I hear this phrase all the time, “ I have a slow metabolism and it is impossible for me to lose weight.” As easy as it is to blame weight gain and weight loss on our own natural metabolism, there are many pieces to the puzzle behind this statement. They include genetic makeup, hormones, diet, stress, and lack of sleep. All of these factors will directly or indirectly impact our energy intake and output.
Is there such a thing as a slow metabolism?
The short answer to this question is – no. There is, however, a term called metabolic adaptation. This is the body’s self-defense system. When one or more pieces of the puzzle get out of whack, our body tries to adjust and adapt in response to the stimulus. One of the major problems that wreaks havoc on our own metabolic adaptation is buying into miracle diets, detoxes, and cleanses. We do this in an attempt to shock and reset our metabolism. This can oftentimes cause more harmful damage and will make our own weight loss goals seem unreachable.
Ways to prevent needing to shock your system
Instead of blaming a slow metabolism, follow these tips to get you further along the road to achieving your nutrition and fitness goals:
- Get enough sleep and manage stress.
- Add a resistance training program and don’t abuse excessive amounts of cardio.
- Be smart with your caloric needs. Less is not better! There is a time and place to be in a calorie deficit, but it’s not a bad idea to hang at calorie maintenance most of the time.
- Prioritize protein intake and focus on food quality.
- STOP buying into fast fix diets.
- Avoid extreme calorie deficits.
- Plan ahead. Set yourself up for success.
- Hire a coach if you need help with where you should start, or need help with accountability.