What exactly is “brown fat,” and what does it have to do with your diabetes risk?

According to a new study, certain people have lower amounts of so-called “brown fat” than others, which might help explain why some have a much greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Unlike white fat, brown fat burns calories instead of storing them, and some studies have shown that brown fat has beneficial effects on glucose (blood sugar) tolerance, fat metabolism and body weight.

Research has shown that compared to whites, blacks are much more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, and to develop it at a younger age. However, little has been known about the reasons behind these differences.

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