What is Metabolism?
Metabolism is a complex biochemical process during which your body extracts calories from the food consumed, combines it with oxygen and produces energy. This energy is then used by the body to sustain itself and carry out various functions like circulation of blood, breathing, food digestion, maintaining hormonal balance, growth and repair of cells.
The rate at which the body converts calories into energy is known as the metabolic rate.The metabolic rate differs from person to person. Some of us manage to burn lesser calories as compared to others. A host of factors affect the metabolic rate. Those who are lean and have more muscles tend to have higher metabolism and end up burning more calories, even when at rest. Age and sex also play a vital role in determining your metabolic rate. Men are known to lose weight quicker as compared to women, due to lesser body fat and more muscles.
Foods that Boost Metabolism
There are ways to improve your metabolism, some of these are as follows:-
- Citrus Fruits. Foods like oranges, grapefruit, lemons and limes contain vitamin C that helps metabolize fat faster, which make them helpful for weight loss. You only need 60 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C a day to meet your body’s basic needs, but increasing your daily intake to 500 mg can boost your fat-burning potential during exercise by 39 percent and result in weight loss.
- Green Tea and Coffee. A combination of caffeine and green tea extracts burn more calories. Green tea is rich in antioxidants like polyphenols which have numerous health benefits and also aid in weight loss. Caffeine helps in warding off lethargy and can even increase your endurance during workouts.
- Lean Protein. A high-protein diet burn twice as many calories after a meal as compared to a high-carbohydrate diet. Eating protein helps to preserve muscle mass during weight loss, keeping metabolism running at full speed. Lean beef, chicken and turkey help to speed up the metabolism and burn more fat simply because they require so much energy for complete digestion.
- High Fiber Diet.
Fiber makes fat and calories from a meal or snack “disappear” by soaking them up and removing them through the digestive tract before the body can absorb them. Lentils are a great source of proteins, carbohydrates and fiber that helps in good digestion. The iron content facilitates the flow of oxygen throughout the body which further helps in boosting metabolism and energy production. High-fiber cereals not only rev up the metabolism, they also digest slowly so you feel full and energized for hours.
- Milk and Yogurt. Milk is a rich source of calcium and some of the recent studies hold that regular calcium intake can help the body metabolize fat efficiently. Yogurt is well known for being rich in probiotics, the good bacteria that helps in digestion and keeps you cool. Cottage cheese is rich in protein and it can help you build, maintain and repair muscles.
- Berries. Berries are high in dietary fiber. The body cannot digest fiber, but it tries anyway and burns calories in the process. Just one cup of raspberries contains a whopping 8g of fiber and only 60 calories. Strawberries, blackberries and blueberries are all good sources of fiber.