Regardless of whether we have a fast or slow metabolism, we must adopt a series of eating habits in order not to gain or lose excess weight and stay healthy.

Actually, whether the metabolism is fast or slow does not only have to do with how thin or not we are , but with the way we take advantage of food to be healthy and help the body to perform its functions correctly.

Metabolism is something that many people have heard of at some time, but that they do not always know how to define exactly. Generally, the concept has been associated with figure or weight. However, it goes much further than that.

Discover in this article what metabolism is, how to know if it is fast or slow, as well as the most suitable diet for each case, the importance of physical activity, among other aspects.

What is metabolism?

Generally, the scientific literature defines metabolism as the set of biochemical reactions -which occur within the cells of the body- that allow an organism to obtain and use the energy and compounds necessary for its development. 

In short, these reactions are what transform the nutrients we eat into the energy needed to carry out all vital functions.

Now, the energy that is produced in the metabolism is used in different vital functions , among which the following can be highlighted:

  • Breathing.
  • Digestion.
  • circulation .
  • Body temperature.
  • Elimination of waste through the kidneys and the intestine.

Metabolism also conditions energy expenditure . For this reason, this function is always taken into account when some people fail to lose weight, despite following strict diets.

Therefore, it is essential to follow the proper diet and regulate this process naturally, according to the guidelines of the specialists (endocrine doctor and nutritionist).

How to know if your metabolism is fast or slow

Next we will see how to know if your metabolism is fast or slow, which is important to define some actions, such as the diet to follow.

Characteristics of slow metabolism

People with a slow metabolism can be characterized by the following symptoms:

  • Tiredness and fatigue.
  • Tendency to constipation.
  • Slow or heavy digestions .
  • Difficulty getting up in the morning.
  • Tendency to depression, in some cases.
  • Difficulty losing weight or frequent weight changes.
  • Fat accumulates in the hips and legs. 

Characteristics of fast metabolism

People with a fast metabolism can be characterized by the following symptoms:

  • Constant appetite.
  • Excess energy.
  • Difficulty falling asleep.
  • Tendency to nervousness and anxiety .
  • Poor absorption of nutrients in the intestine.
  • Difficulty gaining weight.
  • When there is fat, it accumulates in the arms and abdomen.

Relationship between diet and metabolism

There is a theory that there is a relationship between metabolic type and eating preferences . From this perspective, it is essential to know the type of food that is best for us to be healthy.

Next we will give you some recommendations; however, when there is overweight or obesity, it is necessary to go to a nutritionist or endocrinologist . It will be this one who recommends the best diet according to your medical history and symptoms.

Food for people with fast metabolism

People with a fast metabolism tend to have a good appetite and always prefer foods rich in fat and protein. They usually go for the savory options instead of the sweet ones.

However, if this is our case, to maintain a balanced weight we must  reduce the consumption of carbohydrates, especially sweets and refined flours .

It is also very important not to overdo the consumption of animal protein.  We will try to combine it with vegetable proteins such as legumes and nuts.

Not all fats are harmful, as long as we opt for good quality ones:

  • Avocado.
  • Seeds.
  • Blue Fish.
  • Nuts.
  • Yolk.
  • Ghee or clarified butter.
  • First cold pressure oils: olive, coconut, sesame, flax.

We must not forget to combine these portions of protein and fat with a good amount of raw vegetables. We can take them in juices and gazpachos, smoothies or salads. If we have a big appetite , we should eat several meals a day and not skip any of them .

Food for people with slow metabolism

People with slow metabolisms often have a tendency to gain weight and feel fatigued, despite not eating much. In this sense, the best solution is based on adopting a proper diet.

Their preference is usually sweets, which are a temptation that, in general, are not healthy. The most advisable thing would be to always consume healthy carbohydrates, made with sweeteners such as stevia and wholemeal flours. On the other hand, it is essential to reduce salt intake, which often causes swelling and fluid retention.

When you have a slow metabolism , you usually look for energy in stimulants such as coffee or cola drinks. However, it is preferable to choose drinks made with natural fruits and foods such as ginger, maca, pure cocoa, ginseng, etc.

You have to control the consumption of fats . We will consume them in moderate amounts and we will choose the same ones that we have recommended for fast metabolism. On the other hand, drinking water throughout the day, fasting and outside of meals, will also help us.

Can you speed up metabolism?

To make the metabolism faster, there are different proposals basically related to daily exercise and diet.

Moving bodies

When we talk about getting moving we refer to different activities, ranging from sports, to yoga, tai-chi, dancing, walking. Anything other than being sedentary will help speed up your metabolism .

Additionally, it is considered that physical exercise in general not only helps burn calories during activity, but also at rest . On the other hand, there are those who exercise twice a day. Of course, as long as the exercises are not repeated, the muscles will not get fatigued. For example, you can jog in the morning and lift weights in the afternoon.

Food that accelerates the metabolism

On the one hand, there is talk of reducing calories, or rather, fats and carbohydrates , which are what accumulate, when we do not spend them, making us gain weight.

But, in addition, it is also said that there are foods that activate the metabolism, since the body has to spend energy to process them . This is the case, for example, of protein of animal origin.

In addition to these, there is talk of fruits, green tea, even caffeine, as well as peppers (they contain capsaicin). All of these have thermogenic properties, which speed up metabolism .

Eat more and spend more

There is even a plan proposed by Haylie Pomroy, according to which food should be consumed in several small portions per day, instead of having a few larger meals.

This is a recommendation for those with a slow metabolism, which stimulates the body to activate itself to process food and make the most of the energy they provide.

In this regard, it is recommended to have a light breakfast, then a snack, lunch, another snack, a light dinner and, if needed, a small snack (for example, a piece of fruit).

Of course, each of these meals should be done in moderation in terms of quantity , also avoiding excess flour and carbohydrates, and including vegetables, fruits and lean proteins.

Go to the specialist

To find out what your metabolism is like and what is most appropriate for your body, in order to look and feel good, it is best to see an endocrinologist and a nutritionist . They will be able to recommend a diet and physical activity routine according to your conditions and needs.

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