How To Boost Your Metabolism?
What is metabolism?
Your metabolism is basically how many calories you burn each day.
Metabolism refers to the physical and chemical processes in the body that convert or use energy, such as: digestion, breathing, circulating blood, controlling body temperature, contracting muscles, functioning of the brain and nerves.
What affects the metabolism?
•Age : With age metabolism decreases (but it doesn’t mean that you have to be overweight)
•Sex : Females burn less
•Height: shorter people burn less (it is proportional to the body surface)
•Other diseases: Like hypothyroidism/ hyperthyroidism
•Some stimulants like nicotine (but we don’t have to smoke to increase it )
How can we increase our metabolism?
•Don’t skip your breakfast: If you do, your body goes into starvation mode so your metabolism slows to a crawl to conserve energy.
•Eat smaller meals more frequently: This will keep your blood sugar stable and provides a steady source of energy to fuel metabolism.
•Don’t starve: Dropping your calorie intake below 1,000 calories a day will signal to your body that you are in a starvation mode, and this will slow down your metabolism.
•Eat the majority of your food earlier in the day: Dinner should be your lightest meal; it is preferable not to eat after 8 p.m., or any later than 3 to 4 hours before bedtime. This helps your body process and burn the food when you are awake, moving around and burning more calories per hour.
Which food can increase the metabolism process?
•Drink coffee: Caffeine stimulates your central nervous system by increasing your heart rate and breathing.
•Pick protein for lunch: Including protein into every meal helps build and maintain lean muscle mass. Muscle burns more calories than fat does. Aim for protein at each meal : grains- meat- chicken-fish- cheese
•Eat calcium-rich foods: Calcium helps your body metabolize fat more efficiently by increasing the rate at which it gets rid of fat as waste such as yogurt.
•Seek heat: Capsaicin, the compound in chili peppers, can fire up your metabolism. Add cayenne, ginger, chili or hot sauce to your meals.
•Eat iron-rich foods: Women lose iron during their period every month. Since iron helps carry oxygen to your muscles, if your levels run low, muscles don’t get enough O2 and your metabolism slows down. Eat Iron-fortified cereals. Such as beans, and dark leafy vegetables such as spinach and broccoli.
What about other lifestyle changes?
•Combine cardiovascular exercise with strength training. The cardio is great for helping burn fat, calories and increasing your metabolic rate for several hours after the exercise, while the strength training will increase your muscle mass. Since muscle requires more calories than fat even when it’s resting, your BMR will increase over the long term.
•Try not to exercise at a steady pace, but follow the interval training program. Bursts of speed may stimulate a fat-burning response within the muscles. Stick to harder exercises: pushups and more advanced body weight exercises or dumbbell exercises
When you sleep less than you should, you throw off the amounts of leptin and ghrelin; the hormones that your body produces that help regulate energy use and appetite. Make sure you get at least eight hours of rest.
Dietitian Christelle Bedrossian