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For each year that passes, it can seem like it’s easier to gain weight and harder and harder to lose it.
In fact, once menopause hits you may feel like getting rid of that stubborn belly fat and those bat wings is an impossible task. After all, we all know that the older we get, the more our metabolism slows down. That’s why that desert you could eat every day in your 20s goes straight to your thighs in your 50s.
Luckily, there is a way to kick your metabolism back into gear, rev it up and start burning those calories instead of storing them again.
And, it’s a simple method you can use at home that’s been scientifically proven to work.
Here are the ins and outs to making it work for you…
Brown vs. white fat
The answer is in the type of fat (or I should say types) on your body. That’s because one fat helps you use up the calories you eat each day, while the other is nothing but a repository for more fat to end up in all the places you don’t want it.
The first — the good kind — is called brown fat. It’s a fat your body needs to burn energy and keep it warm.
The other fat — the one you don’t want more of — is white fat. It’s there to provide an energy reserve (in other words, keep you from starving when there’s not enough food) and cushion your internal organs.
That’s why people with more brown fat tend to be slender, while I’m sure you can imagine what extra white fat looks like in the mirror.
The problem is that the older we get, the less likely we are to have high levels of brown fat, so we burn less calories, we store more of them and we gain weight.
Changing your body fat composition
But, there is a way to change all of that…
You see, scientists have discovered that your body can literally turn white fat into brown fat under certain conditions — basically, when it gets cold enough.
In fact, one study showed that up to 30 percent of your white fat cells can switch to brown fat when exposed to cold while another found that during the winter months, the fat around your belly and thighs can function as brown fat thanks to the temperature drop.
So, how can you harness this power to convert calorie-storing white fat to calorie-burning brown fat in order to lose weight?
The answer is known as BAT (brown adipose tissue) activation. You can do this in a number of ways:
- Take cold showers (Although this should only be used if you’re healthy since cold showers can raise your blood pressure)
- Turn down the thermostat (Lowering temps to the mid-60s or below can help turn on your brown fat)
- Wear less layers in the winter
- Swim in a cold pool or ocean
- Use an icy foot bath (One study found that placing a foot in ice water for five minutes and then repeating on the other side helped participants increased activation of their brown fat by 15 times.)
Overcoming inflammation to accelerate BAT
However, there is one problem you need to be aware of before utilizing BAT to lose weight… Inflammation.
You see, studies show that inflammation can actually block the activation of brown fat making exposing your body to cold a wasted effort when it comes to weight loss.
And, those studies…
They show that anyone who is obese has enough inflammation to be a problem — creating a cycle of inflammation leading to more fat which blocks you from losing the fat with BAT. Ugh!
But, there is a solution to the inflammation issue.
#1 – Use Fish Oil
Fish oil is the number one way I recommend for lowering the levels of inflammation in your body so that you can activate your brown fat and burn more calories.
And, my favorite fish oil is from krill since it doesn’t contain toxins like mercury that are present in so many other fish oils on the market that can build up in your system and destroy your health.
#2 – Take Vitamin C and Other Antioxidants
Free radicals are on the biggest sources of inflammation in your body and the way to combat them is through the use of antioxidants. For this, I recommend Vitamin C which is known to be both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory along with antioxidants like resveratrol (found in the skin of grapes) and superfruits (like mangosteen, acai, goji berry and pomegranate).
#3 – Eat Anti-Inflammatory Foods
And, don’t forget about your diet.
Avoid foods that cause inflammation like sugar, alcohol and processed foods and instead focus on foods that are anti-inflammatory, like nuts, tomatoes, olive oil, green leafy veggies and fresh fruit.
#4 – Get Regular Exercise
Studies show that just 20 minutes a day of physical activity is enough to significantly reduce the amount of inflammation in your body. So, get out there and take a walk, ride a bike, go for a swim or join a class at your gym.
Getting older may be inevitable but gaining weight as you age isn’t. Fight inflammation and use BAT to turn your white fat into calorie-burning brown fat to slim down and get a slimmer, younger-looking body.
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- You can make your body fat burn off extra calories — Easy Health Options
- Exposure to cold reveals ‘switch’ that controls formation of brown, white fat — Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
- What Is Brown Fat? 8 Key Facts to Boost Your Metabolism — Reader’s Digest
- Use the cold winter to suddenly melt off fat — Easy Health Options
- Foods that fight inflammation — Harvard University
- Just 20 minutes of exercise enough to reduce inflammation, study finds — medicalnewstoday.com