Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Daylight Could Help Control Our Weight

Date:
August 25, 2009
Source:
University of Nottingham
Summary:
Exciting research into brown adipose tissue -- brown fat, which is found in abundance in hibernating animals and newborn babies -- could lead to new ways of preventing obesity.

New research suggests that daylight is a major factor in controlling the activity of brown adipose tissue, which is involved in obesity.
Credit: iStockphoto

Exciting research into Brown adipose tissue (BAT) — brown fat, which is found in abundance in hibernating animals and newborn babies — could lead to new ways of preventing obesity.

Studies have already shown that BAT activity in adults is reduced with obesity. Therefore, promoting BAT function could prevent or reduce obesity in some people.

New research, led by Michael Symonds, Professor of Developmental Physiology in the School of Clincal Sciences at The University of Nottingham, has shown — for the first time — that daylight is a major factor in controlling BAT activity.

Professor Symonds said: “Our research has suggested a previously unknown mechanism for controlling BAT function in humans and this could potentially lead to new treatments for the prevention or reversal of obesity.”

Winter was traditionally a time of the year that was accompanied with increased thermal demands and thus energy expenditure, but the body’s requirements for BAT has been reduced in recent times by central heating plus global warming. BAT is capable of producing up to 300 times more heat per unit mass compared with all other tissues.

The research, published in the journal Diabetes, studied well over 3500 patients. The presence of BAT was documented and correlated with monthly changes in daylight and ambient temperature. Their results showed that BAT was more common in females and that changes in BAT activity were more closely associated with day light than ambient temperature.

BAT is activated by the cold and is unique in being able to produce very large amounts of heat — but little is known about the main factors that regulate the amount of BAT in our bodies. Professor Symonds said: “Our research demonstrates a very strong seasonal variation in the presence of BAT. The study focused on the impact of daylight and ambient temperature as these are two key factors in determining BAT function in small mammals. Our exciting new findings may help us find novel interventions aimed at promoting BAT activity particularly in the winter.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Nottingham. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Nottingham. "Daylight Could Help Control Our Weight." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 August 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090821135024.htm>.
University of Nottingham. (2009, August 25). Daylight Could Help Control Our Weight. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090821135024.htm
University of Nottingham. "Daylight Could Help Control Our Weight." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090821135024.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins