Remember when you were a kid and could eat anything and still be lean and trim? Yeah, me either. But as we all age and slow down physically, so does our body’s ultimate fat burner – our metabolism.
What exactly is your metabolism?
Your metabolism is defined as the chemical processes which occur within your body to maintain life, and its primary role is to help the body convert food into energy or fat.
There are three components to your metabolism, with the largest and most essential function called your basal metabolic rate or BMR.
Why is your BMR the most important piece of your metabolism puzzle? It is basically the monitoring system and engine that measures, converts, and sends info and energy to all of your key body functions, such as breathing, keeping your heart beating and blood flowing. And just like all engines, it needs fuel as it burns about 60% of your recommended calories each day to keep you alive.
Another 30% of your metabolism’s function is kicked into gear by doing basic daily movements (think going to the shops, making dinner, taking a shower), with the final 10% of your metabolism’s function coming from eating thermic food.
And while there is a bucket load of “miracle” tablets and diets advertised to boost your metabolism, don’t be fooled; the best and most effective way to boost and maintain your metabolism is to do it naturally. There is no magic bullet.
Here are some facts (along with some tried and true tips) to get your metabolism moving again:
Pump it UP!
I’m not talking Arnold Schwarzenegger here, but simple muscle boosting and building exercises to get those muscles activated and lean are essential to your metabolism. More muscle means a faster metabolism which means you burn fat faster.
Don’t have dumbbells at the ready? Then just move it – down the street, to the shops, up that driveway – anything that gets you off the couch or staring at your phone will wake up your metabolism and start to burn more calories. While you are at it, increase the intensity at intervals. This keeps your body adjusting to your movements and therefore will keep your metabolism boosted well after you stop moving.
Yep, this is fact. We need to watch what we eat and our portions when we are eating. Organic and fresh is always best, along with thermogenic foods that require your body to either heat up or cool down the meal in your belly. I am a chilli fiend and chilli is an awesome thermic food so hook into that spicy Thai, and you are on your way.
Protein for the win
Your body loves to take its time digesting protein (especially for breakfast), and that means more energy used = more calories burned and metabolism elevated! A bonus to this is you also remain feeling fuller for longer. A recent study at US Purdue University confirmed that diets with higher protein help maintain and preserve lean muscle mass – the ultimate fat burner. Just make sure that it is clean and lean protein. If you want to know the protein that I tap into, contact me.
Eat often and enough
I know this may sound like a contradiction, but it’s true. Grazing through the day on healthy snacks allows your body to keep turning those calories into energy at a steady rate. When you ensure you are eating enough (i.e. no more 500 calories a day diets) your body’s BMR can concentrate on maintaining your metabolism at its most effective rate without fear it won’t be replenished with energy anytime soon. It is a common mistake that people think that eating less will help them lose weight. They can be slowing their metabolism even more by this one action. Eat right and eat often.
Early to bed
Lack of sleep wreaks havoc on our bodies in a multitude of ways. If you don’t get enough, it throws off the amount of leptin and ghrelin in your system, key hormones that regulate your appetite and regulate your body’s energy usage. Stanford University found that those people who sleep less than 7.5 hours per night increased their body mass and decreased their BMR, creating a fat-gaining cycle only stopped when you get enough sleep.
Listen to your body
Bottom line: You need to listen and look to your body for what to do next. Want a glass of wine? Go ahead, just don’t drink the bottle in one sitting and counter all of your day’s BMR efficiency. Instead, ask for help, get the basics right and get your metabolism going again.
Need a little help boosting your metabolism? Contact Jen today to book a FREE 30-minute consultation.