‘Metabolism’ is a term that you will often hear thrown about, but what does it actually refer to?
In fact, it is a series of chemical reactions that occur in living organisms in order to maintain life.
Still not clear?
The chemical reactions allow organisms to reproduce and grow, respond to their environments and sustain their structures.
So in quick summary, metabolism is the rate at which your body burns calories.
The reason you need to know about metabolism is because you can actually affect it positively – and hence positively affect your health – by altering your lifestyle and diet.
You can increase the speed at which your body metabolises calories, which results in healthy weight loss (if needed) and increases your capacity to put on muscle.
Not surprisingly, the two main ways to increase your metabolism are exercise and healthy eating.
In terms of diet, the first and most important change to make is to switch to eating small, frequent meals. Instead of the classic three-meals-per-day ideology, opt for six smaller meals, eaten every couple of hours.
Secondly, make sure you are drinking plenty of water. Water is the resource that allows your body to perform its functions, and more water leads to greater performance. Don’t get ridiculous with your consumption, but about ten glasses a day is a good target.
In terms of exercise, you have two key weapons: aerobic exercise and weight training.
Try to get your heart rate up for a short period, say for about thirty minutes. Do this four times per week. Jogging on the treadmill or riding on an exercise bike is a god start.
Weight training boosts your long-term metabolic rate, because it encourages muscle growth and muscle burns more energy than fat. If you have more muscle, your resting metabolic rate will be higher.