"Lose Unwanted Weight – Metabolism Boosters"
Reprinted from "South Tampa News" article 3-2011

I found an excellent piece in a recent issue of the Environmental Nutrition Newsletter about metabolism's role in weight loss. We have all heard someone blame their excess weight on their "slow metabolism." Do you know a slender person that always seems to be eating and you've thought that they must have a "fast metabolism?" The article, "Boosting Metabolism: What Works, What Doesn't" points out that the makers of weight-loss products often capitalize on the consumers belief that a slow metabolism prohibits them from losing weight. Advertisers offer miraculous ways to boost metabolism and "melt away" unwanted pounds. So what is metabolism and what role does it really play in the weight loss battle?
Metabolism defines the three ways that your body consumes calories or energy. (1) Calories are needed to sustain vital body functions such as breathing, heart rate, cell growth and cell repair; (2) energy is used for physical activity; and (3) is also
needed for the digestion and absorption of food. Amazingly, the energy required for vital body functions (even while you sleep), accounts for almost 75% of your daily calories burned. The speed at which your body burns calories when at rest is called your resting metabolic rate (RMR.) Everybody's RMR differs and may be partially set by your genetics.
It makes sense that if the function of your metabolism is to burn calories, if you speed up your metabolism, you can burn more calories and lose weight. So how do you increase your metabolism? Use the following methods which are sound and proven to work.
• Weight Train/Strength Train – two to three times per week. The bottom line is that this is the most effective, long-term ap- proach to raise your metabolism. An invaluable effect of weight training is to slow down the loss of valuable muscle associated with aging. • Aerobic Activity – aim for thirty minutes or more of heart pumping activity at least four to five times per week. A healthy heart burns more calories. • Eat Breakfast – this will quick start your metabolism after a night of sleep. Be sure to get the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep each night.• Eat Regular, Healthy Meals – don't wait more than five hours between meals, except at night. Skipping meals can slow your metabolism and deprive your body of needed energy.
You'll notice there is no quick fix on the list. That is because a magic pill does not exist. Some advertisers will lead you to believe that you can increase your metabolism by taking supplements. Envi- ronmental Nutrition, along with many other professionals, does NOT endorse weight-loss supplements because, as a rule, ingredients that may be effective tend to boost metabolism only slightly and can be risky. Since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate supplements, you can never be sure just what ingredients you are getting, what dose is safe to take and what dangerous (some- times life-threatening) side effects or interactions might occur.
As you just learned, safely boosting your metabolism is pos- sible and will help you lose weight. The way to accomplish this is by the same healthy habits you have been hearing about all along; exercise consistently, eat right and get plenty of sleep. Making a significant, long-term lifestyle change requires patience and persistence. The results are always well worth the efforts. Have a healthy day.

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