(Check out Dr. Oz's Metabolism-Boosting Iced Tea Recipes!)
I really enjoy the "Eat Like Me" blog posts from Sarah-Jane Bedwell on Self.com. She offers great ideas for eating healthy, delicious foods. Below is a post I refer to often as a reminder of natural ways to speed up my metabolism. Some I've added to my routine and others I just need reminded of. I wanted to share this in hopes it helps you, too!
by Sarah-Jane Bedwell
Many diet pills and supplements promise to speed up your metabolism and help you burn fat. These are often empty promises. However, as these products and the claims they make are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. They also can come with great risk of dangerous side effects and in general are a waste of money.
The good news is that there are some things you can do naturally to rev up your metabolism. Here's my list of the top 7:
- Drink Green Tea: Studies have shown people who drink green tea burn up to an extra 70-100 calories per day due to the antioxidants called catechins (ECGC and polyphenols) in the tea. Brew your own tea and drink about 24oz. per day to get these benefits.
- Eat More Frequently: Never eat less than 1200 calories per day. Every time that you eat, your body experiences the thermic effect of food, which causes an increased metabolism. Eating something small every 3-4 hours can keep your metabolism raised.
- Do Cardio and Resistance Exercise: Exercise is one of the most important factors when it comes to increasing your metabolism. Do intense cardio for 30 minutes or more per day, and your metabolism can stay spiked for up to 2 hours afterwards. Break up your workout into two segments for even more benefits. Do resistance exercises 2-3 times per week to increase your muscle mass and therefore increase your resting metabolic rate to burn more calories 24/7!
- Get Plenty of Sleep: Studies from Harvard Medical School show that if you get less than 7 hours of sleep, your are more than 3 times likely to gain weight each year than if you get at least 7 hours. Energy and activity level is lower when you are tired, which means your metabolic rate decreases as well.
- Use Caffeine in Moderation: 1-2 cups of coffee per day (or other caffeinated, calorie-free beverage) has shown to be helpful in speeding up your metabolism. The amount of caffeine in just 1 cup of coffee can temporarily increase the metabolism by 15%.
- Eat Spicy Foods: Hot peppers (such as jalapeno and cayenne peppers) increase the body's release of certain hormones (adrenaline), which stimulates the metabolism and increases calorie burn. This is due to capsaicin, which is found in the peppers and increases uncoupling proteins found in the muscle. This causes the mitochondria to produce more heat; therefore, increasing the metabolic rate. Dried mustard and chili powder has been shown in some studies to cause the same effect.
- Eat Breakfast: If you eat a substantial and balanced breakfast, this will help increase your energy, control your appetite, and speed up your metabolism. Make sure your breakfast contains both complex carbs and protein.
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* One word of caution... before you purchase green tea in bottles, be sure to look at the calories and sugar content. I almost purchased one today that contained more sugar than a candy bar... NO JOKE!
[UPDATE: I added a post about this tea... it's called Green Leaf Tea.]
Happy BOOsting... and happy Halloween!