If you know how your metabolism works, you’ll be able to boost it properly. Weight loss is a very difficult process for numerous people. But, are they doing everything right? You’ve probably heard many people wanting to get rid of all the stubborn belly fat and change their appearance, but they just try it and stop doing it because they find it very hard. Actually, you just need to understand your metabolism and not starve all the time. You need to know how to support your metabolic and hormonal processes so that you can lose weight.
What Is Metabolism And What Affects It?
It is actually the ability our body has to discover and use some fuel for its energy. The metabolism is a complex thing. We need to learn how to make it burn fat and not starve or use that fat to store it. We’ll need it because we’ll later use it as fuel.
Here, we’re presenting you the major factors which control our metabolism:
One organ which produces the thyroid hormone and we need it for detoxification is our liver.
Thyroid – This is a very important gland which enables normal organ growth, controls body temperature, as well as the ability we have to burn fat.
Adrenal Glands – These are our main stress glands. They are responsible for the regulation of our stress hormones, as well as to regulate steroid hormones. They are also necessary to regulate our metabolism.
Psychological State – Anxiety and stress for a long time can have a very bad effect on your metabolism. We need time so that we can take care of our wellbeing as well as our mental health. That will have a positive effect on our metabolism and also help us have a healthy weight.
Muscle Mass – Our muscle mass helps us burn calories while we’re resting, regulates our blood sugar and helps us burn fat.
1. How To Increase Metabolism: Reduce Toxic Load
As we have already mentioned previously, our liver is extremely important for the process of detoxification. It removes toxic matters and helps us store healthy matters. Many people suffer from toxic overload which can have a negative effect on our metabolism.
What burdens our liver the most is sugar, processed foods, pollution, prescription drugs, stress hormones, alcohol etc.
Numerous metabolic problems can appear when our liver becomes overburdened:
- Low energy
- Inability to lose weight
- Weight gain
- Poor regulation of blood sugar
- Abdominal bloating
- Poor digestion
- Irritability, moodiness
- Sleep disturbances
- Skin problems
Is Your Liver Overloaded?
We constantly have toxins in our body. They come from the food and drinks we consume as well as the environment.
2. How To Increase Metabolism: Hormone Balancing
Our thyroid is extremely important in order to have a healthy metabolism. When it is over stimulated, we can experience restlessness, anxiety, weight loss, as well as sleep disorders. The most important hormone which is released by the thyroid is called thyroxine (T4).
If the thyroid hormone becomes too much or too little produced, our whole body will suffer. The metabolism starts to slow down and various health problems appear.
How to support your thyroid:
Treat the Underlying Causes
First, you must know whether you have hypothyroidism and which causes might trigger it. Some of them are: lack of physical activity, stress, food allergies like heavy metals, gluten and dairy as well as nutritional deficiencies.
Eat thyroid friendly foods
Some things that can affect your thyroid in a negative way are vegetables from the brassica family or too many products which contain soy. The brassica family includes vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage etc. so make sure you don’t eat them a lot.
Eat more foods which contain saturated fat, iodine, omega-3 fats, zinc, selenium etc.
We must take care of the stress and try to do activities which relax us like: spending more time with our family and friends, walk a lot, read, meditate etc.
Exercising moderately is very important for a healthy adrenal function. We also have to intake foods rich in iodine as well as dark leafy greens.
The Adrenal Glands
The central stress response system is our HPA axis (hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis). It regulates our thyroid function, appetite, metabolism, cravings etc.
Stress is considered to be negative, but still, a little bit of stress is necessary for our body since the adrenal glands start to secrete more of the hormone called cortisol. If the levels of cortisol are low, we’ll suffer from hypothyroidism or otherwise called slow thyroid.
Key takeaway: We need to have a balanced thyroid function.
Other important things released by our adrenal glands are the catecholamines, like adrenaline. We need them for burning fat so that we can use it for energy.
These are some of the things that can cause increased production of cortisol or dysfunctional adrenal glands:
- Alcohol consumption
- Chronic stress (emotional and/or mental)
- Immune responses from inflammation or infection
- Over-activity and low activity
- Sleep deprivation
- Caffeine over-consumption
- Blood sugar imbalance
Cortisol can be raised by skipping meals as well as eating food.
These things can also decrease the cortisol:
- Green tea (theanine)
- Physical affection towards your pets or your loved ones
- Spa therapies, sauna and hot baths
- Leisure walking, like for example, in the woods
- Massage, naps or sleep
- BCAA supplements and whey protein
- Laughter, relaxation and rest
- Restorative/stretching yoga, meditation and tai chi
- GABAnergic herbal teas (skullcap, passionflower or valerian)
QUICK TIP: It’s very important to have some low-intensity activity at least three times a week. It will improve your metabolism as well as reduce stress.
3. How To Increase Metabolism: Body Composition
If we want to boost the basal metabolic rate or the resting metabolic rate, we need to have lean muscle mass. The more muscle mass you have, the higher your BMR will be. You’ll be able to burn more calories. By improving our muscle mass, we’ll also manage to improve the regulation of blood sugar.
Here are 2 excellent ways that can help you have adrenal glands which aren’t stressed and you’ll exercise at the same time:
Weightlifting for example helps you fight muscle loss which appears because of aging.
You don’t have to go to the gym so that you can exercise. You can also walk regularly. Download some activity tracker, like for example Fitbit that will help you measure what activity you had every day.
Use the stairs and not the lift. Park further away from your workplace or the store. You can also do any type of housework, wash your car or do the gardening.
Quick Tip: Do exercises that will build your strength. They will improve your whole metabolism as well as your muscle mass.
4. How To Increase Metabolism: Stress Management
When we are nervous constantly, we spend more energy.
If we want to have a good mental as well as adrenal health, we must know what stresses us the most. Start a journal and write it every day. Check your stress at least 3 or 4 times a day for 7 to 14 days by setting an alarm.
It will help you become more aware and realize what stresses you out.
Quick Tip: Start a journal that will write about your stressful situations. You’ll find what’s causing them more quickly.