Scientists may have found a new solution in the warfare that America wages against the ever present problem of obesity. Scientists may have found that they could cure overactive bladders and obesity with the same drug, which switches on the fat-burning process in the body.A team of researchers from Harvard Medical School started trials and later on, published their discoveries in the journal Cell Metabolism.
As soon as they realized the drug Mirabegron (which is FDA-approved), used specifically to treat overactive bladder, could also affect the metabolic burning efforts, they began trials. What happened was that he drug was activating a receptor from the surface of both brown fat and the bladder. So the researchers thought that if the drug could control the bladder’s receptor, it might also be able to control people’s weight. They weren’t wrong.
The trial subjects, consisting of 12 healthy men, were given 200 milligrams (mg) of Mirabegron. It immediately increased the subjects’ metabolic resting rate by 203 calories per day, which equals to the number of calories a person burns staying in bed all day. Even though the FDA approved the drug only for bladder control, and only at a 50mg dosage, the participants did not present any signs of overdose.
The drug works because the same receptor is shared by brown fat and the bladder, and activating it would mean stimulating the brown fat to burn more calories than it normally would, especially in obese people. Conversely, it is to expect that fit younger people have higher levels of brown fat. Currently, there is no accurate way to find out how much brown fat do our bodies have, but this area is being very actively researched. What happens is that through exercising, brown fat converts the white-yellow fat into even more brown fat; this helps the body burn calories and shapes it into a healthier condition, which is the ultimate goal for people struggling with obesity.
Another way to activate brown fat is with cold temperatures; however, the effects were short-lived, so this is a better alternative way to start up the fat’s metabolizing engine. The key factor driving researchers around the world into experimenting with this type of fat, is the possibility of finding a solution to America’s obesity epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of the country struggles with obesity, therefore, solutions are in the highest demand. To this day, obesity is in the national top of increasing health problems, affecting more and more people each generation.
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