When you are losing weight and getting slimmer, the goal is to lose more fat mass than muscle mass. There are lots of myths around how the fat leaves the body that drives people to use various unhealthy and useless methods to lose weight. A lot of people will spend their day sitting in sweat-suits or use laxatives with the hopes of losing fat. The fact is, solely with these methods, the body will only lose essential water in addition to minimal fat.
Mechanics of fat use and storage by our body is very simple. Fat is used as fuel by our metabolism. When we eat, our body converts the contents of the food to usable energy, i.e. calories. If we take in more fuel than we spend during the day, our body converts that energy into fat and stores it in our cells. In order to lose the stored fat, we need to increase the activities that require more energy than energy provided by the food we eat. When body needs more energy than we consume, body tissues such as muscle and liver tap into the fat stored in our cells and burns them off through a chemical reaction. The fat does not simply disappear through this process. It changes form. The body expels the burnt fat as carbon-dioxide through lungs, as water via urine and sweat and as body heat.
This knowledge brings us to 5 keys to keep our metabolism working in order to burn more fat.
1. Learn and practice deep breathing: It is not a coincidence that breathing is an essential component of physical asanas in yoga. Also, almost in all workout programs, instructors always remind you to “keep breathing” during exercise. Proper breathing helps metabolism working efficiently, take in more oxygen to burn energy and get rid of the burnt energy. It is also beneficial to learn and practice deep breathing during our daily lives to keep the oxygen flowing to our brain and muscles.
2. Keep your heart pumping: In order to make the body metabolism work efficiently and longer during the day, keep your heart pumping. Start your day with a healthy breakfast to boost your metabolism. Keep active during the day by working out as well as taking breaks and moving your body every hour. Do not stay idle for longer hours. Even for 5 minutes, take a brisk walk, walk up and down the stairs or stretch. Try to workout at least 30 minutes every day. Rotate your workouts through different types during the week.
3. Increase your muscle mass: Increasing muscle mass in your body will not only make you look lean but also help you burn more calories during the day even when you are resting. Therefore, do not solely rely on cardio for your workouts. Alternate cardio with strength training and stretching so that you increase your body’s muscle percentage vs fat.
4. Consume healthy food: Not all calories the same. Consume calories from vegetables, fruits and nuts vs processed food. Prefer grass-fed meat, free-range poultry and wild fish. Also keep in mind that not all fat is the unhealthy. Your diet should contain healthy fats with Omega-3 and 6 that are essential for your brain and body.
5.Drink lots of water: Lack of water intake slows down body metabolism and puts a burden on kidneys. Drink plenty of water to keep your cells working efficiently and help kidneys perform its filtering function. It’ll also keep you full and prevent you from taking in extra calories that might turn into stored fat.Sources: http://www.lifetimedecisions.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/173/2013/09/Fat-vs-Muscle-burn.jpg
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