Your metabolism is an important part of your overall health and is what is needed for your body to convert the food you eat into energy. The tricky thing about your metabolic health is that plenty of factors can contribute to your metabolism slowing down. Things like genetics, existing illnesses, diet, and movement can affect it, and as you get older your metabolism naturally begins to slow down.
With this in mind, how can we speed up our metabolism with our diet as we age? To find out more, we talked with a few expert dietitians about breakfast habits you can adopt in order to boost your metabolic health after the age of 50!
Read on, and for more tips on eating healthy check out 5 Coffee Habits That May Be Shortening Your Life.
One of the most crucial nutrients for metabolic health and sustainable weight loss is also one of the most challenging ones to get enough of throughout the day. But if you can increase your protein consumptionespecially at breakfast, you’ll make a significant difference in your overall health.
“Protein helps you get full faster and stay full longer because, in comparison to carbohydrates and fat, it takes the longest to break down. While the thermic effect of food does not burn tons of calories, it does burn some, and protein revs that calorie-burning system.Consider jump-starting your day with breakfast protein like eggs, Greek yogurt, cheese, lean beef sausage, or protein powder in a smoothie and aim for 25 to 30 grams of protein,” says Amy Goodson, MS, RD, CSSD, LD, author of The Sports Nutrition Playbook and member of our Expert Medical Board.
Speaking of protein, incorporating eggs into your breakfast can be a great source of this nutrient, as well as a handful of other metabolism-healthy nutrients.
“Eggs are an economical and versatile protein source that is the quintessential breakfast food. And not only are they packed with protein, but they contain key nutrients that support our metabolism too. You can grab a hard-boiled egg on your way out the door , top your avocado toast with a sunny side up, and even add eggs to your oatmeal bowl,” says Lauren Manaker, MS, RDNauthor of The First Time Mom’s Pregnancy Cookbook and Fueling Male Fertilityand member of our Medical Expert Board.
Finding the time and energy to eat breakfast can be a challenge. It’s also common for many people to just drink a cup of coffee in place of breakfast if they don’t feel as hungry. Unfortunately, Goodson warns that this habit could be negatively impacting your health and metabolism.
“While many people think skipping breakfast is better for your metabolism, nothing could be further from the truth,” says Goodson. “Think of a fire. In order for it to start burning, you have to light it. Then you add small amounts of wood every couple of hours to keep it blazing. The same is true with your metabolism! You want to jump-start it in the morning with a high-fiber carbohydrate and protein, then add small amounts of food (think small meals and snacks throughout the day) to keep it burning throughout the day.”
“Green tea has natural compounds that support a healthy metabolism in a delicious way. EGCG is one compound found in green tea that is linked to an enhanced metabolism,” says Manaker. “A classic cup of tea is soothing to sip on, or for a more trendy treat, a green tea latte can certainly fit the bill.”
“Adding hot peppers to your eggs, toast, or any other dish can help support a healthy metabolism. Capsaicin is a compound found in hot peppers that are to thank for this natural effect,” says Manaker.
According to a study published in Bioscience Reportscapsaicin has been proven to help provide benefits to metabolic health and aid in weight loss for those who are considered obese. The study also adds that no negative consequences have been found in regards to consuming capsaicin.
So, if you want a metabolism boost in your 50s and after, make sure you’re not skipping breakfast, you’re getting enough protein, and if you feel up for it, try a hot pepper or a cozy cup of green tea!