June 19, 2017

Natural Metabolism Boosters

Weights and MetabolismNatural Metabolism Boosters

Man, if I could increase my metabolism I could lose weight is what you’re thinking, right?  Can it be done and how do you boost metabolism? Boosting metabolism is one of the real keys to losing weight. The other is nutrition. Give these natural metabolism boosters a try if you want to lose weight.

Once you are overweight trying to lose weight by reducing calories alone is difficult, because the body will slow its metabolism even more (survival instinct) if it is not receiving the necessary nutrients. In the face of ongoing calorie restriction the body at some point senses it is starving and that triggers a decline in metabolism to save precious energy. What this means is you need to do something to increase your metabolism.

Exercise, sound nutrition, and nutritional supplements can boost metabolism and that is what we will discuss today.

Jolting Metabolism Back Into Action

Exercise is among the best natural metabolism boosters. But not all exercises are equal in their ability to enhance metabolism.  Most of us are familiar with aerobic exercises, but aerobics takes a back seat to high intensity interval training and strength training when it comes to boosting metabolism.

High intensity interval training (HIIT) involves performing multiple short bursts of activities followed by a rest period.  An exercise is typically performed at near maximal effort for 20 to 60 seconds.  After catching one’s breath the exercise is performed again, and repeated for several cycles.  See “Exercises to Lose Weight”.

HIIT leads to elevated calorie burning – metabolism booster – for up to 20 hours or more after the exercise is over.

Initially, you may not be in good enough shape to tolerate this type of program, so ease into it if necessary.  Start at 60% or 70% maximal effort and perform the exercise for 20 seconds and then take a minute or two to recover if necessary, and repeat again.  With time you can exercise at a higher intensity with shorter rest periods. You want to get to a point, though, where you are exercising at an intensity that gets your heart rate to at least 80% and preferably 85% or more of your predicted maximal heart rate.

To calculate your predicted maximum heart rate subtract your age from 220 and then multiply by 80% or 85%. For a 35 year old the predicted maximum heart would be 220-35 = 185. Mulitply that by 0.80 and you get 148. So a 35 year old would want to achieve a heart rate of at least 146 during high intensity interval training to get a metabolic boost that could last as long as 20 hours or more after the exercise is over.

The Tabata Protocol involves 20 seconds of exercise followed by a 10 second rest period repeated for 8 cycles for a 4-minute workout. The following video is an example of the Tabata Protocol. Plenty of other Tabata videos can be found on YouTube.

Another high intensity interval training program is Sprint 8.  With Sprint 8 you give an all out effort for 30 seconds followed by a 90 second rest.  That’s one cycle.  You do 8 cycles for a 16 minute workout.  Be sure to spend 5 minutes warming up before you jump into maximum exertion.

The metabolic benefit to high intensity interval training is that it takes a lot of energy, which means it takes a lot of calories to bring the body back to baseline.  Metabolism can stay elevated up to 48 hours in men and 16 hours in women following a training session.  Performing high intensity interval training for a total of 20 minutes 2 to 3 times a week should be enough to boost your metabolism.

This afterburn associated with high intensity interval training is called EPOC or excess post-oxyen consumption.

Moderate to heavy strength training also jumps start metabolism.  Following a strength training session micro-damage occurs to the muscle that needs to be repaired.  That repair requires calories.  In addition, the strength training itself requires our body to burn calories. Plus, a pound of muscle simply burns more calories at rest then a pound of fat. A pound of muscle burns 2-3 times as many calories at rest than a pound of fat. So even when at rest more calories are being burned the more muscle you have.

Nutritional Natural Metabolism Boosters

Drink cold water.  The body burns calories to warm cold water to body temperature.  Plus water improves circulation and delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the cells improving function.

Eat more often but smaller meals.  Try to eat something every 2 to 3 hours.  This actually will keep metabolism up.  If the body goes too long between meals, it senses that it is being starved and will slow its metabolism. There is evidence, though, that short term fasting like 16 to 24 hours can improve metabolism, too.  

Always eat breakfast to rev up metabolism as you start the day. People who regularly eat breakfast are more likely to lose weight and keep it off.

Protein is necessary for muscle development. The many biochemical processes of the body are facilitated by enzymes, which are proteins.  Consume up to 35 grams of protein with the three main meals and 25 grams with in between meal snacks.

Take advantage of thermogenesis.  Your body must burn calories to digest food – that’s thermogenesis. Protein is harder to digest, therefore burning more calories to simply break it down.

Fruits and vegetables also require more calories to digest than simple carbohydrates and are certainly more nutritional.

Buy organic fruits and vegetables. Organically grown foods won’t interfere with thyroid function. The thyroid gland is the key regulator of metabolism. Pesticides and toxins associated with non-organinc foods will hamper thyroid function. Also avoid baked goods which contain bromide. Bromide displace iodine in the body and iodine is essential for optimal thyroid function.

Natural Metabolism Boosters Via Supplements

Nutritional supplements can be effective natural metabolism boosters.

Green tea can boost metabolism but it takes 3 to 6 cups a day to get a metabolic effect.  Instead, try green tea extracts up to 500 mg a day.  Green tea does contain caffeine, so be aware of that.

B complex vitamins, CoQ10, alpha lipoic acid, acetyl-L-carnitine, L-carnitine, and D-ribose promote energy production by the mitochondria of the cells.

You can only reduce caloric intake so much, but there’s always room to burn more calories. A better way to achieve a healthy weight is to boost your metabolism.  Get started now!

See related articles.

Increase Energy Naturally

4 Benefits of High Intensity Interval Training

Increasing Growth Hormone with Sprint 8

Diet and Exercise are the Keys to Weight Loss

Boosting Nitric Oxide with Exercise

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Dr. Joe Jacko


Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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