Most obese people have a trouble with metabolism. I am not sure how many of them actually know at which point in time they start to make the wrong choices in their diet and lifestyle and how they get messed up in the kind of health issues they face today.
Well, here are 10 things we should strive not to do, if we are serious about keeping ourselves in the pink of health, or if we know the importance of keeping up our metabolism, which is basically about how our body uses the food we eat, by bringing about chemical reactions in the body to convert the food into energy.
It's popularly believed that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. However, for one reason or another, many of us still have the habit of skipping breakfast. Many dieticians believe that people who eat breakfast are more successful in losing weight. And studies have found there is for both adults and children a correlation between eating breakfast and learning ability, attention span, and general well-being. Eating a good breakfast fuels the body and sets the tone right for the rest of the day; it jumpstarts our metabolic activities and bring the body into a calorie-burning mode to burn the most calories possible. Furthermore, skipping breakfast increases the likelihood of bingeing on whatever food is available when those hunger pangs finally hit during lunch time. So, have a healthy combo of carbohydrates, protein and fat for breakfast, but dodge all the sugar coated donuts, croissants and cereals. And don't overeat just because everyone says breakfast is the most important meal of the day!
Our body is smarter than many of us actually realise. We humans are designed with a survival mechanism, such that when we starve ourselves by skipping meals or going on a crash diet, our body metabolism automatically drop to conserve energy and becomes more efficient in storing what we eat as fat. And for those who have gone on very brief fasts or dieting plans, you probably know that the initial weight loss is basically water and muscle tissue and not fat. A popular tip is: Eat three nutritious meals in smaller portions and eat healthy snacks in between the meals. It's theorised that by eating more meals with smaller portions you will not feel as hungry or deprived in between meals. This prevents our body from going on 'starvation mode' and trying to hold on to calories. Having frequent meals keep your body from storing as many calories as it senses a steady supply of food.
One of the best ways to slow down your metabolism is to put away all exercise programs, avoid walking, spent time watching TV, and do couch-slouching the whole day. The more sedentary you are, the more body fat you will carry. 60-65% of calories we eat are used to support our bodily functions and keep us alive, 10% is used in processing and digesting food, and a significant 25% goes to support our physical activities. You can learn how to stoke your metabolism by exercising, increasing the amount and intensity of your physical activities, getting aquainted with resistance exercises such as swimming and cycling, and using up stored fat in the process. This will not only normalizes sleep and metabolism, it also increases working capacity, vitality, and rises mood.
I am not taking about building six-pack abs. But if you think the topic of muscle building is only relevant to professional bodybuilders, you have got it all wrong. Muscles are ‘metabolically active'; they burn more calories than other body tissue and increase our ability to burn fat more efficiently. Exercises like weight-lifting can raise our heart rate and boost our resting metabolic rate for hours as muscles burn calories to recover and repair. Remember, if you don't use your muscles, your body gets rid of them.
High-fibre carbohydrates like beans, fruit, vegetables, cereals, legumes, and whole grains gives your thermic metabolism a boost. They take longer to digest, and therefore help burn more calories compared to simple carbohydrates. Fibre also prolongs the feeling of satiety. Hence, to satisfy your hunger with fewer calories, eat more high fibre carbohydrates.
Processed foods such as flour no longer require the body to extract the fibre and nutrients, and to break down into tiny units for absorption into the blood. The body digests them quickly, burning fewer calories in the process as a result. Also, processed foods like sausages and ham are often outrageously high in fat and salt content. The natural enzymes produced by our bodies to help metabolize foods are outnumbered by the amount of processed foods that we out into our system, the result is a slow metabolism and consequently, weight gain.
You have to know these two facts: 1) Fat is the most concentrated (energy-dense) source of calories (nine calories per gram of fat compared with four calories per gram for protein and carbohydrates) and 2) Fat is a lot more difficult for your body to break down than carbohydrates or protein. By following a high-fat diet, you are forcing the body to slow down and burn fewer calories, and putting yourself at many health risks such as heart diseases, diabetes.
We are well aware that sleep restores, rejuvenates and energizes our body and mind. Lack of sleep retards our body ability to perform metabolic functions such as breaking down carbohydrates and producing hormones. The power of quality sleep can perhaps be very well described in the Hibernation Theory which argues convincingly for the proper fuelling of the liver through diet to achieve optimal repair of the body system during sleep, and has taken this world by surprise in a making a powerful connection between poor sleep and obesity.
Our body releases a chemical called cortisol when we experience stress. This constitutes a hormonal signal to the fat cells in the abdomen to store as much fat as possible, leading to weight gain over the long run. The metabolic imbalance created by stress explains why some people tend to indulge in food excessively when they are under stress as their appetite increases, while others find it so hard to achieve a breakthrough in their dieting program.
Dehydration can contribute to an inefficient metabolism by affecting our body temperature. When dehydrated, our body temperature drops slightly, causing the body to store fat as a way to help raise or maintain our temperature. Not drinking enough water will slow down your metabolism, speed up aging, reduce resistance to disease, and reduce muscle recovery after exercise. To avoid this metabolic pitfall, have lots of fluid throughout the day. Green tea, a beverage brimming with antioxidants, is an excellent metabolic stimulant. Its extract is commonly used as an ingredient in many digestion and weight loss pills. Lastly, never indulge in drinking artificially-sweetened drinks and caffeinated, carbonated HFCS drinks, which contain an unbelievable amount of refined sugar that disposes the consumer to great health disasters, including the metabolism disorder of carbohydrates, namely, diabetes.
This article will provide you with more insights into our body metabolism during exercise and rest, and it'll change the way you talk about metablism, calories, exercise and sleep! All in How to Sleep and Lose Weight at the Same Time?