It is an interesting phenomenon how some people appear to defy all odds, effortlessly keeping a trim figure despite their dietary habits or getting older. Meanwhile, others struggle with controlling their weight all their lives. Then there are those who had a trim body, to begin with, but as time went on and they got older, their metabolic engine started to slow down, and everything they thought to be true was challenged.
If you can relate, you may be wondering how to speed up your metabolism and burn calories more quickly. Today we are going to take a look at some different tactics that can help you increase your metabolism, lose weight, and become a healthier, more energetic version of yourself.
What Exactly Is My Metabolism?
The process through which nutrients from the food you eat are transformed into the fuel your body uses to function is called metabolism.
When we think about calorie burning, we normally envision performing some sort of physical activity, and while these do burn calories, bodily functions such as digesting meals, breathing, pumping blood throughout your body, and healing damaged cells and connective tissues also burn calories. These calories are burned regardless of whether you are sleeping or being active.
The speed at which these “at-rest” calories are burned is called your basal metabolic rate and can also be thought of as your metabolism.
Your resting metabolic rate is the baseline that determines how many calories you burn every day. Numerous elements can impact your metabolism, such as your age, genetics, nutritional habits, gender, daily exercise, the natural composition of your body, whatever medication you may be taking, hormonal imbalances, and more. For instance, because men have higher muscle mass than women, their metabolisms typically run 10 to 15 percent faster. Consequently, women must put in a bit more effort to achieve the same outcomes (Sorry ladies!).
Fueling Your Fire: Strategies On How To Boost Metabolism
If you think of your metabolism as sort of a furnace, you will begin to understand that there are certain things you must do to ensure the furnace continues to operate efficiently. To keep your metabolism functioning at peak performance, try adding these strategies to your daily routine:
- Avoid Missing Meals
- This is particularly important when it comes to breakfast. To keep your metabolic furnace running efficiently, you need frequent, balanced meals. Skipping meals can signal your body to conserve energy, slowing your metabolism. Older adults (40s, 50s, or 60s) trying to speed up their metabolism should aim for smaller, protein-packed meals throughout the day.
- Stay Active
- Regardless of your age, regular exercise is key. Aim for a mix of cardio and strength training to maximize calorie burn and muscle preservation. Older individuals should focus on maintaining lean muscle mass, which naturally declines with age.
- Prioritize Building Muscle
- Weight training can be a fantastic metabolism booster! When you engage in resistance or weight training, you build lean muscle mass. Muscle tissue requires more energy (calories) to maintain compared to fat tissue. So, the more muscle you have, the more calories your body burns at rest. Additionally, intense weight training sessions can lead to an “afterburn” effect, where your metabolism remains elevated for hours after your workout as your body repairs and replenishes muscle tissue. This can further contribute to increased calorie burning.
- Prioritize Protein
- Dietary choices like lean meats, fish, beans, and legumes require more energy for digestion, temporarily increasing your metabolic rate. Also, to help speed up the metabolism after age 40, older adults should ensure they’re getting enough protein to counteract age-related muscle loss
- Stay Hydrated
- Dehydration can slow down your metabolism so it is important to drink enough water to help keep your body functioning optimally. Adults who want to speed up their metabolism after 60 should pay extra attention to hydration as the thirst sensation diminishes with age.
- Sleep Well
- A good night’s sleep is crucial for metabolism. Sleep deprivation disrupts hormones that regulate appetite and metabolism. Quality sleep is equally important for all age groups.
- Manage Stress
- Stress triggers the release of cortisol, a hormone that can slow down metabolism and promote fat storage. It is incredibly important to find stress-reduction techniques that are effective for you as unmanaged stress can not only trigger weight gain but a host of other health-related issues as well. Activities such as deep breathing, nature walks, and artistic expression are a few techniques that many find helpful.
- Consume Fat Burning Foods
- Certain spices like chili peppers contain compounds that can temporarily increase metabolism. Incorporating spices into your diet may have a slight metabolic boost for all age groups. This temporary increase in metabolism from spicy foods is often referred to as the “thermogenic effect.” It causes your body to burn a few more calories than usual as it works to cool down and process the spicy foods;
Green tea also has several health advantages and contains caffeine, EGCG, and other catechins which have the ability to accelerate thermogenesis, raise metabolism, and stimulate fat oxidation. Additionally, it increases insulin sensitivity, which promotes better blood sugar control and less fat storage. Some people discover that drinking green tea helps lower their hunger sensations and the amount of calories they consume;
The importance of consuming enough protein can not be stressed enough. It requires a higher number of calories to digest than other foods because it aids in the development of lean fat-burning muscle.
- Be Conscious of Serving Sizes
- As you age, your calorie needs may decrease and your nutrient needs may change. It is increasingly necessary to be mindful of how large your servings are and to choose nutrient-dense foods to support your metabolism and overall health.
- Sometimes it is a challenge to consume enough of the essential vitamins and nutrients we need through our diet. Supplements can offer individuals a convenient way to increase their intake of these vital elements. Some supplements also offer minor metabolic benefits like green tea extract and L-carnitine. It is recommended that you work with a qualified doctor trained in obesity medicine to help you choose safe and effective supplements for your unique circumstances.
- Consult a Professional
- Working with a doctor who is an expert in the nuances of weight loss will give you an advantage in reaching the goals you have set for your health. Often individuals have conditions that they may not realize are impeding their ability to lose weight or that can even cause them to gain weight. Also, age has an impact on your metabolism, so seeking advice from a qualified doctor and their team of professionals (which may include a registered dietitian, fitness trainer, lifestyle coach, etc) can provide strategies for your age group and tailored recommendations.
Medical Interventions To Increase Metabolism
Some people may find it difficult to lose extra weight even after making committed attempts to increase metabolism through diet and exercise. In situations like these, seeking medical help can provide a practical solution. Fortunately, there are non-surgical options that have been shown to be both safe and effective in helping people achieve their weight loss goals.
- You may be interested in considering prescription weight loss injections, such as Semaglutide. This type of medication is called a GLP-1 and was originally developed to manage type 2 diabetes. Recently it has become popular because it can assist with weight loss as well. These prescription shots work by regulating your appetite and reducing the cravings you have for food, which leads to a decrease in the amount of calories you consume. Prescription injections like Semaglutide can be an amazing weight loss tool to have for people who have struggled with cravings and controlling their eating habits;
- Another non-surgical option you may wish to consider is a gastric balloon like Orbera or Spatz3. The procedure does not involve any incisions and Installing one of these deflated balloons into the stomach, which is then filled with a sterile saline solution is done from within. The balloon takes up a good amount of space in the stomach, making you feel full more quickly and reducing your overall food intake. These balloons are usually left in place for about six months, which helps provide a great start to your weight loss effort;
- Suture Sculpt Endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty (ESG) is another option that does not require surgery and has become increasingly popular since the FDA approved the procedure. Suture Sculpt involves the use of an endoscope to stitch the stomach into a smaller, tube-like shape, effectively restricting the amount of food it can hold. ESG offers many advantages such as being minimally invasive, requiring no incisions, and having significantly fewer risks of complications compared to traditional gastric sleeve surgery. It is definitely worth taking a look at if you prefer a non-surgical solution but still want significant weight loss results.
Boosting the speed of your metabolism can be accomplished at any age when you use the right strategies. Batash Endoscopic Weight Loss Center can help tailor a plan with your unique circumstances in mind. Whether you have a small amount of weight to lose or have some serious weight-related health issues, we can help you achieve success.
Steven Batash, MD, FACG is highly regarded as one of the top authorities in the field of non-surgical weight loss procedures worldwide. He has had the privilege of collaborating closely with the doctors who developed the techniques he now employs, and he has been fortunate to witness numerous success stories from patients across the United States, Europe, and South America. For more than three decades, he has dedicated his time and expertise to assisting patients in improving their overall health.
Dr. Batash and the team at Batash Endoscopic Weight Loss Center would welcome the opportunity to discuss the non-surgical options available that can help boost your metabolism and experience sustainable weight loss. Set up a time to visit us in person or online, it will probably change your life!