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Saturday, June 6, 2015

It's You or your Metabolism or which is It?

Are YOU struggling to lose weight and wish YOU could shed those stubborn pounds? Do YOU feel fat and bloated even though YOU exercise and eat balanced meals? Do YOU experience cravings for carbs, sugar or junk food? 

       Your body is likely telling you that your blood sugar levels are high, which is why you can’t lose weight. This not only stops you from burning fat and losing weight, it is also very unhealthy!   A metabolic fast for fat loss is a good solution. What’s the difference between fasting and metabolic fasting to lose fat?
      Regular fasting slows down your metabolism and causes your blood sugar levels to rise due to the stress fasting places on your body. A metabolic fast provides your body with the nutrients it needs to stimulate your metabolism to push your body into fat-burning mode. Fasting incorrectly can do permanent damage to your metabolism, but metabolic fasting for fat loss is a healthy way to boost your metabolism, burn fat and shed pounds!   This metabolic fast will get your body into the fat-burning zone and reduce bloating while detoxifying your system. You may shed some weight in the first 24 hours, and continue to lose as long as you stay on track until you have reached your weight-loss goals. This is a great way to offset unhealthy eating days and force your body to melt fat! 

Metabolic Boosting Steps 
1. Be sure to drink plenty of water every day. Aim for 100 fl oz, minimum. 
2. Allow your body to feel hunger. It’s a sign that your body is burning fat! 
3. Eat at least 5 servings or more of veggies per day; they will keep you feeling full and regular. 
4. Drop all other supplements except what is suggested. 
5. Eat foods from the approved list only. Use a food journal as a daily guide. 
6. Perform daily cardiovascular exercise daily for 45-60 minutes to rev your metabolism. 

     Do something that causes YOU to break a sweat, but refrain from over-exercising as this may contribute to overeating following your workout. Eat More of These Fat-Burning Foods:

Proteins: Whey protein, High-protein, low-carb bars, All white fish, Shrimp, Scallops.... 
Vegetables: Lettuce, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Peppers, Spinach, Cabbage, Squash,  Mushrooms, Onions....
Fruit: Small Green Apples (limit 2 per day), Lemon...
Snacks:  Clear broth (gluten- and soy-free),  Sugar-free, fat-free gelatin, Sugar-free, fat-free popsicles, Hot chocolate made with 1 scoop of complete protein, Half a high-protein, low-carb bar

"Free" Foods: Pure water, All teas, especially green tea, Black coffee...
 Foods to Avoid:   The following foods feed fat cells, so steer clear! Carbohydrates, with the exception of vegetables. Avoid bread, rice, pasta, cereal (including oatmeal), potatoes, beans and all crackers, cookies, and refined manufactured products. Liquid calories and juice, including homemade fresh juices, non-dairy creamers, skim milk, rice milk, soymilk and sports beverages, vitamin water, and especially alcohol! Fats, including healthy fats such as nuts, seeds, avocado, and oils until your body begins burning fat for fuel Dairy products, including all types of milk, yogurt and cheese (even if they are fat free)

     Here's a secret: slaving away inside your body—right this minute—is your very own personal trainer working tirelessly to help you burn calories and shed fat. It's called your metabolism, and it's the sum of everything your body does. Each time you eat, enzymes in your body's cells break down the food and turn it into energy that keeps your heart beating, your mind thinking, and your legs churning during a grueling workout. The faster your metabolism runs, the more calories you burn. The more you burn, the easier it is to drop pounds. And get this — you can make your metabolism work harder, a lot harder, 24 hours a day. To some degree, our bodies hum along at a preset speed determined by gender and genetics, but there's still plenty of wiggle room. "You have a huge amount of control over your metabolic rate," says John Berardi, Ph.D., C.S.C.S., author of The Metabolism Advantage.

 "You can't affect how many calories it takes to keep your heart beating, but you can burn an extra 500 to 600 calories a day by exercising properly and eating right." 

And by making a few changes to your routine. To make those changes simpler, we enlisted the help of leading experts and came up with a round-the-clock, turn-up-the-burn plan complete with new moves that will throw your metabolism into overdrive.

 1. Maximize your muscle. Muscles are fat-burning furnaces, so be sure to do enough resistance training to build and maintain them and follow your workouts with a snack or meal balanced in protein, carbohydrates and fat. 

2. Don't forget the cardio workout routines. It improves definition and blasts the fat that covers your muscles. Combining regular aerobic exercise with strength training will give you the slimming effect you've been going for. After all, toning without cardio is like building a house on a weak foundation. 

3. Be sure to stretch. It can help your muscles work better so you can more effectively isolate your problem areas. 

4. Focus on your assets. Playing up your favorite body parts can boost your confidence and draw attention away from spots you want to minimize. Sculpting your shoulders, arms, chest, and back, for example, can help balance heavier hips so you look more proportionate. Plus, you'll be firmer all over. 

5. Don't starve yourself. Undereating causes your metabolic rate to drop and your body to hold onto fat. Shape recommends that the average, active women consume at least 1,800 calories daily. 

6. Go graze-y. Eat six small meals a day to avoid blood-sugar spikes and minimize urges to binge.

7. Get real. Fuel your body with wholesome, nutritious foods, and limit your intake of refined carbs (anything sugary or white-flour based). 

8. Drink more water. Staying hydrated will help you feel full longer and keep you healthy. 

9. Sleep tight. Get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. 

10. Control what you can. Keep stress levels in check by managing your time, focusing on the present and not over-committing. Your next workout could set you up for a speedier metabolism. 

     Your metabolism includes all the things your body does to turn food into energy and keep you going. Some people have a faster metabolism than others. Some things that affect whether your metabolism is speedy or sluggish include things you don't control, like your age, sex, and genes. Focus instead on what really does make a difference: exercise. Muscle cells need a lot of energy, which means they burn a lot of calories.
     In fact, they burn more calories than fat cells, even when you're not exercising. So the time you spend working out reaps benefits long after you stop sweating. Exercise becomes even more important as you get older. You naturally lose muscle mass with age, which slows down your metabolism. Working out can stop that slide. It's simple. 

     You need to challenge your muscles often in these two ways: 
1. Amp up your workout. Any kind of aerobic exercise, whether you're running or doing Zumba, burns calories. Make it more intense, and your body will burn more calories. Try intervals. You can do them with any type of cardio. The basic idea is to switch back and forth between higher and lower intensity. You make it really challenging, and then back down your pace, and repeat. For example, do as many jumping jacks as you can for 1 minute, and then walk in place for 2 minutes. Repeat for 15 minutes. 
2. Lift weights. Because muscle uses more calories than fat, strengthening your muscles will make you into a more efficient calorie-burning machine, even when you're at rest. Twice a week, do one or two sets of 12 to 15 repetitions on each major muscle group (abs,biceps, glutes, quads). You'll be doing more than just helping your metabolism. Your heart, bones, and even your mood will benefit. It's a win all around.
     Metabolism is the rate at which your body process the food that you put into it. If you're trying to lose weight, increasing your metabolic rate may help you to lose more weight without cutting more calories. The commercialism surrounding "metabolism-enhancing products" has made it difficult to separate fact from fiction (or advertising), but there are some simple strategies that have been shown to be effective. Keep reading to learn how to increase your metabolism.
     Eat small, frequent meals throughout the day. Extending the time between meals makes your body go into "starvation mode," which decreases your metabolism as a means to conserve energy and prevent starvation. While some people are able to lose weight through intermittent fasting, most people generally eat less overall when they eat small, frequent meals. In addition to having four to six small meals per day eating healthy snacks will also increase metabolism.
     Choose lean proteins. Eating a diet rich in lean proteins will increase your metabolism because it takes more energy for your body to digest the protein. Choose lean proteins like turkey, fish, eggs, beans, and tofu. 
     Add spice to your favorite foods. Adding spicy peppers, crushed red pepper flakes, or cayenne pepper to your recipes can help increase your metabolism. The effects of eating spicy foods are only temporary, but you can add a little spice to one or more of your meals every day to keep getting the metabolism boosting benefits. Keep in mind that although spicy foods do increase metabolism, they only increase metabolism by about 8%, so it is still important to watch your calories if you are trying to lose weight.  
     Get at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise every day. Aerobic exercise burns calories while you are doing it and keeps your metabolism elevated even after you finish. If you have a hard time fitting in 30 minutes at once, do your aerobic exercise in smaller intervals, like 5, 10, or 15 minute sessions.
     Add strength training to your exercise regimen. Building muscle helps raise your resting metabolism. A pound of muscle burns 6 calories per day while a pound of fat burns only 2 calories per day. This may not seem like much, but the amount of calories that your body burns while resting will add up over time. 
     Muscle burns more calories than fat does (73 more calories per kilogram per day, to be exact) so the more muscle you build, the higher your resting metabolic rate (RMR) will be. Every muscle cell that you gain is like a little factory that constantly burns calories for you, even while you sleep, and revs up when you exercise. This is the only way to increase RMR, which accounts for 60 to 70 percent of the calories you burn daily.[8] Look for little ways to get extra exercise. The more you move, the higher your metabolism will be, so look for small opportunities to move more as you go through your day. For example, you could take the stairs instead of the elevator, park further away from the entrance at the grocery store, or ride your bike to work instead of driving.
     Drink plenty of water. Studies have shown that by increasing the amount of water that you drink, you can also increase your metabolic rate by as much as 40%. This increase may be a result of your body’s attempts to heat the water that you are ingesting, but the reason for the increase is unclear.
     Drink coffee. Coffee has been shown to increase metabolism because of the caffeine content. One study showed that drinking coffee significantly increased the metabolic rate of both normal weight and obese subjects.
     Keep in mind that the metabolic effects of caffeine are small compared to other measures like exercise. Excess consumption of caffeine can also cause nervousness, insomnia, and other negative side effects. Drink green tea. Combining green tea (even decaf green tea) with diet and exercise can improve your metabolic rate. One study showed that combining decaffeinated green tea extract with exercise created more dramatic results than exercise alone. Consider adding decaffeinated green tea extract or drinking a cup or two of green tea as a complement to your diet and exercise regimen.
     Follow a healthy diet, not a crash diet. Crash diets dramatically restrict your caloric intake, which can have a negative effect on your metabolism. Even though you may experience some initial weight loss from a crash diet, crash diets ultimately slow down your metabolism. Crash diets can also cause you to become deficient in some important nutrients due to the limitations that they place on you.
    Determine what is influencing your metabolism. YOUR metabolism is affected by a variety of different factors. There are several factors that you can control and change, and some factors that you can't. Age - Metabolic rate decreases 5% each decade, after the age of 40, partly because of decreased muscle mass. Gender - Men generally burn calories more quickly than women because they have more muscle tissue. Heredity - You can inherit your metabolic rate from previous generations. Thyroid disorder - Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland) and hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland) can slow down or speed up metabolism. 
     Talk to your doctor if you think you might have a thyroid disorder. Weight - different tissues of your body contribute different amounts to resting metabolism. Muscle contributes more than fat per unit mass and, because it is denser than fat, muscle contributes much more per unit volume. 
     Body size: Metabolic rate increases as weight, height, and surface area increase. Body composition: Fat tissue has a lower metabolic activity than muscle tissue. As lean muscle mass increases, metabolic rate increases. Climate and body temperature: The BMR of people in tropical climates is generally 5 to 20 percent higher than their counterparts living in more temperate areas because it takes energy to keep the body cool. Exercise performed in hot weather also imposes an additional metabolic load. Body fat content and effectiveness of clothing determine the magnitude of increase in energy metabolism in cold environments; it takes energy to keep the body warm if you work or exercise in very cold weather. 
     Estimate your resting metabolic rate (RMR). RMR is often used interchangeably with basal metabolic rate (BMR). Although they are slightly different, estimating either is sufficient for the purpose of losing weight. What these equations will show you is, that if you weigh more, your RMR will be higher! To calculate your RMR, use the Mifflin-St Jeor equation (which is more reliable than the Harris-Benedict equation). 
There are also calculators online that can do this for you: 
RMR = 9.99w + 6.25s - 4.92a + 166g-161 
w = weight in kilograms; if you know your weight in pounds, divide by 2.2 to get your weight in kilograms 
s = height in centimeters; if you know your height in inches, multiply by 2.54 to get your height in centimeters 
a = age in years 
g = gender = 1 for males, 0 for females 
Recalculate your RMR as needed. 
     Your metabolism will slow down as you lose weight. The more weight your body is carrying, the more calories your body has to burn in order to sustain itself, even at rest. When you begin restricting your calorie intake, you'll lose weight relatively easily because your body's high caloric needs are not being met. But after you begin to shed the weight, the body has less mass to carry and thus needs fewer calories. In order to continue losing weight, you will have to restrict your caloric intake even further in order to maintain a difference between what your body needs and what you are providing. 

     Let's go through a hypothetical example: 
  • You are 200 lbs and your body needs 2500 calories a day to sustain itself. 
  • You cut down your caloric intake to 2000 calories. 
  • You lose 25 lbs. Now your body only needs 2250 calories to sustain itself because it's carrying less weight.
  •  If you continue with your 2000 calorie per day diet (the diet that helped you lose the first 25 lbs) you will still be losing, but at half the speed. In order to maintain a steady weight loss you will need to reduce your caloric intake further. However, it is at the utmost importance you do not try to consume fewer calories than your RMR!

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