Metabolism encompasses all the biological processes that happen in our body, like breathing, blood circulation, to the energy used by our muscles, and even the energy our body takes and uses from food.
However, when someone talks about having a slow metabolism or wanting to boost their metabolism in order to lose weight faster, what they’re referring to is the metabolic rate – the rate in which our body burns calories in one day. The two terms are often used interchangeably.
And then there’s also the basal metabolic rate, which is the number of calories our body burns in order to fuel our essential bodily functions like blood circulation, breathing and so on. So, while our metabolic rate can change depending on how active you are on a particular day and whether you worked out, the basal metabolic rate remains steady.
Your metabolism depends on a lot of things, like genetics, age, gender, or weight, but your lifestyle, activity level and even the food you eat can play a significant part in it. Some foods are much better than others for boosting the metabolism and thus, helping you shed pounds faster.
So, scroll down to see which are some of the foods that boost metabolism, and get one step closer to your ideal weight and feeling much better.
First and foremost, drink plenty of water. Other than all the other health benefits of keeping ourselves hydrated, water has also been proven to help increase metabolism by up to 25% for up to 40 minutes after only two cups of cold water.
Water is also good for weight loss because it helps fill you up before meals, and leads to a lower chance of over-eating.
Other than that, they can also lessen the slowness of metabolism that sometimes accompanies weight loss, making foods rich in protein perfect when it comes to weight loss.
Foods with a high content of protein include meat, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, legumes, and seeds.
See Also: 7 Signs You May Have Protein Deficiency
Yes, legumes are part of protein-rich foods but they are so beneficial that they deserve their own section. Consuming legumes like chickpeas, lentils, beans (navy, pinto, kidney, and black), peas, and peanuts will cause your body to burn more energy while digesting them studies suggest.
Similarly, in another study, the consumption of legumes led to an increase in metabolism and more effective drop in weight.
Legumes are also high in fiber, which is good for both your overall health and weight loss, so these seeds are a win-win either way.
Chili peppers contain a chemical called capsaicin.
In a research review of 20 studies, it was shown that capsaicin can boost metabolism and burn up to 50 extra calories a day.
Other studies have also proven that capsaicin can boost the metabolic rate and could potentially aid weight loss, as it may also curb appetite.
Drinking a couple of cups of black coffee may do more than just help you stay awake at work as studies have shown it can both boost metabolism and help with weight loss.
In one study, caffeine raised the subjects’ metabolic rate by 8-11%, while in another study, lean women saw a 29% increase in fat burning after drinking coffee, whereas it affected obese woman less, with a 10% increase in metabolic rate. In yet another research, it was suggested that consuming a minimum of three cups of black coffee a day can help burn up to 100 additional calories.
On the other hand, people who have difficulties sleeping should probably steer clear of too much coffee as a study from 2010 found that sleep deprivation and sleep disorders may have a negative impact on metabolism, and can lead to weight gain and difficulties in losing excess pounds.
Green and oolong tea
If you do not like coffee or are steering clear of too much caffeine, oolong tea is a good option as it has also proven to be good for boosting the metabolism, and is lower in caffeine than green tea and coffee.
But both green and oolong tea could help increase the metabolic rate and burn extra calories due to the presence of both caffeine and catechins, which is an antioxidant known to aid weight loss.
Replacing your normal oils or fats with coconut oil can also help boost your metabolism.
That is due to the fact coconut oil is high in medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), and they have been proven to increase metabolism and even aid weight loss.
Other than food, there are other ways you can boost your metabolism, like exercising, staying active or sleeping well. Though it’s not necessarily good or bad to have a fast metabolism, people with a quicker metabolism are able to manage their weight better without having to watch what they are eating all the time, which is a plus. It is also easier for those people to maintain their weight.
So even though the way your metabolism works might not depend entirely on you, it never hurts to give it a bit of help, right?