You may have difficulty losing weight and getting into shape because your metabolism is not burning calories efficiently. Increasing your metabolism sheds excess weight, improves body composition and boosts workout performance. Research shows that it is possible to improve metabolism by making a few changes in your daily routine.
Start the Day Early
Increase your metabolism by eating a nutrient-rich breakfast shortly after getting out of bed. A national study revealed that people who eat a morning meal kept weight off better than those who skipped breakfast. Drinking a cup of coffee also provides a small boost. Green tea offers many of the same benefits without the side effects. It contains antioxidants and catechin, which is reported to improve the rate of metabolism.
Eat organic food like fruits, whole grains and vegetables. Canadian research shows that pesticides and other thyroid toxins can slow your metabolism. A diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids helps balance blood sugar and reduces resistance to leptin, a hormone that controls how fast fat is burned. Omega-3s also reduce inflammation and help regulate the metabolism. Protein builds metabolically active muscle mass and prevents fat storage. It speeds up the metabolism because more energy is required to digest protein than carbohydrates. Do not cut too many calories. Your body may sense that times are lean and reduce your metabolism to conserve energy. Eating nutrient-dense food reduces the urge to snack.
Your body needs the right mix of vitamins, minerals and micronutrients. While you should strive to obtain all your nutrition from a balanced diet, food can lack sufficient nutrients because of farming, storage and preparation techniques. Supplements like zinc and selenium can help speed up your metabolic rate by aiding the release of neurotransmitters, including dopamine and epinephrine. Supplements can ensure that you are getting enough dietary fiber.
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A lack of water has been shown to slow metabolic rates by as much as 2 percent. Your body needs water to process calories and perform other physiological functions. German research has shown that consuming six cups of cold water per day can raise resting metabolism by 50 calories because the body must increase the temperature of the water. The recommendation is to consume eight 8-ounce glasses per day.
Intensify Your Workout
Vary the level of your workout by incorporating intense 30-second intervals before returning to your normal routine. This strategy requires your body to consume more oxygen and work harder causing you to burn more calories. You will build more muscle mass and increase your resting metabolism. Muscle burns more calories than fat. Increasing your resting metabolism causes your body to run at a higher level even on the days you cannot workout. Although cardio is important for burning fat, short, intense bursts create a post-exercise condition that shifts the metabolism into high gear as the body seeks to replenish normal oxygen levels.
While changing your diet and daily routine may seem daunting, implementing these tips will increase your metabolism. Patience and persistence will be rewarded with an improved physique and quality of life.