While making healthy food choices and staying active are the best ways to lose weight, there are several other good habits that can help boost weight loss and help you stay in shape. The metabolism has a great influence on how the body uses energy. It’s the process by which the body converts what you eat and drink into the energy you need to function. Even when you’re at rest, your body still needs energy for functions such as breathing, circulating blood, balancing hormone levels, growing cells and repairing cells.
Here are eight habits that will kick your metabolism into high gear to help improve health and weight loss:
1. Schedule Meal Times
When the body expects to be fed at a certain time each day, it uses most of its energy by meal time, because it knows that it will be receiving more energy soon. When your meal schedule is irregular, the body stores energy instead of using it, because it doesn’t know when it’s going to get new energy. Eating every 3-4 hours can help speed up the metabolism and allow the body to use its energy.
2. Wake Up Early
Sunlight helps your body regulate the sleep-wake cycle. It impacts the metabolism by letting your body know it’s time to get going, speeding up the metabolism and allowing energy consumption. Going to bed early and waking up early can also have some amazing effects on your overall health and well-being!
3. Don’t Cut Carbs
Many diets suggest that low-carb is the way to go. While it may lead to quick weight loss, most people are sure to gain it back. The body needs carbohydrates to properly synthesize serotonin. Too little carbs can have a negative impact on your brain activity, making you feel groggy, dizzy and unable to focus, and it also puts stress on your body. Instead of cutting out carbohydrates, choose healthy carbs to incorporate into your diet.
4. Drink More Water
Staying hydrated is imperative to making sure every part of the body is functioning properly. When your body is deprived of water, you burn less calories, and your liver becomes so focused on restoring your water supply that burning fat isn’t a priority. If you struggle with the taste of water, add some lemon or other fruit for a sweeter taste!
5. Eat Organic
Many non-organic products are made with multiple additives that can harm the body. Most non-organic meat comes from animals fed with antibiotics and growth hormones, and non-organic fruits and vegetables may be grown with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. To keep your body as healthy as possible and ensure that everything is working properly, including your metabolism, choose organic when possible!
Some see exercise as the best part of their day, while others dread it. If you hate the thought of exercising, skip the gym and choose to do something outdoors. Go for a jog, a hike or a swim! Anything that gets your blood pumping can help speed up your metabolism and better your overall health. Make it a priority to exercise regularly.
7. Regulate Your Iron Levels
Iron deficiency can cause the muscles to struggle to use oxygen, as well as several other health problems. Make sure iron is part of your daily diet. Iron can be found in oysters, beef, turkey, shrimp and eggs. Regulating iron levels may be especially important for vegans and vegetarians. If meat isn’t in your diet, try pumpkin seeds, chickpeas, beans, spinach or lentils to get your iron.
8. Manage Stress Levels
Believe it or not, an inability to cope with stress efficiently can affect the metabolism. Experiencing high stress can cause the thyroid to slow down the metabolism, leading to weight gain. If you’re stressed, pinpoint the problem and find a solution. You may need to slow down, cut back on your commitments, or find a creative outlet to help you manage your stress.