We all have that one friend who can wolf down an entire pizza and still flaunt the body of a runway model.
Indeed, some people are genetically blessed with raging metabolism but even if you aren’t there’s no reason to grump, start skipping meals or stay off all things tasty.
Eating less can slow down your metabolism. On the other hand, eating more frequently – especially focusing on certain foods – can help you achieve a faster metabolic rate.
This improves your body’s fat-burning capacity and helps you attain your dream figure.
What Is Metabolism and How Does It Work?
Your metabolism is hard at work. It’s creating energy from what—and how—we eat.
Metabolism is the chemical process by which your body converts calories in what you eat and drink into energy.
Your body needs this energy for its daily required functions such as breathing, blood circulation, growing, adjusting hormone levels, and repairing cells.
The minimum amount of energy your body needs to carry out these daily functions is called the basal metabolic rate (BMR).
The higher the rate is, the more calories you burn and the easier it is to lose weight and keep it off. This number depends on your body size, body composition, age, and gender.
A fast metabolism is like a hot furnace (burning through calories quickly), A slow metabolism needs less fuel to keep the furnace warm.
Do you know that certain habits impact how quickly (or slowly) it’s operating?
Lifestyle Factors That Affect Your Metabolism
Even though we can’t typically increase the speed of our resting metabolic rate, our habits do affect other aspects of our metabolism. Consider these four factors to improve your metabolism.
1. What you eat.
When you load up on fruits and vegetables that boost metabolism, your body can more readily use that energy. When you load up on foods that cause inflammation, those energy sources are more likely to be stored as fat.
2. Your blood sugar.
Maintaining balanced blood sugar is key. When there is glucose remaining in the blood, insulin turns this glucose into saturated body fat. This, in turn, can impact your metabolism. To boost metabolism, create a balanced plate by pairing carbs with protein and fat.
Furthermore, restricting or depriving yourself sends mixed messages to your metabolism by telling it to store calories as if there’s a shortage of food. Instead, aim to eat every 3-4 hours.
3. How often do you exercise?
When it comes to exercise and its impact on metabolism, consistency is more important than intensity. Walking for 25-30 minutes per day is more beneficial than an hour at the gym, two times per week. Any type of resistance training is very beneficial. After all, muscle tissue uses more energy than fat tissue does, even when you’re at rest.
4. The amount of sleep you’re getting.
We all know that quality sleep is fundamental to our well-being. Aim to get 7-9 hours of sleep each night. Sleep deprivation can cause your body to produce too much insulin, which can lead to increased fat storage.
The good news is, you can increase the daily calories you burn by adding certain foods and drinks to your diet and by engaging in some form of daily physical activity.
After all, who would say no to a faster metabolism?
Want to know how to boost your metabolism by adding certain foods and drinks to your diet? Here is the list of metabolism booster foods that you can easily add to your menu.
9 Foods That Boost Your Metabolism
A rich source of healthy fats, avocados are high in metabolism-boosting nutrients. Containing a hearty dose of antioxidants, vitamin E, potassium, iron, and magnesium, avocados are as well-rounded as produce can get. Magnesium, in particular, supports healthy blood sugar and insulin levels, while promoting regular bowel movements (important for metabolism).
2. Hot Peppers
Eating spicy foods may prevent overeating. But there’s another reason to add hot peppers or jalapenos to your food. They contain a chemical called capsaicin.
Capsaicin can boost your metabolism by keeping your hormones alert, increasing your heart rate and prompting your body to burn calories faster. The regular consumption of capsaicin reduces adipose tissue levels, appetite, and daily energy intake.
Berries are a powerful, nutrient-dense food. They reduce lung cancer risk, slow cancer progression, increase stem cell levels, protect stem cells against stress, boost angiogenesis defences, protect DNA, enhance immune response, and more. Eating berries have also been shown to have beneficial effects on metabolism, stabilizing glucose levels, and decreasing body fat content.
A whole cup of raw strawberries has just under 50 calories and provides 150% of daily recommendations for vitamin C—which is a powerful antioxidant that also fights fat.
4. Cruciferous vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts contain three essential nutrients that power your metabolism: B vitamins, calcium, and vitamin C. They also contain a nutrient called sulforaphane that supports the detoxification of toxins and estrogen. When both of those are active, it stalls fat loss. They also have high water and fibre content, a combination that increases your body’s ability to burn fat.
Of all cruciferous veg, broccoli may benefit metabolism the most. The reason being it contains a substance called glucoraphanin. This substance can “re-tune” our metabolism, lower blood fat levels, and reduce the risk of various age-related diseases.
5. Kidney Beans
Beans (think red and black, not refried) are a metabolism-boosting food loaded with fiber, which lowers insulin levels after eating and improves insulin sensitivity over time. The result? Your body stores are less fat.
We know beans are good for our hearts, but as it turns out, they are also excellent for boosting metabolism. Along with fiber, beans are also the best source of fermentable, soluble fiber that produces short-chain fatty acids. Beans have a direct impact on the overall metabolic rate. Kidney beans, in particular, are rich in folate—an important nutrient during pregnancy.
Beans are versatile, economical, and are also a great source of plant-based protein, helping reduce blood sugar levels, help control cholesterol, and increase good gut bacteria.
6. Citrus fruits
Citrus fruits, especially lemons and grapefruits, are known for their immune-boosting Vitamin C and are great for digestion. They’re low in sugar and contain an antioxidant that can help lower your blood sugar response after meals.
Citrus fruits alkalize the body, which is key to promoting fat loss and boosting overall health.
Oranges are high in soluble fiber, help to keep your gut bacteria healthy, reduce your appetite and help eliminate fat.
Grapefruit is just as delicious, and enzymes found in the fruit help your body break down sugar. It has an extremely positive impact on your metabolism and is high in phytochemicals, which help burn fat efficiently.
Lemons contain a nutrient called ‘limonin.’ It helps support phase one and phase two of liver detoxification. As you support the body’s ability to detoxify chemicals, then you support fat loss.
Apples are good for our health – we’ve all heard the adage a million times. And it is true. Have one apple a day to lose weight fast and naturally without overworking at the gym or depriving yourself of good food.
Apples are rich in antioxidants, dietary fiber, and flavonoids that help reduce inflammation, improve metabolic rate, lower LDL (bad) cholesterol, fight cancer, and improve lipid profile and insulin sensitivity.
Make your doc—and your waistline—happy by adding apples to the menu.
8. Leafy Green Vegetables
Spinach, kale, and other leafy green vegetables may boost your metabolism thanks to their iron content. Iron is an essential mineral for regulating metabolism.
Iron is also an essential component in maintaining your body’s balance. Along with zinc and selenium, it contributes to the wellbeing of the thyroid gland. If the thyroid gland stops functioning properly, ensuing problems like slower weight loss are the outcomes.
Leafy green vegetables are the best way to address this problem since they keep your iron levels in check. Moreover, these veggies provide a good amount of magnesium which is crucial for metabolism and energy production.
Remember that leafy greens are a source of non-heme iron, which means they are not fully absorbed in the body. However, if you pair them with a source of vitamin C, such as lemon, tomatoes, or bell peppers, you can increase the body’s absorption of non-heme iron.
Drinking enough water is important for numerous reasons, including increasing the amount of energy our body expends. Your body is composed of about 60 per cent water, and therefore drinking a lot of water is one of the most important components for a healthy metabolism.
Water both increases the body’s energy expenditure and helps turn stored fat into energy.
Proper hydration is one of the necessities of good health. Experts suggest that drinking 8-10 glasses of water per day would increase your daily energy demand by at least 400 Joules. However, if you are looking to speed up your metabolism, drink cold water instead. Some researchers say that when you drink cold water, your body uses energy to warm up the water to normal temperature before it can use it.
However, adding these foods to a poor-quality diet will not help you in losing weight. You should add these foods and drinks to a balanced and moderately calorie-restricted diet to lose weight.
Always remember that balance and moderation are key to a healthy life at a healthy size.