Finding natural ways to boost metabolism is essential, especially if you have hypothyroidism.
The thyroid gland helps regulates metabolism. Unfortunately, with hypothyroidism, the thyroid gland doesn't produce enough of the hormone, causing your metabolism to slow. This, in turn, slows weight loss, creating a significant amount of frustration for you.
The answer is to improve thyroid function, which means, in this case, to provide the missing hormone.
The typical treatment for hypothyroidism is thyroid hormone therapy using a synthetic (artificial) hormone. This is an effective treatment, which you should continue. However, some natural ways to boost metabolism and thyroid function complement the standard treatment.
Here are eight ways to boost metabolism when you have hypothyroidism.
1. Drink More Green
According to numerous research studies, green tea is an effective way to rev up metabolism. Researchers believe that this metabolism-boosting effect is due to its EGCG content.
EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate) is a catechin, a chemical member of the flavonoid family found in plants. The catechin is known as a powerful antioxidant and is likely responsible for a variety of health benefits attributed to green tea consumption.
It also appears to have an antiobesity and antidiabetic effect in pre-clinical research and clinical trials. (1)
For example, ECGC purified from green tea fed to obese mice appeared to decrease calorie absorption and increase fat burning, which decreased diet-induced obesity. (2)
Human studies have yielded similar results.
In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study (the "gold standard" of scientific research), researchers administered 300 mg of EGCG per day to six overweight men for just two days. The results? ECGC increased thermogenesis and fat oxidation, boosting metabolism. (3)
So, drink up. Scientific studies strongly suggest that green tea can boost your metabolism, particularly helpful if you have hypothyroidism!
2. Eat High-Quality Protein At Every Meal
Consuming protein is another scientifically proven method of increasing the metabolic rate. There are a couple of ways protein consumption affects metabolism.
First, protein has a higher thermic effect than other macronutrients. The thermic effect of food refers to the energy it takes your body to eat, digest, and store food. (4)
You burn significantly more calories digesting protein than carbohydrates and fats, boosting your metabolic rate. And research suggests a high-protein diet increases fat burning. (5)
Protein also indirectly boosts metabolism by increasing muscle mass. This is because when you consume protein, your body breaks down the amino acids and uses them to build bones, cartilage, skin, blood -- and muscles.
Muscle Protein Synthesis And Metabolism
In muscle protein synthesis, the body creates muscle protein specifically to build and repair muscle.
Though "muscle protein synthesis" is triggered by stressing the muscles, some research indicates that protein consumption alone can lead to a minor increase in muscle mass without exercise. (6)
How does this relate to metabolism? The more lean muscle mass, the higher your resting metabolic rate (RMR) is. The RMR is the energy (calories) your body uses when at rest. So building muscle can help reverse hypothyroidism weight gain, making increased protein consumption essential for boosting metabolism.
Increase Metabolism With These Protein Foods
Metabolism-boosting protein foods include:
Plant-based sources of protein include:
Avoid breading, frying, and other calorie-laden preparation methods for best weight loss results. Instead, sprinkle your meats with seasoning and then bake or broil them. (Seasoning adds flavor without calories.)
3. Drink Coffee
Did you know your morning cup of joe can help burn calories helping you lose weight?
It's true! Coffee contains caffeine, a substance that stimulates the central nervous system (CNS).
This triggers a release of the hormone epinephrine, which triggers fat burning. Intense exercise heightens this effect and is recommended for optimal weight management and overall health. (7)
When using this method to boost your metabolism, you must avoid adding calorie-laden cream and sugar to your coffee.
4. Eat Chili Peppers
Research shows that eating chili peppers may effectively increase fat metabolism, thermogenesis, and energy expenditure and promote weight loss. (8)
The reason? Chili peppers contain capsaicin, a substance known to increase the metabolic burn. Interestingly, capsaicin is also an active component of green tea, the famous fat burner.
When researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) examined capsaicin, they were amazed to discover the fat-burning properties of this compound. Indeed, they theorized that capsaicin might be nearly as effective for weight loss as bariatric surgery with far fewer health complications. (9)
Chili peppers also have powerful anti-inflammatory properties, which could help you manage hypothyroidism. After all, inflammation of the thyroid gland can contribute to hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) and hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid). Therefore, it is possible that consuming chili peppers may help soothe an inflamed thyroid and increase metabolism.
Of course, chili peppers aren't everyone's cup of tea. If eating a whole chili pepper is too hot for your taste, try sprinkling chili powder on certain foods. Using chili powder lets you control the heat level while still enjoying the weight loss benefits.
You can also take it in supplement form.
5. Stay Hydrated
About 60 to 70% of the body is water. So, it makes sense that staying well-hydrated is essential for all bodily functions.
Yet, an estimated 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. (10) Dehydration can lead to health complications and metabolic issues.
Indeed, research suggests that dehydration significantly reduces the metabolic rate. For example, in one study at the University of Utah, researchers found that subjects who had eight to twelve glasses of water per day showed a significant increase in metabolic rate compared to the control group who drank just four to six glasses. (11)
This and other research suggest that hydration is an easy and effective metabolism booster. Experts recommend that most people get the equivalent of at least eight 8 ounce glasses of fluids per day, more if out in the sun or exercising. (The fluid in foods also counts toward your daily intake.)
For best health and metabolic results, avoid drinking soft drinks and fruit juices containing sugars and empty calories.
You must also limit your coffee intake if you're going for hydration, as caffeine is a diuretic that removes fluid from the body.
6. Manage Stress
You've probably heard that chronic stress is harmful to your health. But studies suggest that it's also terrible for the metabolism!
There are various reasons why stress slows metabolism.
According to a University of Florida study, researchers found that chronic stress triggers the production of betatrophin. This protein blocks an enzyme needed to regulate fat metabolism, preventing the breakdown of fat. (12)
In addition, chronic stress raises cortisol levels, which hinders thyroid function and slows metabolism. Excess cortisol is also associated with increased belly fat.
Make an effort every day to reduce your stress levels.
Tips for Reducing Stress
Here are some great tips for reducing the stress plaguing you for years without you realizing it. Try one or more of these techniques daily to manage your stress, increase your metabolic rate, and lose weight.
Yoga is an ancient mind/body/spirit practice scientifically proven to decrease stress and enhance relaxation.
You can learn yoga by reading books and watching videos. Still, it’s best if you attend an in-person class to receive group or individual instruction from a certified yoga instructor.
Like yoga, meditation is an ancient practice that has been shown to reduce anxiety.
There are many forms of meditation, but most practice concentrating on one thing, such as breathing. This trains the mind to focus, which relaxes the mind and body, instilling calmness and reducing depressed or anxious feelings.
Meditation is easy to learn, and it can offer instantaneous stress-relieving results. You can learn meditation by reading a book, searching for instruction online, or practicing with a guided meditation video.
You've probably heard the saying, "Laughter is the best medicine." It turns out that this is a true statement.
Numerous research studies suggest that laughter has multiple therapeutic benefits. It has an especially positive effect on mental health, the immune system, and stress.
Indeed, research shows that laughter decreases stress-making hormones in the blood and "mitigate the effects of stress." (13)
There are many easy and free ways to practice laughter therapy. For example, you can easily access funny videos on YouTube. You can also binge-watch comedy shows and movies on NetFlix and other streaming platforms.
Try it and see. There is nothing more relaxing than a good belly laugh!
Get a Pet
Numerous research studies indicate that pet ownership is good for your health.
For example, owning a pet has been found to lower blood pressure, improve cognitive function, boost immunity, improve cholesterol levels, reduce depression -- and, of course, ease stressful feelings.
It appears pets have natural calming abilities.
If you're wondering, the best types of pets for stress reduction appear to be dogs and cats. (Therapy dogs are often brought into hospitals and nursing homes to reduce patients' stress levels.)
7. Do High-Intensity Interval Training Exercises
Multiple clinical research studies suggest that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is great for increasing metabolism.
HIIT involves repeated intense bursts of exercise interspersed with low- or no-intensity "recovery" periods. Studies show that HIIT burns significantly more calories and dangerous visceral belly fat than low-intensity exercise performed at a steady speed. (14)
Studies also show that metabolism remains elevated hours after a HIIT workout. (15)
And one of the best things about HIIT is that you can achieve metabolism-boosting weight loss results in just 15 to 20 minutes, three days a week.
Due to the intensity, you should not perform HIIT workouts every day. Instead, experts recommend giving your body one day of rest. However, you can still do low-intensity exercises and weight training on your "off days."
8. Build Muscle
Building lean muscle mass is also an excellent way to boost your metabolism when you have hypothyroidism.
As mentioned above, it takes more energy (calories) to maintain muscle than fat. Therefore, having plenty of lean muscle gives you a higher metabolic rate.
In a study published in Current Sports Medicine, researchers found that ten weeks of resistance training increased resting metabolic rate by 7% in participants and reduced body fat by nearly four pounds! (16)
To experience these metabolism-boosting benefits, experts recommend that you perform strength-training exercises at least three times per week.
9. Take SANE Luminae™ Supplement Daily!
SANE Luminae™ is a known fat burner! This clinical formulation contains 7-Keto DHEA, a metabolite of DHEA that is nonhormonal and safe for everyday usage.
Studies show that 7-Keto DHEA optimizes thyroid function and can even restore resting metabolic rate to pre-dieting levels in as little as seven days!!! (Calorie-restrictive dieting typically slows metabolism.) (17)
Researchers divided 30 middle-aged, overweight adults into two groups in one study and put them both on the same calorie-restricted diet and exercise program. Half were given 100 mg of 7-Keto twice daily, and the other half were given a placebo. (18)
The 7-Keto group lost 3x more weight than the placebo group.
Essentially, those volunteers increased calorie burn by 5.3%, equating to an extra 96 calories or so burned per day without increasing their activity levels.
Incidentally, studies have found that 7-Keto may increase essential thyroid hormone levels, which could help with weight management if you have hypothyroidism.
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