The better your overall health is, the better your metabolism is.
Here are five ways you can boost your metabolism that don’t include your workouts. I’m not always going to give you such easy ways to get healthier, so enjoy these while you can! These simple habits you can begin today will help your body burn more calories and fat every single day. And by the way, these will also have a huge impact on your overall health!
Protein requires energy to digest
First is the importance of eating protein rich foods. Did you know that every food we eat has a thermic effect? This refers to the energy it takes for your body to simply break down what you eat without requiring any more effort than you put into eating your meals! Digesting our foods requires effort, which means our bodies are burning fuel during the digestion process. But which food uses the most energy during digestion? You guessed it: protein. Eating protein rich food raises our metabolic rate by 15-30%, carbohydrates raise it only 5-10% and fat only 0-3%. To get the most effect, spread your protein out throughout the day, instead of eating it all in one meal.
More of the right kind of calories
Number two, don’t eat too few calories. When trying to lose weight, it is easy to overdo it and cut calories too much. But our bodies are smarter than we are and go into starvation mode, shutting down our metabolism. This comes from the days of being cavemen and cavewomen, when we needed to survive for days without food. Our bodies still maintain many of the same survival mechanisms of these distant ancestors, as evolution can take many, many thousands of years to change some of our physiological structures and processes.
We need to eat not just any calories, but rather vitamin/mineral rich foods that contain a lot of fiber. This way we get the most bang for our buck, because fiber fills us up and we are getting the very best quality in our calories. We need to eliminate high-processed sugar laden foods, and empty calories.
So, in order to lose weight, we need to adjust our caloric intake, but keep our metabolism fired up. How do we determine the right number of calories for our bodies? It depends on our age, size and activity level. There is a formula to help us figure out exactly what that number is. Make sure you are on my email list, as I’ll be sending out that formula soon.
Movement in everyday life
For the third tip, how active are you outside of your workouts? Cranking out a workout is definitely great, and it does boost our metabolism, especially if we lift weights or do interval training. For an all-day metabolic burn, it is all about being active during the day. So how do we do this? We can stand instead of sit (I just bought a stand-up desk at the beginning of Covid-19), taking the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator, parking further away from our destination, and simply looking for more opportunities to move throughout the day. This can account for hundreds more calories burned every day, which could be the difference in dropping those extra pounds or just plateauing.
Our bodies simply burn more calories when we are moving versus being sedentary. This is an important concept to understand because it has been proven over and over that having a sedentary lifestyle leads to a long list of health issues, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
Quality rest is a foundation
Fourth tip—Get enough quality sleep. Lack of sleep leads to all manner of health disruptions and getting solid rest is foundational to good health. We all need 7-8 hours of quality of sleep each night. Since the start of Shelter in Place my sleep has been disrupted. About once a week, I have a hard time sleeping through the night. On the health side of things, not getting enough sleep, drops our metabolism 2-8%. And that is not all, it is also linked to a disruption of our hunger hormones, which can lead to overeating.
Water boosts metabolism
For number 5 there is another sneaky way to boost our metabolisms, drinking plenty of water. Studies show that drinking half a liter of water boosts our resting metabolic rate by 10-30%! That is just a little over two cups of water. You will get more of a boost if you drink cold water, because our bodies have to use energy to heat up the water. And, water helps us fill up before we eat.
One study had people who were overweight drink half a liter of water before they ate their meals, and they lost 44% more weight than the people who didn’t drink the water. When we are hydrated, we are more energized, it is good for our skin and digestion, and in general helps us feel better. A general rule of thumb is drinking half our body weight in ounces of water each day. For example if a person weighs 150 lbs., they would drink 75 ounces of water at a minimum.
In summary, here are the 5 tips:
- Eat enough protein
- Make sure you are getting enough high-density calories
- Stay active during the day
- Get at least 7-8 hours of quality sleep
- Drink at least half your body weight in ounces of water everyday
If you need more help in finding ways to boost your metabolism, click below and let’s have a free 15-minute call. I‘ll help you discover new ways to incorporate healthy habits that boost your metabolism, and help you feel better and enjoy life every day.