Metabolism refers to the life-sustaining processes that occur in the body and can affect weight loss or weight gain. A higher metabolic rate will increase the rate at which calories are burned, which in turn can aid in weight loss. Curbing hunger cravings is also essential to weight loss and to prevent fluctuating blood sugar levels. Learn how to increase the metabolism and curb hunger through healthy eating and exercise tips.
Do cardiovascular exercise regularly to raise your metabolism and keep hunger at bay. Cardio exercise increases the heart rate and breathing, which in turn raises the metabolic rate. According to IDEA Health & Fitness Association, a study by Potteiger et al. in 2008 showed that female and male participants who did aerobic exercise three to five days a week burned an additional 129 and 174 calories daily than control groups. The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention states that healthy adults looking to lose weight should engage in more than the standard of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise, per week. Exercise also helps to curb hunger pangs by keeping you busy and away from the kitchen.
Add strength training to your weekly workout routine. Strength training increases muscle mass in the body, which elevates the metabolism, since muscle is more metabolically active than fat. Hence, increased muscle mass in the body will burn more calories to assist in fat loss. Aim for two to three strength training sessions per week that target each of the major muscle groups. Furthermore, regular exercise can help decrease hunger cravings. Today Health cites Dr. Neil King, professor of human movement studies at Queensland University of Technology, as saying that consistent exercise can help us become more in tune with our hunger signals, which can help us to offset them in the long run.
Eat small meals every three to four hours. Large meals can overload the digestive system, which can slow down bodily processes including the metabolic rate and digestion. Keep the metabolism humming along by eating small meals that are low in calories but high in nutrients. Aim to eat mostly low-calorie, high-volume vegetables with every meal, and snack with a smaller amount of protein and healthy fats. Meal and snack options include: green leafy salads with grilled chicken and olive oil vinaigrette, low-fat yogurt with fruit, whole-grain crackers with peanut butter, oatmeal made with skim milk and nuts.
- Consult a health professional before starting an exercise program or diet.
Jennifer Andrews specializes in writing about health, wellness and nutrition. Andrews has a Master of Science in physical therapy from the University of Alberta as well as a bachelor's degree in kinesiology. She teaches yoga and pilates and is a recent graduate of the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.