How to Speed Up Your Metabolism: 6 Key Tips

Any woman on a weight loss journey will understand the importance of her metabolism and the impact it can have on calorie burn. But is there a way to speed up your metabolism?

As your body’s natural calorie-burning engine, the higher your metabolism is, the easier it is to lose the pounds and keep them off. You might believe your metabolism is beyond your control – but that’s far from the truth!

If you want to give your metabolism a bit of a boost, these six key tips will help.


What is your Metabolism?

Metabolism refers to the process by which your body converts the food you eat and drink into energy. This complex chemical process goes on continuously inside your body to keep you alive and ensure your organs are functioning normally.

Even at rest, your body is constantly using energy for all its background functions including breathing, balancing hormone levels and circulating blood. This is known as your basal metabolic rate, and there are several factors that influence it. These include:

  • Your age – the older you get, the less muscle you have. This can put a brake on calorie burning.
  • Your gender – because men tend to have less body fat and more muscle than women, they find it easier to burn calories[1].
  • Your body – some people are built leaner and have more muscle which can help burn more calories[2]. It’s also possible to inherit a speedy metabolism.

While it might seem your metabolism is out of your control, there are ways to influence it and potentially increase calorie burn as well your energy levels.

Here’s how to speed up your metabolism.

6 Key Tips to Speed up your Metabolism

Tip #1 – Up the Protein

Protein is a highly thermogenic food, meaning it requires extra energy to be digested and absorbed. This effect increases calorie burning and as such boosts your metabolism.

It’s the one macronutrient that causes the largest increase in the thermic effect of food, with studies showing it can increase your metabolic rate by up to 30%[3].

Upping your protein intake may also prevent muscle loss[4], which is definitely something to keep in mind on a weight loss journey. The more muscle you have, the higher your resting metabolic rate is, as muscle burns more calories than fat.

Protein also has an incredibly high satiety index measure, meaning it can cut cravings and the desire to overeat. It can help suppress your appetite and stick to a decreased calorie intake[5] – if that’s what your weight loss program involves.

Struggling to hit your protein targets? It’s suggested that around 1.2 – 2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight is needed daily to encourage muscle growth[6]. If you can’t get enough through your diet, try a whey protein supplement to support.


Tip #2 – Do HIIT

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a hidden gem when it comes to boosting your metabolism. Because it involves quick, intense bursts of activity you’ll feel results in a much shorter timeframe too.

HIIT enables your body to increase fat burn, even after you’ve finished your workout because it triggers a reaction called Excess Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC). We won’t get too technical here but EPOC, also known as oxygen debt, is when your body uses oxygen to return to its resting state. This process can involve restoring oxygen levels, repairing muscle and removing lactic acid and requires a great deal of energy. The more intense your workout is, the more energy required by your body to return back to its resting state[7].

There are numerous ways to approach HIIT, but the most popular duration involves performing your exercise at your highest intensity for 30 seconds then resting for 30 seconds. You could also do 30 seconds of work with one to two minutes of light intensity –  usually for a total of 15 – 20 minutes. For some exercise inspiration, try including sprints, kettlebell swings, burpees, high knees and air squats in your HIIT workouts.

Tip #3 – Stay Hydrated

Water makes up well over half of your body weight and is needed for a whole host of processes. As such, being hydrated can affect the way your body functions, compromising the efficiency of your metabolism.

There have been many studies investigating the effect of water on metabolism speed. One revealed that drinking 500ml of cold water increased metabolism by 30% in both men and  women, with the strongest effect seen 30-40 minutes after consumption. In this case, it was the thermogenic effect of the water that made the biggest difference[8] – the colder it is, the harder your body has to work to heat it up to baseline body temperature[9].

Drinking enough water daily is also key for overall health and wellbeing. Not only does it help with boosting feelings of fullness for better calorie control, but it may boost concentration levels[10] which is helpful when you’re in the gym.

Tip #4 – Build Muscle Through Resistance Training

Putting on muscle is one of the best ways to beat a metabolism slump and reignite your body’s calorie burn potential.

Having more muscle makes your body more metabolically active, meaning you burn more calories at rest. In fact, it’s said that every pound of muscle uses around 6 calories a day to sustain itself[11]. Compared to a pound of fat, which only burns 2 calories daily, you can see why packing on the muscle is ideal for any woman on a weight loss journey.

Try adding compound exercises to your workouts to grow and retain muscle. These include moves like deadlifts, squats and bench press.

Tip #5 – Prioritize Sleep

Sleep deprivation has long been linked to an increased risk of obesity[12]. This could be due to the way it alters insulin levels and the hormones involved in regulating metabolism, including decreased leptin levels (the appetite suppressing hormone) and increased ghrelin levels (the hunger hormone)[13]. When your body can’t respond to insulin properly, it can struggle to process fats from your bloodstream and may end up storing them[14].

Apart from the obvious fatigue, a lack of sleep can also impact on your brain and your ability to make better decisions – for instance, you may lack impulse control and be more inclined to eat junk food[15]. Too little sleep can also increase levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, signalling your body to store fat.

Woman in sun - how to speed up your metabolism

Tip #6 – Get Enough Vitamin D

Sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is absolutely essential for preserving metabolism-boosting muscle tissue[16]. As we know, having a good amount of lean muscle can be a seriously effective to rev up your metabolism.

Vitamin D has the ability to protect your immune system and boost bone health[17]. Studies have also shown that being vitamin D deficient can contribute to obesity and increased body fat percentage[18].

Unfortunately, it’s estimated that nearly 50% of the world’s population are low in vitamin D[19]. Don’t be part of that percentage – try these top ways to boost your vitamin D levels:

  • Eat tuna, eggs or fortified low-fat milk
  • Try a supplement that contains the recommended daily amount of 600 IU (15mcg)[20]
  • Get at least 5-10 minutes of sun exposure daily


While it might seem your metabolism is far from your control, it’s the complete opposite! By following a few of these top tips, you could have a strong influence on the way your metabolism operates. By raising your metabolism, you can increase the amount of energy your body burns and ultimately, take better control of your weight loss.

Don’t forget, the more active you are, the more calories you burn. Try to incorporate a mix of aerobic activity and strength training in your workouts to really put your body through its paces.



























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