Habits That Slow Down Your Metabolism And Lead To Weight Gain.
Metabolism is how the food we ingest gets converted into energy blocks measured in calories. Every time you eat, she suggested that a set of chemical reactions in your body’s cells breaks down the food and turns it into energy.
It’s hard to deny that metabolism correlates with our overall weight, as those with fast metabolism may be able to burn calories quickly compared to those with a slow and sluggish metabolism.
Here are some habits that slow down your metabolism and lead to weight gain:
- Drinks with sugar
Sugar is an enemy when it comes to losing weight because it increases insulin levels in the body, which causes fat storage. Soda, juice, and other sweetened drinks should be avoided as much as possible because they contain sugar without any real nutritional value. Try fruit juice or herbal tea instead of soda pop if you want something sweet.
- Eating late at night.
This is one of the worst habits that can slow down your metabolism and lead to weight gain quickly over time. Not only does eating late affect sleep patterns (which can lead to insomnia) and affects hormone levels that control appetite.
- Eating processed foods.
When food manufacturers strip away natural fats from foods through processing, they often replace them with unhealthy alternatives like trans fats or sugar to maintain flavor and texture. A diet high in these foods (think processed meats, crackers, cookies) is associated with low HDL cholesterol (the good kind), increased triglycerides, and overall weight gain—all of which can negatively affect your metabolism. Instead of choosing processed foods, opt for fresh fruits and veggies and whole grains like oatmeal and brown rice that are natural.
It’s tempting to think that drinking water is counter-productive when trying to lose weight, but drinking plenty of water will help your metabolism work more efficiently. If you drink too much water at one time, your body may expel it without absorbing it, but the key is to drink consistently throughout the day for maximum benefit.
- Skipping breakfast
You’ve heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A healthy breakfast will boost our metabolism and help us stay energized. Skipping breakfast causes your blood sugar levels to drop. If you’re not hungry first thing in the morning, try light yogurt.
Smoking is bad for you. That’s no secret. But did you know that it can also lead to weight gain? One of the side effects of smoking is a slower metabolism, which means your body burns calories at a much lower rate. Nicotine stimulates the release of adrenaline, which signals your body to break down fat, but it also makes your heart beat faster and increases blood pressure.
Smoking is also known to cause insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes and metabolic syndrome. And it’s not just cigarette smoking that causes these harmful effects—surprise! Hookah smoking can have similar consequences. This makes it harder for you to maintain a healthy weight and lose the pounds when you need to. If you’re looking for more reasons to quit, here’s one more! A slower metabolism can also cause constipation, a low libido, decreased brain function, and a higher risk of stroke and heart disease.
- Alcohol Consumption
Drinking alcohol can slow down your metabolism, making it more difficult to lose weight. Alcohol contains seven calories per gram, more than twice as much as carbohydrates and protein. Alcohol contributes to fat storage because it’s converted into sugar in the liver and released into the bloodstream once it’s consumed. The body then responds by releasing insulin to move the sugar out of the bloodstream and into energy or fat storage cells.
Alcohol slows down your metabolism by reducing how much energy your body burns because it increases fat production and reduces fat burning in your liver. People who drink alcohol regularly tend to gain weight over time because their bodies become less sensitive to insulin due to repeated exposure to drinking alcohol regularly. Drinking alcohol after a meal can slow down digestion and make you feel full faster.
- Lack Of Sleep
When you’re tired, your body naturally wants to shut down. That means you will produce fewer hormones that regulate metabolism and energy. It also means that your body will be more likely to store fat and less likely to burn it off. Lack of sleep can also affect your decisions about food, causing you to make choices that are counterproductive to any weight-loss goals you may have. Finally, consider this, you probably aren’t feeling up for exercise if you’re tired. And if you’re not exercising, your metabolism will slow down even further.
So how many hours of sleep do you need? Well, there are different schools of thought on this. Some say about six hours, others say seven or eight—but in my opinion (and the view of some experts), there’s no such thing as too much sleep when it comes to keeping your metabolism humming along at top speed. If you want a healthy lifestyle that keeps your energy levels high and helps keep off excess pounds, get plenty of rest every night.
- Excess Stress
Too much stress can also slow down your metabolism because the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline can cause insulin resistance, making it harder for you to process sugar and store fat instead of burning it off as energy.
- Skimping on protein
Eating enough protein is extremely important for achieving and maintaining a healthy weight.
In addition to helping you feel full, high protein intake can significantly increase the rate at which your body burns calories.
The increase in metabolism after digestion is called the thermic effect of food (TEF). The thermic effect of protein is much higher than carbs or fat. Indeed, studies indicate that eating protein temporarily increases metabolism by about 20–30% compared to 5–10% for carbs and 3% or less for fat.
Although metabolic rate inevitably slows during weight loss and continues to be slower during weight maintenance, evidence suggests that higher protein intake can minimize this effect. In one study, participants followed one of three diets to maintain a 10–15% weight loss.
- A lack of strength training
Working out weights is a great strategy to keep your metabolism from slowing. Strength training has been shown to increase metabolic rate in healthy people and those who have heart disease or are overweight or obese.
It increases muscle mass, which makes up much of the fat-free mass in your body. Having a higher fat-free mass significantly increases the calories you burn at rest. Even minimal amounts of strength training appear to boost energy expenditure.
In a 6-month study, people who performed strength training for 11 minutes per day, three days a week, experienced a 7.4% increase in resting metabolic rate and burned 125 extra calories per day. In contrast, not doing any strength training can cause your metabolic rate to decline, especially during weight loss and aging.
Breakfasts with many carbs and sugars, big meals at lunch, snacks, and even alcohol can all lead to weight gain. Eating more natural & organic food is a significant step, as you’ll better know what exactly you’re ingesting. Plus, it’s always good to get active!