According to the Miller-Keane Encyclopedia & Dictionary of Medicine, your basal metabolic rate is the “minimal energy expended for the maintenance of respiration, circulation, peristalsis, muscle tone, body temperature, glandular activity, and other vegetative functions of the body.” It is the measurement of energy you need to sustain your life force. So how do you increase metabolism without exercise?
Your body has certain processes to increase your metabolic rate. For example, the release of epinephrine prepares you to fight or fly away by providing a release of energy. A high fever can also increase your metabolic rate as well as eating a large meal.
Exercise and weight loss
Many people who start an exercise program report weight loss. But is it fat or water that you lose?
Inflammation is produced by excess calories. Inflammation contains water. So when you don’t have excess calories, your body loses water weight by reducing your inflammation. To truly determine the source of your weight loss, you need to measure your body fat percentage.
Many of our home scales measure BMI (body mass index). This is a calculation of height and weight ratios, but not an indicator for body fat. Athletes can have a higher BMI because muscle mass weighs heavier than fat.
Exercise can increase the calories burned but not change your basal metabolic rate.
Follow the science
Herman Pontzer, an evolutionary anthropologist and author, has studied the cultural patterns including available foods, against the metabolic rates of many cultures. Dr. Pontzer has concluded that daily exercise levels can determine the body fat percentage composition but it does not correlate with basal metabolic rates. Increasing one’s metabolic rate goes against our evolutionary physiology. It would actually increase our risk for starvation because it increases our need for food.
Dr. Pontzer warns starvation diets are dangerous. Whenever people push their body to a limited time for eating, they actually lower their metabolic rate. They trick their body into believing their food sources are limited. This triggers a lower metabolic rate in our evolutionary (hormone) method to conserve energy to sustain life.
The result is the individual gains weight easier until their body is convinced the risk for starvation is passed. Unfortunately, no one can predict how long it takes for your body to convert back to normal.
Exercise is very beneficial
Individuals on a regular exercise program will preserve muscle tone, improve heart health, and decrease cognitive decline. In addition to exercise for the aforementioned benefits, reducing your daily calorie intake should be used for weight loss.
Changing your lifestyle is very difficult. Many people have gained weight during the Covid shutdown. We wanted to feel some relief from stress, so we ate to cope. What you need to do now is focus on what you want. Pairing activities is a good way to remind you. I talk about stacking habits in this post.
If you are gaining weight every year, you need to change your daily habits. I talk about this in great detail in my book, Parent’s Guide to Healthy Kids. It says “for healthy kids”, but really, it’s for the whole family. And actually, since you’re reading this post, I’m happy to give you a discount if you want to check out my book. Use this code at checkout to get 50% off! qb1vxm1
Many people need to lose weight for their health. It is important to find a safe way to do it. Remember, we did not gain weight overnight. It is by changing your habits that you will lose weight.
The easiest way to increase metabolism without exercise is to gain weight. An increase in body mass (BMI) requires more energy (calories) to move around. This is why when people lose weight they report feeling more energy.
The average active adult burns about 2500 Kilo-calories each day. Your body does not care about the type of calories it burns for energy. It can be carbohydrates, proteins, fats, or alcohol. Whatever you eat, your body can convert to energy. When you eat more than your body needs, the excess is stored.
So the truth is, you CAN increase metabolism without exercise. But the addition of exercise is going to increase your muscle mass and will contribute to the weight loss that you probably desire.
I hope you found this article to be informative and helpful! Please check out my eBook to learn more about the lifestyle changes that you can incorporate to see the changes that you desire for yourself and your family.
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