Published in this month’s issue of TOTAL FITNESS magazine. Grab a copy TODAY!
Contrary to what most people subscribe to these days when it comes to losing weight, depriving your body of food is NOT the way to do it. In fact, research shows that speeding up the metabolism process is the more effective way of keeping fit and healthy – and this can be done by eating more nutrition-dense food. The operative word being ‘nutrition-dense’, this means having a good amount of protein and a reasonable amount of carbohydrates in your daily diet. Crash diet causes your body to burn muscle tissue which in turn gives visceral fat the upper hand. And as your metabolism crawls even slower, fat goes on to claim more territories in your body.
To keep your metabolism on the up and up, here are some tips to follow:
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. It is said that your metabolism slows down whenever you are dehydrated, so drinking at least eight glasses of water every day is a surefire way of l keeping your body and your metabolism working properly. Not much of a water drinker? Start by having a glass of cold water before each meal. This will also help you feel full faster. If you want to speed up metabolism some more, drink green tea and black coffee as well.
- Embrace the active lifestyle. Still considered to be the best way to improve metabolism, workout in the form of cardio exercise or weight training is highly recommended by health and fitness experts. An independent research published on http://www.webmd.com, claims that our bodies burn six calories a day for each pound of muscle in our bodies, so it is very beneficial to incorporate some type of weight training in your workout routine.
- Increase your PROTEIN intake. Most of us aim for lean muscle and why not if it makes us feel and look good and strong? To achieve and maintain lean muscle, our body needs protein. Researchers recommend that women, especially those who are into resistance training, should get an amount of protein between 0.54 and 1 gram per pound of body weight. (If you want to lose weight, use your goal body weight as your guide.) Add a serving, like 3 ounces of lean meat, 2 tablespoons of nuts, or 8 ounces of low-fat yogurt, to every meal and snack. Furthermore, research shows protein can increase post-meal calorie burn by as much as 35 percent.
- Have resources, Go ORGANIC! Toxins from pesticides and food preservatives are stored in fat cells and interfere greatly with the energy-burning process of the body. Therefore, people with the most organochlorines (pollutants from pesticides) experience a greater than normal dip in metabolism as they lose weight. In other words, pesticides make it harder to lose pounds. But since organic produce is quite expensive and not easily found in regular supermarkets, you may opt to choose which ones to buy organic such as celery, peaches, strawberries, apples, blueberries, cherries, potatoes, and imported grapes and these produce tend to have the highest levels of pesticides.
- Eat right! Increasing your metabolism is not a complicated matter at all. In fact, it can be as simple as eating the right types of food. Lean proteins like lean meats and fish help increase metabolism because our bodies use more energy to process these foods. Low-fat dairy foods like yogurt or cottage cheese are great snacks and can increase metabolism as well. While at it, clear your cupboard of junk food and sugar-laden snacks that only promote overconsumption.