Fat-fighting hormone could make you happier, smarter and skinnier

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CAMBRIDGE, MA-- Did you ever wonder why you can't seem to lose that gut you have? It's not just because you sit on the couch all day eating cheese doodles. (Of course, that doesn't help.)

Harvard scientists say you don't have enough irisin in your blood. They call it the 'exercise hormone' which is released by your muscles when you get off your duff and get moving. Irisin enters your bloodstream and actually starts converting white fat into brown fat. White fat is where energy is stored and what turns you blob-like when there's too much of it. Brown fat burns off the white stuff.

Side effects of irisin may include: less stress, less depression, increased memory, younger skin and better health. Basically, everything we all know that exercise does (and yet we still avoid it).

Now before you hit the streets looking for synthetic irisin to squeeze back into those skinny jeans, it hasn't been invented yet. But you can bet Big Pharmaceuticals are working overtime to make it happen.

In the meantime, put the diet soda down and get out and take a brisk walk or go pump some iron. Your body will start producing irisin, completely naturally and for free, and all those health benefits will follow.

Short version: exercise leads to good health.  But don't we already know that?

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