Being overweight or obese is a leading risk factor for type 2 diabetes. Carrying excess weight makes it difficult for cells to respond to insulin, because the extra fat acts like an insulating layer, making it harder for the sugar to move into cells and resulting in higher circulating blood sugar levels. Progression from prediabetes to diabetes is potentially preventable through weight loss and by maintaining a healthy weight.
Below you’ll find seven ways to boost your BMR. The more of these you’re able to incorporate into your life, the more you’ll boost your metabolism. That means you’ll be expending (burning) more calories 24 hours a day!
1. Tone your muscles with weight training three days per week. Toned muscles send your metabolism through the roof. Do it!
2. Do some type of aerobic exercise (walking, jogging, swimming, stationary cycling, aerobic dancing, etc.) on a DAILY basis. Try to do it in the morning — and for 30 to 60 minutes at a time! Forget this twice-a-week stuff. Your body was designed to be active on a daily basis! When you are successful, your metabolism soars!
3. Always eat breakfast! Skipping breakfast sends the message to your body that you’re starving because you haven’t had food for a while. As a protective mechanism, your metabolism slows down. Food, especially complex carbohydrates, fuels your metabolism.
4. Never eat less than 1,200 calories per day! Less than 1,200 is usually not enough to support your basal metabolism and thus will slow your body’s calorie-burning ability.
5. In addition to your regular aerobic exercise, take a 10- to 30-minute walk at lunch or in the evening. This serves to rev your metabolism even more!
6. Look for situations to be active. Park as far from the store as you can (when safe) rather than looking for the closest parking spot. Use the stairs rather than the elevator, a rake rather than a blower, etc. Look for the hard way to do things! Make your life active.
7. Incorporate “intervals” into most of your aerobic sessions. Intervals are a powerful tool to help boost your metabolism. They are brief periods (about a minute) of more intense exercise mixed into your regular aerobic exercise sessions. For example, if you’re walking, you would do a one minute interval of faster walking about every five minutes throughout your exercise session.
Here’s how it will look. You’ll start with your normal three- to five-minute warm-up and then five minutes into your workout — you do your first interval: one minute of faster walking (or perhaps jogging). At the end of that minute you should be winded and ready to slow down. You’ll slow down to your normal exercising speed for the next four minutes and then your fifth minute is another one-minute interval. This pattern continues throughout your exercise session.
Get started today! You’ll feel better and your metabolism will be in great shape. Always check with your doctor before making any changes in your exercise program.