If you want to lose weight, you often first think of speeding up your metabolism, for example with a special cure. From the point of view of experts, however, that doesn’t work at all. A combination of a balanced diet and exercise is more suitable.
If you want to lose weight, you should simply stimulate your metabolism – at least that’s what countless metabolism cures promise. From the point of view of nutrition experts, however, this does not work at all. “Most of the cures are primarily intended to reduce the calorie intake dramatically,” says sports medicine and nutrition expert Dr. Heiner Romberg. “They are often combined with ineffective globules that are supposed to act like a pregnancy hormone.” In addition, these cures are usually quite expensive.
In the short term, you can actually lose weight with such a cure: If the energy balance is low and you burn more calories than you eat, the body loses weight. However, the effect is not sustainable – on the contrary: If you only supply the body with very few calories over a long period of time, it falls into a kind of economy program. He uses it to unwind an old, evolutionary program from times of hunger, with which he tries to utilize all the calories from food particularly well. This means that there is a risk of a yo-yo effect after the cure at the latest – and the scales then often even show more than before. This applies not only to so-called metabolism cures, but to any type of radical diet.
The speed of metabolism is primarily genetic
So a metabolic cure cannot be the solution. But how do you get your metabolism going? First of all, you have to know what the metabolism actually is and how it works. Many people associate digestion with metabolism. However, it is only part of the system in which the body breaks down nutrients from food and converts them so that it can use them. “This is how a steak turns into a well-trained biceps,” says Romberg. The metabolism also converts fats and carbohydrates from food accordingly.
The speed at which the body does this and the extent to which it utilizes the components of the food can hardly be influenced by the diet. This is also evident in everyday life: one person seems to be able to eat whatever they want, while the other’s waistband almost pinches as soon as they only think of chocolate. “This is genetically determined to a large extent,” explains the expert. “Unfortunately there is no special diet that can accelerate these processes in the body.”
A combination of a balanced diet and exercise is beneficial
Of course you can still work on your diet. Silke Kayadelen, personal trainer and known from the TV show “The Biggest Loser”, recommends a combination of a balanced diet and exercise. “A healthy mixed diet is particularly suitable for this,” she says. This contains all food groups, not just vegetables and fruit, but also meat and fish, dairy and whole grain products as well as oils and fats. “No food is forbidden, but of course you should eat everything in moderation.”
According to Kayadelen, it is cheap to eat three large meals a day. If you are hungry, you can also have two snacks between meals. You should avoid snacking in between meals and you shouldn’t eat anything late in the evening either. “This can have an impact on the insulin level, which then does not come to rest,” says the expert – and this inhibits weight loss.
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One reads again and again that certain foods are said to have a positive effect on the metabolism, including hot substances such as ginger or chilli. Kayadelen thinks this is nonsense. “When you eat these foods, you can sweat more,” she says. “However, this has nothing to do with the processes in the metabolism.”
High-intensity interval training is particularly suitable
Instead, in addition to a balanced diet, exercise should be used to keep your weight in check. “The high-intensity interval training has the best effect,” says the expert. When doing sport, you alternate between high-intensity, very strenuous phases and quiet units. The effect is that the stores for carbohydrates empty within a short time. “The body replenishes it after training by using the fat deposits,” says Kayadelen, who is also the author of the books “Extreme Metamorphosis” and “The Bikini Bootcamp”.
One should also keep in mind that there are also diseases that can affect the metabolism. For example, an underactive thyroid can cause your metabolism to slow down and make it very difficult to lose weight. Usually this is also associated with problems such as fatigue, freezing, constipation, or psychological symptoms. A dysfunction of the thyroid gland can be ruled out with a blood test.