- Diet & Weight Loss
Best Way To Speed Up Metabolism: Does Fiber Help And More
Many health experts today are teaching that weight management is largely dependent upon a healthy metabolism. As we age it becomes apparent that our metabolism isn’t functioning as well as it once did. Physical symptoms such as fatigue, insomnia, irritability, poor memory and concentration, heat and cold intolerance and weight gain become apparent.
It is easy to believe that a slowing metabolism is due to the natural process of getting old, but it has nothing to do with aging. What slows the metabolism is an unhealthy diet and lack of exercise leading to muscle loss. When people do decide it’s time to begin a healthy eating program, which includes healthy proteins, fats and carbohydrates, many times dietary fiber is left out when it should be the first nutrient to be considered for healthy metabolism.
Speed Up Metabolism
Dietary fiber is important because of its role in blood sugar balancing, which is essential for optimal metabolism. When blood sugar levels are high because of a high simple carbohydrate, low fiber diet, insulin levels become higher leading to fat storage, rather than fat burning. When complex carbohydrates, high in fiber are consumed, the fiber absorbs sugars in the blood stream and lowers insulin levels.
Dietary fiber has also been found to increase the sensitivity of insulin receptors, which diverts sugars to muscle cells instead of fat cells. It is the key to proper elimination which is necessary for reaching and maintaining an ideal weight. Although fiber is derived from complex carbohydrates such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, it can not be broken down by digestive enzymes, which makes it a calorie free nutrient. Another benefit of eating a high fiber diet is the feeling a fullness. When combined with liquid fiber becomes bulky and takes up lots of space with zero calories.
Going on a restricted diet may slow the metabolism even further, increasing symptoms and making weight loss even more difficult. If the body does not get enough energy from food, it holds on to stored fat and begins to burn muscle. Eating one or two meals a day will not speed up your metabolism. It is like trying to kindle a huge log with a match. If the body is incapable of burning the fuel, it will store it as fat. The key to increasing metabolism is to consume four or five healthy, small meals throughout the day. Providing burnable fuel more frequently will cause a noticeable increase in energy.
As we age stress and lack of exercise, slowly turns muscles into fat. This process causes the metabolism to slow. Introducing stress reduction techniques into your daily activities and starting an exercise program that includes weight training and aerobic exercise combined with a healthy diet will be highly effective at speeding up the metabolism.
Eliminate foods that contain refined carbohydrates which contain no fiber. Popular refined foods include white bread, white rice and refined pasta. Although these foods are low in fat they are simple carbohydrates which are quickly broken down by the body into sugar and stored as fat. Be careful when buying low fat foods, they usually are loaded with sugar. Replace simple carbohydrates with complex carbohydrates such as whole grain bread and pasta and brown rice. A high fiber diet requires adequate water intake. Drink eight glasses of pure water daily.
A balanced diet is also important for healthy metabolism. A proper combination of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and nuts should be consumed daily. For those individuals struggling to reach the daily need for dietary fiber, supplements are available at your local health store or online.