Small changes in your lifestyle will give big returns in revving up your metabolism. The result is that your body will function more smoothly and you will lose weight and fat quicker. These tiny habits don’t cost a thing.
Lack of sleep can make you pile on the kilos. “You will burn fewer calories, feel psychologically hungry often throughout the day, and be more stressed because of elevated cortisol levels, which is also linked to weight gain. Late bedtime is a lose-lose situation,” says nutritionist Dr Girish Gadkari. You’re better off getting more shut-eye than working out at night.
Stand in office
Every hour, get up from your chair and work standing up.
Sitting is the new smoking. The human body was designed to be active – hunting meat and gathering fuel — not sitting or sleeping for more than eight hours a day. Standing at work burns 50 more calories than sitting. No wonder Twitter has introduced standing meetings at their headquarters.
Guzzle a bottle of water after brushing
Drinking a litre (or two) of water right after waking up is the most inexpensive way you can give your metabolism a jolt. Your body hasn’t had any fluid supply during the entire night while you were sleeping. Your metabolism has also slowed during the rest. This little morning habit will rehydrate your system before it has to digest any food or do physical activity. It also leads to less bloating and hunger pangs.
Those weekend drinks with high school buddies and weeknight happy hours will slow down your metabolic activity. When the body has to break alcohol down, it ignores the food you’ve eaten with your drinks or prior to the party. One study claimed that alcohol slows the fat-burning process by as much as 73%. If you do decide to drink, restrict yourself to a couple of glasses of red wine — or refer to my booze guide — and keep sipping on water throughout the evening. Skip the fried bar food on that night.
Science says that people burn fewer calories if they nap in the afternoon and stay up at night. Napping messes up the circadian rhythm, the internal biological clock which plays an important role in metabolic activity.
Laugh a lot
Heartfelt ROFL laughter can improve your resting heart-rate and energy expenditure. Says Dr Gadkari, “A study on obesity found that a 10-15 minute giggle could burn 40-170 calories.”
So book your tickets for that new stand-up comedy show, or at least watch a rerun of Seinfeld for comic relief right now.
After all, losing weight is no laughing matter… or is it?