We often look at people who are lean and fit and assume that they were born with an exceptionally good metabolism. And then we look at our growing flab and wonder why we were doled out the unlucky hand in genetics.
But what you may not know is that a slow metabolism is not actually the culprit behind your weight gain. In reality, that has more to do with unhealthy food choices and lack of exercise.
Then why are people so obsessed with metabolism?
Well, it turns out having a fast metabolism is a great way to lose weight. That is, as long as it is accompanied by a healthy lifestyle.
So if you have been looking for a way to shed those extra pounds, read on. Because in this article we are going to show you how to lose weight by boosting your metabolism.
And to do that, we need to start by understanding what metabolism actually is and how it affects our body weight.
What is Metabolism?
Metabolism is a broad scientific term used to define the total energy consumed by our body to keep us functioning throughout the day.
But for the purpose of weight loss, we are more concerned with the body's resting metabolism, which is the energy solely used to maintain the automatic processes in our body, like breathing, digestion, and hormone secretion.
So why are we more concerned with this?
It's because, with a high basal metabolic rate (BMR), you end up burning more energy throughout the day, and thus, burn through the fat reserves hanging around in your body.
The Reason Why Starving Yourself for Weight Loss is Dangerous
A healthy diet is essential for losing weight.
Because exercise alone cannot help you lose it. You need to eat right to reap the benefits of working out.
Unfortunately, a lot of people equate dieting to starving, which is just not true. Because in reality, a correct diet plan always provides you with enough calories (energy) to keep your organs and cells functioning properly throughout the day, while restricting excess calories so your body does not store it away in the form of fat.
Starving does the exact opposite. It deprives your body of energy and so forces it to scavenge from your fat reserves and then your muscles. And you don't want the latter to happen because a good muscle mass always keeps your BMR high.
So now that you know how your body's metabolism works and why you should not starve yourself, it's time to learn how to boost your BMR and keep your fat-burners running at all times.
#1 Do 30 Seconds of High Intensity Workout
According to Mark Hyman, MD and author of the popular book Ultrametabolism: The Simple Plan for Automatic Weight Loss, you should begin working out at your regular pace, stay at it for 5 minutes, and then quickly increase the intensity of your routine for 30 seconds before winding back down to your regular pace.
This short burst of intense exercise puts your body's mitochondria (the energy producers of your cells) under good stress. And keeps them active throughout the day.
So if you usually jog at 5kmph speed, you should increase your speed and run at 6 - 6.5kmph for 30 seconds before winding back to 5kmph once again.
Doing this twice every workout session will greatly enhance your metabolism.
Also read - Best Ways to Boost Your Metabolism
#2 Build Your Muscles
Muscles consume a lot of energy even when they are not being actively engaged. That's why body-builders regularly eat large amounts of food to meet their body's high energy needs throughout the day.
But if you are a woman and don't want to do this since you are afraid of bulking up like a man, then don't worry. It is physically impossible for a woman to bulk up so drastically with simple weight training as our bodies produce very little testosterone, the hormone that is responsible for muscle growth.
In fact, according to Dr. Gary Hunter, lifting weights just 2 times every week for 30 minutes is enough to boost an average woman's metabolism to 100 calories within 4 months.
#3 Eat Breakfast on Time
Eating breakfast on time is important because your stomach produces a lot of acid during sleep, and this needs to be neutralized and cleared out before it eats away your stomach's lining.
Plus, eating a nutritious breakfast takes advantage of your body's hormonal rhythm and prevents you from putting on weight. Haven't you heard the saying "eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a common man, and dinner like a beggar"?
Also read - Healthy Breakfast Recipes for Weight Loss
#4 Eat Organic Fruits and Vegetables
Regular fruits and vegetables are grown in fields soaked with pesticides to keep the harvest profitable. But this ends up polluting the soil with poisons, which then seep into the crops.
And once these toxins make their way into our body through food, they quickly block the function of our thyroid gland, which is responsible for maintaining our metabolism. And thus, negatively impact our BMR.
That's why, if you want to lose weight, it's a good idea to drop your regular produce and switch to organic.
#5 Eat More Meals
Reduce your portion size and increase the number of meals you have every day.
Why? Because this way you will give your body enough energy to keep going all day and will prevent food cravings from destroying your goals.
Want an easy routine?
Eat breakfast at 8 AM, a small snack at 11 o'clock, lunch at 1 PM, another snack at 4 PM, and then finally have dinner by 7 PM.
#6 Increase Your Protein Intake
Proteins are essential for building muscles. And we all know the effect muscles have on metabolism.
Plus, proteins are digested slowly. So you can easily go without food cravings for quite a long period of time after a protein-heavy meal.
These tips are easy enough to implement, but you will fail if you try all of them at once. Therefore, we recommend you try them one at a time and slowly build good habits over time.
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