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Cooling Vests Activate Brown Fat To Burn Calories, Reduce Obesity

June 4, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
U.S. researchers have found that reduced temperatures activate brown fat to burn calories and reduce obesity. The researchers also found that the chemical ephedrine, used as a decongestant and bronchodilator and lately as a weight loss drug, has no impact on brown fat, though it does burn calories, albeit with some side effects like increased blood pressure. For the study, ten people received ephedrine injections or a placebo, or wore cooling vests. Both methods burned the same number of calories, but the cooling vest activated brown fat with fewer side effects.
Aaron M. Cypess et al., "Cold but not sympathomimetics activates human brown adipose tissue in vivo", Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, June 04, 2012, © National Academy of Sciences
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