat, which often is found in the shoulder blade region or the neck. Unlike white fat, brown fat is the good fat as it can help burn more calories. The more brown fat you have, the more calories you burn.
Brown fat is packed with mitochondria loaded with UCP-1, the protein that uncouples fat burning with ATP (energy) production instead of converting the energy into heat via thermogenesis, making the mitochondria effectively the furnace of the cell. The emergence of brown fat as a readily available fat-burning furnace is revolutionary, but like any fire, it requires the proper kindling materials. The ability to get lean by producing extra brown fat, or enhancing the activity of existing brown fat, represents a promising way to burn fat and lose weight.
Several landmark discoveries and approaches to enhancing brown fat function are being explored at major research centers and universities worldwide, with great excitement. Brown fat research is a hot topic today.
TOP 10 THERMOGENIC BROWN FAT ACTIVATORS
By Michael Rudolph, Ph.D.
- Caffeine Raises Your Thermogenic Buzz
Caffeine is best known as the active ingredient in coffee that stimulates the central nervous system, impeding drowsiness and restoring alertness. Caffeine is also a potent thermogenic compound. In fact, a single dose of 100 milligrams of caffeine can increase thermogenically driven energy expenditure by approximately 100 calories per day, demonstrating that regularly ingested doses of caffeine can have a significant influence on energy balance and fat loss.
- P-Synephrine (from Citrus aurantium) Safely Boosts Thermogenic Fat Loss
P-Synephrine is an alkaloid found in bitter orange and other citrus fruits including oranges and grapefruits, and is widely used for weight management. Studies show that P-synephrine specifically binds to beta-3 adrenergic receptors found in brown fat. This class of adrenergic receptor explicitly activates thermogenesis within brown fat. In line with this finding, P-synephrine has been shown to elicit a thermogenic effect by increasing resting metabolic rate in humans, with no adverse impact on heart rate or blood pressure, which typically occurs by activating the beta-1 and beta-2 adrenergic receptors.
- Dopamine Activators: Tyrosine and L-Dopa (from Mucuna pruriens) Drive Thermogenesis
Consumption of the dopamine precursors tyrosine and L-Dopa increases dopamine production and function. The neurotransmitter dopamine regulates neurons that initiate the thermogenic process. In fact, energy expenditure was shown to increase in subjects infused with dopamine in a dose-dependent manner, where greater levels of dopamine increased the amount of energy expenditure. Consequently, the capability of tyrosine and L-Dopa to increase dopamine levels should produce a robust thermogenic effect, supporting considerable fat loss.
- Ursolic Acid Increases BAT Levels for Enhanced Thermogenesis
Another powerful approach that exploits the thermogenic potential of brown fat involves increasing the amount of brown fat in the body. A compound found in many fruits and herbs, known as ursolic acid, has recently been shown to increase brown fat levels. Ursolic acid has also been shown to increase the expression of UCP-1, effectively increasing the thermogenic capacity of brown fat. This combined action gives ursolic acid the unique capacity to increase both the activity and quantity of brown fat, providing an extraordinary capacity to increase thermogenically driven energy expenditure and considerable fat loss.
- Bile Acids Activate Thermogenesis by Stimulating Thyroid Hormone Activity
Bile acids typically emulsify fat for improved digestion. The use of bile acids as a supplement also provides resistance to diet-induced obesity by upregulating thyroid hormone function, which boosts thermogenesis in brown fat. More precisely, bile acids have the capacity to bind to the TGR-5 receptor embedded in the cellular membrane of brown fat. The interaction between bile acids and the TGR-5 receptor escalates the expression of the enzyme deiodinase, which catalyzes the production of the active thyroid hormone triiodothyronine or T3. Greater T3 results in the stimulation of UCP-1 production, which enhances brown fat thermogenesis.
- Kaempferol and 7. Oleuropein – Polyphenols That Improve Thyroid Function and Fat Burning
A wide variety of polyphenolic compounds also enhance thermogenic fat loss. One of the more potent being oleuropein, a polyphenolic found in extra-virgin olive oil, which can enhance noradrenaline secretion and increase UCP-1 in brown fat, triggering thermogenesis. Another polyphenolic with remarkable thermogenic properties isolated from different sources such as tea, broccoli and grapefruit is the compound kaempferol. This compound uniquely activates the thermogenic process in muscle cells. All cells have the capacity to burn fat and expend energy via thermogenesis. Kaempferol also stimulates thyroid hormone production, which stimulates thermogenesis in brown fat, giving kaempferol the unusual capability to activate thermogenesis in different cell types within the body, which most certainly contributes to its robust fat-scorching capacity.
- Spices: Capsaicin, Piperine, Ginger (Gingerols), Cinnamon (Cinnamaldehyde)
Capsaicin is the spice found in chili peppers that contributes to the hot and spicy flavor of the chili pepper. Capsaicin directly binds and activates the TRPV1 receptor within the oral cavity – which releases noradrenaline, boosting thermogenesis in brown fat. Several studies have shown that a single ingestion of capsaicin can activate brown fat thermogenesis, while longer term ingestion of roughly six weeks increased thermogenesis in brown fat, resulting in reduced body fat. Interestingly, this six-week study also showed thermogenic activity in brown fat contributed significantly to fat loss in individuals who had an extremely low amount of brown fat before the study began, which strongly suggests that long-term intake of capsaicin can also increase the amount of brown fat in the body.
Three more spices – piperine, the spicy compound from black pepper; cinnamaldehyde, the pungent ingredient in cinnamon; and gingerol, the active constituent in ginger – also strongly induce thermogenic fat loss. Like capsaicin, piperine and gingerol activate the TRPV1 receptor while cinnamaldehyde activates the TRPA1 receptor, a member within the TRPV1 family of receptors. Activation of this family of receptors triggers thermogenic energy expenditure in a similar fashion to capsaicinoids, which ultimately depletes body fat in a similarly powerful way. For best results, take quick-release supplements of capsaicin. Coated or delayed-release capsaicin may not be as effective because they bypass TRPV1 receptors in the stomach and upper gastrointestinal tract.
- Forskolin (from Coleus forskohlii)
Forskolin is a chemical produced by the Indian coleus plant that activates the enzyme adenylyl cyclase within brown fat, resulting in greater cyclic AMP (cAMP) levels. Increased levels of cAMP in brown fat cells also occur when noradrenaline binds to the beta-adrenergic receptor, triggering thermogenesis. Therefore, the ability of forskolin to increase cAMP levels in brown fat also enhances thermogenesis. In fact, it has been reported that hamsters and rats given forskolin increased oxygen consumption and thermogenic activity of brown fat. Furthermore, forskolin does not interact with beta-receptors in brown fat cells like noradrenaline does, indicating that forskolin could have an additive impact on thermogenesis when taken with other thermogenic compounds that directly trigger noradrenaline release and beta-adrenergic production of cAMP – producing superior levels of thermogenic fat loss.
Melatonin is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland in the brain that regulates the sleep/wake cycle, helping you fall asleep. Melatonin is also involved in energy metabolism and bodyweight control. Many studies show that melatonin reduces bodyweight and abdominal fat without eating less or increasing physical activity. Conceivably, melatonin reduces fat without decreasing food consumption or physical activity by activating thermogenesis in brown fat, which increases energy expenditure and thus fat loss.
For most of Michael Rudolph’s career he has been engrossed in the exercise world as either an athlete (he played college football at Hofstra University), personal trainer or as a research scientist (he earned a B.Sc. in Exercise Science at Hofstra University and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Stony Brook University). After earning his Ph.D., Michael investigated the molecular biology of exercise as a fellow at Harvard Medical School and Columbia University for over eight years. That research contributed seminally to understanding the function of the incredibly important cellular energy sensor AMPK – leading to numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals including the journal Nature. Michael is currently a scientist working at the New York Structural Biology Center doing contract work for the Department of Defense on a project involving national security.
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