Wondering how to boost metabolism? Research shows the best ways to increase metabolism include building muscle, following a healthy diet, using natural adjunct therapies, and restoring gut health.
If you’ve ever researched how to boost metabolism, you’re about to be in for a shock: Did you know that, contrary to popular belief, your metabolism doesn’t slow as you age?
Instead, your metabolism naturally holds steady from ages 20 to 60, from a biological perspective. But, if this is the case, why do people gain weight as they age? And, along those same lines, why are so many interested in learning about how to boost metabolism in an effort to lose that added weight?
Well, your metabolism plays a crucial role in both your overall health and your weight management. It refers to the complex chemical process that occurs within your body to convert your food and drink into energy. You can think of it as your body’s engine.
Having a faster metabolism can help you to burn calories more efficiently, leading to weight loss and increased energy levels. Meanwhile, having a slower metabolism is linked to fatigue and weight gain, as you’re burning less calories throughout the day and instead storing them as fat.
But as you now know, progressing from your 20s to your 50s doesn’t absolutely mean your metabolism will slow down. So, if you’re struggling with weight management, you’re likely asking an obvious question: What factors do impact your metabolism and cause undesirable weight gain and, perhaps more importantly, what are the best ways to boost metabolism so you can reach your weight management goals?
Keep reading to get these answers and more!
What Impacts Your Metabolism?
While aging alone doesn’t cause your metabolism to slow, there is an element of truth here … just not in the way you may be expecting.
As you age, your metabolic rate tends to decrease due to one critical factor: a decrease in muscle mass. According to research, your muscle mass decreases anywhere from 3 to 8 percent each decade. And, as we’ve reviewed before, muscle burns approximately 2.5 times more calories of fat, meaning the more muscle you lose, the slower your metabolism becomes.
Now, the great news is that this decrease in muscle mass can be mitigated through various lifestyle choices.
But there are other factors that impact your metabolism to consider as well. Here are a few to know about:
Gender. Generally, men tend to have a higher metabolic rate than women. And, not surprisingly, this is because men typically have more muscle mass. Hormonal differences also play a role, with testosterone promoting muscle growth and higher metabolic rates in men.
Genetics. Research has shown that some people are genetically predisposed to have faster or slower metabolisms. That said, it's important to note that genetics are not the sole determinant of metabolism, and lifestyle factors can still have a significant impact.
Sleep. Another important factor to know about is in regards to your sleep. Studies show that sleep deprivation can disrupt your hormonal balance, which can trigger the chemicals in your brain to increase your appetite and decrease your metabolic rate (more on this in the next section). Conversely quality sleep increases your metabolic rate by 15 percent, which makes getting quality sleep critical for those looking for ways to increase metabolism.
Diet and exercise habits. Consuming a diet high in inflammatory foods has been shown to promote unhealthy weight gain while eating anti-inflammatory foods has been linked to a decrease in body fat and supportive of healthy weight management. Additionally, dehydration is linked to a slower metabolic process. Likewise, when it comes to exercise, being sedentary allows your muscle mass to continue to drop while engaging in strength training will help to preserve and rebuild lost muscle mass, thereby working to boost metabolism and support healthy body composition.
Stress. While we often underestimate the impact of stress on our metabolism, the truth is that experiencing high levels of stress causes the release of the stress hormone cortisol, which increases appetite and promotes belly fat.
Now that you have a better idea of the factors that impact your ability to boost metabolism, let’s take a look at one critically-overlooked yet extremely important element: your brain.
Engaging Your Secret Metabolism-Boosting Weapon
Believe it or not, your brain plays a significant role in your ability to boost metabolism. This is because your brain controls many of your bodily functions, including metabolism regulation.
Here’s how it works: Your hippocampus is a key part of the limbic system in your brain. In addition to helping you form memories, your hippocampus aids in processing emotions, regulating certain functions, and measures your hormones, temperature, thirst, hunger, stress, and hunger hormones.
This means that keeping this area of your brain as healthy as possible and in rhythm with your body is critical to promote better responses to stress, improve sleep, regulate hunger, provide the energy you need to build muscle mass and lose fat, and so much more.
But that’s not all your brain does to help support a healthy metabolism. Your limbic system also houses your hypothalamus, the part of your brain that plays a critical role in memory and learning. You may be surprised to learn that your hypothalamus plays a crucial role in regulating your circadian rhythm, which is your body’s internal clock that controls your sleep-wake cycle.
Interestingly, because of their close proximity, your circadian rhythm in your hypothalamus lives the same rhythm as your hunger-regulating hormones ghrelin and leptin. You can almost think of them as neighbors living in the same neighborhood that’s been impacted by a power outage: Because they’re on the same grid, when one house has a black out or loss of power, the neighboring houses will as well.
So, anytime your brain and body are out of sync and the normal rhythm is disrupted, this can impact your appetite, sleep, energy levels, and so much more. In fact, newer research published in January 2024 has shown in animal studies that a specific set of neurons in the hypothalamus send signals to the tissue in body fat to release energy. When the communication pathway between the brain and body remains open, it was found to promote greater physical activity, delayed aging, and longevity.
But when this pathway is out of sync or rhythm and communication is blocked, it impacts your metabolism in a variety of ways. And this asynchronicity can happen due to a variety of factors, from functional neurological disorder (FND) to stress.
Fortunately, the very steps you would take as you’re learning how to increase metabolism will also support the proper synchronization between your brain and body.
This means that as you’re learning and implementing the top ways to speed up metabolism and lose body fat, you’ll also be improving your cellular health and working to prevent even more concerning disorders, such as FND, functional movement disorder (FMD), chronic pain, accelerated aging, and more!
Let’s take a closer look at the top four ways to boost metabolism fast and give you a jumpstart on your journey to weight management and optimal health.
4 Tips For How to Boost Metabolism FAST!
Here are some of the most effective ways to increase your metabolism quickly.
1. Follow an anti-inflammatory diet.
Having inflammation in your body can lead to various health issues, including a sluggish metabolism. But adopting an anti-inflammatory diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and lean proteins, you can begin to cool the inflammation in your body and enhance your metabolic function. In fact, improving the quality of the foods you eat is one of the most effective ways to boost metabolism naturally.
To get started, consider incorporating intermittent fasting with a Mediterranean diet. This means you focus on foods such as berries, leafy greens, fatty fish, and nuts — all known for their anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, incorporating thermogenic foods (foods known to use up more calories to convert that food into energy) such as lean protein, chili peppers, ginger, green tea, and more can offer an extra metabolic boost. By including these foods in your meals, you’ll provide your body with essential nutrients and antioxidants that support a healthy metabolism.
You’ll also need to avoid dairy, sugar, and rancid oils, as these are known to wreak havoc on your metabolism. I’ve found that the holy grail to boost metabolism is to avoid packaged/processed foods, processed oils, and fried foods. Conversely, you can still enjoy red meat once a week and grains, as long as you don’t have an allergy to gluten.
Finally, when it comes to protein, keep in mind that many people tend to consume either too little or too much. Too little protein can make it hard to build that muscle you need to boost your metabolism, and too much can bog down your digestion, detoxification, kidney function, and more. To determine your ideal amount of dietary protein, divide your weight in pounds by 2.2 to get your weight in kilograms. Then multiply that number by 0.8 to get your ideal daily amount of protein in grams.
2. Supercharge exercise with oxygen therapy.
If you’ve ever Googled, “how to boost my metabolism,” odds are that you haven’t come across this metabolism-boosting tip. And that’s why it’s one of the best-kept secrets out there!
In addition to incorporating strength training to build muscle and increase your metabolic rate long after the workout is over, there’s another element to include in your exercise routine: using oxygen therapy, which takes your workout to the next level.
Oxygen therapy, also known as O2 therapy, involves using supplemental oxygen during exercise to increase oxygen delivery to your muscles and improve your exercise performance. It also helps to push insulin into your cells and provides more oxygen to your brain. And when your brain gets more oxygen, your hypothalamus operates more efficiently and promotes satiety.
By supercharging your workouts with oxygen therapy, you can burn more calories and improve your metabolic rate. You’ll immediately feel more energetic and notice more clarity. But this doesn’t mean you have to buy a costly oxygen concentrator for your home to get these benefits. Instead of paying $2,500 for your own, search for a local practice near you that offers oxygen therapy. At The Dearing Clinic, we offer 15-minute oxygen therapy rides on a Peloton for $40 per session.
3. Utilize fat-burning peptide therapy.
It’s no secret that peptide therapy is having a moment right now, largely thanks to the increased awareness of the GLP-1 semaglutide (more popularly known by the brand name Ozempic). So, as you’re researching how to increase metabolism, you may be wondering what role peptides can play in boosting your metabolism as well.
Fat-burning peptide therapy is a great adjunct therapy to use to boost metabolism because
peptides are short chains of amino acids that can stimulate metabolic processes in the body. While peptide therapy is highly effective and safe when used correctly, many practitioners are overprescribing it, leading to an increase in undesirable side effects such as nausea, fatigue, and GI issues including constipation and diarrhea. Plus, when people discontinue use, they tend to feel ravenous and end up regaining the weight.
If you want to utilize peptide therapy to help boost your metabolism, make sure to partner with a doctor or nurse practitioner who understands the importance of incorporating smaller incremental increases in your dosage to not only help reduce side effects but also support more steady weight loss and avoid rebound weight gain after you discontinue the therapy.
You can learn more about The Dearing Clinic’s approach to peptide therapy here or reach out to us to learn about our patient training and educational offerings that allow you to manage your therapy at home and get the most out of our vials.
4. Restore your gut with a unique blend of supplements.
Finally, here’s the last tip for how to reset your metabolism: In order to truly kick your metabolism into high gear and lose unwanted fat, you have to restore your gut health.
The truth is that your gut health plays a crucial role in metabolism, and by restoring the balance of good bacteria in your gut, you can enhance your metabolic function. In fact, research has shown that having poor gut microbiota is linked to an increased risk of developing obesity and various metabolic diseases.
If you’re curious about how to increase metabolism by restoring your gut health, here are a few tips to consider. In addition to consuming probiotic-rich foods, such as yogurt and fermented vegetables, and fiber-rich foods, such as whole grains and legumes, you may find added benefit from supplementation.
At The Dearing Clinic, we recommend taking a high-quality probiotic along with a good fiber prebiotic to encourage the healthy colonies to grow faster. This actually helps your gut to create more GLP-1 peptides! In addition, including immune balancing proteins and enzymes is a great way to solidify the good bacteria you’re receiving from the probiotic and prebiotic, but that’s not all.
Our preferred gut restore supplements also include amino acids such as proline and immunoglobulins that help to heal the gut and promote better absorption of the nutrients you’re consuming in your diet.
If you’ve ever researched how to boost metabolism, you may be surprised to learn that, contrary to popular belief, your metabolism doesn’t slow as you age.
The reason many people gain more body fat and weight as they age is primarily due to a loss of lean muscle mass.
Newer research also confirms that keeping your brain and body in proper sync and rhythm is critically important for maintaining optimal energy and to boost metabolism.
In addition to building muscle mass, four of the best ways to boost metabolism fast include following an anti-inflammatory diet, adding oxygen therapy to your exercise routine, using peptide therapy as an adjuct therapeutic option, and restoring your gut health.