Mat­ter-Bolism

Work your body with our me­tab­o­lism guide.

CLEO (Malaysia) - - MAGAZINE -

ME­TAB­O­LISM 101

Ev­ery­thing that you con­sume, be it food or drinks, con­tains calo­ries a.k.a the word ladies dread to hear. A pretty com­pli­cated process then takes place in­side you where th­ese calo­ries merge with oxy­gen to give your body the en­ergy that it needs. This process is what we call me­tab­o­lism. And based on cer­tain fac­tors, each in­di­vid­ual ’s rest­ing meta­bolic rate (RMR), oth­er­wise known as the rate of how fast your body burns off th­ese calo­ries at any given time, dif­fers.

WHAT AF­FECTS IT?

The three most prom­i­nent fac­tors that con­trol your meta­bolic rates are age, gen­der, and the type of ac­tiv­i­ties you do.

Age Mi­to­chon­dria are the com­po­nents that con­vert nu­tri­ents ab­sorbed from what you con­sume into en­ergy. And as you age, this tiny mem­ber of each cell slows down pro­gres­sively, which is why what you eat at the age of 20 can be burnt off a lot faster than it will be when you are 40 years old.

Gen­der This is com­pletely un­fair but it re­mains the sad truth that men burn calo­ries a lot eas­ier than women. This is be­cause a woman’s body is made up of less mus­cle and lighter bones but with more fat to ac­com­mo­date our birthing abil­i­ties. Men, on the other hand, have more mus­cle, heav­ier bones, and lesser fat, which al­lows them to have a higher RMR.

Ac­tiv­ity Un­like the other two fac­tors, phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity is some­thing that ev­ery­one has con­trol over. The more ac­tive you are, the more en­ergy your body re­quires and thus more calo­ries are burnt off at a higher pace to ac­com­mo­date your body’s needs.

SLOW-MO

Some of the usual things that you love to do on a fre­quent ba­sis may con­trib­ute to a de­crease in your body’s RMR rate.

Just Eat Cut­ting short the right amount of food your body needs will se­ri­ously hin­der your jour­ney to a fit body. When you starve your­self, your body thinks that it needs to go into self­p­reser­va­tion mode. It be­gins stor­ing as much fat as it can, which means your RMR rate starts de­creas­ing too. This is bad news be­cause ex­cess fat isn’t be­ing con­verted into en­ergy; they’re be­ing con­verted into jig­gles – the un­wanted kind!

Al­co­hol Over­load As hap­pily ine­bri­ated as it gets you, al­co­hol con­trib­utes zero value to your body. When al­co­hol hits your sys­tem, your body makes it a pri­or­ity to metabolise it first. Imag­ine hav­ing a classy combo of

fries with cheese and a glass of wine – your body gives full at­ten­tion to burn­ing off calo­ries from the lat­ter which means it’s not work­ing hard enough to con­vert the fat you in­dulged from the cheese and fries. All the ex­cess fat, once ac­cu­mu­lated, turns your much-loved abs to flab.

Starch White Here’s a sim­ple rule to re­mem­ber – al­most any­thing that is white, starchy and re­fined is not the best meal op­tion for you. Re­fined meals are eas­ily di­gested, which makes your sys­tem do less work in turn­ing what you eat into en­ergy. So switch it up with foods like oats, brown rice and whole­meal that re­quire more work in or­der to get pro­cessed.

IN­CREASE THAT RATE

There’s yin and yang to ev­ery­thing and that ap­plies to your body’s meta­bolic rate too! Here’s what you can do to pick that rate up. Work It The best op­tion to get your body’s meta­bolic rate up is, and al­ways will be, ex­er­cis­ing. If go­ing to the gym sounds bland, pick up some­thing fun like kick­box­ing, or dance lessons. Add con­sis­tency and boom! Your body will be­come a lean, mean, calo­rie-bust­ing ma­chine.

Chilli Crazy Spicy food will do your meta­bolic rate a favour. Why? Cap­saicin in chilli cranks up your body’s rate to burn 50 calo­ries more than its usual amount.

Hit snooze! That’s right – we’re telling you to sleep more to lose weight (only if you’re get­ting less than what your body needs though!).

BMR vs RMR

RATE (BMR) BASAL META­BOLIC THE NUM­BER OF CALO­RIES YOUR BODY BURNS FOR TIONS. BA­SIC BOD­ILY FUNC

RATE (RMR) REST­ING META­BOLIC

YOU BURN THE NUM­BER OF CALO­RIES FOR BA­SIC BOD­ILY FUNC­TIONS PLUS

Y YOU DO. EV­ERY OTHER AC­TIVIT

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