We all know that diet and exercise is the key to losing weight, but it’s not so easy for most of us to completely change our lifestyle. Take in fewer calories than you burn and you’ll lose weight.
Eat healthy, whole foods, avoid processed foods and exercise 4-5 days a week to burn more calories. Easier said than done, or America wouldn’t have an obesity epidemic. So, what are the simpler options? What small steps can we take to boost our metabolism so we burn more calories every day?
8 Ways to Boost Metabolism and Lose Weight
Obviously, the healthier and more natural food choices are the best option, but you need to eat something to start your metabolism in the morning. Many people skip breakfast to cut back on calories, keeping their metabolism in the overnight fasting mode and making weight loss more difficult. You only need to consume 100 calories to boost metabolism for the rest of the day. Even a piece of fruit or a breakfast bar will kick start your metabolism.
Related Reading: 35 Healthy Breakfast Recipes
The body needs water to function. You can even supply some of your bodies water needs with water heavy fruits and vegetables. Without enough water, the cells mimic dry earth.
Have you ever watched the rain fall on dried, cracked mud? The water doesn’t absorb into the dirt, it runs off. The dirt needs to have some moisture to begin to soak up more. Our cells work the same way. Drinking water on occasion won’t do anything for your body besides send you to the restroom more frequently to expel it all. Even mild dehydration will slow your metabolism.
Eat Every 3-4 Hours
You can eat smaller meals more frequently or snack in between meals, but whatever your choice, you need to eat every 3-4 hours to keep your metabolism revved. You don’t want your metabolism to get sluggish because you haven’t consumed calories in 5 or 6 hours and it starts to conserve energy. This is why grazers tend to be thinner than people who eat 3 meals per day. Pre-slicing several days’ worth of vegetables can help you reach for healthier options.
Keep Meals Spicy
Spicy foods have been proven to boost metabolism for hours after consumption. Add a little spice to your meals to boost the thermic effect (TE) and you’ll burn more calories. Both caffeine and spices will provide a thermic effect, giving you a large metabolic boost, but caffeine will cause your blood pressure to spike.
Spices are a safe and fun method to charge your metabolism. Don’t care for heat in your food? No problem! Even cinnamon will boost TE. Add some cinnamon to scrambled eggs, French toast, even your coffee for a flavor boost that’s good for you.
Green tea is healthy anyway thanks to the antioxidants it contains. There is an endless supply of studies proving the health benefits of green tea, especially the flavonoids. Green tea will not only rev up your metabolism, it will also speed up the oxidation of stored fat. If you don’t care for tea, you can always take green tea capsules to reap the benefits.
Eat Lean Protein Rich Foods
Your body works hard to digest protein, expending more energy in the process. Lean sources of protein will rev your metabolism without adding extra fat to your diet. Lean beef, chicken, and turkey are all good options. Fish is another and will also provide healthy fish oils. Eggs, low-fat dairy, and nuts in moderation provide healthy protein. Tofu and beans provide protein and are healthy choices.
The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn. For every pound of muscle you have, your body needs to burn 6 calories a day just to maintain that muscle mass. While it doesn’t sound like a lot, that’s in addition to the calories you burn through movement. If you have a lot of muscle and make healthy food choices, your body will burn fat to feed the muscle.
Any routine aerobic activity is great for your cardiovascular system and endurance. Your heart and lungs will benefit and your health will improve. In particular, high-intensity aerobics boosts metabolism for hours after the workout has ended. High-intensity training (HIIT) has even been proven to reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
While a complete overhaul of an unhealthy lifestyle isn’t always possible for most people, taking small steps to adopt new metabolism boosting habits will eventually add up to a healthier, thinner body with more energy, which can be used to increase routine aerobics and further boost your health.