If you feel like your metabolism is slowing down, you may experience poor digestion, feel fatigued, and have an overall low mood. But we have good news! Typically with a few lifestyle changes, you can get your metabolism revved and back on track. Poor eating habits, a sedentary lifestyle and inadequate sleep are all reasons your metabolism may not be functioning at its highest, but with some healthy changes here and there, you can shift your metabolism into high gear. We’re talking all about how to reset your metabolism so you can feel better, lose weight and feel more energized.
What is Metabolism?
Metabolism is the process where your body changes food and drink into the energy your body needs to breathe, grow and repair cells, balance hormones, boost circulation and everything else that’s necessary to survive. It runs 24/7 to keep your body moving, expending energy and burning calories.
Many factors contribute to your metabolism, including your age, gender, genetics, muscle-to-fat ratio and amount of physical activity. Your metabolism tends to slow down with age. As we age, muscle mass decreases and muscle is replaced with fat. Since muscle is more metabolically active than fat, the rate at which you burn energy slows. If you’re exercising less frequently than you used to, you’ll likely experience a slower metabolism and gain weight more quickly.
Metabolism can also slow down due to natural changes in hormone levels such as estrogen and testosterone. Changes associated with menopause can cause an increase in body fat and a slowed metabolism. Your body also requires less energy with age. Organs such as the heart, brain, liver and kidneys require less metabolic demand overall as you get older, which can naturally lead to a slower metabolism.
9 Signs of a Fast Metabolism
- Difficulty gaining weight or keeping weight on
- Increased calorie burning
- Increased breathing
- Increased appetite
- Feeling hot and sweaty
- High body temperature eleven when not doing any activity
- Frequent bowel and bladder movement
9 Signs of a Slow Metabolism
- Difficult to lose weight and easy to gain weight
- Poor digestion
- Low mood
- Colder than average body temperature
- Dry skin and nails
- Hair loss
- Sugar and carb cravings
How to Reset Your Metabolism: 8 Tips for Women
1. Get Your Cardio On
Cardio exercises like running, walking, swimming and cycling, increase your metabolism and help you burn calories. Everyone should be getting at least 30 minutes of daily exercise and you can also make lifestyle changes to help you get more movement in. Park farther away at the grocery store, take the stairs instead of the elevator, or get off public transit a few stops early. All of these small changes make a difference.
2. Strength Training is Key
Strength training helps you build muscle mass, which is super important to focus on as you age. It also provides a metabolism boost. When you exercise, your muscle tissue is stressed then repaired- a molecular activity that raises metabolism. Since lean muscle tissue is more metabolically active than fat, the more muscle mass you have, the more calories you’ll burn. You’ll also burn more calories after a weight training workout due to excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC).
3. Always Eat Breakfast
Skipping breakfast is one of the worst things you can do for your overall health. Consuming a healthy breakfast jump starts your metabolism and keeps your energy high all day. Focus on getting a combination of complex carbs, fibre and protein as these will all give your metabolism a boost. A healthy breakfast will also optimize muscle-building and keep you going strong until lunch.
4. Get Your Protein In
Your metabolism gets a boost when you eat, digest and store food, a process called the thermic effect of food. Protein has a higher thermic effect than fats and carbs because it takes longer for your body to burn and absorb. Eating protein at every meal is so important, especially when combined with weight training as it increases muscle mass, which also boosts metabolism.
5. Caffeine and H2O
Drinking caffeine is a great way to reset your metabolism as it stimulates your metabolic rate. After you’ve got some food in you, start your morning with a cup of coffee, or green, matcha or oolong tea, which all have high amounts of caffeine. In addition to caffeine, antioxidant catechins in green tea are also thought to provide a metabolism boost. After your morning caffeine boost, stick to water throughout the day. As well as being an appetite suppressant, H2O boosts your metabolism and helps you burn calories.
6. Eat Smaller Meals More Frequently
Eating five to six smaller meals throughout the day offers a steady stream of energy to your body. This not only stimulates your metabolism, but also prevents energy dips, stabilizes blood sugar, boosts brain power and prevents overeating. If you go this route, make sure to keep portion sizes small. Don’t eat five or six huge meals, as you’ll end up loading up on calories you don’t need.
7. Increase Your Probiotics
Your gut health influences various aspects of your metabolism, so it’s super important to have good bacteria in your gut. Probiotics, found in foods like Greek yogurt, kimchi, kefir and sauerkraut help balance gut bacteria and increase metabolism. Having the wrong balance of bacteria can lead to junk food cravings, blood sugar swings and weight gain, so focus on probiotics to reduce cravings and boost your metabolic rate.
8. Prioritize Quality Sleep
To keep your metabolism revved up, you want to be getting eight hours of sleep each night. And ideally you’ll be asleep before midnight. Too little sleep hampers your metabolism and contributes to weight gain, and your hormones may be at play here. Leptin is a hormone that suppresses appetite, and ghrelin is a hormone that increases food intake and is thought to play a role in the regulation of body weight. Lack of sleep lowers leptin and increases ghrelin, so make it a priority to get yourself on a healthy sleep schedule.
If you’ve been looking for ways to reset your metabolism, we hope these tips and tricks get you back on track to your weight loss goals!
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