Metabolism is a big word for all of the processes that go on inside your body to allow you to draw energy from food and then put it to use. It also prevents toxins from building up, and generally keeps you going.
But the most interesting thing about the metabolism is that it works differently from one person to the next. If you have a ‘fast’ metabolism, you will digest food quickly, and will find it easier to stay slim. With a slower metabolism, the weight may pile on easier.
This is why you might be losing weight slower or faster than your friends – and why you shouldn’t compare yourself to them.
There are many factors that affect your metabolism. These include your age and gender, the size of your body, and genetics. It is also affected by the ratio of fat to muscle in your body – something that can also change as you get older.
Your metabolism can also be affected by what and how you eat – so going on a diet, or changing the food you eat daily, can make a difference. It might slow your metabolism down, or speed it up. This means that everything you do day to day has an impact on your metabolism.
A general rule
In order to figure out how to speed up or slow down your metabolism, there’s one general rule that you can remember: the more muscle mass you have, the faster your metabolism is likely to be.
Now, obviously this isn’t a totally black and white situation. There could be other factors at play. In order to gain muscle, you might have to change your lifestyle in a way that actually slows your metabolism down. However, when you lose weight, it’s often your muscle mass which is the first to go – so your metabolism will naturally get slower the more you trim down.
So what does all this mean? Basically, it means that everyone goes at a different pace because of the fact that their metabolism is reacting differently. What works for you might not work for a friend, and vice versa.
It also means that you shouldn’t beat yourself up if you’re not losing weight as fast as others that you know. You’re still on the right course – just keep moving forward and results will come.