If you are dieting and exercising but you barely seem to lose any weight, your choice of diet (assuming you have selected an all round healthy diet option) is clearly not the problem. It is more likely that your metabolism is sabotaging you.
Many people think of metabolism as simply how fast or how slowly we burn the calories we eat. This is partly true. But the whole truth is that metabolism should be looked at as the sum total of hormones and chemicals in the brain, the digestive system and stomach. Together they control our eating habits, how stressed we are, how our bodies utilize calories we eat and how it stores fat. Food, mood and environmental factors all affect your metabolism.
There are three very important factors that affect your metabolism. These are inflammation, insulin and your thyroid. If you can achieve a healthy balance of each within the body, you will simultaneously increase your metabolism and weight loss will become more attainable for you.
Of course, we hear about the benefits of exercise to any weight loss program every day. Before I get into the 3 factors that are important to your metabolism, here are a few more suggestions that will allow you to sneak in some more exercise and have your burning more calories throughout the day. Standing instead of sitting on the train will burn more calories. Make it a point to stand at your desk several times each day. Stand every time the telephone rings, perhaps? Try walking to lunch or bring your lunch to the park instead of eating at the office. Instead of using email or picking up the telephone, pick yourself up and walk to the office down the hall instead. The point is to keep moving throughout the day
Now here are the 3 factors to pay attention to in order to increase your metabolism and keep the weight off.
Inflammation is a natural occurrence in the body’s defense mechanism. Your white blood cells are part of this defense that help keep you healthy. When this mechanism is disrupted, however, inflammation becomes deadly. Inflammation is the cause of many serious illnesses like heart disease, dementia, Alzheimer’s, cancer and obesity. This disruption in the normal amount of inflammation in the body can be caused by environmental irritants, toxins, and also by inflammatory foods like sugar, processed foods, a high glycemic diet, trans fats and allergies to foods like gluten, nuts, dairy and eggs. In some people, stress, infections and even lack of exercise can cause excess inflammation in the body.
In order to control inflammation, It is best to avoid these triggers and begin a diet rich in healthy fats. Coconut oil is a great addition to your diet. EPA and DHA are essential and can be obtained by eating salmon and tuna or via supplements. OEA which is found in dark chocolate also reduces inflammation. Fruits, vegetables and lean protein should be included in your arsenal of weapons to fight against inflammation.
Reducing stress is very important to your metabolism. Try meditation, yoga, music or just having time for your self. Stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol can make you fat. When activated, they increase fat, sugar and insulin in the blood and can lead to insulin resistance.
Insulin is a hormone needed by the body to regulate the amount of glucose in the blood. Glucose is not just sweets, it is also derived in the body from the carbohydrates that you eat. When you have too much glucose in the blood, excess insulin is released to deal with this onslaught. This high level of insulin is bad for your metabolism. First, it suppresses the hormones that burn fat and sugar and then it stimulates hunger brought on by a dip in blood sugar. So you see how important regulating insulin is to having a healthy metabolism. You can balance your insulin levels by eating regular meals and by including a combination of protein, fiber and healthy fats with each meals.
Shore Up Your Thyroid Function
Your thyroid is one of the major metabolism hormones. It is thought that thyroid hormones affect every cell of the body. Thyroid hormones affect the way fat is utilized by the body. It affects cholesterol and triglycerides. Carbohydrate metabolism is dependent on the proper functioning of your thyroid. If you have been experiencing difficulty with weight, your thyroid may be a factor. Consider getting your levels checked by your doctor. Hypothyroidism is a thyroid disease that can make weight loss particularly challenging. Your doctor can prescribe medicines to balance the thyroid hormone. You can help yourself by including iodine in your diet. A supplement called Forskolin has also been shown to break down fat and raise thyroid hormone levels resulting in a faster metabolism.
By continuing your exercise program, incorporating more calorie burning activities into your lifestyle throughout the day and then focusing on these three key important issues, you really can increase your metabolism and make it work to keep you thin and healthy for life.
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