What is metabolism?
Metabolism refers to the chemical process that takes place in the body. This chemical process allows us to breathe, pump blood through our body, turn our food into energy, etc. Your metabolic rate (same as your resting metabolic rate) is the number of calories your body uses each day while at rest. This is the number of calories it takes just to keep your vital organs functioning.
How many calories you burn each day and your “ability” to burn calories is related to your body composition. Everything inside your body can be put into one of two categories. “Fat” and “Non-fat”. Pretty self-explanatory, the “non-fat” category is everything that is not fat- bones, muscles, fluid, and tissue. The more “non-fat” you have, the higher the metabolic rate. One of the ways to increase the amount of “non-fat” in your body is through weight training. This type of exercise increases the amount of muscle and decreases the amount of fat.
For each pound of “non-fat” you burn 14 calories
Example: Person A weighs 150lbs- 50lbs is fat, 100lbs in non-fat. Person A would burn 1,400 calories at rest (14*100).
Person B weighs 150lbs- 25lbs is fat, 125lbs is non-fat. Person B would burn 1,750 calories at rest
To figure out your body fat composition you can Google “body fat calculator” or a personal trainer at your local gym will be able to perform the test
How long food control hunger
The length of time a meal or snack will control your hunger entirely depends on which foods you are consuming:
Refined sugars & carbohydrates (white rice/pasta, fruit juice, candy): 10 minutes
Complex carbohydrates (vegetables, fruits, whole grains): 30-60 minutes
Lean protein (chicken, fish, lean beef, soy protein, egg whites): 2-3 hours
Lean protein + complex carbohydrates: 3+ hours
Metabolism Question & Answer:
Q. Can I change my metabolism?
A: The answer is yes- with good food choices and incorporating a little exercise into your daily routine. By increasing the “non-fat” compartment in your body, you’ll lower your body fat and increase your metabolism.
Q: Doesn’t my metabolism slow down as I get older?
A: This is a two part answer. Yes, most people’s metabolism slows down as they get older but it is BECAUSE they put on weight. Maybe that’s because of poor food choices, or maybe they are not working out as often or as hard as they were before. When activity and intensity levels decrease, so does your muscle mass. Like we talked about before, when your “non-fat” compartment shrinks, your “fat” compartment increases. So again, you can avoid “age-related weight gain” by increasing cardiovascular and weight training exercise.