Suspect you have a sluggish metabolism? You might have hypothyroidism, or an underactive thyroid gland, which afflicts about 25 percent of American women — many of whom don't know they have the condition, according to the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists. "The thyroid gland controls your body's metabolism, so one of the first signs that it may be off is an inability to lose weight," explains Pamela Peeke, M.D., professor of medicine at the University of Maryland and author of Fight Fat After Forty. Your doctor can determine if you're suffering from hypothyroidism by running a blood test. If you do have an underactive thyroid, you'll be treated with a synthetic thyroid supplement, which you will need to take for the rest of your life (it will return your metabolism to normal, so it should be easier to drop unwanted pounds).
For even more impressive effects on body composition: aim for exercise forms which elicit a positive hormonal response. This means lifting really heavy things (strength training), or interval training. Such exercise increases levels of the sex hormone testosterone (primarily in men) as well as growth hormone. Not only do greater levels of these hormones increase your muscle mass, but they also decrease your visceral fat (belly fat) in the long term. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpyvL0pb0mo
While it is technically correct that cardio activity will use fat to fuel energy output, this process usually only lasts as long as the session itself, and because we gradually adjust to certain levels of intensity the body increasingly resists shedding unwanted weight when routinely using this method: this is why varying one's cardio intensity levels is mandatory if we wish to optimize fat loss. Weight training, however, will work one's body much more intensely than most forms of cardio will, thus stimulating a greater metabolic response, which will ultimately lead to increased fat loss above and beyond that directly attributable to aerobic work.
All of our RD experts agree: H2O is crucial for weight loss. “Water is so important when trying to lose weight since it helps to you feel full between meals,” says Amy Shapiro, RD, founder of Real Nutrition NYC in New York City. Here’s a simple hydration rule of thumb: Shoot to consume half as many ounces of water as your total body weight in pounds. (So if you weigh 180, sip on 90 ounces of water each day.)
A number of athletes told us that they don't abandon heavy free-weight workouts when trying to get cut. "I've lifted weights for over 10 years," says Louisville personal trainer Lindsay Cappotelli, "and I've found that heavy weights lifted for 5-8 reps with a focus on big lifts like the squat, deadlift, and bench press has worked best for me. You always hear, 'Train with light weights for high reps to burn fat,' but I've found the opposite to be true."
While it’s often assumed that bread is off-limits when you’re trying to lose belly fat, the right bread may actually expedite the process. Switching to sprouted bread can help out carb-lovers eager to get their fix without going up a belt size, thanks to the inulin content of sprouted grains. The results of a study published in Nutrition & Metabolism reveal that found that pre-diabetic study subjects whose diets were supplemented with inulin shaved off more belly fat and total weight than those whose meal plans didn’t pack this healthy prebiotic fiber. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY7XCPpyrvM
Fighting constantly with your S.O.? It’s time to address your issues head-on. "Research has shown that cortisol, the hormone that's released during stressful activity, is linked to fat storage,” says Gina Guddet, couples counselor and co-author of Love Metabolism. “And poor communication between couples is the most common type of stress that you tend to experience."
Losing fat doesn't have to be complicated, but it can be so confusing with so much advice coming at you from all angles. Fitness coach Yiannis Fleming (@mrsportofficial on Instagram), who helps thousands of people on their weight-loss journeys, wants to make things simple. With a degree in sport science and a Stanford diploma in health and nutrition, he recently shared a post explaining four tips to help with fat loss.
Are you like Old Faithful when it comes to your morning walk or evening jog? Know this: The more you do an activity, the more your body adapts to it, so you burn fewer calories. If you want to light a fire under your metabolism, consider cross-training. For example, if you normally walk, try biking instead. "Since you're not used to working all those different muscles, it's a more intense workout, which can translate into a greater metabolic after-burn because your body is working harder to recover and get oxygen to all your tissues," says Carol Espel, M.S., an exercise physiologist for Equinox Fitness Clubs in New York City. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sx6lAvbRM-g
Try interval training. Cardio is good, but lately science is pointing the to fact that interval training is better. And it's quicker and more convenient to boot! Instead of jogging for 30 minutes, you do quick bursts of all-out runs for 30 seconds between periods of leisurely walking for 15 or 20. Why? It burns more calories and keeps your heart pumping; there's an afterburn effect, too!
But in today's unenlightened "believe everything you hear" age this most effective and proven approach, for some strange reason, does not seem to attract much interest. This is no more obvious when one witnesses the "technological" revolution that is happening within the fitness industry, where a newer even more ridiculous gadget compared to the one that preceded it promises to build you the body of your dreams, with little effort on your part, "in 30 days or your money back"; where a machine that does most of the work for you is touted as a suitable replacement for actually applying a modicum of effort.
As a nutrient which raises the metabolic rate probably faster than any other, lean protein is favored by bodybuilders for its fat burning properties. As well as encouraging muscle growth through its conversion into the amino acids needed to rebuild damaged tissues larger and stronger, protein, due to the complexity of its composition, requires additional energy to be properly digested. If we do not eat enough protein the body will break down muscle tissue to ensure there is enough of it to fuel the many biological processes that require it. So, to boost the metabolism to encourage fat burning it is essential that we at all times consume enough protein.
People wonder why they cannot lose body fat; their blood sugar levels are out of control! Consume at least three solid food meals per day. Mixed nuts are a great protein shake alternative as they are high in good fats, proteins and have adequate fiber content. Aim to get raw or organic nuts which will have the most nutrients available, peanuts are not a good choice in comparison to mixed nuts.
Almonds, peanuts, walnuts, pistachios — at GH, we're nuts about nuts! People who snack on nuts may have lower abdominal fat than those who munch on carb-based treats, according to a 2015 study in the Journal of the American Heart Association. Nuts are rich in monounsaturated fats, a heart-healthy (and more satisfying) pick than their grain-based counterparts. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qWKAvHO9TQo
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