WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO keep the lights on in the human body? How does the body power everything from blinking and cell repair to washing dishes and running a marathon?
In the simplest terms, all of these activities are powered by calories, which come from the food we eat. This is your metabolism at work.
To support a healthy metabolism, consider making the following eight dietary and activity changes:
- Take control
- Eat enough
- Boost protein intake
- Eat breakfast
- Limit sweets and processed foods
- Stay hydrated
- Increase or maintain muscle mass
- Get enough rest
Moving more and eating well can help ensure your metabolism is running as best it can. Your resting metabolic rate is largely determined by three factors:
- Body size and composition. People who are larger and have more muscle mass tend to have a higher metabolism.
- Sex. Males tend to have less body fat and ore muscle mass, leading to a higher metabolism.
- Age. As you age, you lose muscle mass and your metabolism slows.
For example, a sedentary 55-year-old woman who’s 5′ 4″ tall and weighs 175 pounds only needs about 1,400 calories per day to keep the body going. By contrast, a 55-year-old male who’s 6′ tall and weighs 200 pounds needs nearly 1,800 calories a day to service the basic needs of maintaining the body at rest. When you add in exercise or physical activity, those needs increase no matter who you are.
Weight gain is more likely a product of a calorie surplus from eating and a decline in activity as we get older. That said, you do have control over what and how much you eat and how much you move.
Make a plan and keep track of how much you’re eating, how much you’re moving, and get a sense of how many calories your body needs and burns each day. I advise my clients to keep a food journal if necessary and to eat a “clean” diet. I also schedule 2 30-minute personal training sessions with them weekly and encourage them to enjoy their new strength by staying active between sessions.
Move more, eat often, hydrate, and sleep. Great advice for all of us! Read the entire article from US News here.