The fitness world is no different than high alpinism in the sense that it is filled with mystical creatures nobody has ever really seen. Anavar, Superdrol and brown fat are the most prominent ones.
Brown fat is often touted as teh cure for obesity, the fat that burns fat, the best thing ever- buy my pill to get it.
What is it? On the one hand, there is white fat, which is basically a single lipid droplet per fat cell and not much else. Brown fat has many small fat droplets, capillaries and mitochondrias, therefore it is metabolically active
Brown fat produces heat via uncoupling the protein UCP1 whereas white fat mainly stores energy.
So in a nut shell, brown fat helps you burn fat. It also helps with glucose control and weight control.
Where is it located? In adults mainly along the shoulder blades and spine which wis why these parts light up when you run a heat map on a person training,
Cool! Where do I get it?
Lets back track for a second and ask: who has/needs lot of brown fat?
Babies and hibernating animals.
Because babies have
1. A larger head compared to their bodies
2. Very little muscle to keep them warm.
3. hardly any white fat to insulate
4. Can not dress themselves
5. can not move away from cold spots.
So in a way, brown fat saved mankind.
As we get older the mitochondria’s turn off and the brown fat becomes white.
Now, with the fitness industry being a business the question arises: Can we increase our brown fat stores or even better , transform white into brown thereby curing obesity?
Yes…. tempting but here is the issue: in order to make white fat brown you need to build mitochondrias which is a very energy intense and complex process. The thought of a herb or a pill transforming tissue from passive to active is a bit ambititous to say the least.
Now there are certain things you can do to get a rise in brown fat activity such as
1. Cold showers/ being in colder environments when training/ riding your bike to work in shorts in NYC during November ( oh wait thats me)
2. Get your sleep
4. Do not overeat
An exciting list, right???
What about supplements?
Again the data is spotty but it seems that ursolic acid ( found in apple peels) ,melatonin for deeper sleep, capsicain ( found in red chili) and black pepper might have a minimal effect.
As for drugs, there is no single drug out yet that will take you to the promised land. Some Beta 3 components have shown promise in mice but that is about it.
In conclusion, looking to create more brown fat in your body is a losing proposition. You are better off investing the time, energy and money in reducing your white fat stores, proper coaching and nutrition.