How To Boost Your Metabolism At Any Age

If you’re middle-aged and have been slowly but steadily gaining weight for years, you probably attribute it to an age-related decline in metabolism.
Metabolic rate is the rate at which the body burns calories to stay alive and functioning. It is a generally accepted belief that as we age, resting metabolism slows down, especially after age 40. And if you are a woman in menopause, your metabolism slows down even more.

But this is not true, according to a new article published in Science. Analyzing the data of almost 6,500 people aged between infancy and old age, the authors of the article determined that the metabolism at rest remains stable between the ages of 20 and 60 and that thereafter it registers a decrease of less than 1 % per year.

Also, contrary to conventional wisdom, the paper cites no actual differences between men’s and women’s resting metabolic rates, even in menopausal women, when other factors are controlled for.

The answer has less to do with age and more to do with lifestyle. Although your baseline resting metabolic rate may not have changed between the ages of 20 and 60, the factors that drive other aspects of your metabolism, when not at rest, have likely changed, decreasing your ability to metabolize fat, maximizing fat burn calories from exercise, increase energy-burning muscle mass, and get quality rest to enable metabolic processes.

Don’t worry, this is not bad news. It means that you have the power to make changes that will boost your metabolism, regardless of your age.

Stay active during the day

When wondering why you feel that your metabolism has slowed down with age, you should also ask yourself if your daily activity level has slowed down. In addition to all the other health risks associated with prolonged sitting, experts point out that constant inactivity is the biggest detriment to metabolism.

“Being sedentary most of the day dramatically reduces fat metabolism,” says Edward Coyle, professor of Kinesiology and Health Education at the University of Texas at Austin.

Fat metabolism refers to the type of fuel that is burned during resting metabolism.

Coyle, who is also the director of the university’s Human Performance Laboratory, said his research found that you need to take at least 8,500 steps a day, throughout the day, rather than all at once, to maintain metabolism. adequate from fats.

Additionally, in his lab, Coyle found that just five four-second bursts of exercise performed at maximum effort every hour throughout the day can dramatically increase fat metabolism by up to 49%.

Although doing 20 seconds of full sprints every hour is impractical for most people, sedentary office workers whose time and responsibility constraints make it difficult to hit the gym regularly should be encouraged to get up and move for a few minutes per hour, as it can provide significant benefits.

Get the right kind of exercise

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and strength training have been shown to have statistically significant effects on metabolism.

HIIT is a style of training that involves periods of intense exercise with an elevated heart rate alternated with periods of recovery. It has been shown to raise metabolic rate, specifically for fat burning, long after training is over. One study found that after 12 weeks of HIIT, overweight men reduced their abdominal fat by 17% and overall fat mass by 2 kilos, which is comparatively more than other studies on burning fat using alternative forms of exercise. You can learn more about how to safely perform HIIT here.

With strength training, you increase the muscle mass of your body, which increases your overall metabolic rate. Like HIIT, this means that more calories are burned after exercise. However, unlike HIIT, the muscle you build with strength training will continue to burn caloric energy regardless of how often you exercise, as long as you do enough to maintain muscle mass.

Therefore, strength training can also help you avoid muscle loss and the metabolic decline associated with weight loss diets. In a study of 48 overweight women who followed a diet of only 800 calories a day, strength training was shown to allow them to maintain muscle mass and metabolism, while study participants who only did aerobically or they did not exercise, they lost muscle and experienced a decrease in metabolism.

To maximize the metabolic boost through exercise, you should vary your weekly training program to include both strength training sessions and HIIT training sessions. With that said, it’s important to note that to get the most out of any type of exercise program, you also need to break up long periods of sedentary time during the day with short bouts of activity, as mentioned above.

Doing an hour-long workout would normally increase your fat metabolism, Coyle said. But if you’ve been inactive all day, it won’t be as effective because of what he called “exercise resistance.”

The investigation of Coyle shows that people who are inactive all day become resistant to some of the beneficial effects of exercise, particularly fat metabolism.

That’s why it’s crucial to get bouts of activity throughout the day, in addition to doing longer workouts.

Fill your body with protein and water

Digestion of food increases metabolism for a few hours, as caloric energy is used to process the ingested nutrients. This is called the thermic effect of food (TEF).

This does not mean that you should eat more to increase your metabolism, but if you eat more protein, this can lead to a greater increase in metabolism than other foods. This is because protein causes the greatest increase in TEF, increasing your overall metabolic rate by 15-30%.

Eating protein is also essential for building and repairing muscles, which, as stated above, increases your metabolism. In addition, protein intake helps you avoid muscle loss and the consequent decrease in metabolism that can occur with diets.

Registered dietitian and Owner of Eleat Sports Nutrition Angie Asche, author of the book ” Fuel Your Body: How to Cook and Eat for Peak Performance, ” advises eating 20-25 grams of protein one hour after exercising.

That equates to an 85-gram chicken breast (24 grams of protein), a 200-gram container of 2% Greek yogurt (20 grams), or a tablespoon of whey or vegetable protein powder (the grams of protein vary by brand).

Drinking more water can also briefly increase your metabolism. Research shows that drinking 0.5 liters of water can increase your resting metabolism by 24% for about an hour. Other research points to a possible increase in metabolism if you drink cold water due to the energy expenditure required to warm it to body temperature.

Rest the necessary

Sleep is crucial for the recovery and restoration of all the processes of your body.

Sleeping less than seven hours is usually associated with numerous negative health implications, such as weight gain, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and stroke, depression, impaired immune function, increased pain, impaired performance, and an increased risk of death, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society.

When it comes to the harmful effects of lack of sleep on bodily processes, metabolism is no exception. The investigations have shown that deprivation and reduced quality of sleep have a detrimental impact on metabolism.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 1 in 3 Americans does not get the recommended seven or more hours of sleep per night. To get enough sleep to maintain a healthy metabolism and general health and well-being, it is important to create a nighttime routine that includes strategies that facilitate rest, such as breathing exercises to help calm the nervous system. You can also practice these four yoga movements to prepare your body before going to sleep.

Research indicates that the rate of your metabolism, especially that of fats, is largely in your hands. It’s up to you to make lifestyle changes that boost your metabolism and your overall health and well-being.

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