Thanks to recent research from the Harvard Stem Cell Institute (HSCI), it seems we’re one step closer to having a pill that can mimic the fat-burning effects of exercise.But first, an anatomy lesson. There are two types of fat in our bodies. White fat is what you generally think of when you think of fat; it’s basically just stored energy in your body, and if you eat unhealthy foods and don’t exercise, it can accumulate in your cells. Brown fat, on the other hand, actually burns energy, revving up your metabolism.Using human stem cells, the researchers discovered two compounds that can actually transform white fat into brown fat, the UK’s Daily Mail reported. The more brown fat you have, the more effectively it can burn the white fat, leading to a trimmer figure and healthier cells.Evidence of this fat color change has been seen before in animal studies, but this is the first time research of this kind as shown stable, lasting effects — which means, potential for lasting treatments in humans.Obviously this is huge news. A medication that burns excess fat tissue without any sort of physical activity could make a huge impact in reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity and other diseases that can occur with too much fat buildup in our cells. But keep in mind: A fat-burning pill won’t be able to replicate the other positive effects of exercise, like boosting mood, plus building muscles and healthy bone mass.Also, this hypothetical pill also won’t be available anytime soon. The research results will have to be replicated many more times, and then once a specific medication were developed, clinical trials could begin. But it’s exciting that in the future, science may give us a more effective way to put everyone on the track to a healthier, disease-free body, no matter any physical limitations that might prevent them from being able to burn fat the old-fashioned way.Related Articles:How to Fight a Slow MetabolismNestle Is Developing ‘Exercise in a Bottle’