In basic terms, metabolism is the rate at which your body uses energy. It’s a common misconception that metabolism slows down significantly as we age - in reality, our metabolism actually changes very little between age 20 and 60, and after age 60 it is thought to slow down by less than 1 percent each year. This suggests other lifestyle factors have much more of an effect on our metabolism than aging does. If your metabolism is out of balance, it can cause unnatural weight fluctuations and can leave you susceptible to several health issues. Here are a few ways you can keep your metabolism in peak condition:
1) Keep your meal schedule predictable.
Eating meals at around the same time every day helps your body conserve energy and burn calories efficiently. It’s important not to skip meals - especially breakfast! Besides causing low energy and irritability, skipping meals or restricting food or calories (especially long term) actually slows down your metabolism because your body goes into a type of survival mode.
2) Protein, protein, protein.
Eating protein at every meal is one of the best things you can do for your metabolism. Why is protein so important? Of all the food groups, protein keeps you full for the longest period of time, requires the most calories to digest, and helps stabilize your blood sugar. Protein also helps you build muscle - and the more muscle you have, the more calories you burn. Foods like salmon, eggs, peanut butter, and Greek yogurt are among the healthiest protein sources.
3) Incorporate metabolism-boosting foods.
Protein-rich foods aren't the only ones that offer metabolic benefits - don't forget about your daily cup of coffee! Studies have shown as little as 3-6 milligrams of caffeine can boost your metabolism, help you burn calories more efficiently, and keep you from feeling tired as quickly during exercise. If you’re not a coffee person, you can try caffeinated green tea as an alternative. Spicy foods will also give you a metabolism boost - turmeric, cumin, chilis, peppers, and even cinnamon speed up your metabolism.
4) Cardio, strength training, and NEAT.
Remember, all types of movement are good for your metabolism, and each one has unique benefits. Cardio-focused activities like aerobics, running, or swimming burn the most calories per workout. Strength-focused activities like weight lifting or body weight exercises keep your metabolism boosted for a longer period of time, and the muscle you gain from strength training helps your body burn calories while you are at rest. And don't forget about NEAT (Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis)! NEAT activities encompass a wide range of everyday tasks in which you are moving your body in some way. Walking, raking leaves, carrying groceries, or simply standing at your desk instead of sitting can help you keep your body moving more throughout the day.
If you're concerned about your metabolism or want to know more about natural health, feel free to give us a call at (614) 985-1435 or schedule a time to talk with Dr. Jones at https://www.eohinfo.com/schedule-appointment. We are always here to help!