It seems that almost everyone you speak to these days would like to find ways to speed up metabolism. Foods that increase metabolism is certainly an area of interest.
Metabolism or more specifically, ways to speed up metabolism often pops up in conversation when people want to lose weight. It is usually in the context of, ‘I’ve put on so much weight so I must have a slow metabolism’.
Metabolism is the sum total of all the chemical reactions that take place within all the cells of the body. These chemical reactions use up energy and of course, the more energy you use up the more fat you will burn. Metabolism is a very individual thing. I’m sure you know some people who can literally eat whatever they want and still lose weight, whilst others only need to look at food and they put weight on.
Why is this? Well, there are 3 major factors that influence our metabolism and we will examine each one to find out how you can speed up your metabolism using lifestyle factors.
Here are the 3 major factors:
- Muscle Mass
- Thyroid Function
- Sympathetic Tone
The first way to speed up metabolism is to increase your muscle mass. Since muscle is the one of the most metabolically active tissue in the body (along with nerve tissue), which means it burns up the most energy, the more muscle you have, the easier it is to speed up metabolism and the faster you can burn off body fat.
Optimum thyroid function helps to speed up metabolism. The thyroid gland is situated around the trachea in the throat. The thyroid gland produces the thyroid hormones, thyroxine (T4) and tri-iodothyronine (T3), and these hormones directly speed up metabolism of all body cells. T3 is actually five times more powerful than T4.
Sympathetic tone is the term used to describe the amount of norepinephrine (NE) released from the ends of neurons. Norepinephrine is a neurotransmitter (nerve transmitter) and the more NE is released, the higher the sympathetic tone or metabolic activity of many organs within the body. This is another way to speed up metabolism.
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