Work has you busy as does your home and family life. The feeling that your clothes are getting tighter is disheartening. And you’re starting to resign yourself to the “fact” that your metabolism slows down at 40.
What if that’s not 100% the case? Or it’s not a “age” specific you as you originally thought.
What if you could get back in control of your metabolism, assuming there’s nothing else going on with your health?
But one comment first since I’m going on my own experience, and am not a doctor or nutritionist. Make sure you check in with your favorite medical professional to ensure that there’s not an underlying medical condition that may be affecting your metabolism, resulting in weight gain. Before you make any changes, you need to make sure they’re the right changes for you.
One quick note before continuing. I’m not a doctor or medical professional. I’m sharing what’s working for me based on my research to help you figure out what to consider next. Check with your favorite medical professional to help you decide what works best for you.
Why our metabolisms slow down as we age
First things first. In order to figure out what steps to take to put yourself back on track you need to understand why your metabolism is slowing down.
We’ve always blame age, and simply crossing that 40 milestone as a never-ending battle of weight gain. But is there more to it than that?
Beyond medical conditions, it turns out lifestyle is contributing to the slow down.
Think about your work day.
Are you sitting more than walking? And how what you’re eating for lunch and dinner? Sleeping less than you used to?
This all combines together so your metabolism doesn’t function as well as it did in the past. Then those pounds start to inch up on the scale while your clothes start to get more snug around the waist.
How I reset my metabolism at (almost) 40
Once I understood why our metabolisms seem to slow down, I was ready to take action. I needed a plan of simple changes in my life to reset my metabolism.
And it started with food.
Eat a balanced dinner with protein
For as obvious as this sounds, within a busy life take a look at what you’re eating. And how much of it.
When we’re tired we don’t always make the best choices. We go for quick access, minimal effort food.
Protein fuels your metabolism along with certain vitamins and minerals. Are you eating enough of it daily? There are also other vitamins and minerals that contribute to your metabolism. If you’re not eating all the right things daily, it’s hard for your metabolism to function efficiently.
For me, after a day of working overtime, dinner sometimes was just a cheese stick or warm yogurt leftover from my packed lunch. While those are great sources of calcium, they’re not sufficiently balanced to keep both my metabolism and health in order.
Look for a balanced dinner that includes protein and vegetables.
To help keep myself on track, I initially started with a few meal prep hacks by buying grilled chicken breasts and prepared vegetables. I also kept frozen vegetables as a backup as well. While the salt content is a little higher than I’d like, I was able to start eating balanced meals with little effort.
And once I was able to take back a little more control of my schedule, and was feeling more motivated, I started to cook large packages of chicken breasts in my Instant Pot Mini. Now I can control the salt content as well as the cost.
Make time for exercise daily, even simply walking for 30 minutes
Walking is a great way to get you moving and away from your screen for awhile. Let’s face it. We’re sitting all day long.
The less activities you’re doing, the fewer calories you burn. But you probably haven’t adjusted you’re eating for that. No judgements from me as I know I did the same.
Don’t have time in your schedule to fit in time to go to the gym? Take some time away from all of your digital devices to get some fresh air by taking a walk outside.
At some point you need to disconnect from things for a little while and take time for yourself. And I don’t know about you, but some of my best ideas have come from changing the scenery and giving my brain a chance stop focusing on a problem.
Drink more water
Your systems need water in order to function well. We’re mostly made of water, but it seems like we’re never drinking enough of it. Or we’re drinking something that adds extra calories.
One of the things I challenged myself with was drinking more water each day.
With drinking water, your systems burn a few extra calories to process the water you drink. So you give our metabolism a slight boost with this one simple change.
Eat a low-carb, protein filled snack before bed
This may sound a little strange, but did you know what if you’re not sleeping enough your metabolism doesn’t respond as well. Your blood sugar levels can respond like they are insulin resistant, similar to Type 2 Diabetes. Studies have shown this to happen when you’re getting 6 or less hours of sleep a night.
Ideally getting more sleep would also help reset your metabolism, but if you’re on a busy schedule, you need a plan b.
In my case, I decided to take a page from the Type 2 Diabetes playbook and add in an end of day protein snack to help maintain my blood sugar levels overnight. The idea is to keep your levels from spiking and fuel your metabolism to take care of itself while you rest.
Wrapping up. What changes are you thinking about making to help your metabolism bounce back?
As you make changes, pay attention to what works and what doesn’t work for you. We’re all a little different.
I’m hoping by starting to understand the reasons behind why your metabolisms seem to slow down, you can make a plan for yourself to reset your metabolism at 40 or any age.
Drop me a comment below to let me you know how you’re doing with your journey. What’s worked for you that might help someone else? Good luck!
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