Advertisement

Exercise 'can make cells turn to bone instead of fat'

Physical activity can cause certain stem cells to become bone rather than fat, research has indicated.

Scientists at McMaster University suggested the findings offer another reason to exercise - as overall health is improved by an enhanced capacity to make blood.

The study of mice showed mesenchymal stem cells, which can turn to bone or fat, were more likely to take the latter path in sedentary animals.

"What we're suggesting is that exercise is a potent stimulus - enough of a stimulus to actually trigger a switch in these [cells]," said leader of the research Gianni Parise.

Fat cells filling the bone marrow cavity can mean blood stem cells are less productive, which can result in conditions such as anaemia, but bone cells encourage the process and can ultimately boost the immune system and make oxygen uptake more efficient.

Last month, research published in the Lancet indicated just 15 minutes of moderate exercise each day could extend a person's lifespan by several years.

Comment on this page »

Features

Latest news

Nuffield Health opens doors of new Cambridge Hospital

Nuffield Health plans to open state-of-the-art diagnostic suite

£1.2 million refurbishment at Nuffield Health Bournemouth Hospital

Exercise 'can make cells turn to bone instead of fat'
Advertisement
Advertisement
Connect with us on:

This site compiles with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information