5 Common Metabolism Myths Busted
You must have often heard people rant that they have a slow metabolism and that is why they are not losing kilos. People are just jealous of those who have a metabolism faster than a bullet 😛
Common knowledge says that metabolism is the rate at which calories are burned by the body. However, this is only half true. Metabolism is the process in which the food is broken down by the body and is converted into energy.
Myth 1: Metabolism is genetic and cannot be changed
This is partly false. Yes metabolism is genetic. Some people metabolize food very quickly whereas others are quite slow. Whether the metabolism is slow or fat is determined by the basal metabolic rate or BMR, which is the number of calories a person burns at rest. Even at rest the body’s organs function, digestion occurs, cells grow and die and for all this to happen you need energy. People with a low BMR will tend to burn fewer calories at rest whereas one with a high BMR will burn more.
What burns the calories when the body is at rest? Muscle and fat. For every pound of muscle you burn 35 calories in a day and for every pound of fat you burn only 2 calories. When you increase muscles you will raise the body’s BMR. Weight training is one way to do so. Even aerobic activity will help the body burn calories. All this will help increase BMR. Even if your metabolism is slow due to genetic factors, you need not live with it.
Myth 2: Metabolism is the same for both genders, regardless of their age
This one is totally false. Men have a higher BMR just because they are males. They have more lean muscle than women with organs larger than that of women. This means that that at rest men burn more calories than women.
As people age the body’s metabolism starts slowing down. This is all due to muscle deterioration and the biological incline towards gaining weight. Compared to women, men maintain muscle density longer. So, when a woman’s metabolism declines when she enters 40, a man’s metabolism takes another 10 years to slow down!
Myth 3: Green tea and hot peppers will speed up your metabolism
This is false! Foods can’t speed up your metabolism. Some studies do indicate that spicy foods increase your metabolism, the boost is just for 30 minutes. The same holds true for green tea. It just spikes your metabolism but doesn’t change it. Even if the spike is appealing, it won’t influence weight loss.
What should you do to kick start your metabolism and burn your calories? The answer to that is-‘a balanced diet’. Foods low in carb and high in protein.
Myth 4: Eating one big meal a day can boost metabolism
Studies are going on in this area right now. It is said that eating small and frequent meals with focus of whole foods is the best. Why is this so? This is because skipping meals and totally not eating will slow down your metabolism. When you skip meals there is a lack of nutrients in the body, your body cells will readjust and start using lesser energy, which they can do by storing more fat to be prepared for the periods of deprivation. When you eat frequently, your blood sugar gets stable, reduces cravings and keeps your metabolic rate high. Your body will also be consistently nourished with essential nutrients.
Myth 5: Food consumed after 7 pm turns into fat
This is not true. Though you may be asleep after a few hours after 7 pm, this doesn’t mean that your food will get stored as fat. The metabolism does slow down while you are asleep, metabolism doesn’t stop working entirely.
You can eat even after 8 or 9 pm but you must be eating healthy. Avoid eating high sugar and carb dense foods before you head to bed.
If you want set up rules of your eating timing, it would be better if you don’t skip your morning breakfast. You practically fast all night and as a result your metabolism slows down by 15%. Your metabolism won’t get kick started till the body produces energy and that happens when you consume calories.
So, I guess most of the metabolism myths have been busted!
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