What if indulging in your favorite raspberries, blueberries, grapes, and other fruits this summer could help you to burn stubborn stores of fat? Well, that may just be possible, according to a new study published in the International Journal of Obesity.
The study examines how a substance known as resveratrol, which is found in many fruits, induces a “brown-like adipocyte formation in white fat through activation of AMP-activated protein kinase or α1.” In other words, eating two or three servings of berries and grapes (as well as other fruits) daily can convert ‘bad’ fat stored in our bodies into ‘calorie-burning, good fat.’
Though the study utilized female mice to conclude that eating fruit could burn fat stores, the results were quite impressive:
“Resveratrol significantly increased mRNA and/or protein expression of brown adipocyte markers, including uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1), PR domain-containing 16, cell death-inducing DFFA-like effector A, elongation of very long-chain fatty acids protein 3, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ coactivator 1α, cytochrome c and pyruvate dehydrogenase, in differentiated iWAT stromal vascular cells (SVCs), suggesting that resveratrol induced brown-like adipocyte formation in vitro.”
In another piece of research published in Genes & Nutrition, scientists looked at the effects of resveratrol on diabetics. They discovered the compound protects diabetics from heart disease by protecting the blood vessels commonly damaged by fluctuations in blood sugar levels. So fat-loss is not the only benefit this compound has to offer.
While other foods contain this fat-converting resveratrol, such as peanut butter, pistachios, and dark chocolate, red grapes and blueberries are especially rich in the substance. Many people mistakenly believe they have to drink red wine to get resveratrol’s benefits, but the grapes don’t need to be fermented.
Interestingly, plants make resveratrol to fight fungal infections, ultraviolet radiation, and stress. It seems resveratrol helps our bodies do some amazing things too.
Christina Sarich is a humanitarian and freelance writer helping you to Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World. Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing the Body And Mind Through the Art of Yoga.