Those with high metabolism can devour sinful treats with no noticeable effects on the weighing scale. Yet, others who have a sluggish metabolism find it difficult to lose weight. Why is that? The answer lies in different metabolic rates. Whether you are sitting, standing, sleeping or eating, the body is constantly expending energy by burning calories. Metabolism is the amount of energy (in calories) that the body burns to maintain itself.
Body composition, genes, activity level and dietary habits affect metabolism.
Those with a high metabolism have more muscle, lead an active life and eat sensibly.
What is body composition? Broadly speaking, this is the amount of muscle versus the amount of body fat. Why is this relevant to metabolism? Because muscle uses more calories to maintain itself than fat. Fat is basically metabolic ‘dead’ weight. Therefore, if you have more muscle than fat, you will have a higher metabolic rate than those who have a high percentage of body fat. For example, there are two people with the same weight and height. One exercises on a regular basis and has a low percentage of body fat. The other never exercises and therefore has a higher percentage of body fat. In this example, the person who exercises regularly will have a better body composition and also a higher metabolic rate.
Believe it or not, part of the reason you may not see the results you want is that you may not be eating enough or frequently enough. If you cut down drastically on caloric intake, your body perceives this as a starvation threat. It isn’t being fuelled efficiently and as a result, the body’s metabolism slows down. Eat small nutritious meals every three to four hours to boost your metabolism and to avoid having pangs of extreme hunger. Your mini meals could consist of fruits, salads, juices, soups and low-calorie snacks.
As you age (especially after thirty), your metabolic rate becomes progressively slower due to the natural process of muscle and bone loss. Owing to this, the body needs about two percent fewer calories with each passing decade to maintain the same body weight. Symptoms of slow metabolism include weight gain, constipation, fatigue and low energy levels.