At some time or the other, people tend to blame their slow metabolism for their weight. While it is true that metabolism is linked to your weight, a slow metabolism is not the only culprit in excessive weight. It is actually a combination of how much you eat, how much physical activity you partake in, along with your metabolism that determines your weight. That being said, a good metabolism does definitely help in maintaining your weight or in weight loss, and there are a number of foods that you should be eating that can help your body boost its metabolism.
1. Protein-Rich Foods
Protein-rich foods can include meat, eggs, fish, dairy, nuts, etc. These foods require your body to use more energy to digest them, which helps amp up your metabolism for at least a few hours. Research has shown that eating protein-rich foods increases your metabolic rate by 15 – 30%. It also helps in reducing the drop in metabolism, which is a common occurrence when one is on a weight loss program. Additionally, protein-rich foods help keep you full for a longer time, which helps avoid overeating.
2. Iron, Zinc and Selenium-Rich Foods
This category of foods can include nuts, meats, and seafood. While zinc, iron, and selenium play different but important roles in the proper functioning of the body, the one function they have in common is that they are required by the thyroid to function properly; and it is the thyroid that controls the metabolism of your body. Insufficient intake of iron, zinc, and selenium can hinder the thyroid gland’s function, resulting in a slower metabolism.
3. Chili Peppers
Chili peppers have a chemical called capsaicin which can help boost your metabolism as it increases the number of calories and fat your body burns. Moreover, capsaicin has also shown to have appetite reducing properties.
The effects of coffee seem to vary from person to person, and depend on characteristics like age and body weight. However, a number of studies have shown that caffeine helps boost the metabolic rate of the body and also assists in burning more calories. Further, caffeine is also said to help in burning fat for energy, boosting your workout performance as well.
The combination of caffeine and catechins that is found in tea, especially oolong and green tea, can help in boosting your metabolism.They may also assist your body in using stored fats for energy in a more effective way, thereby increasing your body’s fat-burning ability. However, as is the case with coffee, the effects of tea may also vary from person to person.
While all fruits are a good idea to include in your diet because of their carb and fiber content (both help in the metabolism), berries in particular are also rich in antioxidants like vitamin C, which helps in combatting the harmful free radicals that are generated during physical activities.
We all know that drinking plenty of water is good for hydration and for keeping your skin supple. However, it has been shown that drinking water can also boost the body’s metabolism for a short period, especially if you’re drinking cold water; for your body uses up extra calories to heat the water up to bring it to your body temperature.
There are a number of foods that can help boost your body’s metabolism, and consuming them regularly can help you lose weight and keep it off. However, simply adding these foods to your diet is not enough, and you will have to adjust your lifestyle as well to make a weight loss program you are pursuing to work effectively.