We don’t mean recycling (although we support that too!). By eating more green vegetables, you can increase your metabolism. Green foods tend to require the body to work harder during the digestion process, burning more calories than they have. Sometimes these are referred to as negative calorie foods for this reason. Green vegetables will help you feel full and satisfied, reducing your overall calorie intake as well. If you’re trying to watch your weight or improve your health, try starting your meal with a large salad full of dark green, leafy vegetables. One point of caution—choose your topics and dressings wisely as they can be hidden sources of fat and calories!
Eat More Fibre
Like green vegetables, fibre helps make you feel fuller and for longer periods of time. This can help reduce excess eating, but also increases your metabolism as well. The body must work hard (in a good way!) to process fibre. It helps cleanse the body of built up waste in the intestines, making the entire digestive system more efficient in the process. A good fibre intake goal is 30 grams. However, you want to gradually increase your fibre intake over several days or even weeks to help prevent stomach problems.
Working out is one of the best ways to boost your metabolism. The key is to workout smarter, not necessarily harder. By varying your workouts you will keep your body guessing what is coming next, which helps keep your metabolism going full speed even when you’re not working out. Instead of hitting the gym for an hour every day, utilizing the same routine, try mixing it up.
If you normally hit the treadmill for an hour at a steady pace, try cutting the time in half and doing intervals instead. Intervals increase your heart rate and help keep it elevated by only incorporating short periods of recovery, followed by another short burst of intense activity.
Studies have found that intervals are just as productive, if not more productive, when it comes to fat loss and metabolism boosting. If you’re currently doing interval workouts, try incorporating slower, moderately paced workouts into your schedule as well. By utilizing both types of cardio workouts, you can maximize your body’s natural ability to burn fat and calories. When you repeat the same workout over and over, your body becomes accustomed to it and does not burn as many calories.
Drink More Tea
Tea offers two primary benefits to the metabolism: caffeine and antioxidants. Caffeine is a naturally occurring stimulant that helps increase blood flow throughout the body. It has been the fuel for many great artists, writers, and athletes alike. Tea is also one of the top sources of antioxidants, which help rid the body of toxins found in both food and as a result of environmental exposure. While some exposure to toxins can be prevented, a certain amount of exposure through nature and food can’t be helped. Antioxidants are there to help the body cope with these toxins without letting them build up, which can cause illness and a sluggish metabolism.
People who drink tea throughout the day are more likely to have a low body fat percentage than people who do not consume tea. While caffeine and antioxidants have a part in this, tea can also help keep you feeling full, allowing your body to focus on running efficiently and burning fat, rather than processing excess food intake.
We’ve already touched on the importance of a varied cardio routine, weight lifting is just as important—if not more important—when it comes to super charging your metabolism. Just two weight lifting sessions a week can significantly increase your calorie burn while resting. When you have more muscle, you burn more calories even when you’re sitting around doing nothing—who doesn’t want that? You’ll also developed a lean, tone look. Don’t fret if the scale doesn’t go down when you add weight lifting to your fitness routine. One pound of muscle takes up much less room on the body than one pound of fat and you will look smaller and leaner even at the same weight.
Lemon has been utilized for centuries as a natural cleansing agent and has a positive impact on the metabolism as well. Lemon helps the body get rid of toxins and can help increase calorie burn throughout the day by optimizing many processes in the body—primarily digestion. Try this simple challenge: For one month, start your day by drinking a big glass of water with the juice of half a lemon in it. Use the other half to flavour your water or tea throughout the day. Even if you change nothing else, this one habit should leave you feeling more energized and possibly even lighter as well!
Spice it Up
Just because you’re trying to be healthy doesn’t mean you need to eat boring food. Adding spices to your food can help make it taste better, but it can also help you burn more calories. Spices elevate the body’s core temperature, increasing the calorie burn as well.
One of the most detrimental things to the metabolism in modern times is a sedentary lifestyle. Try paying attention to how much you move throughout the day. While it may seem too small to matter, every small movement you make can have a positive impact on your metabolic rate. Take the stairs if you can, instead of taking the elevator. Walk to the convenience store instead of driving or taking the bus. Take a 15 minute walk on your coffee break at work and take your coffee to your desk instead of standing or sitting around talking and mindlessly eating. The more you move, the more your body learns to burn calories during the day. Once your body knows how to run efficiently, you won’t be affected as much but an off day without much movement…but the more sedentary you are, the slower your metabolism will become!
Eat More Often
While different eating patterns work better for some people than others, most people will find that eating smaller amounts more often will provide better results than eating a few large meals during the day. Eating small meals allows your body to stay in an efficient calorie burning mode, but if you go too long without eating, your body starts thinking there is a food shortage and will naturally hold on to the energy provided by the food through a decreased metabolic rate.
If you’re currently in the habit of eating two larger meals a day, try cutting back your lunch by even one or two hundred calories. Move that calorie intake to your morning meal to help get your metabolism running in the morning. Ideally you will be able to eat 5 mini meals throughout the day (three balanced meals and two snacks)
Although being sedentary is bad for your metabolism, not getting adequate rest will have an even bigger negative impact. When we sleep, our bodies are able to heal and recuperate from our day to day lives. Aim for six to eight hours of quality sleep each night to help keep your metabolism supercharged and your body prepared to utilize many of these tips!
At our wellness retreat we encourage our clients to learn new habits they can take home with them. Even small habits can have big impacts on health and can help supercharge your metabolism, helping you obtain the lean, healthy body you’re striving for!