Content provided by our partner, Carol Wilson ~
WEIGHT WELLNESS OVER 40 – METABOLISM
40 is a milestone – physically, emotionally and spiritually. Many things change as we age – metabolism, lean muscle, hormones, activity, sleep, nutrition. These changes most times manifest in physical changes in, and to, our bodies that affect our quality of life.
I will be commenting on a number of these changes that often accompany aging, especially in women. The first of these I will address is metabolism.
‘Metabolism’ is defined as the rate at which food is converted to energy and used/burned, by the body. The human body is a complex machine with millions of processes going on at any given time. Each of these requires energy. The faster the body burns through energy, the less likely a person is to gain weight.
Your metabolism begins to decline at age 40 at a rate of approximately 5% every decade. There are steps that can be taken, however, to reverse the slowing down of our metabolism. One way to increase your metabolism is by having more muscle. Muscle is a metabolically active tissue, the more of it you have, the more energy it takes to maintain it, and the more calories you burn.
Resistance training helps increase muscle gains. High-intensity exercise is shown clinically to raise metabolism. Another way to support muscle-building for long-term increases in metabolism is to feed your body protein. Eating meals higher in protein and fiber will increase metabolism within a few hours following consumption.
Consider raising your protein intake and distributing it across meals throughout the day—breakfast, lunch, and dinner. By distributing protein over the course of the day, instead of getting most of your protein intake at dinner time, you’ll support greater muscle retention and growth to power your metabolism.
Also, work out daily. Combine resistance, aerobic, and flexibility training over several workouts per week. Work your way up to five workouts per week with two or three aerobic workouts like running or biking and two or three resistance training sessions. Also, make sure to keep some form of stretching in your routine. Your objective is not solely calories burned, but to also boost your body’s metabolism and response to exercise through recovery and rebuilding.