Can Eating More Speed Up Your Metabolism?

Medically Reviewed on 5/6/2022
Can eating more speed up your metabolism?
Your BMR is your metabolic rate during rest, while metabolism is the pace at which your body consumes energy at any time.

Metabolism, in simple words, is the conversion of food and water into energy. This energy is utilized to perform various activities. As activity increases, your body needs more energy. 

Energy is required to digest the food and absorb and process the nutrients you intake. This is called the thermic effect of food. So, you can speed up your metabolism to some extent by eating more.

Even while at rest, a person with fast metabolism burns more calories. When more calories are burned than your intake, you will lose weight.

What is BMR?

The terms basal metabolic rate (BMR) and metabolism are frequently used interchangeably.

Your BMR is your metabolic rate while you are at rest. The metabolism, however, is the pace at which your body consumes energy at any time.

Your metabolism is governed by genetics, age, and other variables; you cannot speed it up considerably. All the involuntary activities in the human body that uses stored energy include: 

  • Respiration
  • Circulation
  • Body temperature regulation
  • Nerve activity
  • Hormone releases
  • New tissue creation

Physical exertion and digestion use more calories.

BMR accounts for 60 to 70 percent of the human body's energy per calorie expenditure. Your genes determine your BMR.

Factors that increase and decrease BMR

BMR is reduced with:

  • Aging
  • Fasting
  • Following very-low-calorie diets
  • Increasing body fat are all factors that lower your BMR

Factors that increase BMR are:

  • Having more muscle than fat in the body
  • Males have more BMR than females
  • Pregnancy
  • During teenage
  • Stress
  • Having a fever

Environmental factors, such as temperatures and work environment, as well as thyroid hormones, have an impact on metabolism.

10 foods that speed up metabolism

Though practically all foods can boost your metabolism slightly, some foods result in a big boost that helps you burn more calories, provided you combine it with enough physical activity (exercise).

  1. Water
    • Water might reduce your hunger and perhaps enhance your metabolism.
    • According to research, the more hydrated you are, the better your body is at everything from thinking to doing exercise easier.
  2. Fish
    • Fish (salmon, tuna, sardines, and mackerel) are high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Protein requires slightly more energy to break down than fat and carbs.
    • The American Heart Association suggests eating fatty fish at least two times a week.
    • Vegetarians are suggested to take omega-3 fatty acid or fish oil supplements.
  3. Chili peppers
    • Chili peppers and jalapenos contain the chemical capsaicin, which gives these vegetables their spiciness.
    • Capsaicin raises your body's internal temperature, allowing you to burn more calories for a short period.
    • Even though this may increase your metabolism, consuming more of them will not help you lose weight.
  4. Lean meat
    • Protein-rich, lean meats, such as chicken and turkey, require more energy to be digested than other carbohydrates and fatty foods.
    • This increases calorie expenditure during the digestion process.
    • It is recommended to remove or eliminate skin and visible fat before cooking.
  5. Lentils
    • Lentils are a kind of legume that is high in iron, magnesium, and potassium (eight grams each).
    • They are an excellent source of plant protein and fiber.
    • A cup of lentils will provide 35 percent of daily iron needs.
    • All lentils are equally beneficial to your health.
  6. Legumes
    • Legume is a broad word that refers to plant seeds that grow in pods.
    • They are high in protein.
    • Examples include black beans, chickpeas, and kidney beans.
  7. Broccoli
    • Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable and is high in water and fiber.
    • This makes you feel satiated for longer hours and reduce excess calorie intake.
  8. Berries
    • Strawberries and blueberries are low in calories but high in fiber.
    • Fiber helps you lose weight by suppressing your appetite.
  9. Low-fat milk
    • Milk contains calcium and vitamin D, both of which are necessary for the development of thick muscular mass, which is crucial for general health.
  10. Tempeh
    • If you are seeking a vegetarian protein alternative to meat, tempeh is a terrific choice.


The Best Diet Tips: How to Lose Weight the Healthy Way See Slideshow

4 common myths of metabolism

  1. Eating a heavy breakfast jumpstarts metabolism
    • Truth: Eating breakfast has advantages; it may supply essential nutrients and energy while satisfying hunger. An unhealthy breakfast with butter and refined bread often does more harm than good. Make sure you have fiber-rich foods, such as oatmeal and fruits, for breakfast. Proteins, such as boiled eggs and lean meats, should be eaten for breakfast every day.
  2. Metabolic rates cannot be changed
    • Truth: While genetics play a role to determine metabolic rates, you may increase metabolism by increasing lean muscle mass. Because muscles are metabolically active, those with lean, muscular bodies require more energy to operate than those with a larger percentage of body fat.
    • As you age, your muscle mass declines, leading to a slower metabolic rate. You may, however, reverse this process by lifting weights.
  3. Eating late nights reduces metabolism
    • Truth: There is little data to back up the claim that eating after 8 p.m. leads to weight gain. However, you may be more prone to mindless snacking in the evenings while watching television.
    • Eat frequent meals and snacks throughout the day to avoid excessive hunger and fullness fluctuations. If you eat later in the evening, eat slowly and put away the snacks when you are full.
  4. Certain foods or supplements speed up metabolism
    • Truth: There is no such thing as a miraculous diet or substance that will continuously increase metabolism. Green tea and hot peppers temporarily increase metabolic rates. However, the difference is small. Eating an organized and balanced diet of vegetables, fruits, proteins, and whole grains is the key to keeping good metabolism throughout the day.
    • There is no evidence to support the usage of supplements to enhance metabolism. Because these items are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Association, you never know what you are eating. Avoid supplements to prevent unwanted side effects.

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Medically Reviewed on 5/6/2022
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