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Fire up Your Metabolism and Wave Excess Weight Goodbye

Aug 17, 2007
More and more, we're coming to understand that for sustained weight loss, without the need to be permanently on a diet, boosting our metabolism is the sensible and sure-fire way to achieve it. To understand why that is, we need to know what our metabolism is and why it's important for weight loss.

In simple terms, our metabolism is the rate by which the body produces and consumes energy and calories to support life. Metabolism takes place 24 hours a day, even while we rest and sleep. As we know, some bodies burn calories more effectively than others and this is down to our metabolic rate - the speed at which our bodies convert food into energy.

We hear of fast or slow metabolisms but in fact we should be referring to efficient or inefficient metabolisms. Having an efficient metabolism enables us to burn fat and lose weight fast with the least amount of activity. As we age, we tend to become less active and lose muscle tissue and increase the amount of fat with a corresponding effect on metabolism but it is possible to counter this, and here are several ways to do this:

1. Build up on lean body mass. The amount of muscle a person has plays a large part in the ability to burn calories and shed fat, so it goes without saying that exercise is essential. We can build strength and resistance by working out at least twice a week, preferably with weights. Do easy exercises in between workouts. Simple tasks such as walking the dog and using the stairs in place of the elevator can already take off calories. The key is to match the amount of eating to the amount of activity we do.

2. Eat breakfast. The old saying "Breakfast like a King" is based on good sound principles. A lot of people are ignoring the fact that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Surprisingly, those who eat breakfast tend to be thinner than those who do not. Eating well and early gives our metabolism a good kick-start. Metabolism can slow down considerably if food isn't eaten until mid-morning or even later.

3. Avoid sugar. Sugar enables the body to store fat. It's recommended that we eat food that helps sustain an even level of blood-sugar. Additionally, progressive exercise 2-3 times a week should help to stabilize blood sugar levels.

4. Eat spicy foods. Hot cooking with peppers and chillies can increase metabolism through raising your body temperature and heart rate, both of which will burn calories.

5. Sleep more. According to research, it's easier for people who do not get enough sleep to gain weight. We need proper and sufficient sleep for the release of hormones such as melatonin and growth hormone, which our bodies need to operate efficiently. Also, muscles are regenerated during the last couple of hours of slumber.

6. Increase water intake. Water flushes out toxins that are produced whenever the body burns fat. The majority of bodily functions involve water, and lack of water causes the body system's operations to decrease its speed, and produces unneeded stress as a result.

7. Eat smaller meals. It is advisable to consume 4 to 6 small meals that are timed 2 to 3 hours apart. You raise your metabolic rate every time you eat, so eating more frequently gives you a metabolic boost more often, whereas eating one large meal can have the effect of slowing metabolism.

8. Never skip meals. People tend to skip meals in order to lose weight, which is a big mistake since it slows down metabolism. Put some planning into your daily meal pattern to make sure you eat at the right times.

9. Do away with stress! Stress, both physical and emotional, triggers the release of Adrenaline, Noradrenalin, and Cortisol. These hormones switch off metabolic activities such as the digestive system, as it's not needed at times of danger or perceived danger, as we prepare for 'fight or flight'.

10. Don't stint on green tea. It can be used as a substitute for coffee and the catechins in green tea have the ability to stimulate metabolism. Green tea has many other health benefits through its antioxidant qualities.

11. Include more energy foods in the diet, such as fruits and vegetables, beans and whole grains. These foods should be a staple of most diets anyway for their overall health-giving qualities.

Achieving the desired body weight is never easy but if you have a sensible diet and exercise regime which increases your muscle mass and reduces the amount of body fat, this will significantly boosts your metabolism, and make weight loss just that bit easier.
About the Author
Andrew Poole is a qualified specialist Weight-loss Coach and the creator of the New-Slimmer-You Weight-loss Support Plan www.new-slimmer-you.com He offers a special gift to subscribers to his informative newsletter
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