Adults can grow new fat cells after all, study shows

 
By Tom Nordlie • Published: January 13th, 2011
Category: Health in a Heartbeat
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In 2008, a study published in the journal Nature said adults don’t grow new fat cells.

That was nice to hear.

The battle of the bulge might seem a little more winnable if we know there won’t be any new enemy troops.

Now, a study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says

adults can develop new fat cells.

And that revelation could provide insight about the risk of Type 2 diabetes.

The study investigated the location and composition of newly acquired body fat.

It involved about thirty healthy young adults.

For two months, they overate at every meal. They were also given supplemental treats to boost weight gain.

The participants put on an average of ten pounds.

Eight-and-a-half pounds of it was fat.

They also developed two-point-six billion new fat cells in the lower body.

New fat cells usually didn’t appear in the abdominal area. There, existing cells just got larger.

That’s not good.

Oversized abdominal fat cells are a predictor for insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.

So the people who added most of their new body fat around the middle were at greater risk for those conditions.

The researchers suggested that the tendency to develop new fat cells in the legs and hips may be a protective mechanism against metabolic disorders.

The only problem is, not everyone gets the same amount of protection.

So for people with pot bellies, this study contains new field intelligence.

It says winning the battle of the bulge is more important than we previously thought.

Fortunately, you have allies. They’re diet, exercise and regular doctor’s visits.

Those three fat-fighters belong on any slim-down squadron.

And if you need them, they’re always ready for recruitment.

In 2008, a study published in the journal Nature said adults don’t grow new fat cells.

That was nice to hear.

The battle of the bulge might seem a little more winnable if we know there won’t be any new enemy troops.

Now, a study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says

adults can develop new fat cells.

And that revelation could provide insight about the risk of Type 2 diabetes.

The study investigated the location and composition of newly acquired body fat.

It involved about thirty healthy young adults.

For two months, they overate at every meal. They were also given supplemental treats to boost weight gain.

The participants put on an average of ten pounds.

Eight-and-a-half pounds of it was fat.

They also developed two-point-six billion new fat cells in the lower body.

New fat cells usually didn’t appear in the abdominal area. There, existing cells just got larger.

That’s not good.

Oversized abdominal fat cells are a predictor for insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.

So the people who added most of their new body fat around the middle were at greater risk for those conditions.

The researchers suggested that the tendency to develop new fat cells in the legs and hips may be a protective mechanism against metabolic disorders.

The only problem is, not everyone gets the same amount of protection.

So for people with pot bellies, this study contains new field intelligence.

It says winning the battle of the bulge is more important than we previously thought.

Fortunately, you have allies. They’re diet, exercise and regular doctor’s visits.

Those three fat-fighters belong on any slim-down squadron.

And if you need them, they’re always ready for recruitment.