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5 Ways to Boost your Metabolism Part 1: Nutrition

There are so many ways to boost metabolism through diet, lifestyle, exercise etc., here I will explore some tips to help you make the changes to your diet to maximize your body's natural ability to burn calories :)

  1. Limit alcohol intake. I know, I know, it is the holiday season but let me explain ;) Alcohol is full of calories that do not have any nutritional benefit to the body. Along with alcohol, the mix is usually some form of sugary or carbonated drink and neither of those things help your metabolism. While your body is busy processing the alcohol through your stomach and liver, it is unable to convert the foods you eat and elements such as glucose, fatty acids, amino acids etc., into useable energy and thus the food you ate just gets turned into fat and ends up stored on your body instead of being processed and burned off.

  2. Eat carbohydrates and heavier calories earlier in the day. This is a tactic I subscribe to in my own diet as well. Keeping your evening dinner meal lighter, makes it easier on your digestive system and allows you to fall asleep easier. Having heavier calories and carbs earlier in the day will boost your engine in the morning or at lunch and you will metabolize most of your calories in your most active time of the day resulting in less stored fat and less digestive problems.

  3. Eat your Fiber. A diet high in fiber will fill you up and can also suppress your appetite. When you are full you are less likely to snack or binge on junk that will slow your metabolism. Get your fiber from a variety of sources such as fruits, vegetables, 100% whole wheat grains, nuts, oats, root veggies etc. Fiber is beneficial in so many ways, it helps maintain blood sugar levels, insoluble fiber bulks up stool, reduces bad (LDL) cholesterol (pectin in apples is good for this). Aim for 30g of fiber per day, best to have some fiber with every meal and snack and drink lots of water to help it pass through your digestive system.

  4. Have a cup of coffee or tea before your workout. Most energy drinks and pre-workouts have caffeine and multiple other ingredients including high amounts of sugar, so its best to avoid those because you don't actually need all that sugar or electrolytes to do a workout of 1 hour or less. You only need those electrolyte's if you are working out for long hours at a sustained high intensity or long duration such as during a marathon or triathlon, where your own electrolyte's would be depleted part way through. Drinking a cup of tea or coffee (with very little, if any sugar in it) and some additional water will boost your metabolic rate during your workout.

  5. Follow the 90/10 rule, and don't crash diet. The 90/10 rule is that you eat healthily 90 % of the time and allowing yourself small indulgences only 10% of the time. Its less strict, and doesn't cause the same fluctuations and stress on your metabolism that crash diets cause. When you are on a restrictive diet your body will resist it at all costs which includes slowing down your metabolism because it thinks it is starving and will convert any calories into fat to use for later. Crash diets may cause substantial weight loss in the beginning, but that loss will also include muscle. Less muscle equals a lower metabolic rate, and the more muscle you have the higher your metabolic rate. most times when people crash diet they breakdown and binge one day and end up quitting the diet and eventually gain back the original weight plus extra, so it is better to go at the healthy 90/10 principle and take your time, as slow and steady wins the race when it comes to weight loss.

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