Weight Loss & Healthy Lifestyle Expert Forum
Metabolism rate
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Questions in the Weight Loss & Healthy Lifestyle forum are being answered by James Beckerman, MD, Cardiologist. This forum is for questions and discussions relating to: cooking tricks, diet books, exercise tips, fad diets, fitness, health and hype, healthy role modeling for children, living a "green" lifestyle, medical treatments for obesity, metabolic syndrome, obesity, restaurants, smoking cessation, supplements, surgical treatments for obesity, trends in dieting, weight-related medical conditions

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Metabolism rate

I heard that an increased metabolism rate helps one to lose weight.  Is that a fact or myth?  If it is true, how do I increase my metabolism rate naturally?
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Metabolism is another way of thinking about the rate at which calories are burned.  Heavier people interestingly have higher metabolisms than smaller people do, because they require more calories over the course of a day to maintain their body's functions.

I generally don't recommend supplements to increase one's metabolism, but small amounts of caffeine as well as catechins contained in green tea will boost metabolism a bit.  Then it really comes down to exercise - your body's metabolism will continue at a higher level even hours after you have exercised.  It's also the case that the more lean muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolism will be.  So adding some weights into your cardiovascular exercise regimen is a good idea for many people as well.
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It's a fact.
Exercise can increase a person's metabolic rate.  Strength training is often recommended but any exercise that uses the big muscle groups is good.
Also, eating smaller meals more frequently can too.  Some people use the analogy of burning wood.  Smaller wood burns more efficiently whereas larger wood takes much longer.

I hope that helps a little.

J
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would drinking water help raise metabolic rate as well? also, i tried taking smaller meals more frequently and what happened is that i can't stop thinking about food now. help!
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I'm not sure, I can't think this through tonight.
OK, bad idea!  Are you able to go back to what you were doing before?  Start with that as your base.  Maybe start with the exercise (hopefully that will also take your focus away from food).  Dr Beckerman has some good weight loss tips on his initial blog, you might like to check that out.
Instead of focusing on metabolism, perhaps shifting your thoughts to another area might be helpful.
Keeping a food dairy might also be useful.  From there you could address the types of foods or quantities of foods you eat.
I'm too afraid to say anything in case I make matters worse than I already have.

Read his blog and then select one or two to work on.  Maybe just incorporate small changes to start with.  If the change is too dramatic or doesn't fit your lifestyle it is less likely to be successful.  You could also try reading some of his other responses to posts to get some more ideas.

If you're still stuck you might need to ask Dr Beckerman for some more advice.  As my suggestion was detrimental to you you might need to be more cautious about what you do and don't try.  Do what you feel is best for you and will work for you.

J
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You sort of have to experiment with meal thing, I think.  I tried eating several smaller meals each day and I, too, found myself so focused on food, it was unreal.  All I could think about was when I could have my next meal.  

I've gone back to 3 meals/day with maybe fruit or popcorn or something for a snack if I need it.  Now that I'm back to 3 meals/day, I can go ahead and do what needs to be done without worrying about whether it's time to eat or not.  

I've also managed to lose a few pounds.  

The idea of a food diary is good.  I'd recommend trying the new one here on Med Help.  My problem with it is that I don't have time to keep it updated.  I find that a small day planner in my bag to jot things down in, is working great too.  It's also a good idea to write down your feelings when you eat too - that way you can tell if you have emotional "triggers" as well - like boredom, anger, frustration, happiness, etc.
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