This fantastic article was written by Chen Ben Asher, a certified holistic nutrition consultant, public speaker, educator, clinician, author and founder of Mor’s Nutrition and More. We encourage you to check out her website here, as well as her books: Best Foods to Eat After Surgery, and How to Reduce High URIC ACID.
Metabolism: one word, a thousand thoughts. These days people -especially those seeking to drop those extra pounds- refer to this body function more like an obstacle rather than a medium to their weight loss goals. Well, the truth is that you actually have a say in what goes on in your body. In fact, you can boost your metabolism by up to 100 calories with minor tweaks here and there.
From myths to science-backed facts, let’s break down any piece of information you need to know about your metabolism on your way to a better “you.”
What is Metabolism?
Every time you eat or drink something, your body tends to convert all these calories into energy. How does this happen? As soon as nutrients enter to your body in the form of food or drinks, your body performs certain metabolic movements due to chemical reactions such as losing or gaining electrons as well as utilizing oxygen and hydrogen.
But, you are probably wondering which are these powerful nutrients that set all these functions in motion. Think organic compounds, carbs (glucose, lactose, sucrose, citrate, and mannitol), essential amino acids and the list goes on.
As soon as your metabolism is set in motion, its function falls into two categories: the anabolic and catabolic state. During the anabolic state, your body promotes the synthesis of all compounds by the cells whereas along the catabolic state your body is designed to break down cells for energy.
The end product of anabolism is ATP, a popular energy molecule. That is the point where you should know that the more stable these processes are, the higher your energy levels. In its turn, a constant stream of energy allows your body to perform regular biological reactions.
Now, when it comes to losing weight, your body follows the same principles. So, if your metabolism is balanced, you are bound to shed those pounds down the line. On the other hand, an unbalanced metabolism slows down or even hits the breaks on your weight loss plan, regardless of your healthy eating habits.
So, as you see a healthy metabolism and proper nutrition, aka sufficient nutrients, go side by side. They work harmonically together with a single goal in mind: to produce enough energy. As part of this process, your body uses energy to produce new proteins as well as nucleic acids (DNA, RNA, etc.).
At this point, it is more than evident that sufficient nutrient intake is necessary to maintain an energy balance within the cells. From the minute you bridge the nutrient gap, you and your weight scale will become witnesses of your weight loss testimony.
Why Are Nutrients Important?
It All Comes Down To A Healthy Function
From your size and gender to your age and mood, numerous factors affect the functions of your body. Even though each body has different nutrient needs, it all comes down to the fact that nutrients are vital for supplying your body with energy. Food is the primary source of nutrients which help you build up, maintain and repair tissues.
Don’t Forget About Weight Loss
Nutrients can also help you lose weight with protein being the most important and efficient among them. In many cases, experts suggest that high-protein diets are one of the most efficient ways to get rid of that extra weight.
Trick #1: It’s All About Protein
As protein has the power to make you feel fuller for longer, you tend to reach out for a snack less. In fact, research suggests that protein activate’s the body’s signals which are responsible for curbing appetite. How is that possible?
These signals decrease the effect of ghrelin, aka the hunger hormone, while increasing the impact of hormones like peptide, cholecystokinin, YY, GLP-1, etc., aka the “I’m full” hormones. At the same time, a diet rich in protein helps you get rid of that stubborn belly fat. Protein also prevents muscle loss in cases of calorie shortage.
So, protein helps you:
- Reduce daily calorie intake.
- Curb late-night snacking.
- Maintain weight loss in the long term.
Trick #2: Why Skipping Breakfast Is Not Such A Good Idea
Skipping breakfast is one of the biggest mistakes you can do when it comes to losing weight. According to research, skipping breakfast has the exact opposite effects you go for during a weight loss meal plan.
Two scrambled eggs with green kale or spinach will give you 12 grams of protein, and about 78 calories. At the same time, 2 tablespoons of homemade tuna salad (no mayo) over fresh salad will give you about 10 grams of proteins and 100 calories. Lastly, 1 tablespoon of Chia seeds over 1 glass of almond milk will give you about 10 grams of proteins and 100 calories.
Not only these breakfast options are low in calories, but they can also satiate your hunger for longer, nourish your body’s cells, stabilize your blood sugar levels and, thus, help you lose weight.
Tips To Incorporate Protein In Your Diet
- Make sure to eat protein-rich foods for breakfast such as eggs and bagel
- Minimize grain consumption.
- Choose organic, clean, rich and safe protein sources such as poultry, meat, seafood, and fish. When it comes to breakfast foods such as scrambled eggs, an omelet, tofu, Greek yogurt, a shake are real protein treats. You might also want to give protein pancakes a shot.
- Unlike with carbs and fat, your body burns more calories to metabolize protein.
It becomes apparent that protein-rich foods are the ticket to achieving your weight loss goals. However, this is not the case with fat which your body has a hard time metabolizing and, thus, gets stored in your tissues.
When it comes to planning your meals, nutrition specialist Chen Ben Asher, from Mor’s Nutrition and More, recommends that you should always consult a professional to prevent triggering allergy symptoms as well as other health issues that might hide between the lines and slows down the process of losing weight.