Scientists in the United States have shown that keywordbrown fat, which is also known as “good fat”, occurs in differing amounts in kids, and that this increases until they reach puberty before declining. They also found that brown fat is more common in leaner children.
The research, carried out at the Joslin Diabetes Center and Children’s Hospital Boston and published in the Journal of Pediatrics, involved PET imaging data to assess the levels of brown fat was in children, and also how it burns energy as compared to the white fat that stores it. They were looking for ways to increase brown fat activity without using drugs, and examined the impact of factors such as room temperature and diet.
The team analysed PET scans from 172 children aged between 5 and 21, with 44 per cent found to have brown fat, which was split evenly between girls and boys. The children in the 13–15 age group had the highest percentage of detectable brown fat and activity. Also, body mass index (BMI) was collected inversely from the brown fat activity, which meant that the slimmer children had the highest brown fat activity.
Senior author on the research, Aaron Cypess, MD, commented “Increasing the amount of brown fat in children may be an effective approach at combating the ever increasing rate of obesity and diabetes in children.”

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