How to Boost Your Metabolism

News and Advice, Weight Loss
on June 7, 2011

Nearly everyone knows that annoying person who seems to be able to eat whatever she wants without gaining weight. Likewise, you might have a friend or family member that seems to pack on pounds just by looking at food. This is due, at least in part, to differences in metabolism. Some people simply burn calories faster than others, regardless of their lifestyle.

Try not to focus on metabolism. Metabolism is given a lot of credit in the weight-loss world, especially in recent years. However, experts at the Mayo Clinic suggest that it’s better to focus on the aspects of weight loss that you can control, like consuming fewer calories and getting more physical activity, rather than fixating on an element that you don’t have much control over, like your metabolism. Giving metabolism too much credit for your weight-loss woes is also a poor excuse that can lead to self-pity and a passive approach to weight loss. It’s better to believe wholeheartedly that you can achieve your goals, rather than to let your ideas about your metabolism serve as a barrier for you.

Build muscle mass. With that said, if you’re already following a healthy diet plan and exercising regularly, it doesn’t hurt to try to boost your metabolism, as long as you do so in a healthy way. One proven way to increase your fat-burning potential is by building more muscle mass. Muscle burns more calories than fat tissue, even when at rest, yet years of crash dieting and aging can lead to muscle loss. If you want to turn your body into a calorie-burning machine, don’t just stick to the treadmill or trails. Add some strength-training or core-training exercises like weight lifting or Pilates to your routine, and don’t overly restrict calories, which can lead to muscle loss. Of course, cardio is still important if you’re looking to burn fat, and you’ll get a temporary metabolism boost for several hours after each workout.

Drink water. Drinking plenty of water is also important for weight loss, as it keeps your body’s systems working at an optimal level. Drinking ice-cold water is believed to temporarily increase your metabolism, because your body needs to work to warm the water to body temperature, a process that burns calories.

Try these foods. Certain foods and beverages — including jalapeno peppers, milk, green tea, grapefruit and avocados — are believed to give your body a temporary metabolism boost. Other foods that are considered a good part of a healthy diet include oats, asparagus, almonds, walnuts, spinach, broccoli, apples and beans. These foods may not actually boost your metabolism, but they have other benefits, such as keeping you feeling full for longer and providing essential nutrients for weight loss.

These are just a few of the ways that you can potentially boost your metabolism. If you make proper diet and exercise your focus, adding these tips could give you that extra edge. Steer clear of supplements that claim to boost your metabolism, especially if they aren’t approved by the FDA. Not only are these items typically a waste of money, but they can also have serious side effects.