Tuesday, 1 January 2019

12 ways to boost your metabolism

12 ways to boost your metabolism

“Stimulate metabolism” is one of the most common search terms at the beginning of the year. Unfortunately, you can’t choose your metabolism. Like your fingerprints, your metabolism is also unique and some people are simply blessed with a faster metabolism than others.

Your height, weight, gender and body composition all contribute to your individual metabolic rate. Someone who has more lean muscle will burn more calories at rest than someone with more body fat.

The older you get, the slower your metabolism will be. But even things like having meals at irregular times can slow down your metabolism.Today, we want to show you a few tricks for stimulating your metabolism.

Are you eating enough?

Many people eat so little whilst on a diet that their body goes into starvation mode, which means that the metabolism goes on the back burner. To lose weight, you have to be in a calorie deficit, but if you consume more than 500 calories of your daily calorie needs, your body will panic and thus cling to any fat cell.

For example, an average woman who is 166cm tall needs 1500 to 1700 calories a day and should never consume less than 1000 calories during a diet, or better still 1200 calories.

These calories should consist of wholegrains, fruits, vegetables, lean protein (fish, poultry etc.) and healthy fats (nuts, seeds, avocado and olive oil).

Strength Training

Strength training leads to tiny little muscle tears. Repairing or rebuilding these tears will cost your body calories. Strength training (or generally a high-intensity training session) also promotes the release of anabolic hormones that are great for burning fat.

HIIT Training

Speaking of high-intensity training sessions, HIIT training is basically the eighth wonder of the world. OK, a little over the top perhaps, but an intense HIIT cycle will burn more calories in the 24 hours after training than regular endurance training at a steady pace. According to a study [1] carried out by East Tennessee State University, you can burn 100 “bonus calories” per day that way.

Green Tea

Have a cup of green tea to increase your metabolism. Sounds easy? It is. According to a study [2] published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, catechins in green tea can increase your metabolism and calorie burning by up to 4%.

Are there differences as far as the type of tea is concerned? According to a study [3] in the Phytomedicine Journal, green Rooibos tea does not only promote calorie burning, but also prevents the formation of fat cells.

Sleep like Sleeping Beauty

Ok, so maybe you shouldn’t sleep for a hundred years, but at least for a full night. Scientists at Stanford University and the University of Wisconsin  [4] have shown that sleep deprivation affects your leptin level.

Leptin is the hormone that regulates your energy use and appetite. Anything less than eight hours a night (when was the last time you slept eight hours in a week?) and your leptin level drops by up to 15.5%. For the benefit of your hormone levels and metabolism, you should read this article: Sleep better: How it works.

Hot, hotter, chilli peppers

If you want to burn calories, you have to burn your mouth - preferably with chillies, not with coffee. Although it has been said that coffee also promotes metabolism, but only slightly.

Capsaicin, the compound that adds spice to chilli peppers and other peppers, also causes you to burn more calories while resting. How? According to a study [5] by the University of Copenhagen, this is the result of a process called thermogenesis.

Organic Produce

There are many reasons why organic products are good, but here's a point that you may not yet have heard: organic fruits, vegetables, and grains grown without pesticides make your fat burning system run like a well-oiled machine since they don’t put a strain on your thyroid.

Non-organic products can block your metabolism by disrupting your thyroid function. The small butterfly-shaped gland is the engine of your metabolism with the thyroid hormone as the petrol. Organic foods are basically like a premium fuel brand.

Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids, i.e. the polyunsaturated fats in fish oil, work wonders on your metabolism. Fish oil boosts metabolism by regulating thyroid hormones.

We have already mentioned how important the thyroid is for metabolism. Wild salmon in particular is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. For example, on days when you don’t feel like having fish, you can also take a high-quality fish oil supplement.


Earlier we mentioned briefly how coffee - more precisely the caffeine it contains - can promote metabolism. Studies [6] have shown that 100mg of caffeine increases metabolism by 3-4%, similarly to green tea. But the metabolism-promoting properties of coffee seem to apply mainly to people who are lean anyway. If you're overweight, green tea is still the better option.

Vitamin B

Vitamin B plays a key role in converting carbohydrates, fats, and proteins into energy. Vitamin B deficiency can slow down your metabolism, make you feel tired or even depressed, and increase your risk of illness.

Try adding more spinach, melon, broccoli and lean protein, such as beans, fish, and eggs to your diet to meet your vitamin B needs. Vitamin B is a great energizer, which also means you can exercise more intensively.

More Protein

Your body already burns calories whilst eating a meal and later during digestion. Foods like carbohydrates are burned quickly and are also easily digestible, which means your body needs relatively few calories to digest.

It's a lot harder for your body to turn protein into energy, which means your metabolism is temporarily elevated during the digestion of protein.


Which mineral is important for your muscles, nerves, your heart, every cell in your body - and your metabolism? Magnesium - the same mineral that many Germans don’t eat enough of. It’s estimated that 15% of Germans suffer from a full-blown magnesium deficiency and 30% from suboptimal levels.

The good news is that the same green vegetables we've named under our last point also contain lots of magnesium.Are you suffering from a slow metabolism or are you one of the lucky ones who can burn calories effortlessly?

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