We all know the importance of having a good metabolism, as it helps to burn off those calories before they become stored as body fat.
You probably know that we all have different metabolic rates, and that it is possible for your metabolism to both increase and decrease during the day, depending on what you do and what you eat.
Here are a few metabolism facts that could help move those weighing scales in the right direction.
#1: Resting Metabolic Rate is most important
The Resting Metabolic Rate or RMR is the amount of calories you burn while resting.
While it is possible to guess your RMR by using an online calculator, your doctor will be able to give you a more accurate figure by performing a calorimeter test.
This test involves measuring the amount of carbon dioxide you breathe out.
It is possible to increase your RMR. Here are a few methods you could use:
- Get more sleep
- Work out intensely
- Don’t skip breakfast
- Lift weights
- Drink water
#2: Eating protein can raise your metabolism
A 2012 study published in the journal of the American Medical Association, discovered that those who ate a high protein diet had a higher RMR than those who ate a low calorie diet.
This means you should be eating lean cuts of chicken, turkey or fish, with most of your meals.
Quinoa, nuts and chickpeas are a good source of protein for those who are vegetarian or vegan.
#3: Not all carbs are bad for your metabolism
While those processed carbs should be avoided; for example white bread. Not all carbs are bad for you, in fact there are some that can actually boost your metabolism.
Stick to vegetables, fruits, beans, legumes and whole grains and you should not experience any issue.
#4: More muscle = Higher metabolism
Research has shown that the more muscle you have the higher your RMR will be.
A study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition in July 2015 discovered that just 9 months of strength training could increase your RMR by around 5%.
Next time you are at the gym, don’t focus purely on the cardio. Try a little weight training too. Your waistline will thank you for it.
#5: Men often have a higher metabolism
Men usually have a more muscle mass and higher levels of testosterone than their female counterparts, which will cause their metabolic rates to be higher.
This unfortunately means that men are often able to lose weight at a faster rate than women.
#6: The menopause can affect your metabolism
When you go through the menopause your oestrogen levels will drop, which unfortunately can cause a drop in your metabolic rate too.
As your metabolism has dropped you will not be able to burn off as many calories as you once did, so weight gain and the accumulation of excess belly fat may become an issue if you do not take steps to combat it.
#7: Various health conditions can slow your metabolism
One of the most common health conditions that can affect your weight is hypothyroidism.
This conditions can make losing weight almost impossible to achieve as your body is not producing enough of the thyroid hormone, which helps to regulate your metabolism.
If you are finding weight loss to be difficult and suspect that your thyroid may be to blame then I suggest that you make an appointment to see your doctor to see what treatment is available.
#8: When you eat, and how much can affect your metabolism
For those who tend to skip meals, but then eat a large meal to compensate may not have the best metabolic rate.
In a study published in The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, a team of researchers discovered that mice who were given their daily allotment of food in one sitting developed metabolic problems and gained more belly fat than mice who were fed several times a day.
I suggest that in order to keep your metabolism working that you eat all three of your main meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner), with a few healthy snacks between meals too.
#9: Vitamin D deficiency associated with obesity
Vitamin D may have some impact on your metabolism, as those who were found to be deficient in this vitamin were at an increased risk of becoming obese.
This fact was published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition back in 2013.
#10: A healthy metabolism promotes a healthy mind
Your metabolism is not only important for maintaining your weight, it can also promote various other benefits too.
For example it can help control your mood, your hunger, your sex drive and your ability to cope with stress.