Brown Fat Cooling During Your Workout: A Hot Fitness Trend?
Combining exercise with brown fat cooling may accelerate metabolism
Cool workouts could be the next hot fitness trend
A leading researcher who authored a book on diet and lifestyle changes to manage diabetes has encouraged using a cold exercise room for brown fat cooling. Dr. George King, the head of research at the Joslin Diabetes Center at Harvard Medical School in Boston, has started a “Joslin Coolout” exercise program that has people working out in a room chilled to t60 degree range. The idea is to create brown fat cooling during exercise to combine the metabolic benefits of brown fat activation by cooling with the benefits of exercise. Dr. King is the author of “The Diabetes Reset” which has a 12 week plan incorporating 8 changes to your diet and life to prevent diabetes including brown fat cooling in a cool room or wearing a cooling vest for weight loss.
The concept of a cool workout to improve weight loss has already spread to a boutique fitness studio in Boston near the Joslin Center. A fitness class is offered in the basement studio with the thermostat set at 62 degrees, and is already popular with people who will try anything to burn some additional calories. Dr. King is quoted as supporting the double benefit of exercise and brown fat cooling: “Not only do use up the calories from the workout itself, but you can also activate the brown fat, which burns up calories and generates heat.” “Cool workouts could be the next hot fitness trend,” Weintraub, USA Today 8/2/15.
it is not clear to what extent the combination of cold exercise and brown fat cooling can boost metabolism, but future studies can research the benefits of brown fat cooling vests, exercising in a cool room, and turning down your thermostat at home. But it is clear that a leading expert believes that mild cold and its role in stimulating brown adipose tissue will lead to promising health benefits in controlling obesity and diabetes.
Brown Fat Diabetes Cooling Study of Cold Acclimation Shows Profound Increase in Insulin Sensitivity in Only 10 Days
Before and After Glucose Uptake Results Cold Acclimation of BAT. Copyright Nature
A recent study of brown fat diabetes evaluating the promise of cooling as a therapy for people with type 2 diabetes published on nature.com added to mounting evidence of major benefits. People with type 2 diabetes participating in the study of brown fat cooling showed better improvement in their insulin sensitivity than seen in the currently most recommended therapy of long term exercise for diabetes. “Insulin sensitivity was markedly increased after cold acclimation as indicated by on average a 43% increase in the glucose infusion rate….”
After just 10 days of cold acclimation people in the study with type 2 diabetes showed very significant positive impact on both whole-body and skeletal muscle sensitivity to insulin. As a result glucose uptake is markedly improved leading the researchers to conclude that brown fat cooling is a valid new way to improve the metabolic health of people with diabetes.
The method of cold acclimation to study the area of brown fat diabetes cooling therapy was remarkably simple and short. Eight overweight males were included in the study which originally was intended to include eleven to obtain valid results. During the study of the initial eight subjects the results on insulin sensitivity from cold acclimation of brown adipose tissue (brown fat) were so significant that the study was shortened with the approval of an external research monitoring board. During the ten day cold acclimation test, the study subjects were in a room kept at 14-15 degrees centigrade with exposure times increased starting with 2 hours on day 1, 4 hours on day 2, and 6 hours on days 3-10. Patients in the study used their normal medications for type 2 diabetes, ate standardized meals at the same time and were told not to exercise.
Exciting opportunities for brown fat diabetes cooling therapies are opened up by this key study, with a cooling vest for brown fat weight loss and diabetes treatment being one that is convenient. The combination of both brown fat cooling and exercise for diabetes treatment is another exciting concept: one that Dr. George King, head of research at Joslin Diabetes Center is already exploring at the Harvard Medical School institution’s headquarters where a “Joslin Coolout” workout in a cool room has started.