Show Details

Heart Hormones & Fat

March 19, 2012

Hormones released by the heart may help burn fat.



Fat-burning heart hormones. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

When your pulse quickens, your heart releases a hormone called NPRA that helps you burn fat.  This according to a study at the Sanford-Burnham Research Institute in Orlando, Florida.  Diabetes and obesity researcher Sheila Collins says the hormone has a similar effect to that of adrenaline, which converts energy-storing white fat into energy-burning brown fat.  She and her colleagues experimented on white fat cells in the lab.

SHEILA COLLINS (Sanford-Burnham Research Institute):

When we gave them either the synthetic adrenaline, or these heart hormones, they could turn on all the machinery of becoming a brown fat cell.  And being active at wasting energy.

The findings help explain how vigorous exercise helps you lose weight. It could also lead to new obesity treatments that either boost or imitate the heart hormones’ activity.  I’m Bob Hirshon for AAAS, the Science Society.