When asked about their body weight, a lot of people respond that it is down to their metabolism. Those who seem to keep slim fairly easily attribute it to having a fast metabolism, while those who struggle to keep weight off often blame their slower metabolic rate. Certainly, metabolism – which is essentially the rate at which your body burns calories naturally – does have an impact on your body’s ability to burn fat, but you don’t necessarily have to settle with what nature gave you. Here are 5 things that you can do to improve your metabolism.
Eat small, regular meals
Many people still wrongly believe that reducing food intake is the best method to help them lose weight. However, the longer you wait between meals the more likely your body is to go into starvation mode – which will slow your metabolism right down as the body clings onto calories. Eating regularly can therefore improve your metabolism, with many nutritionists recommend eating between 4 – 6 small meals a day.
It’s estimated that for every pound of muscle you gain, your body will naturally burn between 50-70 more calories per day. Focusing on exercises that build your muscles is therefore a great way to increase your metabolism. Whether it’s bicep curls or squats that you’re doing to strengthen up, each bit of muscle growth will have an impact on your body’s ability to burn calories – so get lifting!
Increase your Omega 3
Omega 3 is often praised for the good it can do your heart, joints and skin – but it can also have a big impact on your metabolism too. One reason is that omega 3 reduces inflammation and balances blood sugar levels, helping to keep your metabolism in check. Research also suggests that these fatty acids help to reduce the body’s resistance to leptin, the hormone linked to fat burning. To increase the amount of omega 3 in your diet, try replacing meat with fish such as tuna or salmon a couple of times a week. Alternatively, introduce supplements into your diet.
With your tea, that is. Green tea has been praised for years for its detoxifying qualities, but research has also shown that one of the main ingredients in green tea – catechin – can help to boost your metabolism. This is because catechin can improve thermogenesis, which is essentially how much fat your body can burn when digesting food. By drinking several cups of green tea a day, therefore, you could boost your metabolism so that you burn more calories after eating.
Cut out trans fats
If you’re hoping to lose weight then you’re likely to be watching what you eat anyway, but one food type you should be especially keen to cut out is anything contains trans fats. This type of fat clings to liver and fat cells, ultimately slowing down your metabolism by forcing your body to process them in a different way. While some meat naturally contains low levels of trans fats, you should seek to eliminate any food rich in artificial trans fats. These usually include things such as cakes and biscuits, where the hydrogenated fat has been included to give the products a longer shelf life.