Are you completely frustrated because no matter what you do, your weight doesn’t budge? Has your metabolism been running low on cruise control and you’ve had a real heck of time trying to shift it into high gear to boost your metabolism?
Hopefully, you haven’t resorted to diet pills or some weird one food crash diet…like the Banana diet! Yeah, really, believe it or not it’s the craze in Japan (of all places!). Apparently green tea is out…it’s all about the bananas.
Well, diet pills and crash diets may work for a short time, but it’s temporary at best, super unhealthy and only perpetuates more yo-yo dieting and worst of all it slows your metabolism even MORE.
So how do you “fix” your lazy metabolism so you start burning off calories again?
Here are 5 simple but very effective tips you can implement to “wake up” your metabolism, so you can start burning fat more effectively!
- Eat a diet low in sugar! That means eliminating all refined carbs like bread, pasta, rice…basically all grains. Whole grains (especially gluten free) are better than refined grains, but for the sake of optimizing your insulin hormone to boost your metabolism, I recommend completely eliminating grains altogether. Of course, this also means not consuming any (processed) junk foods, like chips, ice cream, candies and soft drinks (these foods are TERRIBLE for your health). If you have a difficult time eliminating grains from your diet (...I know in some cultures, grain is an integral part of their diet and is hard to eliminate) you can take this before you eat your meals. This helps you keep your blood sugar levels low, even when you eat carbs, keeping your insulin levels stable. Most of your carbohydrates should come from vegetables and some fruits. Even fruits I would consume in moderation since they also have higher sugar (fructose) content. But, you can’t go wrong with vegetables…especially dark leafy green vegetables like kale, spinach, arugula and chard that are super nutrient dense and provide your body with anti-aging, anti-oxidant and anti-cancerous properties…all while effectively increasing your metabolism as well!
- Eat plenty of quality proteins. Most people just don’t eat enough proteins. A major portion of a typical diet comes from refined carbs and as stated above, that completely compromises (slows down) your metabolic functions. Getting enough protein is essential to building lean muscle which boost your metabolism. It also increases your satiety level, so you get full quicker and for a longer period of time. Eating protein also takes more energy, so you actually burn more calories by eating protein than any other types of food! It’s a win-win situation. Keep in mind though, that not all proteins are created equal. I highly recommend that you eat high quality protein, preferably from animal sources that haven’t been treated with antibiotics or hormones such as grass-fed beef, pasture raised chickens, eggs that come from pasture raised chickens and wild caught fish since they have the highest bioavailability…meaning it gets used by your body the best. If you don’t eat much meat, you can use high quality protein supplements like whey protein or egg protein. You can also use plant proteins supplements as well, although they are less bioavailable. Either way getting enough protein in your diet is key (along with low sugar intake) to maximize your lean muscle building process and enhance your metabolism!
- Eat enough healthy fats. Did you know that many of the hormones in your body are made from cholesterol? And guess where cholesterol comes from? You go it… fat. Eating fat doesn’t make you fat. In fact, eating the right kinds of fat along with a low carb diet is one of the best ways to optimize your hormones. And the more efficient your hormones are working the better your metabolism functions. You should be getting plenty of healthy fats rich in omega 3 fatty acids from foods like cold water fish such as salmon, anchovies, mackerel and herring. Since omega 3 fatty acids are harder to come by from foods, you can use high quality supplements as well. And don’t forget to eat healthy saturated fats from foods like grass-fed beef, eggs (yolk) from pasture raised chickens and coconuts as well.
- Perform short bursts of intense activities! I know that cardio is king in many people’s opinion, when it comes to burning fat. But what’s even more effective is doing short bursts of high intensity exercises. Doing short bursts of high energy activities produces an energy deficit, also known as the EPOC effect, and really cranks up your metabolism! It’s by the far the most effective way to wake up your dormant metabolism and shift it into high gear to start burning more calories. Why bother doing long mind numbing cardio, when you can get better results by doing less?
- Get enough sleep! I know it seems like a no brainer. But I think way too many people take sleeping for granted. You need to get enough sleep so you can lower your cortisol level, and boost your metabolism. During sleep is when your body repairs itself and rebuilds your body from the inside out. It’s when you burn the most fat, it’s when you build the most lean muscle mass and it’s when your body gets rejuvenated so it can function at it’s best during the day. Make sure to get 7 - 8 hours of restful quality sleep every night!
These are simple but very effective tips that you can start today and “fix” your metabolism for good. Keep in mind that the most “real” solutions are simple, but not necessary the easiest. Changing your diet and doing the right workouts can seem daunting at first, but the results are well worth the effort. Be patient, persistent and don’t give up just because you couldn’t do it perfectly the first time around. It’s like riding a bike, you’re going to fall down a few times before you can get up and ride it for good. Give yourself some leeway to fall down…just make sure that you get back up and get on the bike again!