You want to lose weight, but you have no idea how to rev up your metabolism and burn fat.
If you’ve tried every single diet in the book, have hours of exercise time logged in your journal, and even hired a personal trainer, it’s only natural to grow frustrated.
Is there no end to this weight struggle?
For starters, losing weight isn’t easy, so don’t be discouraged by initial failures.
Instead, choose to learn from your mistakes and stay focused on your goal. You can achieve it if you’re willing to make some big changes in the way you live.
A healthy weight loss program requires a total lifestyle transformation, not merely a change of habits and exercise routines.
Sure, you’ll have to work at it (you wouldn’t expect muscles to grow without effort, would you?). But the rewards of losing weight and keeping it off far outweigh any temporary discomfort that accompanies your effort.
Do you want to know how to burn fat? Good – then read on.
You might be surprised that it isn’t all about exercise.
In fact, the best way to burn fat is through small but steady changes in your daily routine. This article will share with you effective methods of burning fat easily.
Increasing your metabolism is one of the best ways to lose weight. It’s a complicated process, but it boils down to this…
When you eat more calories than your body needs for energy, those extra calories are stored as fat.
The good news is that there are many things you can do in order to increase your metabolism and burn more fat.
If you take the time to learn and follow these 7 steps, you will make your body an efficient fat-burning machine.
Understanding Metabolism And How It Works
Metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat and drink into energy.
During this complex process, calories in food and beverages are combined with oxygen to release the energy your body needs to function.
The amount of calories you burn at rest is called your basal metabolic rate, or BMR.
Your BMR can influence the number of calories you burn throughout the day through physical activity.
For example, the more active you are and the more muscle mass you have, the higher your BMR will be, and thus the faster you will lose weight.
In general, men tend to have a higher metabolism rate than women.
Additionally, fat tissue burns calories slower than muscle tissue does, so having more lean muscle mass will improve your metabolism.
Estimating Your Resting Metabolic Rate (BMR)
The Harris-Benedict equation, which was developed in 1919 by two scientists at the Carnegie Institution for Science (now known as The Carnegie Mellon University) in Pittsburgh, is one of the most accurate methods for calculating BMR.
It considers your height, weight, and age to determine calories burned per day at rest.
The formula is pretty complicated, but an online calculator makes it easy. You just need to plug in some basic information about yourself, and you’ll get your BMR output.
It may be a little higher than what you expect.
For example, if the tool tells you that your BMR is 1,200 calories per day, this is a rough estimate of how many calories you burn each day while at rest.
Remember, however, that every person is different, and hundreds of factors can influence this number.
That’s why it’s best to take your BMR as just a starting point and use other methods, such as monitoring what you eat, to help you reach your weight-loss goals.
Increase Your Metabolic Rate With The Right Food
The big problem for most people is not being able to work off the calories they eat.
You can’t lose weight just by working out, you need to also cut back on what you eat.
The solution is to eat more foods with a high thermic effect. Put simply, these are foods that eventually increase our metabolism rate after eating them.
Protein-rich foods have a higher metabolic rate than other food groups because they require more energy to digest and absorb the protein in them. (1)
This is because your body must break down the amino acids that contain protein and rebuild them into proteins.
In addition to eating foods with a high thermic effect, you can also choose foods with a low glycemic index (GI).
These are foods that digest slowly. This means that they enter the bloodstream gradually and affect blood glucose levels at a low level over a long period of time.
Eating foods with a low GI prevents drastic fluctuations in blood sugar levels, which in turn helps stabilize your energy and moods, preventing you from eating as much at night or between meals.
Low-GI foods also help you feel full for longer. (2)
The goal is to include foods with a high GI in your diet but ones with a low GI at each meal.
Here are some foods that can make you lose weight without starving yourself:
- Quinoa: This gluten-free food has a low glycemic index of 53, which means it digests slowly and makes you feel full longer.
- Oatmeal: This food has a GI of 55 and is rich in fiber, which helps regulate your glucose levels while reducing the amount of insulin you need to produce.
- Apples: These have a very low GI of 36, which makes them an excellent choice for breakfast when your day is about to start. You don’t even need to add any sugar.
- Beans: Kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, pinto beans, and black beans are all good sources of protein that will keep you full for a long time.
- Plain yogurt: This dairy food has a low GI of 14, making it an excellent choice for snacks. It’s also high in calcium and protein.
- Lean meat: Protein-rich food has been shown to significantly increase your metabolism rate for several hours after eating it. Lean meat has a GI of 20-46.
- Coconut oil: This oil is made up of medium-chain fatty acids, which improves your body’s ability to break down stored fat and use it as fuel.
- Fish: Eating fish has been linked to increased metabolism rates.
- Gluten-free bread: This type of whole grain has a low GI of 51, which is similarly effective as oatmeal in keeping your blood sugar levels stable throughout the day.
If you’re following a low-carb diet, include foods with a low GI, and be sure not to go above your daily allotment of carbohydrates.
Exercise To Increase Your Calorie Burning Capabilities
As we have stated, your basal metabolic rate (BMR) will provide the baseline number of calories you need to maintain your weight.
But if you really want to burn body fat and lose weight, then physical exercise is an important factor.
For most people, the ideal workout routine combines cardio and strength training.
Cardio exercises include running, cycling, swimming, and rowing—they help you increase your heart rate and burn fat fast.
Strength-training routines with weights can help build muscle which helps to raise your metabolism. The more muscle you have on your body, the more calories you’ll burn every day because muscle tissue is metabolically active.
It’s important to keep in mind that it can take weeks or even months to see results from exercise.
It’s not something you do for a few days and then stop; you have to be consistent.
Make sure that whatever exercise routine you choose fits your schedule and fits into your lifestyle.
How Sleep And Metabolism Work Together
Getting enough sleep is also crucial. It’s been shown that insufficient or poor sleep quality can cause our metabolism to decrease as much as 10-15%.
Inadequate sleep has many negative effects on the body, including higher blood pressure and increased cortisol levels, which is a stress hormone that inhibits the use of fat for energy.
In addition, fewer hours of sleep results in a slower metabolism and an increased risk for obesity. (5)
When we get enough quality sleep at the right time, our circadian rhythm is “reset.”
This means that weight loss can be boosted by getting more rest when you need it most (usually during the night) so your body has time to repair and rebuild muscles.
How Hydrating Properly Can Help Your Metabolism
Hydration is crucial for optimal metabolic function. When you are dehydrated, your metabolism slows down.
Therefore, drinking water throughout the day will keep you hydrated and help speed up digestion, which helps boost energy levels and burn more calories.
Here are a few simple ways to increase your water consumption:
- Carry around a reusable water bottle with you so you’ll always have it with you. Ensure that you drink from the bottle and not sip on it throughout the day, as sipping will not hydrate enough. Aim for at least 64 oz of water per day.
- Add slices of lemon or cucumber to your water—this will make drinking more enjoyable and can also increase the metabolism-boosting effects.
- Drink water before eating a meal—this will help fill you up and reduce the amount of food eaten at the meal.
Also, drinking cold water has been proven to increase calorie burning because your body expends extra energy to warm the water up to body temperature.
The Power Of Rest And How It Affects Your Metabolism
When we are tired, stressed, or overworked, our bodies pump out more cortisol. (6)
When this stress hormone is at high levels for an extended period of time, it causes the body to store fat.
Unfortunately, it also lowers metabolism because it encourages the release of insulin (which triggers your body to store fat). As such, when you are fatigued, you will not be able to lose weight; you’ll simply find it harder to maintain your current weight.
So it is essential to pay attention to rest and recovery because your body goes through a lot of wear and tear over the course of each day.
Resting properly allows your heart rate and blood pressure to decrease so that you can get some much-needed peace, relaxation, and sleep.
Minimizing stress will also help reduce your stress hormone production.
Change Up Your Eating Pattern
Intermittent fasting is a type of eating pattern that cycles between periods of fasting and non-fasting.
It’s been shown to have many health benefits, including boosting the metabolism, improving insulin sensitivity, reducing inflammation, and lowering blood pressure.
Intermittent fasting can be done in various ways, but most people do it by restricting their food intake for 16 hours every day (usually from 8 pm until noon) and then eat balanced, healthy meals the other eight hours.
It’s important to note that intermittent fasting isn’t just about what you’re eating, it’s about when you’re eating.
The human body is a complex machine that needs to be fueled to function properly.
Eating the right foods and getting enough sleep are two of the most important factors for maintaining good health, but when we are tired, stressed, or overworked, our bodies pump out more cortisol.
When this stress hormone is at high levels for an extended period of time, it causes the body to store fat and lowers metabolism because it encourages the release of insulin (which triggers your body to store fat).
As such, when you are fatigued, you will not be able to lose weight; you’ll simply find it harder to maintain your current weight.
It’s also not just about what you eat, it’s when you eat, too.
Intermittent fasting can help by boosting metabolism and improving insulin sensitivity while reducing inflammation and lowering blood pressure.
This type of eating pattern can be implemented in various ways.
The most common way of intermittent fasting is by restricting your food intake for 16 hours every day (usually from 8 pm until noon) and eating balanced, healthy meals the other eight hours.
As explained above, the other ways to boost metabolism are by exercising and improving your body composition.
To maintain a healthy weight, it’s important to keep track of the number of calories you are taking in daily and stay aware of how much exercise you’re getting.
By focusing on the fat-burning process that is metabolism, and by placing an emphasis on rest, relaxation, sleep, and intermittent fasting regularly, taking care of your body will not only help you lose weight more easily—it should also help you feel healthier, too.