Truth About Metabolism
is Strongly Correlated with Body Composition
metabolism is related directly to the physiological composition of
your body. Muscle has the natural ability to increase metabolism, and
fat has the unfortunate ability to slow it down. By maintaining a
proper and healthy balance of Muscle and Fat, you can positively
impact your metabolism, generating more energy and helping you stay
healthier and more lively throughout the day.
easiest way to determine your body composition is through a simple
conversion known as the Body-Mass Index. Although not perfect, BMI
will give you a roundabout estimate of your muscle-fat ratio, letting
you know what your goals should be when exercising and dieting.
Are the Best Food to Enhance Metabolism
that you eat influence your metabolism powerfully. The more complex
the food that you eat, the more energy it takes for your body to turn
it into a useful product. Proteins take the most energy for the body
to break down, so they burn the most calories.
sugars and carbohydrates take the least energy for the body to break
down, and have the least influence on metabolism. The body has the
ability to break down simple carbohydrates and convert them directly
into fat. Complex carbohydrates such as brown rice and whole grains
take more energy to break down and are healthier for the body because
they add fiber and other nutrients to the diet.
Have Slower Metabolism than Men
seem a bit unfair, but it is physiologically more difficult for women
than men to burn fat. Women genetically store higher levels of fat
than their male counterparts, because this helps with the nursing
process and makes it easier for women to bear healthy children.
the other hand, have higher metabolisms, both because their bodies
are less prone to deposit fat, and because Testosterone flowing
through their veins encourages the muscles to grow larger, which
further enhances metabolism.
thing about this for women is that they are biologically designed to
carry more body fat than men, which means that as long as they stay
within a normal range for their sex, it's not harmful for women to
have a slightly higher BMI than their male counterpart pound for
Exactly Is Metabolism?
of diet, nutrition, and exercise, the word Metabolism usually refers
to the rate at which your body burns fat and calories, but the full
definition is more broad. Metabolism refers to any activity that your
body does that uses energy.
exercise, your body is burning consumed and stored calories in order
to fuel your physical activity. Any food that you eat will lead to an
increase in metabolism, because your body is spending energy breaking
the food down. The problem with simple carbohydrates and empty
calories is that your body expends significantly less energy breaking
simple foods down than more complex foods, such as proteins and whole
grains. This causes your body to store more calories than you
can further be broken down into two forms of action: Anabolic
Metabolism and Catabolic Metabolism. Anabolic Reactions in the body
either store energy or use energy to build cells and other
physiological structures. Catabolic Reactions refer to any metabolic
reactions which free up stored energy or break down cells or
Rate refers to the speed at which your body burns calories over time.
When you hear the word Metabolism used in the context of exercise,
nutrition, and diet, it is generally being used as a shorthand for
common scientific measure of Metabolic Rate is Basal Metabolic Rate.
Resting Metabolic Rate is a shorthand method of approximating Basal
Metabolic Rate using weight, height, sex, and age in a less
Baseline Metabolic Rate gives you a general idea of how your body
uses energy. The more muscle you have, the more calories your body
will naturally burn even in a sedentary environment. The more fat
that you have, the fewer calories that your body will ambiently burn.
Variety of Factors Influence Your Metabolism, Including Lifestyle,
Age, and Genetics
is impacted by a wide variety of different factors. Lifestyle is the
aspect that you have the most control over as an individual.
Lifestyle encompasses a wide variety of components, including the
foods that you choose to eat and the level of physical activity that
you choose to engage in.
have any control over age, but it is important to recognize how age
affects metabolism. Children and adolescents have incredibly high
metabolism, because they directly use the energy and calories they
take in to grow taller and stronger. During early adulthood, most
people still have strong metabolisms, but metabolism naturally slows
with age, making it harder to maintain a healthy weight.
is another factor which cannot be controlled by human beings. You got
your parents eyes and their height, and you also get their
physiological predisposition toward metabolism. Some people are just
born to burn energy, and these people will find it easier to keep
weight off than those that were born with more modest metabolism.
is Controlled Primarily by the Thyroid Gland
Thyroid Gland is a complex area of the brain which is responsible for
controlling the way that your body absorbs and expends energy.
Thyroid Hormones control how slowly or quickly that your body burns
makes executive decisions regarding what your body does with the
nutrients that you take into your body. The Thyroid decides if you
need to build protein for muscle or build fat for energy storage. The
Thyroid also decides whether you burn fat or muscle during exercise,
and how your body reacts to other hormonal influences.
Dysfunctions are almost synonymous with Metabolic Disorders.
Hypothyroidism is a condition in which the body does not produce
enough Thyroid Hormones to allow the body to function appropriately.
This has a negative influence on metabolism, and can lead to extreme
fatigue, reduced metabolism, and extreme difficulty maintaining a
healthy weight. Hyperthyroidism is a condition in which the Thyroid
Gland produces too many hormones, which speeds up metabolism,
sometimes leading to rapid weight loss or a need to consume a large
number of calories to remain at a healthy weight.
Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism can be treated with medications
which influence the rate at which the Thyroid Gland operates.
Hypothyroidism can be treated with Thyroid Hormone Replacement
Therapy which replaces Thyroid Hormone which is not being produced
effectively by the brain, and Hyperthyroidism can be treated with
medications which block Thyroid Hormone Receptors, limiting the
influence of the excess hormone production.
Strength Training is a Fantastic Way to Encourage Faster Metabolism
Lifting and Resistance Training are powerful ways to both help you
lose weight and increase your Basal Metabolic Rate. Although there is
no debate as to whether or not this is true, there is some debate
regarding the mechanism by which these positive changes occur.
one school of thought that suggests that reducing body fat and
increasing muscle mass increases your metabolism at rest, allowing
you to burn more calories even when you aren't engaged in physical
many detractors to this hypothesis, however, including the American
College of Sports Medicine. The ACSM suggests that the primary
benefit of Strength Training for most people in regard to Metabolism
occurs during exercise and when new muscle is being developed. They
admit that regular Strength Training does increase Resting
Metabolism, but for most people, the Metabolic Benefits of Strength
Training which occurs in the period during and immediately after
physical activity vastly outweighs the slight increase in Resting
Grow Older, Your Metabolic Rate Decreases
mentioned earlier, briefly, your Metabolism decreases as a factor of
age. The rate at which this decline occurs is different from person
to person, but all people will burn less energy as they grow older.
for this is that the body becomes less effective at maintaining
muscle mass over time. The influence of hormones like Testosterone
and Human Growth Hormone start to decline in the late twenties and
early thirties, and the metabolic processes of the body start to slow
down. The average rate at which metabolism tends to slow down for the
individual is around two percent every ten years.
Menopause can also play a more immediate factor in metabolism. It is
vitally important to engage in physical activity before, during, and
after Menopause, because studies have shown that women that do not
engage in regular exercise lose about ten percent of their
metabolism, adjusted for
age-related loss of muscle mass, than women that have not yet
experienced Menopause. Women that exercise regularly do not
experience any additional decline beyond the guaranteed two percent
A Highly Restrictive Diet Has a Negative Impact on Metabolism
Many people believe that one of the easiest ways to lose weight is
simply to cut calories. While it is true that responsibly cutting
back on calories is an effective aspect of losing weight, cutting
calories too much can actually have a negative impact on your ability
to lose weight. If you cut your calories to less than 1,200 per day,
your body is going to react to that as a sign of starvation and cut
back metabolism significantly in order to help the body maintain its
weight against that risk. The problem is that if you are simply
cutting back in order to try to lose weight, you are going to get
vastly limited results.
The best way to lose weight is to cut calories moderately and
increase physical activity in order to enhance metabolism. Following
this method, you ensure that your body increases its metabolic rate
while also reasonably decreasing calories, which produces the most
effective rate of healthy weight loss.
Experts also suggest spreading small, nutrient dense, low-calorie
meals across the day in order to enhance metabolism. Eating a snack
or meal every two to three hours gives your body energy and choosing
foods smartly allows your digestive system to work hard to break down
the nutrients contained within the complex foods that you are eating.
Caffeine Increases Metabolism
Caffeine belongs to a class of chemical compounds known as
stimulants. Caffeine has the ability to positively impact metabolic
rate, and research has indicated that a single cup of coffee has the
ability to increase metabolism by as much as four percent as it is
metabolized by the body.
Caffeine takes around twenty to thirty minutes to fully enter the
blood stream, and many people actually use it in order to amplify
their physical activity. Caffeine can increase energy levels during
exercise and help prevent fatigue. Caffeine can also help the body
burn more calories and exercise harder. It's important to consume
caffeine in efficient sources, however. Black coffee contains few
calories, but if you are drinking peppermint mochas to increase your
metabolism, you are being counterproductive.
Of course, too much caffeine can be bad for you, and the body does
slowly develop a tolerance to caffeine over time. There are some
experts that suggest that the best way to use caffeine to enhance
weight loss is to use it for such purposes only for short periods of
time. For example, drink coffee before exercising for two weeks, then
stop for two weeks.
Eating Spicy Foods Can Boost Your Metabolism
Spicy foods contain a potent chemical known as capsaicin. Capsaicin
is what makes spicy foods feel hot no matter what temperature that
they really are. They accomplish this by stimulating heat receptors
in the mouth and other parts of the body, giving a stronger burning
sensation dependent upon the concentration, measured in Scoville
Like caffeine, capsaicin can also be used in order to enhance
metabolism. Capsaicin is also a very calorie-effective means to
accomplish this, because most hot sauces contain very few calories.
Simply using a few dashes of hot sauce on your breakfast, lunch, or
dinner can give you a quick and easy metabolic boost.
If you want to boost your metabolism before a workout, take a
tablespoon equivalent of green chile pepper or red pepper. This has
been shown to provide you with a temporary increase in metabolism
which can be as high as 23 percent. If you don't want to deal with
the taste, you can also get a beneficial effect from red pepper
capsules. Taking a capsule before every meal has been shown to
provide an average metabolic increase of ten to sixteen percent over
the course of a two day period.
Be Extremely Careful When Considering Weight Loss Supplements
Weight loss pills and supplements may sound like a miracle in a
bottle, but most of them also come with a significant risk of
side-effects. Never use a dietary supplement without consulting your
doctor, because your physician will be able to give you a responsible
and professional opinion regarding their use.
For example, Ephedra used to be a widely-used energy and weight loss
supplement, but was made illegal in 2004 after it was found that
Ephedra could be dangerous to take for many people. Ephedra has the
ability to both increase heart rate and blood pressure, which does
increase metabolism, but these two factors are also associated with a
number of dangerous health conditions such as heart attack, stroke,
and anxiety attacks.
We also suggest extreme caution when utilizing amino acid
supplements, because the human body can only process a certain
concentration of amino acids and other peptide fragments before the
liver starts to suffer and become overloaded as a direct result. Try
to get your amino acids from the foods that you eat, not from
supplements that flood your body.
Climate Has a Direct Impact on Your Metabolism
The human body is a machine that is designed to function at a
particular level of body heat. Our bodies work hard to keep our
internal temperature between 96 and 98 degrees, and the harder that
is to attain, the more energy that will be expended to restore
optimal temperature. The chemical reactions in our body depend upon a
specific range of temperatures, and the body will start to fail if it
becomes too hot or too cold.
Room temperature is the ideal environment for our bodies. The ambient
heat generated by the body is enough to sustain an average
temperature. The more it deviates from that temperature, the more
calories the body will burn. Studies suggest that people that live in
hot climates have Basal Metabolic Rates that are between five and
twenty percent greater than those that live in cool climates.
Remember that your body doesn't care what the temperature is outside,
if you are inside. A helpful tip to slightly increase your metabolism
is to keep your home a little cooler or a little warmer than room
temperature, depending on the season. The increase in metabolism may
only be slight, but every little bit counts when you are trying to
sustain a healthy weight.
Your Body Burns More Calories Simply Sustaining Itself Than
The human body burns a lot of calories just keeping you alive. On
average, seventy percent of the calories that you burn during the day
would have been burned whether you were running at the gym or sitting
around watching television.
This doesn't mean that you should forgo exercise or anything, it just
gives you an idea of the amount of work that it takes for your body
to keep you happy and healthy. Around thirty percent of the calories
that you burn during the day are a direct result of the activities
you pursue throughout the day.
People that are sedentary always burn fewer calories than people who
are active. People that are sedentary only burn around twenty-five
percent of their calories through physical exertion, whereas
physically active people burn around-thirty five percent of their
calories through exercise and activity.