Have you ever noticed those lucky people around you who tend to eat all junk, sweets and drink as many beers as they want, without gaining a weight? And on the flip side is you who just think about a piece of cake and gain weight! What could be the reason? Is your metabolism working at a snail’s pace? You need to boost metabolism to lose fat. But what is it, really?
Metabolism is a term that is used to describe all chemical reactions involved in maintaining the living state of the cells and the organism. In simple terms, it is the rate at which your body naturally burns the calories you take in. And it plays a very important role in your weight loss efforts.
We all have got one, but some people’s are “faster” or “slower” than others’. And that matters, because the rate at which your body burns calories and converts fuel to energy can affect how easily you gain or lose weight. The higher it is, the more calories you burn and the easier it is to lose weight and keep it off. Here I’ll discuss how to boost metabolism to burn more fat.
Metabolism is influenced by age, gender, body composition, or lean to fat ratio. It may also be determined by your genes. So it’s ok if you have inherited your mother’s slow metabolism because there are several things that you can do to fight back. Yes, you have a huge amount of control over your metabolic rate. Let’s see how –
NEVER SKIP YOUR BREAKFAST
Kickstart your day with a healthy, energizing and metabolism-revving breakfast with a good 300 to 400-calorie meal. It will not only refuels your body but aids in weight management by helping to avert cravings and ravenous hunger before lunch. It keeps you on track to make healthy choices all day. Many breakfast foods are perfect metabolism boosters because they’re high in complex carbohydrates, fiber, or protein.
Think twice before skipping breakfast whether you’re trying to save time or cut calories. If you skipped breakfast, you may have not had a meal for over 18 hours ! Your body reverts back into a survival mode. That is why breaking your fast after a long night’s sleep is very essential, especially when you are trying hard to manage your weight.
Eating breakfast can increase your resting metabolism by up to 10 percent, according to the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center.
EAT OFTEN TO BOOST METABOLISM
I know it may sounds contrary to what you would do if you want to lose weight but it actually give your metabolism a bump. Dividing your meal up into 5 or 6 small portions is much better way to slim down rather than consuming the traditional three large meals a day. You can either prepare three small main meals and then supplement these with healthy snacks or split your main meals into two smaller meals. But make sure to keep your portions in check.
Small meals throughout the day are a great way to give your body continued energy without storing fat.
Choosing healthy snacks between meals can help keep your blood sugar levels steady and your metabolism in check. The faster your metabolism runs, the more calories you burn. The more you burn, the easier it is to shed weight.
DRINK GREEN TEA
Green tea is emerging as a healthful drink. It’s active ingredient, catechin, may crank up the metabolism by improving fat oxidation and thermogenesis. (Thermogenesis is the calories the body burns while digesting and absorbing food as it’s being eaten.)
Studies have shown that green tea-extract increases the metabolism by 4% over a 24 hour period. Three to five cups a day can help you burn an extra 70 calories a day. Apart from boosting metabolism and helping in losing weight, it has several health benefits. So replace your sugary drinks with a cup of green tea and reap the benefits.
Read : Pros and Cons of Green Tea
BUILD MORE MUSCLE
Muscle mass is very closely related to metabolism. Strength training is important for building and retaining muscle. Higher amounts of muscle will result in a higher metabolism. Faster metabolism will burn more calories each day even when you are sitting and doing nothing.
Muscle is more metabolically active than fat. Over the long term, muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue, so a person with a lower body fat percentage will have a higher metabolism and burn more calories at rest than a person of the same weight with a higher body fat percentage. Differences in muscle mass is one of the reasons why women usually have lower metabolic rates than men. Men are just naturally leaner than women.
Try adding some weights into your workout regime and feel the difference yourself !
GET A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP
Sleep plays a vital role in regulating metabolism and appetite. People who are sleep deprived, feel more hungry and struggle hard to lose weight. This is because their metabolic system moves out of balance, which will ultimately affect the dietary choices people make. Teens who are sleep deprived crave more carbohydrates. Sleep deprivation can sabotage your waistline and your health. It causes your body to produce more Ghrelin, the “hunger hormone” which stimulates appetite.
According to research done by “American Journal of Clinical Nutrition”, those who got less than the optimal amount of sleep showed an increase of about 300 hundred calories per day. Lack of sleep has also been linked with increased blood sugar levels and insulin resistance, which are both linked to a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. So, getting enough sleep is essential to optimal body function, including maintaining a healthy weight.
ADD SPICES IN YOUR LIFE
It’s not an old wives tale after all ! Spices like chilli are known to raise metabolism by up to 50 percent for next 2 – 3hrs after eating. It increases heat and calories burned in your body. Studies have shown that capsaicin is a compound which gives chillies their heat and help prevent obesity. Doesn’t it give you the reason to simply add cayenne, jalapenos, or any other hot peppers to your recipes ? If you don’t like chillies, you can add more capsicums in your diet.
Don’t think “adding spice to your food” alone can help you getting desired result. It will work only when combined with other metabolism – boosting strategies.
PILE ON THE PROTEIN
Try to add plenty of proteins at every meal as it can boost your metabolism and helps in burning fat. Your body digests protein more slowly than fat or carbs, it takes longer to break down protein than other foods. Breaking these down requires more energy from the body, so about 20 to 30 percent of calories go toward digestion compared to 5 to 15 percent when we eat fat or carbs. Eating protein has also been shown to help you feel more full and prevent you from overeating ( this is especially true when you have it for breakfast ).
One recent study from Purdue University found that diets higher in protein may help preserve lean body mass, which is the best fat-burner of all.
STAY AWAY FROM STRESS
Stress-related weight gain is primarily due to a combination of low physical activity and increased caloric intake. When we’re stressed, we’re more likely to eat the wrong foods and with wrong foods, weight gain becomes more likely because we are burning fewer calories. Even if stressful situations don’t cause you to binge on fatty foods, your body may take longer to process any calories that you do eat. This is because during a stressful event, your adrenal glands activates the hormone, cortisol which has been clearly associated with a worsening of metabolism. It’s always better to stay away from stress if you want to boost metabolism to burn more fat.
Making some lifestyle changes and incorporating these practices can go a long way in boosting your metabolism.