Both diet and exercise are essential for weight loss. In fact, both play a significant role in staying fit and healthy. And, while diet alone is good enough combining it with exercise makes it even more effective as it releases a weight loss hormone.
During exercise, the body releases irisin, a fat-burning hormone that not only helps the body shed fat but prevents it from forming. Experts say that irisin hormone may suppress or prevent fat cell formation by 20% to 60%.
Some call it an exercise hormone but perhaps, the more appropriate description would be a weight loss hormone.
How Irisin Weight Loss Hormone Works?
Irisin hormone is also known as FNDC51 and it prevents and fights fat formation in the body. Colloquially, experts call it an exercise hormone because the body releases it during moderate aerobic endurance exercise.
During physical activity, the engagement of the cardiorespiratory system, as well as exertion of force through the muscles, releases irisin.
It fights and prevents fat formation in two ways.
First, irisin appears to activate protein and genes responsible for storing calories to white fat cells into brown fat.
The conversion of white fat cells to brown fat cells is essential for burning fat as the latter helps burn energy even after exercising.
Second, irisin inhibits the formation of fatty tissue. In a 2016 study2 in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology And Metabolism, researchers confirmed its weight loss benefit.
The researchers say that irisin release during exercise is beneficial for clinical intervention for fighting obesity3, as well as maintaining ideal body weight.
Moreover, the researchers believe that the irisin hormone reduces the body’s ability to store fat through a complex chain reaction. Through this process, irisin prevents it by turning white fat cells into brown fat.
Furthermore, irisin, as a weight-loss hormone also promotes the differentiation of stem cells into bone-forming cells.
Another Way Of Converting White Fat to Brown Fat
Another way of converting non-beneficial white fat cells into fat-burning cells or brown fat is through cold showers.
This is not to suggest favoring cold showers over-exercise. Instead, combining both as ways to switch the body into fat-burning mode.
Moreover, when it comes to diet, it would be beneficial and worth considering to do intermittent fasting. IF or intermittent fasting has been shown to lower blood pressure, regenerate pancreas in diabetic patients, and boost the body’s immune system.
More Health Benefits of Irisin
Besides an effective hormone for weight loss, irisin has other health benefits. This is somehow a sort of domino effect as one benefit leads to another benefit and so on.
1Improves Heart Health
Earlier studies of irisin classified it as a myokine, which is a chemical messenger or cytokine produced by muscles, with the following benefits such as;
- Boosting metabolic rate and energy expenditure
- Reducing the risk of arterial plaque buildup
- Increasing mitochondrial biogenesis
- Promoting telomere elongation in cells
Among other health benefits of irisin hormone offers include improving diagnosis of common endocrine disorder like polycystic ovary syndrome(PCOS)5 in teen girls.
What Type of Exercise Induces The Body To Release Irisin?
There is no specific exercise. Hence, you can do HIIT along with strength training, or even running and brisk walking. The key is to exercise regularly.
Even simple exercises like squatting is a good choice. Additionally, doing quick full-body exercises is just as beneficial. Not only that, but some of these quick full-body exercises are also useful in inducing the body to release nitric oxide naturally.
As mentioned earlier, doing one thing can lead to a domino effect. And, as long as that one thing you do is beneficial like exercise, it can lead to many health benefits.
Of course, always consider a good nutrition plan and stick to eating whole foods like fruits and vegetables.