Turn Your Metabolism Into A Weapon To Burn Fat Fast

by : Craig Nybo

You can use your metabolism as a weight loss tool. Your metabolism breaks down nutrients like proteins and carbohydrates into elements that are used to generate and repair cells. Like an engine, your metabolism requires fuel to run. Metabolic fuel is measured in calories. It's easy to confuse calories with nutrients, but calories are merely a measurement of energy. Gasoline can even be measured in calories; one gallon of gasoline contains 31,000,000 calories of energy. Body fat can also be measured in calories; 1 pound of body fat contains about 3,400 calories of energy. Therefore, if you burn 3,400 calories from fat, you lose one pound of flab.

It is possible to use your metabolism as a tool to lose fat. The first step is to calculate your BMR (basal metabolic rate). This calculation determines how many calories your body requires to stay alive while at rest. The calculation is simple:

Harris-Benedict Equation for Men:
BMR = 66 + (6.23 x weight in lbs.) + (12.7 x height in inches) - (6.8 x age in years)

Harris-Benedict Equation for Women:
BMR = 655 + (4.35 x weight in lbs.) + (4.7 x height in inches) - (4.7 x age in years)

A 30-year-old, 115 pound, 60-inch tall woman calculates her BMR with the following calculation:

1,296 = 655 + (4.35 X 115) + (4.7 X 60) - (4.7 X 30)

By this calculation, the woman's body burns 1,296 calories a day while at rest.

To calculate actual calories burned per day, you must multiply your BMR by an appropriate lifestyle activity modifier. Modifiers are as follows:

- Sedentary (Little or no exercise) = BMR X 1.2

- Lightly Active (light exercise/ sports 1-3 days per week) = BMR X 1.375

- Moderately active (moderate exercise, sports 3-5 times per week) = BMR x 1.55

- Very active (hard exercise or sports 6-7 times a week) = BMR x 1.725

- Extra Active (very hard exercise or sports & physical job or training twice a week) = BMR x 1.9

A woman who is lightly active, and has a BMR of 1,296 calories per day, calculates her daily caloric need by multiplying her BMR by her activity level modifier of 1.375. Hence, she requires 1,782 calories a day to maintain her current weight. (1,296 x 1.375 = 1,782).

Once you calculate your daily caloric need, you can determine how to use your metabolism as a fat-burning machine. The first step is to reduce your caloric intake by 500 calories a day to lose 1 to 2 pounds a week. As stated earlier, 1 lb. of body fat contains roughly 3,400 calories. Therefore, by reducing your calories by 500 calories a day, you create a 3,500 calorie per week deficit. Your body must, therefore, take its energy from fat reserves at the rate of 1 pound of fat per week.

How do you go about limiting your caloric intake comfortably without starving? Below are some effective suggestions:

- Divide your daily food into 6 small meals a day. Balance each meal with 85% complex carbohydrates, and 15% proteins. Think of your plate like a pie chart. Set your serving size of protein to about the size of your palm; a palm size chicken breast, pork chop, beef-steak, etc. The rest of your plate should be made up of complex carbs such as whole grain breads, oats, and vegetables.

- Don't eat simple carbs after 4:00 PM. Simple carbohydrates are found in candies, soda, cake, ice cream and white breads. You should eliminate simple carbs from your diet altogether. But if you must have them, you can cut your consumption in half by not eating them after 4:00 PM.

- Drink plenty of water. You lose, on the average, about 64 ounces of water in sweat and urine every day. Hydrate your body by drinking a half-gallon of water every day. You might start each meal with a glass of water to help control your hunger.

- Count calories for two weeks. It is not necessary to count calories for the rest of your life, but counting for a short time period is an excellent way for you to see where your dieting strengths and weaknesses lie.

Turn your metabolism into a weapon against unwanted weight gain by calculating your caloric need and shooting for a 3,500-calorie deficit every week. With time and patience, you will see the fat melt away.