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Metabolism & Weight Loss

Metabolism and What Determines Our Metabolic Rate

| Definitions | What Determines Metabolic Rate | Basal Body Temperature | Measuring BBT |
| Causes of Low BBT | How to Raise Metabolism Rate | Basal Metabolic Rate Formula |


Basal Metabolism
The minimum amount of energy required to maintain vital functions in an organism at complete rest, measured by the basal metabolic rate in a fasting individual who is awake and resting in a comfortably warm environment.

Basal Metabolic Rate
The rate at which energy is used by an organism at complete rest, measured in human beings by the heat given off per unit time, and expressed as the calories released per kilogram of body weight or per square meter of body surface per hour.

What Determines Our Metabolic Rate
Several things determine our metabolic rate, including:

Our Genes
Some people have a naturally faster metabolism

Our Age
As we age, our calorie needs decrease. On average it drops 2 per cent each decade.

Our Muscle-to-Fat Ratio
Muscle cells are about 8 times more metabolically demanding than fat cells. So the greater the our proportion of muscle to fat, the faster our metabolic rate.

Our Activity Level
Exercise burns calories. Even after we stop exercising, the effect continues. So we burn calories at a faster rate for several hours afterwards.

How Often We Eat
Our metabolic rate increases during digestion of food, a process known as the Thermal Effect of food. In simple terms, if we go too long without food (5 hours for men; 3 hours for women), our body thinks there is a food shortage and our metabolism tends to slow down.

Our Health & Nutrition
Metabolism is governed by thousands of separate chemical reactions. To perform this process efficiently, our body needs a constant supply of nutrients. Without these nutrients (like vitamins and minerals, esp. vitamins B2, B3, B5, B6 & vitamin C) metabolism can become inefficient and sluggish. The best way to ensure good dietary nutrition is to follow a balanced diet.
For a good vitamin/mineral supplement try Thin for Life "Core 4" Supplement. It is a 1) A multivitamin, 2) An essential fatty acid, 3) An antioxidant, 4) A probiotic.

Basal Body Temperature
Your body temperature gives an indication of your body's metabolism the rate in which each cell in the body converts food into energy. A low temperature indicates a sluggish metabolism or "hypo-metabolism".
Most of the time, low body temperature occurs because the body cannot maintain a normal temperature. Even though the body thermostat may call for more heat.

A number of conditions can be responsible for a low body temperature. Low thyroid function may be the cause. Thyroid blood tests are helpful, but they do not always give the information needed for treatment. Other causes include deficiency of vitamins, minerals or calories and chronic allergies.

Since most infections and even cancer can elevate basal body temperatures. A normal reading does not rule out a sluggish metabolism.

Measuring Basal Body Temperature
Measuring your Basal Body Temperature (BBT) is one way to measure your metabolism. A basal body temperature taken first thing upon waking is the most accurate way to do this.

Six Simple Steps
1. Obtain a thermometer to record your body temperature. Before retiring to bed, the night before you do this test, thoroughly shake down the thermometer and place it on your bedside table. To remain in basal state, you should avoid any unnecessary movements when taking your temperature. It should be easily reached with minimum effort in the A.M. Be sure you do not use an electric blanket.

2. Take your temperature first thing in the a.m. upon awakening. The temperature is taken by placing the thermometer snugly in the armpit. It must be kept there for at least 10 min. This must be done by watching the clock to make sure it is a full 10 minutes.

3. Repeat this procedure daily for at least 5 days. It is best to do for 15 days for more accuracy.

4. Enter each day's temperature on the Basal Chart Graph by placing a dot on the appropriate spot. Join the dots to make a curve. Make extra sheets to continue the graph if you wish.

5. Check your heart rate before getting out of bed. Take your pulse by placing two fingertips over the thumb side of your inner wrist area. As you feel the pulsations, count your pulse for 30 seconds. Multiply this amount by two and record the pulse rate on the chart. A lower heart rate and BBT can indicate hypothyroidism.

6. Enter comments on the graph to indicate days of menstruation if applicable. Such as Ml for the first day, M2 for the second etc. Other notable events may be listed.

In women, particularly, there may be a variation in temperature during different phases of the menstrual cycle. It is ordinarily slightly higher at mid-cycle during ovulation, (10-13 days prior to an expected period). Reading obtained 2nd, 3d, and 4th day of a menstrual period would most reveal a sub-normal basal body temperature.

If accurately measured, basal body temperatures, which consistently run below 97.8 degrees are highly suggestive of a hypo metabolic state. The normal range is 97.8 to 98.2. Temperatures that vary ' widely from day to day, are indicative of need for thyroid treatment as general rule.

The chemical and metabolic rate regulates and controls many body functions. Irregular thyroid function is a common determinant of the metabolic rate. Blood tests such as thyroid hormone levels (T3, T4, T7, FTI, TSH, etc.) only measure the quantity of these hormones in the blood. The levels are compared to community averages but can not tell if the level or function is appropriate for your thyroid hormones. For example, the level of hormone may be within the "normal" range yet not be sufficient for your metabolic needs.
A non-drug solution for thyroid irregularities may be Thyrosol. It is a multi-faceted supplement formula featuring targeted nutrients and herbs that promote healthy thyroid function.

Some causes of low body temperature and related symptoms:

  • Hypothyroidism: low heart rate, slow movements, mental dullness, weight gain, high cholesterol, high blood calcium, rapid blood clotting.  It is worth noting that low thyroid function does not always require hormone replacement (levothyroxine, Thyrolar®, Cytomel®, Armour Thyroid ,etc). Thyrosol for example.
  • Pituitary insufficiency: obesity, white skin, sluggish mentality, increased urination, lack of hair growth
  • Gonadal insufficiency: - no hair growth, smooth thin skin, high-pitched voice, obesity, irregular menses, immature mammary glands
  • Adrenal insufficiency: low cholesterol, hyperpigmented skin, low blood pressure, asthenia
  • Hypoglycemia and other impairments of oxidative metabolism
  • Cirrhosis
  • Pancreatitis (usually acute cases only)
  • Recreational drug or alcohol abuse
  • Central Nervous System abnormalities (severe and unusual types).
  • Metabolic toxicity:  if the mechanisms that produce energy (and thus the heat that keeps your body temperature above room temperature) are ineffective or blocked, it only makes sense that your temperature would be lower than expected

    How to Raise Metabolism

    1. Take regular exercise
    This should be aerobic exercise that makes you breathe more heavily. Exercises that build muscle are also useful.

    2. Eat Breakfast and Eat Regularly
    To benefit from the Thermal Effect of food and ensure that your body burns calories willingly, eat breakfast and then eat regularly throughout the day.

    3. Eat a Balanced Diet
    This helps to maintain a good supply of nutrients which in turn keeps your metabolism working smoothly.

    4. Avoid Pills
    For the sake of your health and weight, avoid all supplements that claim to offer fat-burning and weight loss benefits. Remember, if you do not take your eating and exercise habits, you will not keep your weight off.

    5. Specialized Supplements
    For those who have a slow metabolism because of poor eating habits, an eating disorder, or some health conditions, supplements may be an option to help "kick" metabolism.
    Thin for Life "Core 4" Supplement is an excellent supplement for overall good health.
    Thyrosol is an excellent supplement to promote healthy thyroid function.
    Thin for Life Metabolic Management Pack is an excellent choice to 'kick start' slow metabolism. However, do not try it until you have tried other options. In other words, work on living a healthy lifestyle first.

    6. Metabolism - The Bottom Line
    The only safe and effective way to raise your metabolism is to take more exercise. The harder you work, the faster your metabolic rate.

    More Ways to Increase Metabolism

    Increasing Lean Muscle Mass
    This is the first and probably the most obvious way to create a more constructive metabolism. It is natural that the more muscle we have the more calories we will burn...even at rest! Muscle takes energy to make it work but fat does not, it just sits there. Try moderate resistance training to start off. Even 15 minutes of stretching will help get you started in teh right direction.

    Engaging In Aerobic Exercise
    Aerobics are great! This will ensure that your body fat will decrease while at the same time your lean muscle mass will increase. Even after you have finished exercising your metabolism will remain higher for a period of time, working more efficiently. You will then burn more calories no matter what you're doing…working, driving, even watching television! Our Heart Rate Chart shows you what your heart rate should be for aerobic exercise.

    Make Sure to Eat
    Yes, that's right, eat! Also, make sure you avoid crash diets where you starve yourself. Restricting your calories too much will result in a loss of lean muscle tissue slowing your metabolism down. And we don't want that! Make sure to also spread your meals out evenly throughout the day. Smaller, more frequent meals are generally considered better. Try a minimum of four. This way, your body will not think it's starving itself and won't be as likely to store the food as fat. This is usually the case when you only eat two or three meals during the day.

    One of the number one mistakes that individuals make when trying to lose weight is not eating enough foods. In other words, reducing calorie intake less than the Basal Metabolic Rate required for their body. Here is a formula for determining your BMR. WARNING. Do not use this formula to practice anorexic behavior, this can be life threatening. Remember the Thin for Life philosophy is slow, but steady. If you try to lose weight by drastic calorie reduction you are only sabotaging your goal to be Thin for Life.

    Even More Ideas on Increasing Metabolism
    To increase metabolism, always eat breakfast in the morning. Break-fast...break the fast. Don't skip breakfast. If you wait  until mid morning or afternoon to eat, your metabolism will run slower. Think of breakfast as adding logs to the fireplace. Your metabolism is the fireplace and logs are the breakfast.

    Increase metabolism by eating smaller meals through the day. Eat 4 to 6 six small meals, 2 to 3 hours apart.

    Include energy foods such as whole grains, beans, vegetables and fruits in your diet.

    Park further away and walk. Use the stairs instead of the elevator when possible. Walk to the post office instead of getting into the car. Take your dog on a daily walk. Do more activities around the house to burn energy instead of wasting money on pills and potions that don't work.

    Incorporate a walking routine to increase metabolism at least three to four times a week. Walk 30 to 40 minutes each time. This is the best way to increase your metabolism. Join Thin for Life's America on the Move Program as a member.

    Don't starve yourself when trying to lose weight. This will slow down your metabolism in a hurry. Avoid 5 to 6 hour gaps between meals without eating.

    Be committed to eating smaller meals at regular intervals. Prepare food in advance and bring it with you. Never eat sporadically and plan each meal. The common mistake is to skip meals and eat too little during the day. This makes you vulnerable for eating junk food later in the day. Eating to lose weight takes planning.

    Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) Formula
    Your Basal Metabolic Rate shows the number of calories your body needs to operate. This doesn't account for any activity, it's simply the energy needed to sustain a heartbeat, breathing and normal body temperature. It measures the body at rest, not sleep, at room temperature.
    WARNING. Do not use this formula to practice anorexic behavior, this can be life threatening. Remember the Thin for Life philosophy is slow, but steady. If you try to lose weight by drastic calorie reduction you are only sabotaging your goal to be Thin for Life.
    BMR for males = 66 + (13.7 x w) + (5 x h) - (6.8 x y)
    BMR for females = 655 + (9.6 x w) + (1.8 x h) - (4.7 x y)

    h = height in centimeters (inches x 2.54)
    w = weight in kilograms (pounds ÷ 2.2)
    y = age in years

    NOTE: The information provided in this report is for educational purposes only. You should always consult with your doctor for advice regarding your metabolism.