Your metabolism is the way that chemical processes in your body cause food to be used in an efficient way. Essentially, it's how your body burns calories. Not all of us inherit a fast metabolism and as we age, our metabolism naturally can slow down. A higher metabolism is one key factor to help maintain health and keep off excess weight. There are several methods to help increase your metabolism in a healthy, safe manner.
1. Consume ProteinYour body burns more calories when digesting proteins. Replace carbohydrates with protein with protein in every meal and snack. Consume more lean proteins such as fish, turkey, lean red meats, white meat chicken, nuts, eggs and beans.
2. Drink waterAs your body uses water to burn calories, staying hydrated is important. Drink at least 8 or more glasses a day. Drinking water before every meal and snack can help improve digestion and may result in consuming less calories. Choose fruits which contain natural hydration versus chips or other salty foods.
3. Drink coffeeDrinking coffee in moderation can provide a short rise in your metabolic rate. Similar to the effects of green tea, coffee can promote fat burning and is also considered an antioxidant. Drinking a cup of coffee before you hit the gym or start your workout can allow you to burn more calories.
4. High Intensity WorkoutHigh intensity exercise helps speed your metabolism during the hours following a workout. High intensity workouts should involve short periods of vigorous exercise that make your heart rate speed up. Consider including running or jogging sprints to your daily walking routine or adding 30 seconds of fast peddling and back to normal rate peddling during while cycling.
5. Drink Green or Oolong TeaThese teas offer the combined benefits of caffeine and antioxidants. It has been shown that drinking green or oolong tea pushes the body for a short period to burn up to 17% more calories during a moderately intense workout.
6. Eat Frequent Small MealsBelieve it or not, eating frequent small meals and snacks will assist with weight loss. Eating a healthy meal or snack every 3-4 hours keeps your metabolism going, burning more calories throughout the day. When you eat a large meal with hours in between the next meal, your metabolism slows and stores more fat cells.
7. Build MuscleMuscle mass has a higher metabolic rate than fat, which means that muscle mass requires more energy to preserve. Lift weights or use resistance bands as part of your regular workout.
8. Get a Good Night's SleepThe average person requires 7-8 hours of sleep at night. When you don't get adequate sleep and feel tired, your body naturally releases a hormone that can make you feel hungry. With plenty of sleep, your body produces leptin to help you feel full.
9. Eat Spicy FoodsPeppers contain a substance called capsaicin that helps reduce hunger and contains metabolism boosting properties. Add red pepper flakes, cayenne or jalapeños to meals and snacks.
10. Vitamin BVitamin B is essential for the metabolism of proteins and fat. Vitamin B is critical in helping keep your metabolism working effectively. Eat bananas, spinach, eggs, orange juice or peas as part of your regular diet.
Along with the tips above, ensure you are eating a balanced and healthy diet. Regular exercise will be key in maintaining a healthy weight or assist in shedding those unwanted pounds. It's always recommended that you consult your doctor to ensure your weight loss methods are appropriate for you.