By: Dr. Masoud Abdar
Not Enough Sleep
Not getting at least 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep most nights not only causes you to burn fewer calories, but increases your cortisol levels which stores fats. You may do everything in your power to control your appetite such as drinking rooibos tea to boost your metabolism and stay on track. But lose out on sleep and your efforts are wasted.
Dehydrating Your Body Every Morning
After waking, drink at least 20 ounces of chloride-less, fluoride-less water to boost your metabolism (Chloride and fluoride in unfiltered water disrupt your metabolic functions and lower your thyroid level). While asleep, your metabolism is slow, and if you don’t replenish your body with food/other drinks, you’re stressing it and keeping it slow.
You Have Unnecessary Stress
Things such as road rage on your way to work causes headaches, stomach upset, increased blood pressure, and sleep disturbances. The end result is it causes your body to metabolize food slower too.
Too Much Caffeine
Drinking caffeinated drinks all day suppresses your appetite and you may not eat much. Not getting enough rich calories slugs your metabolism. By the time you eat, instead of using that food for energy, your body is aggressively storing it as fat, just in case it will be deprived again.
You’re Often in Too Warm Environments
Sleeping in cooled bedrooms to 18°C for at least a month doubles your brown adipose tissue burned. This is a type of fat that burns calories instead of storing them. This fat becomes more active in cooler temperatures and helps naturally warm our bodies back up, all the while boosting our metabolism instead of slowing it down in already hot temperature rooms.
You had zero carbs
Just like how eating too many refined carbs can get in the way of your weight and health goals, eating too few carbs has the same detriment. Our muscles need carbohydrates during exercise to turn glycogen into energy. Have about a cup of oatmeal, sweet potato or brown rice prior to working out, gives your muscles that energy it needs, all the while keeping your metabolism up.
You thought nuts were too fatty
Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids found in nuts such as almonds, boosts the activity of certain genes that control fat burning. At least one ounce of walnuts daily (just one handful), can burn so many calories.
You shunned table salt for sea salt
Sea salt may sound like such an organic, healthier option. But if you read the label, because it’s all natural, there has been no iodine added, a key element that supplements your thyroid hormone. Your thyroid gland helps regulate metabolism. Not enough iodine can cause you to gain weight even though you thought you were doing so well by not consuming much salt. But just remember, only a half of a teaspoon of iodized salt will provide 100 percent of your daily needs. Eat seaweed, cod, shrimp, or eggs which are also rich in iodine.
You ate too many calories too late in the day
Last and most importantly, not eating enough calories all day, then craving a meal after eight PM every night, tells your brain to go into starvation mode and store fat. This leads to increased cortisol, leading to unsightly fat storage in the stomach and hips regions, which comes with its own set of health risks. Not to mention, eating late can throw off your inner clock and make you not hungry in the morning, ultimately leading you to skip breakfast and gaining weight when you do finally eat. Advice: prepare ahead of time in case of busy days, with lots of healthy small snacks to curb your cravings and keep you energized, all the while keeping your metabolism up.