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[Journal Cell Physiology March 11, 2015] About 50% of used energy is used to maintain a constant body core temperature.For the first time researchers now report that lean individuals exhibit a slightly higher core body temperature (100.22 Fahrenheit compared to 98.24 F for obese individuals) during the day ( AM to PM) but not at night.[Obesity Sept 2011] However, even among those individuals who do not exhibit activated brown fat on a PET scan, researchers say PET scans are not optimal for imaging brown fat and that regardless of PET scan status, brown fat is “highly prevalent in adult humans.” [Journal Clinical Endocrinology Metabolism Aug 2011] The detection of brown fat by PET scan is protective against diabetes and obesity.[Molecular Imaging Biology Dec 2011] Subjects whose brown fat doesn’t readily take up sugar as visualized on a PET scan tend to have modestly higher blood sugar levels.In fact, brown fat is not just beneficial for the waistline.
[New England Journal of Medicine April 9, 2009] While the traditional description of the origin of obesity is rooted in an imbalance between energy intake (food consumption) and expenditure (such as exercise), only now have researchers discovered a metabolic difference between the lean and obese.
[Medical News Today Sept 15, 2014] As technologically advanced as PET scans are, they underestimate the prevalence of brown fat because they only measure activated brown fat.
[Current Opinion Clinical Nutrition Metabolic Care Jan 2011] And of course, PET scans expose subjects to a radiation hazard.
[Current Opinion Clinical Nutrition Metabolic Care Jan 2011; American Journal Physiology Endocrinology Metabolism Oct 2010] Brown fat is not only distinguished from white fat by its color but also by its iron content that gives it a tan to dark red color.
The fat that builds up around the midsection and thighs is white fat while brown fat is mainly found around the collarbones and neck bones.