Metabolism refers to how the cells utilise the energy we have absorbed from food during digestion. It is important to remember that even when you’re resting, your body needs energy to function (to breath, circulate blood, adjust hormone levels and grow and repair cells, etc). The number of calories your body requires to carry out these basic functions is known as your basal metabolic rate or what you might call metabolism. Everyone has a different basal metabolic rate. Our rates also change over time. This means that our metabolisms all burn food differently. As a result, counting calories is an inefficient way to lose weight as we all have different bodies. Instead you should focus on eating wholefoods. It’s also important to remember that calories are not created equal. For example, high fibre foods contain many calories, however, they support weight loss. Here are my weight loss tips:
Eat – 3 meals each day with 2 snacks in between to keep your metabolism firing. An example can be found here.
Gut – a healthy gut will burn fat faster. Nurture your gut. You can find out how to fix your gut here.
Avoid artificial sweeteners – they are chemicals that suppress your satiety. You cannot recognise when you’re full and satisfied so you overeat.
Exercise – don’t stress your body with over-exercise. So many people believe that if they work their body hard, they’ll lose weight. This is incorrect, if you work your body hard, it holds onto fat because it is stressed. Our primal bodies perceive stress as a time to hold onto fat, and slow the metabolism in case a famine is coming.
Good fats – good fats do not make you fat. Good fats are essential for energy, satiety, cell growth, organ health and nutrient absorption. Olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds are fantastic good fat options.
Avoid sugar – the body stores extra sugar as fat.
Protein – each meal and snack should contain protein. Protein requires a lot of energy to break down, which in turn boosts your metabolism.
Breakfast – most important meal of the day and should be your largest meal of the day, with dinner being the smallest meal of the day. Some great breakfast ideas are listed here.
Gluten free – the protein found in gluten is extremely hard to digest and highly inflammatory. Aim to avoid gluten where possible. There are so many gluten free options available. Here are my gluten free bread, pasta and cereal options.
Perfect plate – fill your plate with the correct portions. ¼ protein, ¼ carbs, ½ vegetables and sprinkle with good fats. More info on a perfect plate is here.
Liver – your liver is your fat burning organ. Support your liver with bitter greens such as parsley and rocket. Great liver supplements include milk thistle, schizandra and dandelion root.
Fibre – wholegrains and leafy greens are excellent sources. Green smoothies are a great way to increase fibre in your diet. You can learn how to make a green smoothie here or make my favourite Minty Fresh Green Smoothie.
Avoid packaged food – your body does not know how to digest processed food containing additives, enhancers, artificial colours and flavours. Eat real food. My real food shopping list can be found here.
Water – drink water to fire up your metabolism. Aim for 2 litres each day. If you struggle to drink water, try my Vitamin Water.
Avoid fat free products – the fat is replaced with sugar and the body stores extra sugar as fat. You can take a look at the foods I avoid here.
Detox – give your body a break, my top 10 detox foods are found here.
Metabolism – boost your metabolism, learn how to boost your metabolism here.
Hormones – important factor in weight loss is balanced hormones. 8 hours sleep and stress reduction is required for hormone balance. More info on balancing hormones is here.
Bedtime – stop eating 2-3 hours before bedtime. Your body does not digest well when sleeping.
Do you have any other tips to add to this list?