Until 2008, most medical professionals agreed that there was no way for a person to increase metabolism. It was thought to be a predetermined genetic factor that we were born with. However, new research has shown that there are certain things someone can do to help give their metabolism a boost. Gone are the days of using the excuse of a slow metabolism to justify being unable to lose weight. There are a few easy to follow steps that can be used to naturally boost your metabolism and reap the benefits.
Learn about Metabolism
Metabolism is the metabolic rate at which out body processes and burns calories. Our energy level is determined by the number of calories our body is able to burn off. If we have a calorie intake greater that the amount of calories our body burns, we start to rapidly gain weight. This means that if you are looking to maintain your current weight you need to find a balance between metabolism and calorie intake, but if you are looking to lose weight your metabolism needs to be greater than your calorie intake.
Simply cutting calories out of your diet will not make you magically drop weight. In order to maintain a good metabolic rate your body needs those calories to create enough energy to burn them. In other words, the fewer calories you eat the less energy your body has to burn off those calories. The key to weight loss is finding a balance between the two.
Causes of a Slow Metabolism
The first place you should visit to determine why your metabolism is slow is the doctor. They will be able to complete a thorough check-up that will reveal whether or not your metabolic rate is being influenced by a disease or disorder. The most common culprit is a thyroid disorder. If you receive a clean bill of health from your doctor, it is safe to assume that another factor is slowing your metabolism.
Lack of Exercise
The more muscle you have, the higher your metabolism will be. By increasing your exercise level, you will in turn have a higher muscle mass. An inactive person is going to have a harder time burning off fat, and that fat will quickly build up and clog your system. A clogged system is unable to burn calories. Less calories to burn results in lower metabolism and weight gain. If you want to increase metabolism, increase your exercise routine.
Eating the wrong foods will also cause your metabolic rate to slow. If you are eating foods too high in calories your body will not be able to keep up. The calories will result in weight gain, which will in turn slow your metabolism. On the other hand, if you are eating too few calories, your body will not have the energy to burn any, which will also result in weight gain and a slowed metabolic rate.
According to WebMD, when we reach the age of 40 our metabolic rate starts to naturally decrease. In fact, every decade that passes we lose 5% of our metabolic rate.
Men have a metabolic rate that is naturally higher than a woman’s. Sorry ladies, this means that you will have to work harder to achieve the same weight loss as a man.
How to Increase Metabolism
Thankfully, even if you suffer from a slow metabolic rate, there are some things that will help you increase your metabolism. The following things will help give your metabolism a boost and make your weight loss dreams a reality.
Eat Smaller Meals More Often
Instead of eating three meals a day, eat five smaller meals spread out over the course of the day. This will help prevent overeating and keep your metabolism rate constant. The smaller meals will prevent your body from running out of energy, which can negatively affect metabolic rates.
Drink Cold Water
When you drink water, make sure that it is ice cold. This will encourage your body to warm the water to body temperature. Your body will burn calories in the process, which will increase metabolism and help you burn fat.
Eat the Right Foods
The following foods will help you increase your metabolic rate. They all accomplish this in a similar way. They cause your body to burn extra calories processing them and they lower the body’s insulin level. The insulin level in your body is what triggers the fat storing response. Snacking on these foods during the day will provide a good boost to your metabolism… Grapefruit, Green Tea, Spinach, Beans, Broccoli, and Soy Milk.
Another great way to boost your metabolism is aerobic exercise. If you do it first thing in the morning your metabolic rate will be increased for the entire day. A study conducted at Georgia State University by J. Andrew Doyle, Ph.D, found that engaging in regular aerobic exercise will decrease your body’s fat levels, and in turn increase your metabolic rate. You don’t have to join a gym to start aerobic exercise though; it can be as easy as going for a brisk walk around the block every morning or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
In order for your body to have enough energy to maintain a good metabolism you need to get enough sleep. The average adult needs eight hours of sound sleep each night. Sound sleep means a deep sleep, not dozing in and out for eight hours. In fact, short periods of light sleep can actually be worse for your metabolize. It is also important that you maintain a consistent bed time. By sticking to a schedule your body will be able to adapt.
Overall, the things that help boost metabolism are the same things that you should be doing anyway. If you take care of your body, maintain an exercise routine, and eat right you will automatically see a rise in metabolic rates. The added health benefits are a good reason to follow the guidelines too. If you want to increase metabolism you have to start by treating your body well.