Yoram Yasur Blume: Slow metabolism, how to improve it?
Aging is inevitable: countless changes will happen in our bodies from the moment we are born until we reach an old age. One of the most significant changes is the slowing down of metabolism, especially as the 30- or 40-years approach.
- What is the metabolism?
Yoram Yasur Blume: Metabolism is the set of all chemical processes by which the body converts food into the energy it needs. They include fat burning and burning calories, so important when we want to lose weight. When people talk about their metabolism, they actually refer to their metabolic rate: the amount of energy (or calories) they spend at rest or exercising.
The metabolic rate is made up of several factors. The amount of calories you burn when you are resting or sleeping is the minimum amount of chemical exchanges to keep you alive, at least for a while. You also spend energy digesting and absorbing food nutrients: this expense usually occupies 10% of the calories burned throughout the day.
Also, not all bodies spend the same amount of energy exercising, so that will count for your ease or difficulty losing weight. Finally, there are activities that are not exercise but burn calories: move your hands when you are nervous, stand, wash the dishes and do other household chores. Not all people burn the same amount of calories doing the same tasks.
- Why does metabolism slow down with age?
Yoram Yasur Blume: Many are the factors that are part of your metabolism and determine its speed. In addition to those already mentioned, the amount of muscle you have, your height and the levels of different hormones will also affect that rhythm. There is something we all have in common, and that is, if we have the metabolic rhythm we have, losing weight will become more difficult over time:
- Some metabolic processes stop
2 cellular components are responsible for burning resting calories: mitochondria and sodium-potassium pumps. The former create energy for the cells. The last one helps produce nerve impulses that cause muscle contractions, which include heartbeats. The research available in this regard shows that both processes lose their efficiency with age, and therefore slow down your metabolism.
- You become more sedentary
Many people do not realize it, but they end up being much less active at 40 than at 20. There are studies that show that people spend much less time exercising at 50 than in previous stages of their lives. The good thing is that the recipe to speed up the metabolism is to exercise more.
- You lose muscle with age
Yoram Yasur Blume: The average adult loses 3 to 8% of muscle mass as he ages. Some longitudinal studies have shown that 80-year-olds have 30% less muscle than when they were 20. When you get older, you lose muscle: that is the mechanism that reduces energy expenditure.