Looking to boost your metabolism this winter?
Metabolism is the name given to myriad chemical reactions that occur in every cell in the body, changing energy from food into energy used to power every aspect of staying alive and moving.
At any given time, thousands of different metabolic reactions are occurring in your body.
Try these six tips to boost your metabolism and nourish your insides:
Move and groove
The best way to boost your metabolic rate is through regular aerobic exercise combined with resistance training.
This combination will reduce body fat, increase your lean muscle mass and directly boost your metabolic rate for four to eight hours after completion.
Check your thyroid function
An underactive thyroid will slow your basal metabolic rate and cause weight gain or difficulty losing weight.
Hypothyroidism is especially common in women and is often overlooked as a cause of poor health.
Common symptoms include fatigue, weight gain, poor immunity, mood issues and sensitivity to cold.
Breakfast like a king
After fasting all night your metabolic rate slumps, and by eating a healthy, substantial breakfast you will slowly restoke your metabolic furnace.
Choose from low-GI carbs such as porridge, wholegrain unsweetened muesli or wholemeal toast and combine with proteins such as nuts, yoghurt or low-fat cheese.
Eat little and often
Resist the temptation to skip meals due to work or time pressures. Instead, become a grazer, eating five or six small, healthy meals a day.
Regular intake of protein, complex carbohydrates and healthy fats will keep your metabolic rate elevated.
Nutrients count, too
Ensure that you are eating a nutrient-rich diet to keep cellular energy production high, as well as safeguarding thyroid health.
Take a high-quality multivitamin or mineral formula daily to ensure you are getting a full spectrum of nutrients.
Turn out the lights earlier
Getting eight hours of sleep every night is vital to keep your metabolic rate high.
Inadequate sleep reduces our ability to metabolise carbohydrates and reduces sensitivity to the hormone insulin, leading to weight gain.