Scientists found a cup of coffee can stimulate brown fat cells, which generate heat by burning excess calories.
Brown fat cells have the opposite function of white fat cells, which are used to store excess calories for energy.
Now scientists hope that understanding what stimulates brown fat could lead to new weight regimes and treatments for obesity and diabetes.
Researchers at the University of Nottingham performed stem cell studies to see if coffee (or the caffeine) could activate brown fat cells.
Professor Michael Symonds, who co-authored the study, said: “Brown fat produces heat by burning sugar and fat, often in response to cold. Increasing its activity improves blood sugar control and the extra calories burnt help with weight loss.
“However, until now, no one has found an acceptable way to stimulate its activity in humans.”
The researchers are now running tests to work out whether it is the caffeine or another ingredient in the coffee that activates the brown fat. Daily Mail