Building more muscle means your body burns more calories and your metabolism is boosted. How much exercise burns off a treat?
Building more muscle means your body burns more calories and your metabolism is boosted. How much exercise burns off a treat?

How to speed up your metabolism and lose weight

IT SOUNDS too good to be true, right?

You only have to do one thing to speed up your metabolism and lose weight for good.

But there's a catch - you have to be willing to put in the effort, reports The Sun.

In order for your metabolism to speed up you need to increase your muscle mass, and that means one thing - up your exercise.

Exercising for weight loss is hardly a state secret, but what you may not have known is once the weight is off, and you have gained muscles, your body actually needs more calories to survive.

So not only have you lost weight, but you can now eat more as well.

That's because your basal metabolic rate (BMR) increases.

Your BMR is the number of calories your body needs to survive each day - it is essentially what you would burn if you did nothing but rest for 24 hours.

In a nutshell, your body needs calories to function properly and cutting out calories unnecessarily is not healthy for your body and won't help you maintain weight loss in the long term.

Head to the gym if you want to increase your metabolism.
Head to the gym if you want to increase your metabolism.

And it speeds up when you gain muscle, according to nutritionist and dietitian Helen Bond.

"For the ultimate fat-burning boost, you have to look at aerobic exercises and strengthening exercises," she said.

"They will increase the calories you burn during the exercise and afterwards as well.

"You really need to do strength training along with that - lifting weights and using your own body weight to build muscle.

"The more muscle you have, the faster your metabolism is going to be. You are going to burn more calories, even at rest."

And even if you take a few weeks off exercise when on holiday, you will still be burning more calories thanks to your BMR being boosted.

So what about the foods you should be eating alongside your new exercise plan?

It is important that you are eating a healthy, balanced diet but you shouldn't be too restrictive on calories, Ms Bond said.

And, unfortunately, there is no wonder food that will boost your metabolism.

"There is a lot of things out there that say different things work in terms of boosting your metabolism," she added.

Lifting weights helps increase muscle mass which in turn increases your metabolism.
Lifting weights helps increase muscle mass which in turn increases your metabolism.

"Lab studies have shown results with regards to chillies, green tea, grapefruit, ginger, coffee and pepper in boosting metabolism.

"But in the real world, eating these foods is unlikely to result in a weight loss.

"Don't restrict your calories too much, you need to make sure you are eating enough to cover your BMR - what your body needs just at rest.

"Eat a balanced diet too because often when you are deficient in nutrients that's when you don't have enough energy to exercise."

Generally speaking, health experts recommend a woman eats no more than 2000 calories a day and a man should eat no more than 2500.

But those are based on averages and the real amount you should be eating should actually be based on a number of factors including age and exercise levels.

You can calculate your BMR to work out how many calories you should be eating each day by using the formula below:

Women:

10-17 years BMR: 13.4 x weight + 692

18-29 years BMR: 14.8 x weight + 487

30-59 years BMR: 8.3 x weight + 846

Men:

10-17 years BMR: 17.7 x weight + 657

18-29 years BMR: 15.1 x weight + 692

30-59 years BMR: 11.5 x weight + 873

 

This article originally appeared on The Sun and is reproduced with permission.


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