Ingredient Spotlight: Fish Oil for Fat Burning

Researchers from Kyoto University in Japan have discovered that fish oil can enhance fat metabolism in mice. “We knew from previous research that fish oil has tremendous health benefits, including the prevention of fat accumulation. We tested whether fish oil and an increase in beige cells could be related,” said senior researcher, Teruo Kawada.

During the study researchers fed one group of mice fatty foods, and the other group was fed fatty food with fish oil additives. The group that ate the food with fish oil additives gained 5-10% less weight and 15-25% less fat than the group that was not fed any fish oil. Their research has revealed that fish oil assists with transforming fat-storage cells into fat-burning cells, because fish oil stimulates receptors in the digestive tract, triggers the sympathetic nervous system, and prompts storage cells to metabolize fat. In addition, once the fish oil activated the sympathetic nervous system, beige fat cells formed from white fat cells.

This is significant because fat tissues all have specific functions. White fat cells store fat for energy, brown fat cells break down fat to regulate body temperature and beige fat cells metabolize fat. However, beige cells diminish with age, and as the cell production decreases fat continues to accumulate. The results from this study indicate that fish oil could assist with preventing this issue, particularly in older individuals.

Kyoto University. “Fish oil helps transform fat cells from storage to burning: Research shows how fish oil can improve fat metabolism in mice.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December