What Can Affect Your Metabolic Rate?
Our metabolic rate is how efficiently and quickly we utilize energy, i.e. calories from food. The faster your metabolic rate, the faster your body processes, digests, and uses (burns) the energy consumed. Despite what you may believe, you are not born with one metabolic rate and that’s just it. Your metabolism may be “slow”, but you can completely change your metabolic rate making is similar to a teenager if you put in the work and tried hard enough. Do not believe in the myth or think a slow metabolism is a death sentence for the rest of your life. Read carefully the factors that go into making a metabolic rate strong and robust, and then look at your own behaviours and see what you need to improve on.
The reason someone would have a faster metabolism over the next person is due to a few factors:
Height, weight, age, and sex:
Your overall body composition has a lot to do with the speed of your metabolism and how fast your body needs to use the energy consumed. If you have a high body fat % relative to height, weight, age, and sex, then you will have a slower metabolism because you are holding stored energy. Body fat is stored energy, calories i.e. energy that were not used and therefore are being stored for later.
Body Fat %:
Body fat is stored energy, if your body does not need energy consumed quickly, then it is stored for later in the form of body fat. Your metabolism does not have to burn and disperse the energy quickly since it has back up energy to rely on. This does not mean you do not eat calories to burn fat, your metabolism is not a calculator. This just means you need to decrease body fat, and increase lean muscle mass to turn your body into a calorie burning machine. Body fat does not turn into muscle and muscle does not morph into fat, they are two metabolically different structures. Body fat is a storage unit, muscle is an Olympian whereby it’s alive and thriving on all pistons. If you want to lose body fat, then the best way is to eat 5-6 nutrient dense meals, dispersed 2.5-4hrs throughout the day, cardio will help increase caloric burn, and then weight training will help increase lean muscle mass.
Lean Muscle Mass i.e. out of total weight, how many lbs are lean muscle:
Muscle is alive! Think of lean muscle as just another mouth to feed, so the more muscle you have, the more mouths that need feeding. The more kids you have to feed, the more food you need to buy obviously right? The more kids you have, the quicker your food in the cupboards and fridge runs out, the more you have to grocery shop, the bigger size you need to buy…building muscle and sustaining that muscle are the same thing. You need to eat, to grow…but eat WELL and DISCIPLINED!! Muscle requires increased calories in order to build and repair from the micro-trauma of weight training. It also requires calories in order to sustain it, so that means your metabolism has to work faster at digesting, absorbing and transporting the energy to all the cells. The more energy that needs to be dispersed and utilized, means the greater chance your body fat (stored energy) will be used as energy/fuel. You want to be in a position where your metabolism is roaring while you are at rest, which will only mean it will go from roar to absolute mayhem when you work out hard. A fast metabolism at rest will maximize your fat burning potential and increase the chance of a hard and sculpted body.
How active they are in daily routines and day to day life:
When blood sugar is low between meals and your metabolism is high, your body will need energy to fuel the cells and “feed all the mouths”, and it can pull this needed energy from your body fat when food energy is absent. How active you are in your day to day life will contribute to increased caloric burn which can help increase unwanted body fat. If you have a desk job, getting up often and walking up and down stairs during the day, no snacking between meals, drinking water and hot tea, will contribute week by week to a healthier physique.
Increased stress on the other hand, whether that be environmental, psychological, social, work, financial, relationships, over-exercise, under-eating, lack of sleep…all can slow down your metabolism. If your body is stressed, hormonal imbalances can occur, cortisol rises, and glucose utilization will become difficult. Lack of sleep can also significantly impact your body’s ability to repair and reconstruct new muscle tissue, which then can impact your ability to increase your metabolic rate.
If you are not eating, digesting, and expelling…then where is your food waste sitting? It is likely sitting in your gut, and our “gut” is not just our stomach, it’s the entire digestive tract so that includes your intestines. Which by the way are two football fields spread-out…wild. Food waste that is not being properly expelled is sitting somewhere in your digestive tract, excreting toxins back into your body which will alter hormonal balance and make weight loss hard, as well as just about everything else. This entire cycle of simply not digesting and expelling your meals or food properly will definitely cause the entire metabolic system to slow down. Nothing runs efficiently when there’s a clog, and it’s more that things happen over-time which causes the back logging to be even worse, just like a traffic jam. One person in front breaks hard, but it’s behaviours that follow that make the problem worse. The person behind was following too close so they break harder, and now the whole line of people are breaking one after another and it comes to a complete stop…but one person was texting and didn’t notice, so an accident occurs and now it’s just total madness. Nothing is moving, no one is going anywhere, as more cars keep piling up, just as you need to keep eating. You don’t want that to be your food packing in on each other with nowhere to go, if the food is not moving then your metabolic rate is going to slow down. A sign of a fast metabolism is a healthy digestive tract in which you are very efficient at the entire digestion process of your food from beginning to end.