The human body performs millions of chemical reactions, known collectively as metabolism. For example, the process by which food (and liquids) is converted into energy is called metabolism. These functions help us survive and function and help the body grow and repair tissues. It also enables regular performance by breaking down nutrients from the diet.
Metabolism greatly affects the number of calories the body burns at any given time, which is essential for gaining, losing, or maintaining weight. That’s because metabolism maintains a balance between incoming and outgoing energy. The basal metabolic rate (BMR) is the amount of energy that is burned just to keep the body running at rest. It makes up most of the metabolism and accounts for between 50 and 80% of the energy required.
Good metabolic health helps remove toxins from the body and can improve blood circulation, making a person feel more energetic. Moreover, it boosts mood and provides internal energy for work, increases immunity, helps in quick weight loss, and improves sleep quality. Irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea or frequent constipation are common problems caused by poor metabolism. It is also one of the important problems associated with poor metabolic health. In addition, you should consult a nutritionist if you experience any of these symptoms. Many tests can assess poor metabolic health.
Your HealthifyPro 2.0 subscription includes a comprehensive panel of 80 parameters in a single blood test performed in the comfort of your home. Continuous glucose monitoring allows you to assess appropriate dietary and activity levels to maintain metabolic health. The convenience of being able to consult with a nutritionist makes food selection very practical. As a result, your metabolic health improves with the right nutritional interventions, and you can achieve sustainable weight loss.
Metabolic health is critical to an individual’s well-being. Unfortunately, poor metabolic health can lead to heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and kidney and liver disease. Metabolic disorders can impair an individual’s ability to metabolize essential nutrients and enzymes. Moreover, it interferes with the biochemical reactions necessary for the synthesis of important micronutrients such as protein and carbohydrates. Usually the first sign of poor metabolic health is weight gain and a slow metabolism. Therefore, please get a medical examination if you cannot lose weight, experience irregular sleep, difficulty concentrating, or feel jittery.
The basal metabolic rate (BMR) is higher in infants and young children, and peaks between the ages of 3 and 5 years. It peaks at just over 50 calories per hour per square meter of body surface between the ages of 3 and 5, and then gradually decreases through childhood, middle age, and old age.
People’s metabolism slows down as they age due to sarcopenia, the natural loss of muscle tissue, and hormonal and neurological abnormalities. After the age of 30, loss of lean muscle mass results in a 3-5% decrease in BMR each decade. But the good news is that regular resistance and strength exercises can slow or stop muscle loss, which ultimately helps reduce your metabolic rate.
Genes may play a role in determining metabolic rate. As a result, BMR rates vary between families. In some cases, the defective gene produces a protein that inefficiently processes food, resulting in a metabolic disorder. Most hereditary metabolic disorders are treated with extensive dietary monitoring and medical supervision.
Men often have a higher metabolic rate than women. That’s because women usually have a higher percentage of body fat and less muscle mass than men of the same size. According to a study, women’s basal metabolic rate is 5-10% lower than that of men.
Metabolic rate increases when body mass, height, and surface area increase. Because larger bodies have more metabolic tissues and larger organs with more fluid to maintain, the basal metabolic rate is higher. For example, a man who is 6’6″ has a different metabolism than a man who is 5’6″ tall.
Adipose tissue has a lower metabolic activity than muscle tissue. Therefore, it burns much fewer calories than most other human tissues and organs. According to a study, metabolism increases with lean or lean muscle mass (since your bones, organs, skin, brain, etc., stay the same). Having more muscle mass corresponds to a higher metabolic rate. Therefore, the more muscle mass a person has, the more calories a person burns per day.
The hormonal system manages the metabolic rate. Because of this direct link, hormonal imbalances can affect how quickly or how slowly the body burns energy.
A study shows that hypothyroidism is linked to the most common hormonal condition. Also, the thyroid gland secretes hormones that control metabolic processes (including the rate at which calories are burned, and energy expenditure).
Thyroid diseases consist of:
Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
- Because the thyroid gland does not secrete enough hormones, the metabolism slows down.
- Autoimmune disease is a common cause. Hashimoto’s syndrome
- Symptoms include constipation, unexpected weight gain, fatigue, despair, and sadness.
Overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
- The gland secretes too many hormones.
- Graves’ disease is a common cause.
- Symptoms include increased appetite, weight loss, anxiety and diarrhea.
Thyroxine, which is made by the thyroid gland, is an important regulator of basal metabolic rate (BMR) that increases metabolic activity in the body. Basal metabolic rate increases with increased thyroid hormone production. Thyrotoxicosis is a disease in which the body produces too much thyroid hormone, resulting in a doubling of the basal metabolic rate. Conversely, myxedema occurs when insufficient production of thyroid hormone causes the basal metabolic rate to drop to 30-40% of normal.
According to a study, muscle energy expenditure accounts for about 20% of total energy expenditure at rest. However, when people work hard, their energy consumption can increase by 50 times or more. During vigorous physical activity, muscles can burn up to 717 calories per hour.
The amount of energy expended during exercise varies by individual and session intensity, including a person’s body type, age, health status, and level of exercise. Regular exercise trains the body to burn calories more quickly even when at rest and builds muscle mass, thus boosting metabolism.
The body has to work harder to maintain an average body temperature in extreme cold or heat, which speeds up the metabolism. According to studies, people who live in tropical climates have a higher BMR than those who live in temperate climates. That’s because the body needs energy to maintain a constant temperature.
The body’s metabolic rate (BMR) rises by about 7% for every 0.5°C increase in internal temperature. Higher temperatures also speed up chemical reactions in the body. Therefore, a patient with a fever of 42°C (about 4°C above normal) will experience an increase in basal metabolic rate of about 50%.
One study indicated that fever raises body temperature, which increases the body’s metabolic rate by 14-15% per degree Celsius. Undoubtedly, the accelerated metabolic processes in the body lead to this increase.
Metabolism remains stable with adequate sleep. Lack of sleep disrupts the body’s natural sleep cycle, affecting hormones and making it difficult for the body to use energy efficiently. A slow metabolism and cravings for unhealthy food may result from a lack of sleep.
Metabolism can be accelerated by certain substances, such as nicotine or caffeine. Additionally, no matter what one eats, some medications, such as antidepressants and stimulants, can cause weight gain by slowing down the metabolism.
The basal metabolic rate rises when a person is sick because the body has to work harder to regenerate tissues and create an immune response. According to the research, fever, illness, or injury may cause a twofold rise in the basal metabolic rate.
The body produces the hormone cortisol in response to stress. If stress levels are high, the body engages in a “fight or flight” reaction, which causes it to keep producing more cortisol.
Insulin, an anabolic hormone, is one of the main hormones in fat metabolism. However, the body has difficulty using insulin due to the high levels of cortisol. Improper use of insulin also prevents the body from metabolizing fat and retaining fat, which slows down the metabolism and causes weight gain.
Weight gain and long-term fat storage are associated with chronic stress. According to one study, experiencing one or more stressful experiences before eating a single high-fat meal can slow down your metabolism. As a result, it can reduce the body’s metabolism and lead to weight gain. The subjects also had higher levels of insulin, which contributed to fat storage.
Overtraining, excessive exercise, overeating to repair or lack of sleep to achieve adequate recovery are all symptoms of stress. When the body is pushed too far, hormones may become imbalanced, causing the body to become inflamed, stressed, and disrupted by metabolism.
Some nutrients may affect metabolism. A diet lacking in iodine, for example, reduces thyroid function and lowers metabolism. Taking more calcium and vitamin D, taken with magnesium for better absorption, is associated with healthier bones and a better system for controlling body fat and metabolism. Having too little iron in the body can slow down the metabolism.
Water helps in the metabolism of food; Therefore, keeping the body hydrated is essential to maintain an efficient metabolism. According to a study, consuming 500ml of water increased metabolic rate by 30%, with the increase starting within 10 minutes and peaking between 30 and 40 minutes. It is brought about by water thermogenesis, where water stimulates the metabolism.
Thirst is often confused with hunger; Drinking more water can help reduce overeating. On the other hand, metabolism may slow down if one does not drink enough water. Furthermore, alcohol affects liver processing and can delay metabolism, while sugary drinks can cause insulin resistance.
Your food choices and portion control have a huge impact on your metabolism. Food has a thermogenic effect, which leads to an increase in metabolism after eating due to the energy required for food consumption, digestion and metabolism. Metabolic rate increases soon after you start eating and peaks approximately 2-3 hours later. This rate can range from 2 to 30%, depending on the portion and quality of the meal. The degree to which different foods raise your metabolism varies. For example, spicy and spicy foods have a thermogenic effect.
Eating too few calories causes the body to reduce its metabolism to conserve energy (as is the case with strict diets, strict diets, and starvation). Eating less food when one wants to lose weight can backfire because the body will hold onto those extra calories, making shedding extra pounds more difficult.
Intermittent fasting has recently gained in popularity and benefits metabolism and metabolic health because it is associated with an increased balance of essential hormones involved in lipid metabolism (insulin, human growth hormone, and norepinephrine). These hormones affect a person’s weight, food consumption, and calorie expenditure. As a result, fasting can help burn fat and lose weight.
The primary factors that influence metabolism include age, gender, stress, genetics, body size, muscle mass, hormonal and environmental factors, and many more. In addition, nutrition and physical activity are major factors that affect the metabolism. For good health, adequate sleep and hydration are essential.
Metabolism is the process of generating energy from food to work efficiently. Diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease are all examples of metabolic diseases. Also, normal blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels improve the metabolic health of an individual. On the other hand, age, gender, genetics, diet, stress, water and other factors influence the metabolism. Furthermore, being overweight or obese can be a primary indicator of poor metabolic health.