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Can You Hack Your Metabolism to Lose More Weight?

“If only I could speed up my metabolism I could lose weight.” That sentence is a common one spoken by the millions of people trying to lose weight. It’s no surprise, as the correlation between an elevated metabolic rate and weight loss has long been scientifically proven, but this leads people to question if there are easy ways to increase their metabolic rate, so they can lose weight faster. They want to know; can you hack your metabolism to lose more weight?


No Magic Hacks, But There are Other Options

Unfortunately, there is no “magic hack” that can instantly optimize your metabolism. But, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t ways to keep your Resting Metabolic Rate running at a more consistently high level during the day. Making smarter dietary choices and living a more active lifestyle are the two primary factors that affect metabolism. Some of the most important things you can do to improve your metabolism include:

 Can You Hack Your Metabolism to Lose More Weight?

1. Increase Your Protein Intake

Eating a diet that is high in protein is not only satiating, it also helps the body build muscle. When adopted with a strength-building exercise regimen, eating more protein makes the body stronger by increasing its muscle mass. The minimum amount of protein you should eat (also known as the Recommended Daily Allowance or RDA) is 0.8 grams of protein per kg of body weight. An easier way to calculate your RDA for protein is to multiply your weight in pounds by 0.36. For weight loss, however, and especially to preserve muscle mass, you should nearly double this.


2. Make Sure to Do Strength Training

When you perform strength training exercises, muscle fibers are ripped, and the body works hard to repair them. The energy that’s needed to make the repairs causes the metabolic rate to increase. Therefore, the constant sequence of rip and repair keeps the body’s metabolic rate higher than usual, allowing the body to shed fat quicker. Plus, this process helps to build muscle, which is more metabolically active than fat. In other words, greater muscle mass leads to a higher metabolism.


3. Review Your Medications with Your Doctor

Certain medications can cause the body to gain weight. If you’re trying to lose weight and you haven’t noticed a difference despite your best efforts, schedule an appointment with your doctor and explain to her what your weight loss goals are. Ask your doctor if any of your medications can cause weight gain, and if so, can she prescribe you a different medication that has less of an effect on your weight. Of course, talk with your doctor first before stopping a medication.


4. Have Your Thyroid Checked

The thyroid is the gland that regulates your metabolism. If your metabolism is sluggish, have your thyroid checked. Hypothyroidism (low thyroid state) is common and slows the metabolism, leading to weight gain.


Does Eating Fewer Calories Increase or Decrease Metabolic Rate?

The body’s Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is its rate of burning energy throughout the day when a person is completely sedentary. For people who live sedentary lives and are obese, the Resting Metabolic Rate accounts for 60% to 75% of their total energy expenditure. Therefore, the RMR is the body’s primary method for burning energy. Therefore, any factors that would slow the RMR would be associated with a reduced ability to lose weight and an increased ability to gain weight. Naturally, any factors that increase your RMR would promote weight loss and improve the maintenance of weight.

Unfortunately, restricting calories produces a reduction in the Resting Metabolic Rate. Think of it this way… if you reduce food (energy) intake, then your body will eventually resist this by slowing down the metabolic rate in order to conserve energy. It’s thought to be an evolutionary survival mechanism to adapt to times of food scarcity. In addition, if you lose weight, your metabolic rate will decrease because your body will need to burn less energy to fuel all of its functions—in other words, it will have less body to fuel.

The importance of strength training can’t be understated when it comes to maximizing your metabolic rate. Adequate protein intake and strength training lead to higher muscle mass which in and of itself leads to a higher Resting Metabolic Rate. When the RMR can be elevated and maintained at that level, weight loss is more likely to occur. So jump to it and start building some muscle!

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With more than 40-year years of experience in delivering wellness and weight loss programs, the Duke Diet and Fitness Center has established itself as one of the leading weight loss and total body health destinations for health conscious individuals seeking a residential style health program focused on natural weight loss.

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