Your metabolism plays a vital role in how much fat is carried on the body and a lot of different factors can affect the speed of it and how fast or slow it works in order to help you stay as lean and healthy as possible. Your diet and lifestyle will dictate how possible your health and fitness goals are so we’ll address the most common factors that affect your metabolism.
NOT ENOUGH WATER
Water is vital to an unlimited number of functions in the body. If you don’t drink enough water it can lead to dehydration which can cause a number of metabolism-related disasters among others. It can also make the body think it's hungry as it also helps prevent you from overeating due to helping you feel fuller for longer. Aim to drink a minimum of 2-3 litres of water per day.
TOO MUCH SUGAR
Sugar is unavoidable at times as it seems to be in everything we eat and drink, even things you wouldn’t expect to contain it. With this in mind, it’s important to limit sugar intake so that it limits insulin in the blood sugars and keeps the metabolism firing. Refined sugars should also be replaced for more natural sources like honey, but also should be used in moderation. Too much sugar can also lead to diseases such as type two diabetes.
As enjoyable as it can be to have a few drinks with friends, alcohol is not our friend when it comes to weight management. Alcohol is a major metabolism enemy as once it enters the body, our metabolism immediately begins using it as fuel. This means our body stops metabolizing other fuel sources which can lead to increased fat storage. If you must drink alcohol, try and opt for spirits with low calorie mixers and keep their consumption limited to just a few units per week.
NOT ENOUGH SLEEP
A good amount of sleep is essential to keep you strong and ensure that your body has the strength to be productive and boost weight loss. It will also reduce stress and aid the recovery and growth of muscle and hormone production. A lack of sleep will increase your stress and cortisol levels wreaking havoc on your health and weight loss goals. Make sure you go to bed at a reasonable time and aim to get a solid 8 hours sleep every night.
NOT ENOUGH HEALTHY FATS
Believe it or not but healthy fats are vital to a healthy diet and work wonders for your metabolism as they increase insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation. They can also help balance hormones and stop constant cravings. Healthy fats can be found in foods like salmon, almonds, avocados, bacon, meat, eggs and cheese, among others.
NOT EATING OFTEN
Many people simply do not eat often enough. Some skip breakfast, others work through lunch whilst some believe you can’t have any carbs past 6pm. Whatever the reason, they are all wrong and one of the best ways to keep your metabolism fast is to eat enough and eat regularly; every few hours. Going long periods without eating slows the metabolism as your body assumes there's a shortage coming and holds on to what it can for energy.
NOT ENOUGH CALORIES AND TOO MUCH EXERCISE
When trying to lose weight, most people tend to dramatically reduce their calories and exercise as much as possible. This is a big mistake as exercising without eating properly can trigger the metabolism to slow down and will actually cause you to burn fewer calories, hindering your progress. Eating too fewer calories causes the metabolism to slow down as it looks to conserve energy.
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