You may have heard the term “metabolism” used a lot but do you really know what it is? Your metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat and drink into energy. During this complex biochemical process, calories in food and beverages are combined with oxygen to release the energy your body needs to function.
How fast your metabolism works is determined by many factors including your hormone levels, how much muscle mass you have, and your genes. A slow metabolism can cause weight gain and make it more difficult to lose weight. A fast metabolism has its benefits too, but it’s more common to hear people complaining about a slow metabolism. There are some things you can do to reset your metabolism if it’s not working as efficiently as you’d like. Below are four tips to help get your metabolism back on track.
1. Eat More Often
You may have heard that eating several small meals throughout the day is better for your metabolism than eating three large meals. This is because when you eat, your body is required to use energy to digest and absorb the food you’ve consumed. The more frequently you eat, the more times your body has to do this work, resulting in a higher metabolic rate. Aim to eat every 3-4 hours during the day. If you’re not used to eating this often, start with 5-6 smaller meals and snacks spaced evenly throughout the day.
2. Get Enough Protein
Protein has a higher thermic effect than carbohydrates and fat, meaning your body burns more calories digesting and metabolizing protein than it does processing these other nutrients. In one study, people who increased their protein intake to 30% of their diet burned an extra 80-100 calories per day. That may not seem like a lot, but over the course of a year, it could add up to 8-10 pounds of weight loss!
3. Lift Weights
Muscle tissue is more metabolically active than fat tissue, meaning it burns more calories even when you’re at rest. So, if you want to boost your metabolism, one of the best things you can do is build more muscle. Lifting weights is the most effective way to build muscle, but you don’t have to lift heavy weights to see results. In one study, people who did lightweight training ( lifting weights that were 50% of their 1-rep max) burned more calories both during and after their workout than those who did no exercise at all.
4. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is important for many reasons, including maintaining a healthy metabolism. When you’re sleep-deprived, your body produces more of the stress hormone cortisol, which can interfere with the production of thyroid hormone. The thyroid hormone is responsible for regulating your metabolism, so if it’s not produced in sufficient quantities, your metabolism will slow down. Getting enough sleep is also important for managing your weight because it helps regulate the hormones that control hunger (ghrelin) and fullness (leptin). If you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re more likely to experience cravings and make poor food choices.
Aim to get 7-8 hours of sleep per night. If you have trouble sleeping, there are things you can do to improve your sleep quality, such as avoiding caffeine in the afternoon and evening, establishing a regular sleep schedule, and creating a relaxing bedtime routine.
Making even small changes in your diet and lifestyle can help reset your metabolism and promote weight loss. If you’re struggling to lose weight, talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian to develop a plan that’s right for you.
There are many factors that affect how well your metabolism works but there are some things you can do to reset it if it’s not working as efficiently as you’d like..By following these four tips – eating breakfast every day, eating smaller meals more often, exercising regularly, and drinking green tea or coffee before working out you can give your metabolism a much-needed boost. Additionally, try to avoid processed foods, get enough sleep, and manage stress levels as these can also impact how well your metabolism functions. By making simple changes to your diet and lifestyle, you can see big improvements in how well your metabolism works which can lead to weight loss and improved overall health. Talk with your doctor if you have concerns about your metabolism or if you are struggling to lose weight despite making lifestyle changes. They can run tests to check hormone levels and thyroid function which could be contributing to a slow metabolism. They may also be able to recommend other lifestyle changes or prescribe medication if necessary.
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