Our ability to lose weight involves a number of factors. The two primary factors in weight loss are the food choices that we make, and the amount of exercise that we get. Both of these help to create an overall healthy lifestyle, and both can help to boost metabolism, which is a very important part of weight loss.
The great news is that we have the power to influence our own metabolism. Exercise, (particularly weight training) is the number one way to help boost our BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate). The other way to help boost metabolism is through the food and beverages that we consume.
Metabolism boosting foods:
- Tea: Oolong tea is one of the very best natural metabolism boosters. The combination of caffeine and polyphenols contained in tea can increase energy expenditure (EE) and help to boost weight loss. It can also help to decrease blood pressure, lower cholesterol, and promote healthy skin and teeth.
- Protein: A serving of healthy meat, such as lean turkey or chicken is low in calories and packed with protein. The enzymes found in proteins are potent natural metabolism boosters. The body uses extra energy to break down proteins and so will automatically burn more calories. Protein is also a fundamental building block of muscle, and the more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn.
- Spices: The vast majority of spices are either calorie free, or extremely low in calories and can help raise metabolism significantly for a few hours after eating. They work by increasing the body’s thermogenic process. This means that they raise your body temperature, which in turn increases the energy (calories) that you burn. Some of the very best metabolism boosting spices are hot peppers, cinnamon, ginger, cumin, and turmeric (often found in curry powder).
- Grapefruit: While I would never promote something extreme like the grapefruit diet, there is research to substantiate the fact that eating grapefruits can reduce insulin levels and, in turn, increase weight loss and boost metabolism. So grab a grapefruit and treat yourself to a delicious snack. NOTE: Grapefruit can interact with certain medications, so please check with your doctor first.