Losing weight and gaining muscle can be challenging, and a slow metabolism just makes matters worse. But you CAN speed it up so you burn more calories and lose more weight with a few easy changes (like drinking green tea!) — read a doctor’s simple advice below!
Dr. Christopher Calapai is a New York City Osteopathic Physician board certified in family and anti-aging medicine. He has worked with stars like Mike Tyson, Mickey Rourke, and Steven Seagal, and as a medical consultant for the New York Rangers.
He says, “By strength-training just a couple of times a week, for example, you’ll reverse 50% of the seemingly inevitable metabolism slow-down that comes with age.”
Read his top 7 tips to rev up your metabolism below!
1. EAT MORE…OF THE RIGHT FOODS
Not eating enough can actually cause you to lose muscle and slow your metabolism. Your body basically goes into starvation mode. You should never dip below 1,200 calories a day.
“Under-fueling is just as risky as over-fueling. In an attempt for quick, noticeable weight loss, many people wrongfully believe that eating as few calories as possible is the best solution. Not only can this lead to numerous nutritional deficiencies as the body is getting less food overall, it can actually have the opposite effect on weight loss.”
2. MIX IT UP IN THE GYM
You need to mix cardio and strength training for the best results. Dr. Calapai says interval training is best for weight loss. It also increases your metabolism, and improves cholesterol levels. Intervals are easy — sprint on a bike or treadmill for 30 to 60 seconds, and then rest for the same amount of time. Repeat 10 times.
3. ALWAYS EAT BREAKFAST
“You’re not kick starting your metabolism if you have coffee for breakfast. Skipping breakfast puts the body in starvation mode slowing your metabolism to a crawl to conserve energy,” says Dr. Calapai.
He recommends a combination of lean protein, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats. Some examples are combos of fresh fruit, egg whites, steel cut oatmeal, Greek yogurt, and fiber-rich cereals.
4. ADD SOME SPICE
Spicy foods have been proven to kickstart your metabolism. According to the Journal of Nutritional Science and Vitaminology, eating one tablespoon of chopped red or green chili peppers boosts the activity of your sympathetic nervous system, and spikes metabolism by 23 perfect! Add red pepper flakes to pizza, pasta, chili and more!
5. DRINK GREEN TEA
The doctor says one recent study found that people who drink 4 to 5 cups of green tea daily, and then did a 25-minute workout, lost an average of two more pounds and more belly fat than participants who did not drink tea.
6. EAT MORE, SMALLER MEALS
“Snacking every 2 hours will also prevent you from going without food so long that you become so hungry that you overeat. Try not to let more than 4 hours elapse between meals and make sure each meal includes protein, for an extra metabolic boost.”
Here’s an example:
Breakfast: Egg whites and fruit
Snack: Greek yogurt
Lunch: Chicken or fish on top of greens
Snack: banana + cheese, apple + peanut butter, or harrots + hummus
Dinner: Lean protein like turkey and steamed vegetables
7. GET OFF INSTAGRAM AND GO TO BED
Not sleeping enough has been linked to obesity, and can make you irritable and unable to focus. Not getting enough shut-eye increases blood sugar levels and your hunger hormones. Overall, it slows metabolism and makes it harder to lose weight.
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