Do you ever feel like your Metabolism growth is working against you? If so, you are not alone. Nearly 90% (!!) of Americans are considered metabolically unhealthy, according to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. In other words, most people have a “slow” metabolism. Which can affect the body’s ability to optimally support its most basic biological processes.
And while it’s true that genetics partially determines your metabolic rate, it doesn’t necessarily seal your fate; the things you do every day can have an even bigger impact. Translation? Lifestyle habits and behaviours provide ample opportunity to increase your metabolism and ultimately improve your overall well-being.
Here, learn how to boost your metabolism with accessible, multidimensional strategies, according to experts and science.
What is Metabolism growth anyway?
Simply put, “metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat into energy,” says Casey Kelley, M.D., ABOIM, functional physician and founder of Case Integrative Health, mbg.
This energy (i.e., calories) is used, or “burned,” to support your most basic bodily functions—such as breathing, circulation, and nutrient absorption.
It also provides energy for complex physiological reactions (including DNA synthesis, RNA transcription, and neuronal cell signalling in the brain), as well as actions that require more energy (such as immune function, healthy inflammatory responses, and physical activity).
Needless to say, it affects your Metabolism growth a lot.
- Basal metabolism. Also known as resting metabolic rate (RMR) or resting energy expenditure REE), basal metabolic rate (BMR) accounts for 60% to 75% of the total calories you burn each day at rest. BMR is the resting “burn” from just not “keeping the lights on” in your body (think: breathing, muscle contractions that keep food moving through your GI tract, controlling body temperature, etc.). Many factors can affect BMR – including biological sex, age, muscle mass, body composition, thyroid health, physical activity, lifestyle, diet, sleep and genetics.
- Thermogenesis. Thermogenesis is the production of heat in the body. This is due to the activation of brown adipose tissue (a specific type of fat) as well as the digestion and absorption of food – which in turn burns calories. Foods that require more energy to break down have a higher “thermic effect,” according to registered dietitian Maddie Pasquariello, M.S., R.D.
- Physical activity. Most people know the connection between physical activity and burning calories.
Metabolism and your health.
As previously mentioned, metabolism is a biological process that affects how your body uses energy and calories. This includes several important metabolic pathways, including those that affect body composition, energy balance, blood sugar balance, and blood lipid levels (total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, and triglycerides)—all of which play a vital role in overall health. and longevity.
Metabolism is closely related to your metabolic rate or the amount of energy/calories you consume or “burn” each day. Metabolic rate also depends on:
Unfortunately, only 12% of Americans are considered metabolically healthy, highlighting the importance of targeted daily metabolic support.
How to speed up Metabolism growth.
While genetics certainly plays a big role in how “fast” (ie healthy and active) your metabolism is, there are several lifestyle habits you can incorporate into your daily routine to boost your metabolism and optimize your metabolic health.
Increase your hydration. For peak metabolism, hydration is key, according to Kelley. This is because H2O is essential for the metabolic reactions in your cells that dictate signalling to hormones and other substrates. Drinking water has also been shown to trigger a process called water-induced thermogenesis, which can increase your metabolic rate by up to 30% per hour, according to a 2016 Frontiers in Nutrition review.
According to Kelley, drinking cold water can be especially beneficial because of the energy your body needs to expend to heat the water. Read more: Most Favourite American Foods for Everyday Life
Create a healthy sleep pattern.
In addition to skin health and brain longevity, a quality sleep routine is a key to metabolic well-being. As Kelley explains, not getting enough sleep can lead to increased oxidative stress. And hormonal fluctuations that can disrupt your metabolism. Fortunately, the changes aren’t permanent, which means it’s possible to curb these effects by tweaking your sleep routine.
Eat a nutrient-dense and filling diet. “Generally speaking, [following] the Mediterranean diet is the best way to naturally promote a healthy metabolism,” explains Pasquariello. Specifically, foods that speed up metabolism include:
- Complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates sometimes called “slow carbs,” help regulate blood sugar and promote fat metabolism. Examples include whole grains, potatoes, squash, fruit, and fibrous or starchy vegetables, according to Pasquariello.
- Lean protein. High-quality lean protein increases satiety while providing essential nutrients. Fish and poultry are considered lean proteins, as are plant sources such as beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, tofu, and tempeh, notes Pasquariello.
- Unsaturated fats. While saturated fat can slow metabolism, unsaturated fat (or “good fat”) can support healthy lipid levels. These include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (we’re looking at you, omega-3s). Found in foods such as nuts, seeds and fatty fish – such as salmon, anchovies and mackerel.
- Plants. Is there anything plants can’t do? A diet rich in colourful fruits and vegetables will provide the fibre and phytonutrients that are essential for metabolic well-being. Fibre also has the added benefit of increasing satiety, which helps keep your appetite under control.
Think about your hormones.
Hormones, or your body’s chemical messengers, affect almost every process in the body. For example, thyroid hormones are related to energy expenditure and body weight. The same goes for cortisol, or the stress hormone (more on that later), and insulin.
All that said, it’s worth working with an integrative health practitioner who approaches hormone health from a holistic angle. Especially if you have existing concerns about hormone health. Source medicalnewstoday.