Understand your metabolism!
Understand your metabolism and how it works!
Now metabolism is essentially how quickly your body can digest food to turn into energy rather than storing as fat. These metabolic processes include breathing, eating and digesting food, delivery of nutrients to your muscles to help them function, using your muscles along with nerves, cells, and finally even the elimination of waste products from your body.
What Is Metabolism?
When talking about metabolism, we aren’t really talking about a long list of physical and chemical processes in which makes us the metabolism. Most use “metabolism” to best describes the rate in which their bodies burn calories. This is the rate at which your body converts food into energy (calories, kilojoules) and then uses the energy to perform daily functions such as walking exercising, even breathing. The rate at which we burn calories or burn energy is called metabolic rate.
Your metabolic rate changes from day to day depending on your activity level, however your basal metabolic rate or BMR stay’s the same however can be change if you want it to be. Your basal metabolic rate is the number of calories needed to fuel your body’s to essentially live, like breathing and circulating blood.
Calculating your BMR!
To determine your metabolic rate, you first need to calculate your basal metabolic rate (BMR). There are several different ways to find this out, If you press this link I actually have the calculator on the home page! (https://www.fittoliveaustralia.com/#1531265437010-0d22864c-ec41)
The most accurate way to measure BMR is to have it tested in a lab. However below is the formula I have used in the calculator in the home page.
If you enjoy math, here is the formula below. Definitely give it a go yourself!
Men: BMR = 88.362 + (13.397 x weight in kg) + (4.799 x height in cm) – (5.677 x age in years)
Women: BMR = 447.593 + (9.247 x weight in kg) + (3.098 x height in cm) – (4.330 x age in years)
Now that you have your BMR, and know where your baseline is you can then tailor your diet around it! However it does get a lot more difficult than that. Least know you have a baseline. Now your total metabolism or metabolic rate or also cn be referred to you TDEE (Total daily energy expenditure is a combination of your BMR and other variable metabolic processes like eating, exercise, and other daily movement.
The easiest way to add up the number for these other processes is using a fitness tracker. For example, you might burn 500 calories from daily exercise and lets say your basal metabolic rate is 1300 calories, therefore your total energy used (metabolic rate) for the day would be about 1800 calories.
Why your Metabolism could be slow…..
Everyone’s metabolic rate is different. You might wonder of think your metabolism is slow compared to everyone else’s. There could be many reasons why and below are some.
Age. Age is a big one, you all can relate yourself – when you were 18 you could eat anything and not gain a thing, but now you look at a cookie and you gain a kilo.
Gender. Men generally have a higher metabolism than woman. Don’t ask me why, I haven’t done the research yet.
Body size. Bigger bodies burn more calories, as they require more energy.
Body temperature. Metabolism increases – Prime example is wintertime, we eat more, as the body has to work harder to keep it warm.
Caffeine. All you coffee lovers! Your metabolism may increase if you consume caffeine.
Hormones. If your thyroid hormones aren’t producing properly by your body, your metabolism may increase or decrease.
Pregnancy. Women who are pregnant have a faster metabolism, as you’re now eating for two!
Food intake. Now this is a big one!!! Which I will write a article on! If you don’t eat enough food, your metabolism slows, along with all your organs.
- However you can reverse this! Read reverse dieting article
Body composition. Lean muscle burns/needs more energy to function, rather than fat, even when your body is at rest. This is why weights/resistant training is so good for you!
Activity level. This is an obvious one that affects the metabolism.
Now if you wanted to change your metabolism you would have to do the opposite to the above! Saying that, we can’t change/ lower our age or change our chemical make up. However, what’s in our control is Body size/composition, food intake, and daily activity.
Spoiler alert – exercising! You burn more calories when you exercise. Harder the workout, the more you burn, if you want to know more about training styles and principles read this article.
Which leads me to my next point, yes any exercise and daily activity/movement is good but let’s put the exercising to good use and increase our BMR along with how we look. I mean doing/adding resistant training to your exercise routine. As most of you know, weights’ training increases our lean muscle mass, if we have more muscle the body requires more energy to function. Therefore increasing your metabolic rate!
However there is a catch, and this is probably the most important one! Making sure you’re eating the right number of calories! Using the example we did before. You’re burning 500 calories a day with exercising and your BMR is 1300. Let say your only eating 1500, you are now eating 300 calories less then what your body needs to survive. What happens then – your vital organ slow down and go into a starvation mode, your muscles become more efficient which in turn slows your metabolism. This is why it’s important to calculate your TDEE.
Lastly body composition. How do I change it? How do I lose weight? If I eat to little I slow down my metabolism. But if I eat what TDEE I don’t lose weight. Yes, There is a fine line between the two. However on a general rule, you want to eat 20% less of your TDEE, which is still above your BMR allowing your metabolism to stay in shape and reasonable fast.
In conclusion your metabolism will change slightly from day to day. But if you can learn how to manage and maintain a healthier metabolism on a regular basis by understanding the above and using my calculators or training to help you, you will find managing your weight and health a lot easier.