Five Easy Ways to Boost Your Metabolism

Hello Friends!

We hope you are enjoying the crisp air and change of seasons!  We love the being out in the fresh air whether it’s enjoying an invigorating walk/hike or football with the kids. It’s a good time to remind ourselves on little things we can do to keep our metabolism “bumped up.”

Although the topic of metabolism is too big to handle in one book let alone one blog, here are five tips that can be readily incorporated into your daily routine to keep you looking great or start to build that fire from within that will have you on the path to becoming a fat burning machine!

1.  Increase your muscle mass  – Weight training increases lean muscle mass, which raises the amount of calories your body uses, even when you’re at rest. When there is less fat in your body your blood moves better which equates to more energy.  Just think about how you feel after a really good workout, your blood is pumping and circulating throughout your body.  Imagine this happening consistently at a more sustained pace and you can start to see how you would feel good at all points in the day without the “crash” or fatigue most people feel.

No gym?  No problem.  Some simple weight-bearing exercises include:

  • Pushups
  • Planks
  • Leg lifts
  • Lunges

2.  Eat some protein at each meal or snack – Protein has a greater metabolic boost than fat or carbohydrates. The more complex the food (think steak vs. sugar) the more calories you burn as your body has to “work” to digest it as it travels through the digestive tract.

Quick on-the-go protein snacks include:RawWalnuts14

  • Almonds, pistachios and pumpkin seeds
  • Organic hard-boiled eggs
  • Pre-cooked marinated chicken breast
  • Raw almond butter in celery stalks

3.  Become a lympo-manic – Many of us think that we need to walk or run for the cardio aspect.  Although cardio is a benefit the movement associated with walking, running or even jumping jacks helps to stimulate our lymph system.  The lymph system helps to maintain fluid movement between the cells and the bloodstream. It has been referred to as the body’s “garbage disposal system”, in that it removes waste products and other toxins from the cells and transfers it to the bloodstream which then circulates it out of the body. A body that is “clean” runs more efficiently and maintains a higher metabolism than one that is bogged down with toxins and other waste.

Ways to get your lymph on the move:

  • Rebounding
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Running in Place
  • Walking
  • Playing sports such as tennis and basketball

4.  Wake up with water – According to researchers at Virginia Tech, people who downed water before their first meal of the day consumed an average of 75 fewer calories at breakfast than those who didn’t drink up first.

Tips on drinking more water:

  • Have a glass first thing in the morning
  • Add a wedge of lime or lemon to your water for flavor
  • Take and extra glass water with you in the car to sip on
  • Drink a glass of water when you get home from work before you start on dinner or homework
  • Have a cup of herbal tea in the evening while reading or watching the news.

5.  Hang out with Joe – Having that morning cup of coffee can provide direct benefit to

Nothing like a great cuppa joe!

Nothing like a great cuppa joe!

getting your metabolism moving in the right direction.  We all know that coffee contains caffeine but how does it help our metabolism to burn fat?
Caffeine stimulates the nervous system, which sends direct signals to the fat cells to tell them to break down fat.  This is how caffeine helps to mobilize fat from the fat tissues, making it available for use as free fatty acids in the blood. Studies show that caffeine can improve exercise performance by 11-12% and increase the metabolic rate by 3-11%,  A cup of (regular) coffee before a workout can be a good thing!

Resources:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8201901
http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/25/2/364.long
http://www.lymphnevada.com/about-lymphedema/lymph-system

Have a great day and hope you are able to incorporate one of these five easy ways to boost your metabolism.  You are worth it and deserve great health!

Yours in health,

Donna and Daniela

 

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Fall Favorite – Oven Roasted Balsamic Brussel Sprouts

Hello Friends!

We hope that everyone had a smashing week and have an even better weekend!  As much as we love the fun days of summer the change in weather is good too.  Cooler nights and crisp air have us changing up our menus too!  One of our in-season favorites is oven roasted balsamic brussel sprouts.  They are super easy to make and can be made ahead of time too.  Whether you buy them directly on the stalk and trim them yourselves or hand-pick them from the farmer’s market, fresh is best!

How to buy:

  1. Make sure they are fresh! – The leaves on the brussel sprout should compact and tightly wrapped.  One or two loose leaves are fine but if you can start doing “he loves me, he loves me not” with the sprout leaves, you need to move on.
  2. Pinch them hard! – We want them hard when we pinch them, like marble hard.
  3. Size is important! – Try to pick out brussel sprouts that are uniform in size so they cook evenly.

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How to clean and trim:

Simply rinse your brussel sprouts and discard the one to two loose exterior leaves.  Trim the rough stem by simply taking off an 1/8″ off the bottom of the sprout.  Our recipe calls for the sprouts to be halved but you can also roast them whole for a varied presentation.

Oven Roasted Balsamic Brussel Sprouts

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half through the core
  • 3 Tablespoons of olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • Himalayan sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

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Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl mix the olive oil, vinegar and minced garlic together.  Place the halved brussel sprouts in the mixture and toss lightly together until all sprouts are coated.
  3. Place the Brussels sprouts on a sheet pan, including some of the loose leaves, which get crispy when they’re roasted.  Spread the sprouts out in a single layer and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Roast the Brussels sprouts for 20 to 30 minutes, until they’re tender and nicely browned. Toss once during roasting.
  5. Remove from the oven and serve.

These are great not only as a side dish for dinner but make a great lunch leftover as well.  You can also do your own mixture of mixed veggies and this same olive oil, vinegar and garlic recipe if brussel sprouts aren’t your favorite.:)  Seriously though, if you haven’t had them before you should give them a try.  These may become your new fall favorite!

Have a great weekend and keep smiling!

Donna and Daniela