(CNN)Research has shown that the fatter your body becomes, the harder it becomes to burn that excess fat.
New protein could help burn fat faster
1 of 8
2 of 8
3 of 8
4 of 8
5 of 8
6 of 8
7 of 8
8 of 8
Vital Signs is a monthly program bringing viewers health stories from around the world.
As people eat more fat than they burn, the body stores this excess in various parts of the body and as this storage increases, metabolism changes.
However, all is not lost: a recent study by researchers at the University of Cambridge identified one of the proteins underlying this blockage of fat burn. "[This protein] is part of the system in place to help the body store more energy," says Antonio Vidal-Puig, Professor in Molecular Nutrition and Metabolism, who worked on the study.
The culprit, called sLR11, was found to block the functioning of brown fat cells -- responsible for generating heat to keep us warm -- and instead help the body store fat more efficiently by preventing excessive heat generation.