Dr. Mercola: Irisin: The Health Promoting Hormone Produced By Exercise

Diet and exercise are two interwoven aspects of the body change mechanisms. One cannot work without the other. Both of them are interconnected by a biological lever and work likewise.

A recent research has reportedly shown that a fat burning hormone, Irisin or FNDC5 is released during exercise which helps the body in shedding the stored fat and its further formation. Epoch Times reported as, “Irisin appears to work by boosting the activity of genes and a protein that are crucial to turning white fat cells into brown cells. It also significantly increases the amount of energy used by those cells, indicating it has a role in burning fat.”

Recent tests done on this hormone have said that iririn can suppress fat cell formation by 20 to 60 percent. Exercise increases the formation of this hormone and hence keeps our body fat percentage down.

Irisin is a myokine, a chemical messenger produced by muscle and helps in a variety of ways. It lowers the risk of atherosclerosis by preventing the formation of plaque. It increases the mitochondrial biogenesis, telomere elongation and increase in metabolic rate making it a heart protective and immune protective hormone.

Irisin also protects against polycystic ovarian disease. Polycystic ovarian disease causes obesity and male sexual characters to appear in girls. It helps in regulating weight and fights obesity and hence the disease. This hormone has the capability of converting the white fat cells into brown fat cells which rather than storing fat, help in burning it.

In 2014, Dr. Doug McGuff said in an interview to Dr. Mercola about the significance of myokines and the most effective way to boost their production, “ Myokines are very anti-inflammatory, and research suggests myokines may play an important role in combating metabolic syndrome and cancer, for example. It may also increase insulin sensitivity, increase glucose utilization inside your muscles, increase liberation of fat from adipose fat cells, increase burning of fat, and inhibit body fat irrespective of calorie intake and inhibit release and effect of inflammatory cytokines produced by body fat.”

There are some ways in which the production of Irisin may be boosted such as eating more fruits and vegetables and using carbs in a low quantity. Working out with high intensity training rather than slow intensity may also increase the production of this hormone. Meal timings are important. Research has suggested that having meals at the same time everyday helps in overall health boost and prevention of excess fat deposition and also increases the basal metabolic rate.

Intermittent fasting may help too in reducing the white fat deposition and improving the overall health. Boost the production of Irisin by following all the remedial measures and take your health to another level.



American Journal of Physiology, Endocrinology and Metabolism August 19, 2016; 311(2): E530-E541

 Mercola.com, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome by John R. Lee, M.D. July 1999

Journal of Clinical Investigation 2012 Feb 1;122(2):486-9


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