Kick Start Your Metabolism

Dr. Rebecca Tocher-Richmond, ND

 

Some people seem to be able to eat whatever they want and never gain a pound.  We might say they naturally have a fast metabolism but there are steps you can take to make sure your metabolism is working up to its potential.

These are some of our favourite ways to boost your metabolism:

  1. Stay Satiated

Even if you’re trying to lose a few extra pounds, staying fairly full is key to your success in managing your metabolism and your weight. Eat slowly, chewing well, until you’re about 90% full, and then stop. This will allow you to determine if you really do need more sustenance or if you’re just eating out of habit. Even if you’re aiming to reduce your food intake, starving will only make your metabolism slower as it tries to store the limited energy it’s being provided – and that’s the opposite of our goal.

  1. Commit to Breakfast

It’s not surprising that those who don’t eat breakfast actually tend to gain more weight over time. That’s because those who skip this meal tend to make up for it (and more) by overeating at lunch, snack times, and dinner. After a good night’s rest your body is primed to accept the fuel it needs to move through the day. In fact, it needs more fuel because it’s been hours with your metabolism in resting mode! Try a breakfast that’s high in protein, and has some complex carbohydrates and a bit of fat to jumpstart your metabolism and keep you satisfied until lunch time.

  1. Up That H20

Whether via glasses of water or herbal tea, giving your body quality fluids is essential to having a well-hydrated metabolism. Water helps keep nutrients flowing into your cells, carries toxins out of your body, and is key to a happy digestive system. It also keeps you feeling full, and helps your energy level.

  1. Add Tea or Coffee

The antioxidants and small amounts of caffeine found in black, green, and white tea as well as coffee are beneficial to revving up your metabolism and keeping it chugging along healthily. One or two cups a day can provide the most beneficial amounts without going overboard. And, even better, adding herbal teas such as fennel, mint, or ginger tea after a meal can assist your digestion processes, helping meals to settle better and digest more easily – without added caffeine.

  1. Spice Is Extra Nice

Studies show that adding spicy hot peppers or hot pepper sauces can help to increase your metabolism! Studies are showing that the thermogenic properties of peppers and capsaicin, a compound in chiles, can temporarily increase your body temperature, helping it to burn more calories in short bursts of time. So, try adding some extra spice to those soups or other foods, and see what benefit you might derive!   Adding more flavour to your food also helps to prevent overeating.

  1. Include Intervals

Any form of exercise can be bolstered with the addition of the short bursts of cardiovascular activity also known as ‘Interval Training’. Adding in 2-5 minute bursts of jumping jacks, skipping, or burpees are all great ways of building long lasting metabolism increases.  If you’re a walker, try adding a few brisk hill repeats into your route.

  1. Turn Down Stress

It’s been long understood that high levels of stress hormones like cortisol can result in a slowed metabolism and eventual weight gain. The opposite is also true: by turning down the stress in our lives we can help our brains, hormones, and bodies relax, a natural reboot for our metabolism.

  1. Stimulate Your Stomach

If you consistently experience symptoms like heaviness after a meal, acid reflux, bloating, food allergies, undigested food in stool, flatulence, or even nausea after taking supplements you might be suffering from low stomach acid which, in turn, can result in lowered metabolism. Stomach acid, or HCL (hydrochloric acid) is a core requirement to digest effectively and one of the essential building blocks to a well-functioning metabolism.   Our Naturopathic Doctors are very experienced in assessing and treating this digestive issue.

  1. Excel With Enzymes

Sometimes there are particular foods that make us feel sluggish, heavy, bloated, or uncomfortable. In that case it might be time to consider a digestive enzyme to help break down food to make it more digestible and the nutrients within it more absorbable.  Look for the ones that help with your food difficulties: protease for proteins, amylase for help with carbohydrates, lipase for help digesting fats, cellulase for breaking down fiber, and maltase to help convert complex sugars from grains into glucose.  A broad spectrum digestive enzyme will cover all of your bases.

  1. Sleep Soundly

The quality of your sleep doesn’t just affect your mood and energy level, it also has a profound effect on your metabolic state because deep REM sleep is the body’s time for rest and repair – and that includes how the body manages stress hormones, blood sugar levels, and inflammation – all of which play critical roles in our metabolism. We’re still learning much more about how important consistent sleep and rest are for our health, but what we do know for sure is that a sleep deprived body is slower and more lethargic which means weight management is harder. So if you choose just one of these tips to follow, make getting sleep your number one priority!

Looking for personalized assistance in maintaining a healthy metabolism? We can help you navigate this and provide you with a fully customized plan for better health. To book your appointment call us at 780-459-5601 or visit us online at www.npath.com.