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Supercharge Your Metabolism!

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Part 2: Eat Your Way Slim

4. Don't skip meals.

We know you're superbusy, but make sure you grab lunch. "Simply chewing, digesting and absorbing food kicks your metabolism into gear," says Jim White, RD, a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

"The more frequently you eat, the more often it revs up." Conversely, missing a meal, or going too long between meals, brings your metabolism to a crawl. "Your body switches into starvation mode and your system slows down to conserve energy," White explains. Keep your engine humming by having three healthy meals of 300 to 400 calories and two snacks of 200 to 300 calories every day, he advises.

5. Fill up on smart foods.

Start by serving yourself protein at every sitting, says Darwin Deen, MD, medical professor in the department of community health and social medicine at City College of New York and a coauthor of Nutrition for Life. Not only does your body need it to help build lean muscle mass, but protein also takes more calories to digest. To get your fix, have low-fat yogurt at breakfast, chicken in your salad at lunch, and salmon for dinner. Between meals, snack on protein-rich walnuts. They contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help promote weight loss by increasing your feelings of fullness, according to a recent study in the journal Appetite.

While you're at it, eat more foods that slowly release the sugar you need for sustained energy, like high-fiber fruits and veggies and whole-grain breads and pastas. Munch a food high in fiber three hours before your workout and you'll also burn extra fat, a study at the University of Nottingham in England found. Sipping java can also help. "Caffeine stimulates the production of adrenaline, which speeds up the metabolism," White says. Research shows that caffeine can significantly accelerate your burn. Just limit yourself to no more than two cups a day; too much caffeine can overtax your system, resulting, ironically, in fatigue.

6. Eat breakfast.

It will switch your metabolism from idle to high speed. That's because your level of cortisol, a hormone that helps you use calories to build muscle, is highest just before you get up in the morning. When you eat an a.m. meal, your body is primed to turn those calories into muscle pronto -- the only time during the day this happens. Take advantage of the natural torching process by having a healthy breakfast of scrambled eggs, low-fat turkey bacon, and a piece of whole-grain toast.

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5/23/2014 06:29:07 PM Report Abuse
wngdwolf wrote:

Fat does not "just sit there". It plays an important role in estrogen production, especially for peri-, menopausal, and post-menopausal women.

1/7/2014 09:41:40 AM Report Abuse
EthanChong wrote:

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9/10/2013 02:10:03 AM Report Abuse
cdcco68 wrote:

Love the tips! Going to add the 15 - 20 min cardio before bed! Can't wait to see and feel the results!

7/11/2013 03:56:32 PM Report Abuse
tameasa1 wrote:

This is great! It really helped me to understand better how your metabolism works and why it is important to consume calories consistently, excercise regularly and get a good nights rest. I did not know that ALL of these things can effect your metabolism...especially the sleep part. I have chronic insomnia and only sleep about 20 hours or less a week. I'm always running on empty. I'm going to really focus on how to help my body relax and sleep this coming week.

10/22/2012 02:54:59 AM Report Abuse

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