How To Boost Metabolism Naturally: Health And Fitness Hacks For Weight Loss
Learn Our Top Tips On How To Boost Metabolism Naturally
Punishing workouts you don’t really like and super-strict diets that involve counting every calorie is nobody’s idea of fun. What if you could learn a few clever tips on how to boost metabolism naturally?
And what if you discovered some fitness hacks and dietary tricks that could crank your metabolism levels up and boost your weight loss efforts?
Stick with us because that’s exactly what this article is all about.
First, let’s talk metabolism basics. Your metabolism is a complex process related to how your body processes energy from proteins, fats, and carbohydrates, and how it stores that energy.
Your body burns fuel at rest and the number of calories burned is called your resting metabolic rate (RMR). The amount of calories your body goes through in a day is not the same for every person due to age, gender, lean body mass etc. But fortunately there are steps you can take to speed up your metabolism naturally and ultimately burn more fat effectively.
“Exercise speeds up your metabolic rate,” said Captain Obvious.
Of course regular activity is going to help increase metabolism, but in this article we’ll delve into particular forms of fitness and exercise hacks that have been proven to really ramp things up.
We’ll also serve up some tips on a certain spice and a healthy drink that have been shown to have a positive effect on metabolism too.
Exercise In The Morning On An Empty Stomach
When you body swerve breakfast and head straight to the gym, or go for a morning run, you’re in a fasted state. You’ll have been sleeping for around eight hours and, with another few hours at either side of eating dinner the previous evening and getting active in the morning, you’ll probably have been without food for between 10-14 hours.
Our bodies convert excess glucose from the food we eat to glycogen and this is stored as our main source of energy. However, when we go long periods without food our glycogen bank runs out.
What happens then? Your body turns to its fat stores to use this as fuel instead.
So, exercising first thing in the morning in a fasted state can preferentially burn up fat in the body.
A good gym workout for 45 minutes, or completing a high-intensity circuit training session for example, requires plenty of coal in the fire. With glycogen levels low, that bodyfat at your belly, your ass, and wherever else you don’t want it, becomes your body’s coal supplier.
Go Heavy And Build Some Muscle
Lifting weights, and progressively heavier weights as you naturally get stronger, is one of the most effective ways to speed up metabolism and trigger weight loss.
There’s long been a misconception – particularly with women – that weight training will lead to you becoming big and bulky. This is a myth.
Lifting weights, or doing strength and conditioning classes, develops lean muscle and keeps you trim. It’s been shown that for every pound of muscle gained, your body naturally burns extra calories just to maintain it. Now we’re talking increased metabolism on autopilot!
The fitness experts at Strong Kitchen said: “Muscle tissue will burn seven to 10 calories daily per pound, replacing a pound of fat with muscle helps you burn an additional four to six more calories each day.”
Go Fast – Sprint Training Can Turn Your Body Into A Fat Burning Machine
Did you ever watch the Olympics, Commonwealth Games, or any other professional 100m sprint competition and wonder why every single sprinter has the body of a Greek God?
Pure lean muscle, ultra-toned bodies, and just in ridiculous shape overall.
It’s because sprint training triggers a unique, physiological response in the body which, quite literally, turns you into a lean, fat-burning machine.
This form of high-intensity running in short bursts supercharges your body’s natural production of growth hormone, with some studies showing that levels more than quadruple and stay elevated for longer.
Not only is growth hormone an anabolic hormone which helps develop lean muscle, but research has shown that it promotes lipolysis. This is a metabolic process that effectively breaks down fat cells in the body, reducing the volume of fatty tissue.
Bottom line: forget a light jog, sprint like you’re being chased by an axe-wielding madman to really see results with weight loss.
Intermittent Fasting For Fat Loss
Too many people believe that burning fat and losing weight is all about calories in and calories out. There are other factors too, with one of the biggest being the functioning of our hormones.
Our standard Western diets filled with processed, junk food and too much snacking has our hormones out of whack.
One of the most effective ways to help bring about balance is through intermittent fasting a few days per week.
No, this doesn’t mean you have to starve yourself or struggle through some sort of fad diet.
Intermittent fasting involves an extended break from food and by adjusting your eating habits in a clever way (which is coming up), you can give your body a signal to burn fat automatically.
As we briefly mentioned earlier, your body’s main source of energy is the glucose it derives from carbohydrates. Excess glucose is converted into glycogen and stored in the liver and muscle cells for a ready-made supply of energy later.
When that bank of glycogen runs out your body needs to look elsewhere for fuel. That’s when it turns to fat stores and the body breaks down the fat stored in your white adipose tissue into free fatty acids in the bloodstream. These released fatty acids are then used as your primary fuel source.
It generally takes 12-14 hours for you to reach this fasted state and for the amount of fatty acids in the bloodstream to increase. Between 18 and 24 hours the number of fatty acids increases even further.
Regularly going without food for 24 hours is obviously not going to end well. And you’re probably thinking, ‘how the hell am I going to last even 14 hours without food?’
There’s an easy answer: skip breakfast.
If you finish eating at 8pm the night before, skip breakfast, and then make lunch at 12noon your first meal of the day, then you’ve effectively been fasting for 16 hours. Even if you eat at mid-morning, say 10am, that’s still a 14-hour fast (because roughly eight hours of fasting has been done when you’ve been sleeping).
Health and fitness guru Thomas DeLauer is a big fan of intermittent fasting and shares plenty details on it in this video.
How To Boost Metabolism Naturally Through Your Diet
Now let’s wrap things up with one specific food and a healthy drink that have surprising metabolism-boosting effects.
Ginger – hailed as an ‘anti-obesity spice’, researchers in this study claim that ginger has beneficial effects against obesity and metabolic disorders.
The scientists claimed: “…dietary ginger prevents body weight gain by remodelling whole-body energy metabolism and inducing browning of white adipose tissue.”
Green tea – this powerful drink is loaded with antioxidants and various plant compounds that can benefit your health, but can it help with metabolism and weight loss?
Most sports supplement companies these days stock up on green tea extract to help give fitness fanatics a boost of energy…and boost in the fat-burning department.
Researchers believe that compounds known as catechins with green tea, along with its caffeine content, combine well to produce a fat breakdown effect.
Ultimately, there are numerous steps you can take to kick your metabolism into gear. But it takes movement and some swift action.
So, enough reading and get to work.
The time course of the human growth hormone response to a 6s and a 30s cycle ergometer sprint
Effects of growth hormone on adipose tissue
16:8 intermittent fasting – everything you need to get started
Ginger prevents obesity through regulation of energy metabolism and activation of browning in high-fat diet-induced obese mice.
Green tea and thermogenesis: interactions between catechin-polyphenols, caffeine and sympathetic activity