Sirine Abu Zeineh (aka The Gymcess) is a nutritionist, fitness freak and food lover, and her favourite food reflects these elements of her personality. Once she opened her eyes to the wonders of exercise, she worked hard towards obtaining a personal training certificate. After earning her fancy biomedical science degree that she doubts she'll ever use, she took up a Masters in Nutrition, her true passion. As a result, Sirine is a scientist, nutritionist, personal trainer and food lover, passionate about motivating people to be the best version of themselves.
Slow metabolism is a common problem…or excuse. People tend to envy their skinny friends that can eat all they want and never gain any weight. What they don't seem to realise, however, is that they too can speed up their own metabolism by making a few lifestyle changes. Metabolism is the system that burns fat and converts what you eat and drink into energy. This can speed up and slow down at any time, depending on several factors.
Here's 5 ways to speed up that metabolism of yours:
1. Consume Healthy Fats
The word "fat" seems to terrify people, which is quite unnecessary. There are different types of saturated and unsaturated fats, and the only one to fear is trans-fats. Healthy fats, however, should be a part of our daily diets, since they help us feel fuller, have healthier skin and hair, and are even good for our cardiovascular and nervous system (yup, some fats actually don't lead to heart attacks).
Healthy fats to include in your diet:
- dark chocolate
- olive oil
- coconut oil
- natural peanut butter
- flax seed
Avocado on Rustic Toast | Craft Cafe (Dubai Design District)
2. Eat Small Meals Every 3 Hours
From experience, this can go either way. Some people get over-excited and eat regular meals every 3-4 hours instead of small meals, which leads to them eating more calories than necessary. The aim of this habit is not to get you eating more - just more often, so your metabolism doesn't slow down. Most people, like myself, like to have their meals at regular times, so I suggest to my clients that they consume breakfast, lunch and dinner at regular times, but with smaller portions, and have 2-3 healthy snacks in between, like:
- yogurt with honey
- peanut butter
3. Drink 2-3 Litres of Water Every Day
Our bodies are made up of 57-60% water, which is why we absolutely cannot deprive ourselves of water. Research also shows that an increase in water consumption increases metabolism drastically, so drink up!
4. Get 8 Hours of Sleep
Sleep helps the body perform up to its full potential. Sleep deprivation causes your metabolism to slow down, causing your body to use less energy (because you already don't have that much left), and causes many to binge-eat later in the day. Sleep your way to slim!
5. Avoid Restrictive Diets
Restrictive diets take a toll on the mind and body, because it's hard to lose weight and stay motivated if you don't have a healthy relationship with food. If eating makes you feel stressed or guilty, it increases levels of cortisol (stress hormone), causing the body to cling on to more fat instead of using consumed food as energy.
Breakfast Bowl | Pineapple Express (JLT)
Remember - No two bodies are the same, and what works for your friends and family may not work for you. Follow healthy guidelines, but only trial and error can tell you what works for you. Listen to your body.
Happy Healthy Living,