13 Lifestyle Changes to Boost Your Metabolism
Most people think metabolism is the amount of energy your body is able to burn.
However, it is actually the makeup of all the chemical processes in a living organism to maintain life. These processes enable your body to function, allowing you to think, digest food, move, breathe, and perform the essential functions of being a living being.
Metabolism allows your body to function properly, and the worst thing we could do is slow it down by not eating. All those fad diets that limit your caloric intake? Throw them out the window! Instead, start speeding up your metabolism by eating metabolism-boosting foods and treating your body to a little TLC!
Here are 13 things you can do to boost your metabolism naturally:
1. Get Some Rest
Lack of sleep not only gives you those dreadful bags under your eyes, but research also shows that it drastically slows down your metabolism. This means that your body uses less energy to do normal bodily functions, like breathing. The less energy you use, the less energy you can burn, which can also lead to weight gain.
2. Brew a Pot of Coffee or Tea
Caffeine is your metabolism’s friend. Coffee and black tea are packed with caffeine and antioxidants, a double whammy to kick-start your day. If you don’t want the high caffeine punch, brew green tea to sip on throughout the day. Green tea has less caffeine than coffee and black teas and tons of antioxidants and an important component called Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which helps stimulate the fat-burning process.
These beverages give your body and mind a boost, so when you need a pick-me-up, grab one of these options instead of a sugary energy drink!
3. Hot Peppers
Hot peppers contain a chemical known as capsaicin, which is what gives them their spice and revs up your metabolism. This chemical also makes you feel satiated and suppresses appetite. Try adding one pepper per day to your diet for maximum effects. Add jalapeño slices to your sandwich, roast them to top off a burger, and add them to your homemade salsa or guacamole.
4. Healthy Fats
While we are talking about guacamole (yum), adding healthy fats to your diet boosts your metabolism. Yes, that’s right – fat doesn’t make you fat – it helps you burn fat! Healthy fat also helps your body absorb and process nutrients, protects your organs, and provides energy.
One of the most impressive healthy fats you can consume is a little miracle nut known as an almond. Almonds are high in protein and fiber, two building blocks to boosting your metabolism. Snacking on this nutrient-dense nut will guarantee you feel satiated while delivering a boatload of healthy nutrients to your body!
Antioxidants seem to be the magic word these days, and berries are loaded with them. Antioxidants, such as vitamin C, increase your metabolism and help combat free radicals and assist you in repair after working out. Berries are very low in sugar and are also anti-aging!
6. Chia Seeds
These little wonders are packed with protein, fiber, and healthy fats, all of which do wonders for your metabolism. Add these guys to your granola, shakes, toast, or make chia seed yogurt. To make your own chia seed yogurt, mix 1/3 cup chia seeds, one cup coconut milk (or homemade almond milk) (ADD LINK TO DIY ALMOND MILK RECIPE), two tablespoons of honey, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, and a dash of Himalayan pink salt. Refrigerate the mixture overnight and add your favorite toppings when you are ready to enjoy.
The human body doesn’t produce all of the essential fatty acids it requires, which means we must acquire these supplements from our diets. Add this fish to your salad to give yourself a boost of essential fatty acids (the key word being essential). Cold water fish like salmon are higher in omega-3, which lowers blood sugar and inflammation and helps raise the body’s metabolism.
8. Leafy Greens
Spinach and other leafy greens are jam-packed with fiber, a big metabolism booster, and can increase your metabolism by 30%. They also support healthy blood, which is crucial for your metabolism to work at its best. Reach for organic options like spinach and kale, which are high in iron and calcium.
You may want to read: Are Your Favorite Leafy Greens as Healthy as You Think They Are?
9. Lower Your Stress
High-stress levels have been linked to too much TV watching and overeating. Instead of vegging out, add some activity into your schedule! Yoga and meditation are excellent ways to reduce stress and calm your mind, body and spirit.
10. Work Out
Your metabolism is not dependent on your food intake alone. Working out is an essential factor for jolting your metabolism to life. Try doing bursts of exercises rather than maintaining a steady pace such as jogging. Doing bursts of exercise has been proven to burn fat more efficiently, and it can keep your metabolism boosted for up to seven hours after your activity is completed.
11. Psyllium Husk
Psyllium husk is a natural, gentle laxative that is armed with soluble fiber, which promotes regular bowel movements and removes toxins from your body. It also helps prevent colon cancer, maintains optimal pH in the intestines, keeps you satiated for a longer period, lowers cholesterol, and reduces the risk of heart disease.
12. Choose Organic Options
The benefits of organic foods keep growing and growing. Don’t add hormones, pesticides, and antibiotics to your diet. Instead, reach for food in its best, organic and unadulterated state. Your body uses food to clean its insides, and if your food is polluted, your body is not able to do its job properly. Organic foods can improve your metabolism and increase your body’s overall performance.
13. Find Nemo
Last, but certainly not least, drink your water! Studies have shown that upping your water intake throughout the day increases your metabolism by 30% and helps break down fat in the body. Even slight dehydration can slow down your metabolism.
Start the day off with warm lemon water to kick-start your metabolism. If you aren’t sure how much you should aim to drink throughout the day, take your body weight and divide it in half. That is the minimum amount of ounces you should be consuming each day.
Small changes in your lifestyle can do wonders for your body. Don’t become overwhelmed with trying to do it all at once. As always, find your balance. Maybe start with adding warm lemon water to your morning routine, and build from there. Your body and metabolism will thank you for including any of these lifestyle changes into your day.