Have you ever wished your metabolism was faster? You’re not alone. While a lot of your metabolic rate is linked to gender, genetics, age and body size, there are some changes that can speed your metabolism up. Even small adjustments to your metabolic rate can have significant health benefits over time, so what are you waiting for? It’s important not to get hung up on how fast or slow your metabolism is, though. Having a fast metabolism doesn’t mean that you can stay slim forever eating nothing but junk, and having a slow metabolism doesn’t mean you are automatically doomed to being overweight for the rest of your life.
Let’s have a look at these seven metabolic boosters:
1. Turn your heating down
Sleeping in a cool bedroom may not seem like much, but apparently it can improve people’s percentages of brown fat, which is a type of fat that behaves more like muscle. A 2014 study showed that five male subjects who slept in temperature controlled rooms with only light pajamas and bed sheets for several months nearly doubled their amounts of brown fat. While it won’t work like a diet does, turning the thermostat down at home or the office may have a similar effect.
2. Drink some coffee
There have been links between caffeine and increased metabolism, and this could be because caffeine helps the body to break down fat. However, too many caffeinated drinks can cause nausea, insomnia and nervousness.
3. Keep stress to a minimum (if possible!)
Stress often makes us turn to binge-eating, but even if you resist that, your body may still take longer to process calories. The stress response activates cortisol, the stress hormone. Cortisol has been linked with a worsening of the metabolism, and increases the obesity risk over time.
4. Get quality sleep
Lack of sleep has been shown to slow metabolism down in both men and women. Even if you go to bed early, but you are woken several times in the night, the quality of sleep is far inferior to a straight seven hours of sleep.
5. Work out
Any kind of physical activity can help to speed up metabolism, but the best exercise to build brown fat and boost the metabolism is strength training. If you increase your muscle mass, you increase the amount of calories burned even while resting.
6. Have a spicy snack
Capsaicin is a molecule found in hot chilies, and it has been shown in studies to increase body temperature and speed up fat loss – although only temporarily, and only by a little. There’s also evidence that chemicals called isothiocyanates may help activate brown fat and speed up metabolic rate. These chemicals are found in spicy mustard, wasabi and horseradish.
7. Do some pylometrics
Squat jumps and burpees are high-intensity – getting your heart rate up to burn more calories in a short amount of time. According to one study, HIIT plus pylometric exercise for 12 weeks resulted in more lean body mass and improved metabolic abnormalities compared to HIIT alone.