I get it: metabolism is a tricky thing to comprehend. In fact, it took me years (and plenty of mistakes) before I really understood how brilliant our bodies actually are, and how I could best support my metabolism, rather than confuse it.
What is "Metabolism" anyway?
Here's why it's confusing: your metabolism is not "a thing," (like an organ), but rather, a series of processes that, together, break down food and convert it into energy.
Based on many factors, your metabolism either functions optimally, or, it can become quite sluggish, which can lead to weight gain and discomfort.
I’ve broken down the 5 core metabolism mistakes we make in the hopes that YOU can better understand the way your brilliant body works, and harness its power for your benefit.
Mistake #1: Blaming “Genetics”
“I eat healthily and I exercise and I still can’t seem to lose the weight”— is a common frustration I hear. This struggle can often make you feel like giving up and that nothing works and you are just cursed by the genetics of a slow metabolism.
Yes, genetics does play into the equation, but the good news is that it is not as big of a determining factor as once thought. And even though we are all unique we can fix our metabolism.
However, most of the time we choose the wrong foods or resort to old behaviors or methods that we used in the past to lose weight and we end up slowing our metabolism down.
Mistake #2: Dieting
The most common mistake I see is dieting— calorie counting, under eating, and depriving yourself of the foods you love. What ends up happening is that you may lose some weight initially, but you end up putting your body in starvation mode, and since our bodies’ job is to keep us alive, it will hold on to fat. So, the pounds on the scale you are losing is muscle and not fat. Yikes!
Then after you have had some success with a “diet,” you get tired or bored and reward yourself with food for all the hard work, and ultimately hit a plateau, and give up because you don’t have enough time, or life gets in the way…
And usually, the food that you reward yourself with is either sugar or highly processed foods. And can you blame our bodies? Our brains and bodies were wired for pleasure, and dieting is certainly not pleasurable.
After a while, this yo-yo dieting method is recognized by the body and it gets used to storing fat because it never knows when you might try to deprive it or starve it again!
So, this is the vicious cycle that we can get caught up in. Chasing after the newest greatest diet, product, or anything that promises “this time it will be different!”
This is a very difficult cycle to break, and my best tip is to shift your mindset from a short-term diet to nourishing yourself for a lifetime. When we nourish ourselves, we don’t deprive ourselves of the things that we love. I have covered this extensively in my new book “Love Yourself Healthy” which will be released on May 2nd. (Psst. reserve your copy here!)
Mistake #3: Exercising More
Another big mistake I see is excessive exercise. While exercise IS one of the fastest ways to increase your metabolism, most people are using outdated methods. They think that by doing a lot of cardio, that they will increase their metabolism. The problem with this method is that if you dotoo much cardio, your body perceives that you are in danger of depleting your energy– so metabolism decreases.
The best exercise that boosts your metabolism is through strength training.Strength training helps you to build muscles which increases your metabolism and improves your ability to burn calories.
Mistake #4: Not Buying Organic
Another mistake I see is what we put into our grocery cart. Most people are aware that it is healthier to choose organic foods, grass-fed beef, and free-range chicken. A lot of us think that the only reason for this is that it contains fewer chemicals and toxins for our body. However, did you also know that the antibiotics and exposure to pesticides will also slow your metabolism down? This is because the antibiotics and pesticides have a harmful effect on your good gut bacteria and can cause you to gain weight. So, that apple that you thought was healthy could actually be causing you to gain weight.
Many people cannot afford to buy all organic all the time. So, I suggest that you familiarize yourself with the Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen so you know which fruits and vegetables contain the most chemicals. Also, there are hidden chemicals in prepackaged foods so I suggest that you read the food labels before you buy.
You can get my free shopping guide here so you can know what is in your food!
Mistake #5: Thinking It’s “Broken”
The good news is that you can improve your metabolism. If you are curious about your own metabolism, take this FREE quiz!
In it, I’ve identified 3 types: The Over Reliant, The Emotional Eater, and The Misinformed.
This quiz poses 12 simple questions meant to identify your methods and behaviors that may be sabotaging your health goals. You will receive your results immediately with no email required. And for those who would like to find out exactly what you can do to improve your metabolism, I will send you a complimentary customized guide to becoming fit and healthy.
Making small simple lifestyle changes can not only increase your metabolism but can increase your energy and improve your quality of life.Notice, I didn’t use the words big, difficult, or hard changes.
Think of the paradigm: Small hinges swing big doors: the big issues require little changes, and little changes will take care of big issues.
Watch my Facebook Live on this subject: