You may have heard skipping breakfast and eating certain foods improve your metabolism naturally and help you to lose weight. Are these true? Get your metabolism facts right.
Metabolism is the way the body burns calories to enable you to survive. While some people blame a lack of weight loss on a slow metabolism, the truth is more likely to be that the calories they are consuming outweigh their body’s needs.
FACT: You do! Staying fit is the best way as you use more energy when you have greater muscle mass—so
exercising can boost your metabolism. Put simply, the more you move about, the more calories you will burn. There are many different ways to burn more calories and you don’t have to be a gym bunny to keep fit. Singapore offers many indoor and outdoor options — see our
A-Z for inspiration.
FACT: Eating regular meals helps weight loss. Our body, especially the brain, requires a regular supply of glucose from food to function effectively. When you go hungry and skip meals, your body may lower the rate at which it burns energy. When you do finally eat, your body will store as much energy as possible in case it is starved again. As well as causing you weight gain, you may also be so hungry that you will also have a tendency to overeat at your next meal. In the long run, such dietary habits of skipping meals may also lead to nutrient deficiencies.
FACT: Like the study conducted by A/Prof Leow and his team at the Clinical Nutrition Research Centre (CNRC), studies have shown that certain foods like chillies will boost your metabolism, but only for a short period of time—and the temporary lift is not enough to give you licence to ingest more calories.
The truth is that only exercise can improve metabolism naturally. Although
fruit and vegetables don’t boost metabolism, incorporating more into your diet — particularly those which are high-fibre and low-calorie — will make you feel full on fewer calories.
FACT: It doesn’t matter what time you eat; what’s important is how many calories you consume. If
your total calorie intake is less than the number of calories you expend, you will lose weight.
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This article was last reviewed on
22 Nov 2023
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