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Good News About Big Bottoms

A type of fat that accumulates around the hips and bottom may actually offer some protection against diabetes.

Subcutaneous fat, or fat that collects under the skin, helps to improve sensitivity to the hormone insulin, which regulates blood sugar. Mice that got transplants of this type of fat lost weight and their fat cells shrank.

Researchers have known for some time that fat that collects in your abdomen -- known as visceral fat -- can raise your risk of diabetes and heart disease. People with pear-shaped bodies are less prone to these disorders. It seems that their fat may be actively protecting them from metabolic disease.

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

The first thing that struck me as I read through this study was how conventional medicine is confronted by the reality -- each and every day -- of just how little is really known about the vast interconnectedness of the human body. And, of course, just how seldom they face that reality squarely and use it as a sign that strict caution is required when trying to fix a medical problem from without, instead of maintaining or restoring health from within.

Surprising Fat Findings – They’re More Different Than Previously Thought

We’ve known for some time that body fat, and especially visceral fat (the fat that gathers around your internal organs, around your midsection) is a major contributing factor to developing diabetes and metabolic syndrome (which also used to be called Syndrome X).

But this study shows that there’s more to this issue than previously thought.

Subcutaneous fat, found just under your skin, is the type of fat that causes dimpling and cellulite. This type of fat turns out to be intrinsically different from visceral fat in several ways.

It actually produces substances that act systemically to improve glucose metabolism, and is able to communicate with various organs to elicit beneficial effects.

Not only is the gene expression inherently different between the two types of fat, but the fats also vary their genetic expressions based on where in the body they’re placed!

For example, when the researchers added more subcutaneous fat subcutaneously, there was no major difference in health outcome. But when they placed subcutaneous fat in with visceral fat, in the abdominal cavity, all of a sudden there were surprising health benefits, such as weight loss and improved metabolic function.

Aside from rejoicing if you happen to carry a little more fat around your hips and buttocks, this should also remind you just how experimental conventional medical treatments are. Especially pharmaceutical drugs, which are synthetic substances used to change or control a specific function in your body.

Completely unsuspected, surprising adverse effects are virtually guaranteed in this system, because no one knows exactly how this artificial change will affect the rest of your system, which is FAR more interconnected than any scientist is willing to accept when he’s staring at a new potential blockbuster drug.

Which, by the way, is exactly what they’re aiming for here.

The Search for Magic Bullets Continue

As stated in this article: “Kahn's team is working to find the substances produced in subcutaneous fat that provide the benefit with the hope of developing a drug that might copy this effect. Although fat is known to produce several hormones, Kahn said none of the known hormones appeared to be involved in this process.

"If we can capture those (substances), we might have an opportunity to convert them into drugs or use them as guides to help develop drugs," he said.”

This is precisely what is wrong with conventional medicine. They look at virtually every new discovery as an opportunity for a drug solution.  Although it’s certainly possible that some highly targeted stem cell approach might be an effective solution in the distant future, I am not aware of ANY drug that will address the foundational causes of obesity.

Worse yet, I don’t really anticipate any to be developed in my lifetime. Will there be new drugs for obesity?  Of course, but it is my belief that every one of them will fail to address the cause and have some unexpected adverse side effect on some unsuspecting metabolic pathway that will cause disruptions in normal physiology leading to some disease.

Basic Guidelines for Metabolic Syndrome and Diabetes

Two guidelines should be placed at the top of your list if you have been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome (pre-diabetes), namely:

  1. Exercise, and
  2. Avoid grains and sugars in your diet like the plague

These two guidelines are so important, they will benefit absolutely anyone, regardless of whether you have pre-diabetes or not; whether you’re overweight or not. They are basic foundations of optimal health!

In addition to those two fundamental basics, the following guidelines are vital components if you have metabolic syndrome or diabetes:

  1. Avoid trans fats
  2. Get plenty of omega-3 fats from krill oil or fish oil
  3. Get enough quality sleep every night
  4. Maintain a healthy body weight

Exercise Right for Optimal Benefits

One of the keys in using exercise to normalize your insulin and leptin levels, with the secondary benefits of weight loss and normalization of blood sugars, is to make certain minimum thresholds are met. It is my experience that most people are not exercising enough.

There are three important variables with exercise:

  • Length of time
  • Frequency
  • Intensity

Assuming you can exercise, I encourage you to gradually increase the amount of time you exercise to reach one hour per day. Initially the frequency is daily. This is your treatment dose until you normalize your weight or insulin levels. Once normalized, you only need to exercise three to four times per week.

Exercise hard enough so that it is very difficult to talk to someone next to you. When you are exercising that hard your cardiovascular system is under such a significant stress that the mere act of talking makes you unable to provide your body with enough oxygen because of the diversion of airflow.

 If you cannot carry on a conversation at all, then you have gone too far and need to decrease the intensity slightly. However, most people don’t exercise at the appropriate intensity and as a result aren’t able to obtain the benefits.