Do you know people who complain about having a slow metabolism and how they barely eat anything yet still gain weight? Or have you met people who complain about someone they know who can eat whatever he or she wants — including large portions of junk food — due to a fast metabolism and apparently never gain weight. In both cases the individual usually ends by saying, “It’s not fair!” These scenarios raise several very good questions:
- What role exactly does metabolism play in weight gain or weight loss?
- Is your metabolic rate determined by your genes? If so, can you speed up a slow metabolism through exercise, drugs or certain foods?
- Is the importance of metabolism just a myth? Is weight gain or loss purely due to “calories in and calories out?”
Pausing, and deciding to rest, is not only the hallmark of most people who are successful and healthy, but can actually give you more results from all the hard work you do!
For example, did you know that if you keep working out every day, you’ll quickly begin to plateau? You’ll be exercising on top of your poor muscles that are torn down but can’t rebuild. And rebuilding is the only way they become stronger, more defined, and end up burning more calories, day and night.
Your metabolism is a lot of systems and processes, all working to keep you alive and nourished. When it works well, you look and feel great. When it doesn’t, you get sluggish, fatigued, bloated, and even sick.
Metabolism or metabolic rate is defined as the series of chemical reactions in a living organism that create and break down energy necessary for life. More simply, it’s the rate at which your body expends energy or burns calories.
The reality is that for most people, excess weight is not all due to bad luck, thyroid trouble or some other unexplained, uncontrollable external factor. It’s simple accounting involving calories in and calories out that determines changes in weight over a lifetime.
Regardless of whether your metabolism is fast or slow, our bodies are designed to store excess energy in fat cells. So if you eat and drink more calories (energy “intake”) than your body expends (energy “output”) you will gain weight. On the other hand, if you eat and drink fewer calories than are burned through everyday activities (including exercise, rest and sleep), you’ll lose weight. Our bodies are also programmed to sense a lack of food as starvation. In response, our BMR slows down, which means fewer calories burned over time. That’s one reason why losing weight is often difficult.
When it comes to weight, metabolism is important and does have a genetic component. Clearly, you can change how you balance the calories you take in against the calories you burn up through activity, which can change your weight. As you can see, there are many factors involved in your metabolism and your ability to follow a Healthy Weight Lifestyle. This is our specialty here at Doctor for Life. We help you each step of the way. Identify possible obstacles, help you plan your successful journey, conduct medical test as necessary and coach you each step of the way. Give us a call today to schedule your first step to your Healthy Lifestyle 864-640-0009.