Many of us have that one friend who can eat whatever they want, yet they somehow stay thin. In these instances, this weight maintenance is blamed on metabolism, so it’s hard not to wonder how we can attain a metabolism like that too. Although we can’t change our body’s natural “set point” for our metabolic rate, we can pick up on eating habits that can encourage better burning of fat and calories.
Your resting metabolic rate is the amount of calories you burn each day without participating in exercise. Studies seem to show that this rate is something we are born with, however, you can influence it by changing your diet and increasing your amount of physical activity.
Since diet is especially important, it’s good to know what foods can help you burn more energy. If you’re looking for some metabolism-boosting meals, consider adding these six foods into your diet.
1. Spicy Food
If you’re a fan of the heat, you’re in luck. Spicy food can help speed up your metabolic rate because it contains capsaicin, the chemical responsible for creating heat. Capsaicin helps burn energy and stored fat.
2. Green Tea
A study from the American Journal Of Clinical Nutrition found that green tea raises metabolic rates and speeds up fat oxidation. This is partially attributed to its caffeine content, but green tea also contains antioxidants called catechins that activate the metabolism of fat.
3. Fatty Fish
Fatty fish contain omega-3 fatty acids, which lowers your body’s level of leptin. This is the hormone that is responsible for helping you feel full and regulating the rate at which you burn fat.
These types of fish, including salmon, tuna, and sardines, help boost your levels of fat-burning enzymes while decreasing the level of fat-storing enzymes.
Studies show that coffee can increase metabolic rate, but the effect does not show with the decaffeinated variety. Caffeine gives your body a boost by speeding up bodily functions, but make sure you drink your coffee without sugar or cream, as these can actually slow down your metabolism instead.
5. Whole Grains
Because whole grains take longer for your body to digest, your body ends up burning more calories. This can be attributed to the thermic effect of whole grains and the fiber present that helps regulate your blood sugar levels.
Mild dehydration can cause your metabolism to slow down, so it’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day. Studies have found that drinking water can increase metabolic rate by 30 percent, but on the flip side, mild dehydration can decrease metabolic rate by three percent.