Metabolism is often talked about in conversations about health, especially those centered on weight loss. But what exactly is it, and how do we keep it at a healthy speed?
On the basic level, your metabolism is how your body uses what you eat and drink in order to turn it into energy. If you have a faster metabolism, your body is burning energy more rapidly, which is something that can aid in healthy weight loss and weight management.
While losing weight and boosting metabolism involves more than just a specific type of food or drink, there are items you can consume that can contribute to you meeting your goals based on the nutrients and antioxidants they carry.
To learn more about metabolism-boosting drinks, we talked with a couple of dietitians to get their choices for the best metabolism-boosting teas.
Making tea with ginger is known as being one of the healthiest teas you can drink.
"Ginger is unique to weight loss in that it contains compounds known as gingerols and shogaols. These compounds create an antioxidant effect in the body that reduces free radical damage in the body. This damage leads to an increase in oxidative stress that can both cause and exacerbate obesity, and can also lead to decreased metabolism, energy, and more," says Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD, a registered dietitian at Balance One Supplements.
Black tea is a classic drink enjoyed by many different cultures. Not only does it contain helpful levels of caffeine, but it also comes packed with helpful nutrients for metabolism-boosting.
"It's usually packed with flavones, which have shown to speed up metabolism and support weight loss by supporting excess calorie or fat burning in the body. The caffeine in black tea can also improve metabolism, especially when taken in the morning, and can also help regulate total BMI," says Nataly Komova, RD, a registered dietitian and fitness expert at Just CBD
Matcha is a popular type of green tea known for having tons of health benefits.
"Matcha is a popular high-quality herbal Japanese tea containing caffeine, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties. Taking a cup of matcha tea before a workout has been shown to boost metabolism and fat oxidation, which can aid in weight loss. Fat oxidation is the pace at which the body uses or burns body fat, and a higher rate implies increased weight loss," says Komova.
Green tea is a classic metabolism-boosting tea and one of the most common choices among tea drinkers.
"Green tea is rich in antioxidants and has been positively associated with fat loss and weight loss. It is loaded with catechins, a type of antioxidants that have been shown to help increase fat burning, especially during exercise. A study found that women who had green tea extract for 12 weeks had greater weight loss and smaller waistlines. A review of 14 studies in 2014 showed that obese participants lost an average of 0.44-7.7 pounds more compared to those who did not have green tea in a 12-week period," says Vandana Sheth, RDN, CDCES, FAND, author of My Indian Table – Quick & Tasty Vegetarian Recipes.
If you're not a fan of black or green tea, oolong is always a great alternative that still comes with helpful antioxidants for aiding in weight loss.
"Oolong tea has been associated with promoting weight loss by enhancing how our body metabolizes fat. A study in 2009 found that over 64-66% obese and overweight participants in a six-week study while drinking 8 grams of oolong tea per day lost more than two pounds," says Sheth.
Rooibos is a helpful choice for boosting your metabolism if you don't want the caffeine that comes with the other types mentioned above.
"Rooibos, which is from South Africa, is an herbal tea that contains aspalathin. This compound may potentially help increase both sugar and fat metabolism. However, more research needs to be done," says Sheth.
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