Ursolic acid: properties, benefits, sources - Increase muscle and burn fat

Ursolic Acid Review, Benefits and possible Side Effects. Some of the Ursolic Acid Properties has to do with losing fat and gaining muscle, and also improving physical performance.

To expose the properties and benefits that ursolic acid has mainly on the skeletal muscles and the creation of brown fat, I will take as a basis a study conducted in men titled: "Ursolic acid increases the amount of the irisine hormone in the blood Which increases muscle strength during resistance exercises. "

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Ursolic Acid Review - Health Benefits For Skeltal Muscle Growth?

So, to understand this study and why ursolic acid is good for your health and well-being, and to explain how ursolic acid can increase muscle strength during resistance training, you should first clarify some concepts mentioned in the title of this study:

NOTE: ursolic acid can be found in tablets, powders and capsules but also in fruits such as apple, pear, grapes, among others and in many vegetables, mainly in their shells. So wash very well before eating them.

And keep in mind chewing very well the husks before swallowing them in order to promote a better digestion and absorption of ursolic acid.

Remember: ursolic acid could inhibit muscle atrophy.

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Benefits of taking Ursolic Acid

1. Irisine:

Irisine is a hormone that tends to increase its levels while a person performs exercise, especially when it comes to exercises of high intensity, or also performed at moderate intensity but long duration (resistance), and it is responsible Of causing our body to produce heat and at the same time is able to help us turn our white fat into brown fat (brown adipose tissue).

So Ursolic acid promotes its creation by increasing the amount of irisine.

2. Brown fat or brown adipose tissue:

Thanks to the exercise and consumption of foods and / or supplements containing ursolic acid, our body is able to increase the production of this type of fat and reduce the levels of White fat that serves as reservoir of energy (which usually makes you look fat).

Instead, brown fat that accumulates in brown adipose tissue allows us to generate heat, is a type of tissue that is more vascularized (it gets more blood) and has a greater amount of mitochondria so we could say that we can burn more white fat thanks to this type of brown fabric and we can also protect us more against the cold (low temperatures).

3. Endurance exercises:

Usually this type of exercises have as main objective to increase the anabolic capacities of our organism through hormonal and molecular factors, contributing to the increased secretion of the hormone insulin, increasing also the production of Insulin Growth Factor (IGF-1) And also myoquines, all these being hormones that contribute to the processes of growth and muscular development, mainly.

Resistance exercises act primarily on the elevation of IGF-1 which is a hormone that can regulate hypertrophy and muscle strength, and is also closely associated with myoquine levels in the bloodstream.

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Ursolic acid influences muscle recovery, increased muscle mass and increased brown fat (brown adipose tissue)

Method of study: The participants of the study whose title I mentioned in the first paragraph of this article, performed a resistance exercise program under strict supervision.

There was one group to which it was supplemented with ursolic acid for 8 weeks, there was a control group who was given a placebo.

None of the groups were mentioned to which group they belonged.

Blood samples were taken in both groups before and after 8 weeks of training, and there was also a prior and subsequent evaluation of both body composition and muscle strength in each individual in each group.

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Subjects: 30 healthy Korean men who were performing resistance exercises for an average period of 3 years were chosen as the first instance for this study, of which only 16 remained according to the inclusion and exclusion criteria of the study.

The average decimal age of participants was 29.7 years.

Intervention: Participants performed the resistance exercise program for 8 weeks using free weights and machines under the supervision of a trained instructor who led the stretching exercises as a warm-up phase to prevent soft tissue injuries and ensure the safety of each subject.

Ursolic acid supplementation: The placebo group received 3 capsules daily containing 450 mg of guar gum and the Ursolic Acid group received 3 capsules daily containing 450 mg rosemary ursolic acid extract.

The capsules had the same color, shape and size, and participants took 1 capsule (150 mg) after each of the 3 main meals.

Participants were followed up by questionnaire by e-mail, cell phone and visits to the laboratory to confirm compliance with the supplementation throughout the study.

Results of the study: no significant differences were observed in body composition and strength parameters between the group to be supplemented with ursolic acid and the placebo group before applying the 8 weeks of resistance training.

After 8 weeks of training, the group that consumed ursolic acid had a significant reduction in white fat levels compared to the group that consumed placebo.

Although the increase in lean mass (lean muscle mass) showed only a slightly significant increase in the ursolic acid group compared to the placebo group.

As for the levels of the Irisine and IGF-1 hormones, and the strength characteristic, all three of these variables showed significant increases in their post values ​​with respect to their pre values ​​in the group consuming ursolic acid compared to the group that only consumed placebo.

Conclusion: until now the simplest conclusion would be that ursolic acid helps the production of brown fat, the elimination of white fat and the increase of the hormones Irisin and IGF-1 which contribute to the aforementioned brown fat muscle hypertrophy and strenght.

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Second study on ursolic acid, although this time will be tested in rats

I will now take as reference a study in rats which is titled: "Ursolic acid increases skeletal muscle mass and brown fat, and decreases the risks of obesity caused by poor eating habits, glucose intolerance and fatty liver" .

Well, actually the title of this study that I'm going to reference is not so long, but I wanted to do it more specific, I mean the real title I will mention it in the next subtitle.

The goal of this study will then be to expose the benefits of ursolic acid on the skeletal muscles and the creation of brown fat or also known as brown adipose tissue.

As an initial part, it should be noted that ursolic acid is found mainly in the shell of fruits such as apples, grapes, pear, among others.

However, it is worth noting that it is good to wash these very well before ingesting them especially when it comes to countries that are not developed where the health regulations are questionable.

Ursolic Acid Increases Skeletal Muscle and Brown Fat and Decreases Diet-Induced Obesity, Glucose Intolerance and Fatty Liver Disease

NOTE: This study aimed to study rats and mice.

Even so the results in humans can also occur, but it must be taken into account that all work must not be left to ursolic acid since other eating and life habits play an important role to prevent muscle atrophy and promote muscle hypertrophy and also to prevent several diseases.

Ursolic acid is a lipophilic pentacyclic triterpenoid that contributes to "waxy coats" in apples, other fruits and many herbs, including some medicinal folk herbal for diabetes.

We have recently identified ursolic acid in a screen for small molecule inhibitors of skeletal muscle atrophy.

In that study, we assessed the effects of fasting and spinal cord injury on mRNA levels of skeletal muscle in humans, and used that information to generate signatures of mRNA expression unbiased for human skeletal muscle atrophy.

These signatures were then used to consult the connectivity map for compounds whose expression signatures negatively correlated with signatures of human muscle atrophy.

Of 1300 compounds in the connectivity map, ursolic acid emerged as the most likely inhibitor of muscle atrophy.

To test the hypothesis that ursolic acid could inhibit muscle atrophy, we studied mice that had been fasted or subjected to denervation of the surgical muscle, and found that ursolic acid reduced muscle atrophy.

Then investigated the effect of ursolic acid in the absence of a stimulus of atrophy by adding ursolic acid to standard food mice for 5 weeks.

In that context, ursolic acid would induce hypertrophy in the skeletal muscles.

Since Akt protein kinase (also known as PKB) inhibits muscle atrophy and promotes muscle hypertrophy, we examined the effect of ursolic acid on Akt.

Ursolic acid was found to increase Akt activity in mouse skeletal muscle and C2C12 cultures in skeletal myotubes.

In urinary myotubes, ursolic acid increased Akt activity at least in part by enhancing insulin-dependent receptor-binding and insulin-like growth factor receptor 1 (IGF-1) activation.

In addition to causing muscle hypertrophy, genetic interventions that activate Akt (PKB) specifically in skeletal muscle also increase energy expenditure, reduce adiposity and blood glucose, and impart resistance to obesity induced by diet, glucose intolerance and Fatty liver disease.

Similarly, ursolic acid was found to reduce adiposity and blood glucose in non-obese mice, and others found that ursolic acid reduced total body weight, white fat, glucose intolerance, and hepatic steatosis in Mice with high fat content.

Based on these considerations, the hypothesis is that ursolic acid could increase Akt skeletal muscle activity in a diet-induced obesity model of mice, leading to muscle hypertrophy, increased energy expenditure, and Both, reduced obesity, impaired glucose tolerance and fatty liver disease.

In the present study, this hypothesis has been tested, and it was found that ursolic acid increases not only the skeletal muscle, but also another tissue that opposes diet-induced obesity: brown fat.


First study: Yung Seo, D. et al. (2014). Ursolic Acid-Induced Elevation of Serum Irisin Augments Muscle Strength During Resistance Training in Men.

Second study: Steven D. Kunkel et. to the. (2012). Ursolic Acid Increases Skeletal Muscle and Brown Fat and Decreases Diet-Induced Obesity, Glucose Intolerance and Fatty Liver Disease.