Guys... Guess where I am right now? PARIS. Yup - my BFF is getting married there and I am performing the oh-so-stressful Maid of Honor Duties (can you sense my sarcasm? I'm in PARIS)!
I wanted to keep ya'll entertained in my absence so I have fellow Health Coach and Personal Trainer, Erin Melito to the rescue! And I have to say I am just loooving this post she wrote for the blog. Check out Erin's BIG secret on how to boost your metabolism - I'll catch ya'll next week!
So you want to boost your metabolism?
My guess is that you’ve done some research and have probably tried some, or maybe even all, of these:
- Making healthy food choices
- Watching your portions
- Eating 5-7 small meals every 2-4 hours to keep things humming
- Drinking plenty of water
- Getting your sweat on regularly
- Lifting weights to add lean muscle
- Adding some heat into your food because spicy foods might give you boost
- Drinking more coffee or green tea because the caffeine might kick things up
- Eating more protein because that might do the trick
- Fidgeting like it’s your job because it just might burn a few more calories
- Maybe even taking fat-burners or other “magic” supplements that make glamorous claims – YIKES!
When I started to write this blog, I went out on the wonderful world-wide-web and Googled “boost metabolism.”
No surprises here! Those listed above were the most common things to come up.
And yet, so many women still come to me because they’re frustrated that they’re not getting the results they want.
Can you relate?
- You feel like you’re doing everything right and yet…nothing!
- Your body won’t budge.
- Or it feels like your progress is quite comparable to that of a snail. Ugh!
What’s a woman to do?
Well, there’s one rock that you may not have even considered looking under.
What’s that rock, you might ask?
It’s the state of your body and your mind when you’re eating.
Okay, some of you are rolling your eyes right about now.
I get it.
But stay with me.
Are you eating when you’re:
- Overly emotional about something?
- While you’re watching the nightly news (unfortunately most of the stories we see aren’t exactly full of rainbows and unicorns)?
These situations typically cause STRESS.
There’s growing evidence that when you eat your food in a state of stress you drastically limit your ability to digest and metabolize effectively.
According to Marc David, founder of the The Institute for the Psychology of Eating, here are just a few things that happen:
- Cortisol (stress hormone) and insulin levels increase and both accelerate fat storage
- Blood flow to the digestive system decreases which inhibits proper digestion
- Healthy gut bacteria decreases making it more difficult to absorb vitamins and minerals appropriately
- Oxygen, a key factor in metabolic functioning, decreases
- Inflammation in the body increases making it more difficult to shed fat
Holy moly! For realzzzz?!
So, what to do?
Here are a few strategies to bring more stress-less eating into your life:
1. Sit down to eat
Sounds simple but this is one that I see so many women NOT doing. And this doesn’t mean sitting in your car! Sit at a table, take the time, and eat your food in a more mindful way. Pay attention to the flavors, textures, and how your body feels.
2. Practice deep breathing before you eat.
This one takes a lot of patience! Before ANYTHING goes into your pie-hole commit to taking 5-10 long, deep belly breaths. Quiet your mind. Some people like to say a prayer or give thanks for the food they’re going to eat. Pay attention to your body and be sure that you’re feeling relaxed before eating.
3. Tune out any technology
Turn it off or tune it out. ALL of it. The TV, iPhone, iPad, computer. This can be so hard in our day and age when we all seem to have our eyes constantly attached to some electronic device. Detach. You can do it. I know you can! The idea is to get your body and your mind feeling relaxed when you are eating.
There are many other ways to lower stress in your life such as practicing meditation, yoga, getting adequate sleep, etc. The irony is that it can be overwhelming and stressful to try to incorporate all of them into your daily life!
My recommendation is to start with one. Commit to it. Practice it daily until it becomes a habit and then add another into your life.
Small, baby steps add up to big, consistent wins.
Erin Melito is a personal trainer, nutrition coach, lifestyle coach and passionate supporter of womenwho are ready to end the struggle with diets, exercise, and negative self and body image. She has a skill and passion for coaching individuals to create a vision, breakthrough physical, mental, and emotional barriers, and reach their goals. She loves to eat, exercise, and enjoy life! Coaching and teaching other women to do the same is the reason she started www.erinmelito.com.