5 Easy Ways to Boost Your Metabolism as You Age
Written By: Taylor Rao
Usually, when someone says age is just a number, there are usually eye rolls to follow along with some complaint about joint pain or weight gain. But age being just a number should be a good thing. Wait, what?
Let’s back it up. We’re in an era of female empowerment and defying the odds. Women are successfully carrying children despite the health risks for pregnant women over 35, we’re overcoming barriers in the workplace like equal pay and gender discrimination, and that means we can accomplish just about anything with mental and physical toughness on our side.
And as we age, there’s a lot of things we want to keep control over, and our metabolism should be at the top of that list. Now, you might think that’s out of your hands (and you’re not the only one, there are 346 million Google search results for the phrase, “is metabolism genetic”), and the short answer to that question is...sort of.
But, the good news is there are a lot of things we can do --and not just us ladies out there --to improve our metabolism as we get older. Learn these tricks now so you won’t ever feel like you have to avoid the dreaded age question ever again. Who knows, you could even end up getting carded at the bar after you implement these tips into your lifestyle.
1. Become BFFs with Your Water Bottle
If “busy” is the best way to define your daily routine, it’s not uncommon to consume coffee all day long and literally forget to fill your body with any other liquid. And while staying hydrated with plenty of H2O is good for a lot of reasons, it might not make your metabolism skyrocket to a quicker pace. But, it will make you feel full which curbs the need for that midday snack.
And some sources do say staying hydrated can have a noticeable, positive impact on your metabolism. According to active.com, drinking six cold cups of water per day can boost your metabolism by 50 calories, AKA enough to shed five pounds in a year if you start this habit and stick with it.
2. Spice Up Your Life
You should always keep a healthy amount of the Spice Girls on your Spotify playlist no matter how old you are, but as you age it is important to keep spices and spicier foods in your diet as it’s known to help keep your metabolism in check.
Have you ever felt your body heat up faster than an oven at 350° when eating something spicy? Well, there’s a reason why. Spicy foods have a thermogenic effect, which really does mean your body heats up during a spicy meal, and this effect actually burns calories in the process. So, you might want to add a little cayenne pepper to your shopping list or look up the perfect recipe for a chili dish to make at home.
3. Try Out Metabolic Training
It would only make sense that the fitness trend of metabolic training would have something to do with fat-burning and helping your metabolism, right? Luckily, the two nearly identical words go hand and hand.
Builtlean.com sums up what metabolic training is as good as anyone (and I do metabolic training and I can’t even describe it very well). According to BuiltLean, metabolic training is a mix of structural and compound exercises with little rest in between. This type of workout is meant to maximize calorie burn and increase metabolic rate during and after the workout.
Like I said, I do this workout so I know this is true. In a metabolic training class, you are constantly squatting, lifting, burning out your quads, thighs, arms, shoulders, you name it --all with little to no downtime between movements. Your heart rate is constantly on the come up and your body builds strength and stamina over time.
PS: Examples of metabolic training include CrossFit (pretty extreme) and the Upstate NY-based fitness program conveniently named Metabolic Meltdown.
4. Pack on the Protein
You might think sticking with salads is going to be the best for you as you age, but the truth is you must keep a healthy amount of protein in your diet to continue to boost your metabolism. Protein makes you feel more full and satisfied with your meal, which will keep you running on that energy longer without feeling like you need to cheat or snack in between.
Here’s a head start on some high protein foods that will get you through the day:
For breakfast: Eggs, oats, greek yogurt
For a snack: Cottage cheese, almonds, pumpkin seeds (or if you’re up for some cooking, try these activated charcoal protein bars)
For lunch: Turkey breast, broccoli, quinoa
For dinner: Lean beef, tuna, lentils, spinach
For dessert: A sweet smoothie with protein powder (there are too many great recipes to name them all!)
5. Give Yourself Some Standing Room
How many of us sit at a desk all day? *Raises hand*
It’s no secret that sitting down for an extended period of time simply isn’t good for you --it’s why we wear FitBits and Apple Watches on our wrists to remind us to get up and move when we’re in the zone at work.
And since most workplaces are aware of our country’s obesity crisis and want you to be the most productive employee possible, let them know you’re interested in a standing desk like Varidesk that lifts your laptop up and allows you to be up and at ‘em while you work.
According to healthline.com, an afternoon of standing at work can burn an additional 174 calories. The more calories you burn, the more you’re doing to boost your metabolism. Easy enough, right?