Up to 80% of calories are used to sustain the normal functioning of the body and processing of foods you eat. Let’s look at some ways to increase the calories used in these activities to aid the eternal quest of maintaining weight — without doing too much on your part.
BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) is the daily amount of calories required by your body to fuel the various vital organs (such as the brain, heart, muscles, etc…) that sustain life, it accounts for about 60% of total daily calorie intake.
As well as functioning of the vital organs energy is expended for digesting and absorbing the foods you eat, this is called the Thermic Effect, which accounts for about 10% of calories per day. Different nutrients have different energy requirements for their breakdown into smaller entities.
There are a few ways to achieve a metabolism boost
#1 BUILD MORE MUSCLE MASS
Muscle cells use up more calories than fat cells (not a significant boost, but a boost nonetheless), so by lifting weights you gain more muscle that in turn burns more calories by just being present in your body. This is the way to go, for a continuous increase of metabolism which also gives you a lean look which, frankly, is why most people lift weights in the first place. Should be noted that as you age you lose muscle mass, which means your metabolism slows down and you will gain weight by eating the same amounts of food. This means you have to do weight training to sustain the muscle mass and prevent metabolism from slowing down. By maintaining muscle, your metabolism will slow down by only 1-2% throughout your life, as compared to about 40% in a sedentary lifestyle.
#2 EXERCISE FOR THE AFTER-BURN EFFECT
Be it a vigorous workout or just a few minutes of light exercise, studies have shown that your body uses up more energy even after the workout. For a few hours afterward your body will still be burning extra calories. Of course, the amount of those calories depends on the intensity of the workout.
#3 EAT FREQUENTLY
From 5 to 6 small meals a day, instead of 3 big ones. This will keep your digestive system more active and burn more calories for the continuous processing of food (the Thermic Effect). Eating frequently also helps you curb your hunger and make it less likely to overeat and gain weight, because you don’t reach extreme hunger levels.
#4 OPTIMIZE THE THERMIC EFFECT
Eat more protein and complex carbs, as they require more energy to be processed. Especially protein, it requires a few times more energy than the other nutrients.
#5 DRINK PLENTY OF WATER
Water plays an important role in our bodies. Drink about 8 glasses a day.
#6 GET ENOUGH SLEEP
8 hours are recommended. Lack of sleep will elevate your hunger and harm the ability of your body to properly metabolize carbs and leave a lot of sugar in the blood which will turn into fat as it’s unused.
#7 EDUCATE YOURSELF FURTHER
Knowledge is power, and in this case knowledge is a slimmer waist! There are more tips that I haven’t covered, one of which are the foods that allegedly drastically boost your metabolism, come to think of it, it’s an un-tip. You can read more on the subject here. Pages 1 & 2 won’t add anything not covered here, so read up on page 3. Happy boosting!