What is Metabolism and What Can It Do To My Weight Loss Plans?

Published:February 1st, 2011

Metabolism is the term used to describe the process by which the body converts usable energy from food sources and drinks. During metabolism, your food undergoes some complex  processes together with oxygen to release the energy for bodily functions. Every activity your body has such as sitting, walking , resting and sleeping requires energy.  Internal processes such as digesting of food, thinking and even breathing requires energy.

There is a minimal amount of energy in the form of calories required by the body for these very basic functions.  The term used for this minimum energy requirement is called Basal Metabolic Index or BMI.

There are different factors that affect your Basal Metabolic Index.

1.  The composition and size of your body. People who are larger and those who have greater muscular build have higher BMI compared to their leaner and with lesser muscle bulk counterparts. Skeletal muscles are the primary burners of energy within the body.  And so, with the greater bulk of your muscles, the higher will be your metabolic rate.

2.  Sex. Men has faster metabolism than women because they have greater muscle bulk.  Women, on the other hand, have greater fat stores compared to men.

3.  Age. Older people tend to have slower metabolism because of lesser muscle bulk and greater fat stores.

How does metabolism affect your weight?

Many people blame their “slow” metabolism for their weight gain.  As mentioned by Mayoclinic.com, your metabolism is a basic process and your body only balances it to meet your energy needs. However, for most people, their caloric intake is much, much more than their metabolism can handle and this results in the build up of energy stores in the form of fats.  With this, we can safely conclude that to have a lesser fat stores, the energy expenditure must balance the caloric intake.  With increased energy expenditure, less fat stores will be accumulated and with lesser burning of energy, the opposite will occur.

So, how can you increase your metabolism?

As mentioned earlier, your skeletal muscles are the main burners of energy in the body.  And so, to increase your energy consumption, the best thing you can do it get up and move! Higher metabolic rate does not come from chance. Build your muscle bulk to increase your metabolism.

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