Until recently, nutrition scientists and the general public regarded all dietary fats as bad, and they made no distinction between the different types of fat tissue in our bodies. Once they researched a bit deeper, they found out that our bodies are prone to burning certain types of fat as opposed to storing them, certain fatty acids take on the role of hormonal precursors and other types take on all kinds of roles and provide various benefits that are yet to be examined and understood.
What are the different types of fat?
Nutrition scientists have found out that different types of fat stored in certain body areas play different roles in our bodies’ function. Additionally, they all have a different impact on our metabolism and overall health. The fitness rookie focuses on getting rid of the subcutaneous fat, which is the type that’s just beneath your skin and can be held together with the so-called “K pinch”.
This type of fat is made up of two separate layers, superficial and deep layer. The first layer that is just beneath your skin was the type of fat considered by nutrition scientists to be the first type to be used as a fuel source if food was not available. Those who overeat will experience the biggest increase in the superficial layer, while the people who are on calorie restriction will lose this layer.
If you had a poor diet and neglected physical activity, chances are that your body will start storing fat into other depots, like the deep subcutaneous layer. It’s been found that the deep layer serves multiple purposes. The first one being that it offers a protective layer from sudden environmental changes, softening minor collision impact against various sharp and solid objects. It is also crucial in controlling your temperature, having the role of an insulator against loss of body heat and the flow of warm or cool blood from and to the skin surface which can be drastically hotter or colder in comparison to your internal body temperature.
The deep layer also acts as an organ, by producing molecules similar to hormones, known as lipokines which control body inflammation levels, insulin resistance, and many others. It’s been found that the relation between the deep subcutaneous fat and insulin resistance and other illnesses is more pronounced in men than in women.
Inside our midsection, there exists another type of fat depot, which is often ignored, called visceral fat. This type has become the target of recent studies, since it’s been proven to be an especially strong indicator of development of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome and many other health issues. As we already said about the deep subcutaneous fat layer, visceral fat produces lipokines which affect our liver, and impact our body’s inflammation levels.
This type of fat has a serious role in controlling the balance of energy and maintaining a healthy weight. Scientists are eager to find any possible type of meds which would target these different types of fat depots and have a positive impact on our weight and overall health status. Taking into consideration the obesity epidemic that has taken control over America and our culture’s obsession with body image, it’s no wonder subcutaneous and visceral fat have become an integral part of our vocabulary.
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