Increase Your Metabolism!

Trust me, I’ve heard the expression “easier said than done” before. There are a lot of factors that might be stacked against you: genetics, age, a desk job, etc. But if you learn the tricks, it CAN be easy!

Pursue a high-protein diet.

Your body breaks down fats, carbs, and proteins during digestion. Of those three, proteins require the most energy to digest by a long shot. And what does your body do when it needs more energy? It burns more calories.

Turn off the AC!

Yep, you read correctly – calories are burned to warm you up and cool you down. If your environment isn’t regulated by a heating/cooling system, your body will work hard to restore itself to equilibrium. Being cold can boost your metabolism by up to 20%! As a matter of fact, you could even encourage this process by drinking an ice-cold glass of water. Your body expends energy to heat the water up for absorption.

healthy sleepGet your 8 hours.

Believe it or not, a consistent sleep routine that gives your body at least eight consecutive hours of rest will help your body control certain hormones that influence appetite. According to a study by Stanford University and University of Wisconsin academics, people with shorter sleep schedules have reduced levels of leptin (a hormone that regulates fat storage) and increased ghrelin (a hormone that boosts appetite).

Don’t skip meals.

Your logic might tell you that the less you eat, the more weight you’ll lose, so skipping a meal or two is a good thing. Wrong. Your metabolism works best when it is stimulated throughout the day. When you skip meals, your body enters starvation mode and will store fats and calories instead of burning them. While eating several small meals per day is recommended, keep in mind that these meals should be nutritious and low-fat.

Stimulate the thyroid – with VITAMINS!

Vitamins B-2 and B-6 assist the thyroid, which determines metabolic rate.

chew to lose weightChew gum.

According to a study by Dr. James Levine published in the New England Journal of Medicine, gum chewing increases energy expenditure and led to weight loss.

You’ve heard this one a thousand times…Exercise!

So far, this list has made things pretty easy for you: sweat more, sleep more, don’t skip meals, and chew calorie-free gum. However, don’t forget that an active lifestyle and regular abdominal workout exercises will boost your metabolism tremendously, increase your abdominal muscle mass and reduce your body fat. Remember, your body burns calories for at least two hours after workout session to repair torn muscle tissue. Frequent (3-4 times per week at least), intense workouts are recommended.

The Importance of Good Nutrition

If you want a healthy lifestyle, in addition to a consistent workout regime you’ll also need a balanced diet. Sadly, with today’s media and advertising focusing on fast food and sugary drinks it’s easy to end up with eating habits that don’t provide your body with the nutrients it needs to give you maximum strength and energy for the day.

It’s probably easier than you think to get the right vitamins and minerals in your system, and whole foods are what you want to focus on. Check out these five things to watch out for and include in your daily food regiment:

veg basketFruit and Veg

You absolutely must eat a good variety of foods throughout the day. Remember that your 5-a-day recommendation of fruits and vegetable is a MINIMUM, not a maximum. Yummy things like vegetables, whole grains, beans and fruit are the core of a high quality diet and not things you should consider as an afterthought, once you’ve finished your burger!

Watch your salt intake!

The potassium/sodium balance is essential for hydration of your cells, so you still need salt to remain healthy… you probably don’t want to eliminate it from your diet completely. However, it is important to focus on good quality salt… I really love Himalayan sea salt because it contains a lot of other important minerals

healthy raspberriesToo much sugar?

You should know that sugar doesn’t have to be completely eliminated from your diet for you to be healthy. The main thing to focus on is to try to make the majority of your sugar intake to come from fresh whole fruit. Even fruit juice is best kept to a minimum because the lack of fiber you get from eating the fruit will result in an insulin spike from the instant sugar your body gets. Obviously processed sugars should be avoided on the whole, but no one will expect you to always miss out on a post meal dessert.

If you follow these basic principles, you’ll be making great steps towards a better overall healthy future. Just like alcohol, don’t binge eat and always stay hydrated with plenty of water… and yes, it needs to be plain water, not sugared or caffeinated… filtered and mineral is best.

Running Is Great Exercise

Like most people, we all have jobs, obligations, and responsibilities. Most people work the regular 9 to 5 and have many other things going on during their day. Sometimes it seems as if 24 hours just isn’t enough time in order to get everything done. Our hectic schedules and stressful lives will often make us retreat to our couches and watch tv, or do any other form of activity which is not physical. This is extremely bad because not only are you missing out on all the benefits of exercise, but you are also making your health even worse.

running exerciseExercise not only is crucial for us to maintain in great health, but the benefits that it provides are way better than an afternoon movie at home.  It is important to make room in our schedules even though at times it can get pretty tough, but we must remember: fitness first!

One of the best things we can do for our health that not only is cost efficient but effective would be to go running. Research has been shown that running can raise your levels of good cholesterol, while also helping you increase your lung capacity and function. It has also been said that people who run on a regular basis, are also less susceptible in getting sick. With that being said, it has been proved that running helps to improve the immune system. For women, running can be one of the best forms of exercise there is. It has been said that female runners not only have all the “normal” benefits of running, but they also have a much less risk of developing breast cancer.

Not only is running good for your physically, but it is also good for you mentally.  It has been proven that after a couple of minutes of running, your body starts to liberate chemicals that are responsible for keeping us in good moods. This is great for combating stress , boosting confidence and even help to eliminate depression.

running workoutMost people are interested in the idea of running however often times the weather does not permit them too. In order to get the best out of running workout especially in places that are cold I would personally recommend the Nordic Track Treadmill as a substitute for outdoor running. If you are going to take your workout indoor it is important to follow regular workout routines, such as stretching.

You should stretch for at least 5 minutes before beginning your run.  In order to stretch properly it is important that you have an exercise mat or a tumbling mat available in order to have a nice padded surface to be able to stretch your body. Running is great for cardiovascular activity and for your overall health however if you also want to be able to tone your muscles I would recommend an Elite Pilates performer so that you will be able to get a nice toned physique.

If you are looking for a great work that not only will contribute to your overall health, but also increase your mood, I would strongly recommend you get into the sport. So be sure to get up off your couch and start running!