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  • Writer's pictureleanintensive

increasing your metabolic rate

By increasing your metabolic rate and burning more calories you can make weight loss quicker and easier, here’s how.

Metabolic Rate is the rate at which the body burns up calories. If you consume 2500 calories a day and burns 2500 calories a day will stay at the same weight. If however, consume 2500 calories daily but burning only 2000 will gain weight at the rate of about 1lb a week.

You can do quite a lot to speed up metabolism –Burning calories is dependant on knowing what determines your metabolic rate and what you can do to influence it.

Your body burns calories to provide energy for three primary functions:

1) Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)

This is the amount of calories you burn just to live – even when you are lying down, doing nothing. BMR accounts for approximately 60% of the calories burned for an average person.

2) Burning Calories for Activity

Every movement takes energy – from lifting your arm to operate the remote control to cleaning the windows. On average a person burns 30% of the calories in this way

3) Dietary Thermogenesis

The ‘thermogenic effect’ described as meal-induced heat production – the calories burned in the process of eating, digesting, absorbing and using food. Hence certain foods are known as negative foods. An example of such a food is say, celery. If you eat a large stick of celery which is approximately 20 calories, it will require the equivalent energy of 120 calories to process and digest it. So in effect you are losing weight and burning calories by eating

The speed at which you burn calories is influenced by some or all of the factors listed below

1) Building or Toning Muscle

Increase the amount of muscle in your body. For every extra pound of muscle you put on, your body uses around 50 extra calories a day. In a recent study, researchers found that regular weight training boosts basal metabolic rate by about 15%. This is because muscle is ‘metabolically active’ and burns more calories than other body tissue even when you’re not moving. This is also why it’s important to focus on body fat %, rather than weight. Muscle weighs heavier than fat.

Training with weights just 3 times a week for around 20 minutes is enough to build muscle. Not only will you be burning more calories, you’ll look better – whatever your weight.

2) Moving More

Although the average person burns around 30% of calories through daily activity, inactive people only use around 15%. Being aware of this fact – and taking every opportunity to move can make quite a dramatic difference to the amount of calories Consumed

Simple things make a great difference

  • Swing your legs

  • Don’t use the internal phone – go in person

  • Move your head from side to side

  • Tap your feet

  • Change position

  • Wriggle and fidget

  • Pace up and down

  • Stand up when you’re on the phone

  • Use the upstairs loo

  • Drum your fingers

  • Stand up and stretch Clench and release your muscles

  • Park in the furthest corner of the car park

You’ll find lots of ways to burn more calories if you set reminders to do so its as simple as putting a note on the fridge to make two trips to the table, or simply displacing items so you have to travel further to retrieve them.

3) Eat Spicy Food

Evidence shows that spices, especially chili, can raise the metabolic rate by up to 50% for up to 3 hours after you’ve eaten a spicy meal. So go for that Indian. Drinks containing caffeine also stimulate the metabolism, as does green tea.

4) Aerobic Activity

High-intensity exercise makes you burn more calories for several hours afterwards, as well as the actual amount of calories burned during the exercise or activity

Try vigorous walking, step aerobics, jogging or swimming, 3-4 times a week.

5) Eat Little and Often

There is some evidence to suggest that eating small, regular meals will keep your metabolism going faster than larger, less frequent meals. There are two reasons why meal frequency may affect your metabolism. Firstly, levels of thyroid hormones begin to drop within hours of eating a meal, and metabolism slows. Secondly, it may be that the thermogenic effect of eating several small meals is slightly higher than eating the same amount of calories all at once.

Provided your small meals don’t degenerate into quick-fix, high fat, high sugar snacks, eating little and often can also help to control hunger and make you less likely binge.

Again this is just a guide , very generic and should be seen as such. I will go more in depth with things like intermittent fasting and other ways to increase metabolism in a later article.


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