Health & Wellness

Published on November 12th, 2011 | by thevyne


Boost Your Metabolism

By Siddiqu “The Personal Trainer”
One of my clients was out to dinner with a group of her friends and the big question at the table was Metabolism!  Metabolism is how fast you burn calories when your body is active or at rest and how fast you lose and gain weight.  Lets debunk the myth about metabolism once and for all, there is no biologic reason for men and women to gain weight or for their body fat to increase as they grow older.  Increase in body fat is more a function of activity than age.  Inactivity results in loss of muscle.  And loss of muscle, not an aging metabolism, is the primary cause of creeping obesity. The muscle that remains is as metabolically active as ever.  Here is a list of what you can do to actually increase your metabolism and keep it burning those calories:
  • Potassium rich foods speed weight loss by keeping the body’s cells well-hydrated. If the cells have too little fluid your metabolism will slow down and will burn fewer calories. Potassium rich foods include bananas, dried apricots, honeydew and baked potatoes.
  • Iron rich foods help by getting oxygen to the red blood cells. Metabolism will slow down as a result. For pre-menopausal women 18 mg of iron is needed daily. For post menopausal women 9 mg of iron is needed. Spinach delivers 3 mg of iron per ounce. Meat, fish, nuts, and beans are also good sources of iron.
  • Vitamin C will help to prevent the oxidative stress that slows fat burn. When we are young, the body produces lots of antioxidants. As we grow older, production slows down. Oranges and other citrus fruits are good sources of vitamin C.
  • Limit alcohol, Alcohol suppresses the central nervous system. When alcohol is added to a meal less fat is burned which causes more fat to be stored by the body.
  • Green Tea, Green tea is another metabolism booster. One claim is that a glass of green tea can help burn an extra 80 calories a day.  Why:  Green tea is filled with catechin polyphenols, chemicals that act both as an antioxidant and as a metabolism (fat burning)
  • B Vitamins create energy, which speeds metabolism and increases weight loss. Foods high in B vitamins include asparagus, broccoli, spinach and nearly all energy drinks. Try to eat foods high in B vitamins throughout the day to keep energy levels high, thereby speeding up metabolism. Eat four to five servings each day.
  • Foods rich in magnesium are another proven ingredient in speeding up metabolism. Eat oatmeal for breakfast, or snack on almonds or cashews throughout the day. Other magnesium-rich foods are halibut, soybeans and spinach. Incorporate three to four servings of magnesium into your diet each day.
  • Limited Snacks are needed throughout the day for extra fuel between meals. An average snack portion should be about the size of a handful. Do not eat when you are not hungry, and do not eat junk food for snacks, as this will slow the metabolism. Snack on nuts and dried fruit, or fresh fruit or vegetables with a fruit or veggie dip.
  • Eat Breakfast A healthful breakfast each morning will give the metabolism a boost and keep it moving throughout the day. Eat a breakfast that could include peanut butter on whole-grain toast, a bowl of oatmeal or a high-fiber cereal with soy milk.
  • Exercise is an important factor in a speedy metabolism. Strength training and cardiovascular exercise will boost to the metabolism and keep it working throughout the day. Fit in at least 10 to 15 minutes of exercise each day, even if you are only able to do it in five-minute intervals. The key is to get the metabolism to a fast rate, which will burn more fat over a longer period of time.  
  • Increase your protein-  Protein exerts a greater metabolic-boosting effect than carbs or dietary fat.  When calories drop, protein saves muscle, which helps keep the metabolism (calorie burning) elevated.
  • Cardio is a good way to trigger fat loss.  The ideal time is after workouts, as research shows that you burn more fat when you do cardio after a weight workout.  However, another good time to do cardio is in the morning before eating.  Why?  That’s when sugar levels in the blood are at their lowest.  If you perform cardio when your blood sugar and insulin are lower, fat burning is maximized.
  • Eat more fish- When calories are controlled, the inclusion of omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon, trout and sardines may promote speedier fat loss.  A study revealed that dieters who ate fish on a daily basis lost more weight than those who ate fish just once a week.

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