Scientists in Austria bring to light a new mechanism by which a well-known vitamin can, under certain conditions, help burn fat and lose weight. Read what this vitamin is and how it works.
In the "Transforming" fat from "bad" to "good" reportedly can contribute Vitamin A in cold temperatures environment, according to the findings of a new scientific study that could in the future form the basis of new therapeutic approaches for obesity.
Led by Dr. Florian Kiefer from his Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism Vienna University of Medicine, the study - which is published through Molecular Metabolism- showed that cold ambient temperatures increase vitamin A levels in humans and mice.
This helps to convert "bad" white adipose tissue into "good" brown adipose tissue that stimulates fat burning and heat production. This fat "transformation" is usually accompanied by enhanced energy consumption and is therefore considered a promising approach in the treatment of obesity.
Specifically, Scientists have found that moderate application of cold increases vitamin A levels, which circulates in the blood bound to a protein vector, retinol binding protein. Vitamin A is mainly stored in the liver and exposure to cold is said to stimulate its redistribution to adipose tissue.
Cold-induced increase in vitamin A levels led to the conversion of white adipose tissue into brown, and to higher fat burning rate.
When Dr. Florian Kiefer and his team blocked the chemical transporter of vitamin A, retinol binding protein, in experimental animals through genetic manipulation, both the cold-induced increase in vitamin A levels, as well as the conversion of white adipose tissue to brown, attenuated.
"As a result, "Fat oxidation and thermogenesis were disrupted and mice could no longer be protected from the cold," explains Kiefer., the addition of vitamin A to human white fat cells led to the expression of the characteristics of brown fat cells, with increased metabolic activity and energy consumption.
"Our findings show that Vitamin A plays an important role in the function of adipose tissue and it affects the overall energy metabolism "points out Dr. Kiefer.
He clarifies, in each case, that it is not recommended to take vitamin A supplements unless there is a relevant medical need and guidance, noting that "it is crucial that vitamin A is delivered to the right cells at the right time".