Metabolism post written by, Angie, CEO of Mommy and Me Fitness.
What is Metabolism and how does it affect our weight?
This question was brought to light with a response to our grapefruit food spotlight post, you can read it here, when a reader asked if grapefruit had the ability to speed up your metabolism. Although I think grapefruit is a powerful fruit, grapefruit itself, or any other food for that matter, does not have the ability to change your metabolism. However as highlighted in this post (read here) some studies have proven its ability to to have influenced. This study was conducted by Department of Nutrition and Metabolic Research, Scripps Clinic, La Jolla, California.
I thought it would be beneficial to put on my nurse hat, and share some information on exactly how our body metabolic rate affects how we burn calories.
First I want to start by covering the basics :
What is metabolic rate is?
It is simply the rate at which your body will use calories.
Several factors influence this in our body.
1. Age – as much as I wish it wasn't true, it is. As we age, our metabolism will decrease. This factor you can not control... we all have birthdays! If you have time, check out my personal post on birthdays here.
2. Gender – I always joke with my husband that I want to be the Dad! Because men burn more calories than women. Why? Because they have more muscle.
3. Heredity – you inherit more than just your good looks from your parents, part of your metabolic rate has been given to you from previous generations.
4. Thyroid disorder – hypothyroidism (under-active glad) and hyperthyroidism (overactive gland) can slow down or speed up your metabolism. To understand this more check out what webMD says here.
5. Weight – This you can control. Maintaining a healthy weight will keep your metabolic rate healthy.
Stay informed on your health. Be proactive so you will not have to someday be reactive. Start today! Here are some useful tips:
1. Eat small, frequent meals of natural whole foods.
2. Drink water all day long!
3. Aerobic exercise - MMF classes are a great example of this.
4. Always consult a dietitian or doctor before making a major change in your diet and exercise routine.
5. Start with knowing your BMR you can use this online calculator to help by clicking here.
6. Muscle burns more calories than fat, around 73 calories per day more. Add weight lifting to your workout to help increase your rate. This even makes a difference while you are asleep!
After you know your BMR, read below to figure out how many calories your body needs to maintain your current weight. If you are making a lifestyle change and trying to shed some pounds simply decrease the calories you take in. Some helpful ways to count calories is be aware of what you are eating by recording what you eat and looking up how many calories each food item contains (either on the food packaging or in tables provided in books or online).
- If you use no exercise : = BMR x 1.2
- If you use light exercise : = BMR x 1.375
- If you use moderate exercise : = BMR x 1.55
- If you use hard exercise : = BMR x 1.725
- If you use very hard exercise : = BMR x 1.9
Have a great day! Stay Mommy Strong!