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How to Boost Metabolism [The Healthy Way]

Woman working out to boost metabolism

Ten tips to boost your metabolism, jumpstart weight loss, and ultimately have you feeling more energetic. Read to learn how to get started.

Metabolism-boosting is the goal of anyone wanting to lose weight. Why? Because these chemical reactions that take place naturally in your body set the tone for how fast you burn calories.

Your body has to undergo all those metabolic processes, and it's our basal metabolic rate (BMR) that keeps the energy and vital functions going even while at rest.

Some people inherently have a higher metabolism than others. Men usually burn calories faster than women, and most people experience a slow-down in metabolism when they hit age 40.

While age, gender, and genetics are out of your control, Profile by Sanford has put together a list of tips—both nutritional and behavioral—to help reboot your metabolism, jumpstart weight loss, and ultimately have you feeling more energetic!

15 healthy ways to boost your metabolism

Tip #1: Drink more water

In addition to boosting your metabolism, water helps maintain the balance of fluids in your body, energizes your muscles, and aids in digestion.

We recommend our members set a goal of drinking 64 ounces of water a day, or eight 8-ounce glasses of water (visualize the size of a half-gallon of milk).

We encourage our members to work their way up to 128 ounces of water a day, the equivalent of a gallon.

You can increase your water intake by drinking a glass of water before you walk out the door in the morning or by reaching for water instead of sodas or energy drinks throughout the day.

Tip #2: Eat protein at every meal

It takes more calories to digest protein than fat or carbohydrates, which is why we recommend our members include protein in every meal.

Protein options may comprise lean beef, turkey, fish, low-fat dairy products, nuts, tofu, beans, eggs, and protein meal replacements.

Tip #3: Eat a small meal or snack every 3-4 hours

We encourage our members to eat a small, healthy meal or snack every 3-4 hours throughout the day to keep their metabolism cranking.

The meals and snacks should include the appropriate portion size of the five food groups: fruits and veggies, starches, dairy, protein, and healthy fats.

Tip #4: Eat whole grains

Whole grain hearty meal

Like protein, your body burns more calories digesting whole grains than processed grains. So, we recommend our members replace bread and pasta with whole grains such as brown rice, oatmeal, and quinoa.

Tip #5: Opt for green tea and black coffee

Green tea or oolong tea has plenty of health benefits. It contains a plant compound called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) that helps increase your metabolism, so your body burns more calories after drinking 2-3 cups of it.

On the other hand, coffee is known to increase metabolism and promote fat burning in some people. Be mindful of using creamers and sugars, as they often contain a hidden number of calories and chemicals that will hinder your weight loss efforts.

We advise our members to keep their caffeine consumption around 32 ounces (or about 4 cups of coffee) to avoid negative side effects such as shakiness or insomnia.

Tip #6: Enjoy alcohol in moderation

Alcohol slows down metabolism because the body always processes it before food. We advise our members to enjoy alcohol in moderation to avoid the side effects of snacking and overeating. It’s also helpful to consider how alcohol will make you feel the next day.

Tip #7: Avoid stress

When you’re anxious or under pressure, your body reacts by producing a stress hormone called cortisol. High cortisol levels may cause you to give in to unhealthy stress-induced behaviors.

That is why it’s so important to manage your stress with positive lifestyle changes like self-care, meditation, and social support. It can help to exercise, find or create a quiet space in your home to relax, or talk with someone you trust about what you are going through.

Tip #8: Exercise

Regular exercise helps you burn more calories and body fat and increase metabolism. You’ll reap the benefit long after you stop sweating.

Find an activity that you enjoy doing—such as walking, playing tennis, or golfing—and that makes your body feel good afterward. If you enjoy the activity, you are more likely to partake in it more, which is a win-win all around.

Tip #9: Weight or resistance training

Women performing resistance training with her resistance bands

Your muscles continue to burn calories even after exercise. Weight or resistance training is recommended to increase your body's muscle mass and strength.

Doing any of these can boost your metabolism no matter where you are in your fitness journey. Bodyweight exercises are just as effective as lifting a barbell!

Resistance training, in particular, assists in building muscle mass for long-term metabolism-boosting effects.

Tip #10: Get enough sleep

Sleep is as important to weight loss as nutrition and exercise. When your body doesn’t get enough rest, it impacts your appetite, fullness, and food choices.

Lack of sleep boosts the hunger hormone ghrelin and decreases the fullness hormone leptin. Hence, sleep-deprived people are more likely to feel hungrier and struggle to lose weight.

We recommend a consistent nightly routine, being mindful of your caffeine intake, and keeping naps to less than 45 minutes.

Tip #11 Have a healthy work routine

Work takes up a significant portion of the day for most adults. You don’t have to sacrifice your metabolism to keep up with your busy career.

So, how can you keep yourself healthy at work?

Avoid sitting too much since it’s bad for your health. Sitting for long periods burns fewer calories and may lead to unwanted weight gain.

Have mini-activity breaks throughout the day to get out of your chair and keep your body moving. Regular movements are helpful in so many ways, such as:

  • Weight loss
  • Boosting productivity
  • Improving concentration

If you have a desk job, standing for short periods during your mini breaks helps. You can also opt for ergonomic standing desk kits.

Tip #12 Increase Fiber Intake

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends a daily fiber consumption of 25 grams for women and 38 grams for men.

Bumping up fiber intake boosts metabolism because it is an indigestible carbohydrate. Meaning, it stays relatively intact as it passes through your digestive system and out of your body while working on these tasks:

  • Pulls toxins and cholesterol out of your system
  • Helps regulate blood sugar
  • Promotes good bowel movement
  • Slows down digestion

Fiber is commonly found in various plant food such as wheat bran, cauliflower, apples, beans, artichokes, oats, brown rice, among other foods.

Tip #13 Consider Meal Replacements

To jumpstart your metabolism in a healthy and convenient way, you could consider adding meal replacements to your meal plan.

Meal replacements are packed with protein and fiber and can help you feel full and energized throughout the day. Stock them in your pantry, your purse, and your briefcase when you are on the go, need a snack, or don’t have time to stop for a healthy meal.

Meal replacements are part of Profile’s three-phased approach to weight loss and are gradually used less frequently as our members learn more about healthy choices, meal planning, and sustaining their new weight.

Remember that not all meal replacements are created equal. Check your labels and be sure they are like Profile’s meal replacements—offering a balance of high-quality protein, calories, fixed macronutrient content, and 20% of a wide range of vitamins and minerals.

Tip #14 Lower your trans fat

Trans fats are known to give foods a more desirable taste and texture. However, they are bad for your heart and can slow down your ability to burn fat.

Eating food with trans fats can raise your bad cholesterol and lower your good cholesterol levels. You can increase your risk of heart diseases, stroke, and diabetes if you don’t control your intake of these fatty acids.

Tip #15 Eat enough calories

Just because you want to lose weight doesn't mean you have to burn more calories every single day.

Skipping meals to lose weight may negatively impact metabolism and your overall health. The same results can happen if you eat meals that aren’t filling.

An average adult woman needs between 1,600 to 2,400 daily calories, depending on day-to-day physical activities. Adult men, on the other hand, need 2,000-3,000 calories per day. As the basal metabolic rate reduces as you age, your calorie intake will generally decrease also.

Boost your metabolism for a healthier body!

man-running-outdoors

We recommend that you boost your metabolism for your overall health and well-being, not just for the sake of losing weight.

Bump up your daily activity level and make healthy lifestyle and diet changes. Make sure to speak with your doctor about your health information before adjusting your diet or changing your exercise routine.

Want to learn more tips that can help you boost metabolism and live a happier and healthier life? Profile by Sanford can help! Our science-based weight-loss program is focused on losing weight the healthy way and keeping it off long-term. 

Profile’s delicious and flexible meal plans, motivational tracking tools, and compassionate, one-on-one coaching give you the encouragement, support, and accountability you need to meet your goals.

Ready to start your weight loss journey with a health coach?