Fast, slow, average metabolism? Regardless of body size and composition there are a number of factors that impact a person’s rate of burning energy – that is fundamentally your metabolic rate.
Some people have a slower metabolism meaning they burn fewer calories, storing more as fat in the body; that’s why some people have difficulty losing weight by just cutting calories. Whereas those with a fast metabolism tend to burn calories faster – explaining why some people can eat a lot and not gain extra body weight!
Factors that affect your metabolism
Despite gimmicks out there promising to boost metabolism, there are a number of biological factors that impact your rate of burning calories:
- Age – metabolism often slows with age,
- Genetics – it’s in your DNA literally!
- Health conditions and hormonal changes.
Ways to rev up your metabolism
Whilst there are some factors you can’t change, a sluggish metabolism may possibly be sped up naturally by making small changes to your diet and lifestyle. Looking at what you’re eating and what types (and intensities) of activity you’re doing can make a difference.
- Eat more protein and eat it regularly over the day – a couple of reasons for this is that protein keeps you feeling fuller for longer so you don’t go snacking on energy dense, nutrient poor foods all the time. Secondly, protein tends to have a higher “thermic effect” compared to fats and carbs – this means your metabolism is revved up more whenever you eat and digest this food.
- Add in more strength training – resistance training is known to help boost muscle mass, and more muscle mass means a speedier metabolism.
- Pick up the pace – HIIT training can help keep your metabolism firing for as much as a full day!
- Enjoy sleep and manage stress levels.
There are other foods like green tea, caffeine and chilli that have been said to boost metabolism. However, the key to success really is consistency with food and exercise routines, paying attention to intensity and details of macro nutrients like protein.
Whilst plenty of marketers out there will make magic promises to speed up your metabolism, your aim should be to prevent your metabolic engine from slowing down by keeping up your muscle mass and fueling your body with good nutrition.
Check out this recipe for a delicious high protein, low GI meal Mexican bowl.