Do you think that weight gain depends only on what you eat? It’s not the case; it also depends on how effectively your body metabolizes the food you eat.
What is metabolism?
Metabolism is a process that makes energy from foods (and liquids) that you consume and uses this energy for necessary functions of the body.
Your body needs constant energy (even if you are on rest) for basic life functions like breathing, blood circulation, and growing or repairing cells. This is called your Basal Metabolic Rate. Usually, BMR accounts for the energy use of the body by around 60 to 70%.
Weight and metabolism
It’s easy to blame your metabolism for your weight issues. However, because metabolism is a natural process, your body has several mechanisms that regulate it to meet your specific needs.
- Unfortunately, gaining weight is a complicated process. It’s a combination of genetics, hormonal controls, diet composition, and the impact of your environment on your lifestyle habits, such as sleep, physical activity, and stress. All these variables contribute to the energy equation (consumption of calories and burning of calories).
You gain weight when you consume more calories than you burn — or when you burn fewer calories than you are consuming.
- Excessive weight gain is only seen in rare cases due to a medical condition that slows metabolism, such as Cushing’s syndrome or having an underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism).
- While some people can lose weight more quickly and easily than others, everyone loses weight when they burn more calories than they consume.
To lose weight, you must create an energy deficit by eating fewer calories or increasing your calorie burn through physical activity, or both.
Factors that affect metabolism
- Muscle Mass: The more muscle mass and body surface area you have the more energy you need to function. That’s why athletes and bodybuilders have a faster metabolism and burn more calories.
- Age: As you grow older, your metabolism slows down.
- Sex: Males have a faster metabolism than females. They also have more muscle mass, larger bones, and less body fat.
- Genes: The genes you inherit from your family are responsible for your physique (muscle mass) and metabolism.
- Physical Activity: Walking, exercise, and playing sports can affect your body by increasing the burning of calories than being sedentary.
- Drugs: Caffeine and Nicotine can speed up the metabolism, so you burn more calories. You can see people gain weight after they quit smoking. Similarly, Antidepressants and steroids can make you gain weight.
- Hormones: Hormonal imbalances can affect metabolism.
- Diseases: Metabolic disorders are conditions that affect how nutrients or enzymes are processed by the body. A metabolic disorder is usually inherited from a parent. It makes no difference how much you eat or exercise. A few examples of inherited metabolic disorders: Gaucher’s disease, Hemochromatosis, Mitochondrial disorders, and Wilson’s disease.
Tips for a healthy metabolism
- Eat enough food based on your dietary requirements.
- Build your muscles to help you burn calories faster.
- Quit smoking. Quit alcohol or drink in moderation.
- Boost your metabolism by eating healthy foods like fruits and vegetables, protein, healthy carbohydrates, and fats.
- Get high strength training (at least three times a week) to boost your metabolism.
- Don’t skip meals.
- Eat healthy fats (like salmon, tuna, olive oil, avocado, flax seeds, nuts, etc.) to avoid cholesterol accumulation. Avoid fried foods and heavily processed foods full of unhealthy saturated fats.
- Keep a cheat day in a week in your diet calendar.
- Drink green tea to increase your antioxidants.
- Drink a sufficient amount of water and healthy liquids to avoid dehydration.
Your metabolism is essential to the proper functioning of your body. Age, muscle mass, and physical activity can all influence how your metabolism uses calories for energy. Your weight is affected more by calories in versus calories out. Cutting calories drastically can have a negative impact on how your metabolism works. Speak with your bariatric team about options for maintaining a healthy weight.
Want weight loss advice from an expert? Our doctors treat many patients with obesity. So, why not talk to them and get the results that you are looking for? Call us at 347-868-1060 or contact us online- at www.doralhw.com.