‘How to speed up metabolism’ should be the first question you ask, when trying to lose weight and stay healthy. Your metabolism is a complicated subject, and frequently misunderstood. Yet understanding how it works—at least basically—can make you feel tremendously more comfortable with your diet, because your metabolism is at the heart of whether you gain, lose, or maintain weight.
Most people think of the relationship between weight loss and weight gain as two extremes, with only a thin margin known as “weight maintenance” dividing the two. It is commonly assumed that this margin is closer to the weight loss end of the spectrum than the weight gain end. Many of us believe that we’re better off maintaining weight on fewer calories rather than more. We short ourselves, and end up shorting our performance as well. In short, most of us are looking to burn calories, rather than find the answer to the question ‘how to speed up metabolism?’.
Weight loss and weight gain are not so narrowly divided. It’s not as much a balancing act as you may believe. Yes, there are concrete points we could scientifically determine with enough information—points at which you will either gain or lose weight, fat and muscle—and yes, your metabolic rate (BMR) is constant. But when the whole of your diet and lifestyle is considered, there is a lot more wiggle room, and this give makes your effective needs for weight maintenance a bit more open. So, how to speed up metabolism? Read on:
How to speed up metabolism: 5 sure ways
Exercise to Boost Metabolism
There are multiple factors that affect your metabolic rate that cannot be changed. However, there are ways to maximize your metabolism. Among the best ways is exercise style. Weight training is king in this respect to build the muscles that will boost your metabolism in the long term. Since muscle burns more calories than fat – even while at rest – the more muscles you have, the higher your resting metabolic rate. Meaning your body will be burning more calories just to sustain you. If you are already using the Body Beautiful app, you are probably already burning tons of calories, because all the workouts there are geared to speed up metabolism.
How Nutrition Affects Metabolism
Along with exercise, you can follow some dietary guidelines to increase your metabolic rate. For example, small, frequent meals help keep your metabolism in high gear, burning more calories overall. When you wait too long between meals, your metabolic rate slows down to compensate. The best advice is to eat 3 regular meals and a couple small snacks each day. Eating frequently also helps you eat less at regular meals.
Drink to Maximize Your Metabolism
Stay adequately hydrated. Dehydration can contribute to an ineffective metabolism. Your body temperature drops slightly if you are dehydrated causing your body to store fat as a way to maintain the temperature. Water helps mobilize fat stores, while dehydration stimulates fat to stay.
Green tea and caffeine in coffee also can enhance calorie-burning, but it’s not clear if this is enough to boost weight loss. They may help you be more active by increasing your level energy, indirectly increasing your burn through energy expenditure.
Foods That Can Help Increase Metabolism
What about claims that certain foods increase metabolism? How to speed up metabolism with them? Protein requires more energy to digest than carbohydrates. A high-protein meal may accelerate metabolism more than a carb-laden meal with the same number of calories. Protein also makes you feel more satisfied after a meal, preventing you from overeating. But keep in mind that the majority of weight loss is explained by a deficit of calories and an increase in exercise, not only because of changes in the percentages of protein or carbs in a diet.
Omega-3 fats can boost metabolism, while saturated fat consumption slows metabolism. Unprocessed foods such as fruits, veggies, and whole grains take longer to digest because the body has to work harder to digest the fiber. Compared to refined and processed foods, simply digesting whole foods burns more calories. Spicy foods such as red pepper may increase metabolism for about 30 minutes after eaten, but studies haven’t shown that the effect lasts longer. Also, the most effects were when the spicy foods were eaten with high fats foods, which are best avoided.
Can Supplements or Pills Help Increase Metabolism?
Many companies of weight loss supplements lead you to believe that their product will help boost metabolism and melt away fat. Don’t be fooled: there is no magical pill. As a rule, ingredients only boost metabolism slightly and carry risks. Some pills have dangerous side effects, and “metabolism boosting” ingredients such as white willow and ma huang which overstress the thyroid. Stimulants like guarana, yerba mate, kola nut, and bitter orange increase heart rate and can cause elevated blood pressure. Regulation on safety is poor with these products, so it is wise to be sceptical about.
Taking a vitamin and mineral supplement makes sense, though. An efficient metabolism also requires the smooth running of many complex body processes that rely on sufficient micronutrients. Inadequate amounts of B6, B12, folate, thiamin, and niacin can slow the body’s metabolism. Magnesium also plays a role in metabolism because it is used in more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body.
Some factors contributing to metabolism are out of our control or very difficult to change. Furthermore, metabolism is a finely tuned and highly regulated operation of our bodies and we function best when it is in balance. Learn how to structure your nutrition to fit and lifestyle to maximize it. Start by downloading the Body Beautiful app, all the programs there are geared to speeding up your metabolism. It will show you how to speed up metabolism in a healthy and sustainable way.