Signs of a Slow Metabolism + How to Boost It

Understanding Your Metabolism

Metabolism is the body's process of converting food into energy. This complex biochemical process involves calories from food and drinks being combined with oxygen to release the energy your body needs to function. A fast metabolism efficiently performs this process, helping to prevent excess fat storage.

What Is Metabolic Rate?

Metabolic rate refers to the speed at which your body conducts these functions, converting food to energy. It's not a single process but a series of functions and chemical reactions occurring continuously.


Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)

Your BMR is the number of calories required for basic life-sustaining functions. Even at rest, your body burns calories for breathing, nutrient processing, cell production, and circulation. Factors influencing BMR include sex, height, weight, age, weight history, body composition, and genetic factors.


Causes of a Slow Metabolism:

  1. Cortisol

Cortisol, essential for carbohydrate and fat metabolism, can increase appetite and cravings, potentially leading to weight gain.

  1. Thyroid Conditions

Thyroid hormone imbalances can impact metabolic rate and cause weight gain or loss.

  1. Insulin Levels

Insulin regulates sugar absorption by cells. Excess glucose intake can lead to its storage as fat.

  1. Hormonal Imbalances

Low estrogen or testosterone levels can slow metabolism and lead to excess fat storage.

  1. Age

Aging can slow metabolism due to hormonal changes and muscle tissue loss.

  1. Medications

Certain medications can increase appetite and promote fat storage.

  1. Caloric Deficit

Extreme calorie deficits can slow metabolism, hindering weight loss.

Symptoms of a Slow Metabolism

  1. Weight Gain

A less efficient metabolism leads to fewer calories being burned and more fat stored.

  1. Difficulty Losing Weight

A slower metabolism conserves calories, making weight loss more challenging.

  1. Fatigue

Reduced energy production can lead to chronic fatigue.

  1. General Weakness

A slow metabolism can weaken the immune system and increase susceptibility to illness.

  1. Dry Skin

Metabolic imbalances can affect skin health, leading to dryness and irritation.

  1. Thinning Hair

Nutrient absorption issues can impact hair health and growth.

  1. Mood Swings

Metabolic issues can contribute to emotional instability.

  1. Concentration Difficulties

Inefficient metabolism can affect cognitive functions.

Boosting Your Metabolism

  1. Increase Muscle Mass

More muscle mass leads to a higher resting metabolic rate.

  1. Portion Meals

Well-portioned meals can help regulate metabolism and prevent overeating.

  1. Avoid Late Night Snacks

Eating late can lead to unburned calories being stored as fat.

  1. Drink Enough Water

Proper hydration is essential for an efficient metabolism.

  1. Get Enough Sleep

Aim for at least 7.5h sleep which is crucial for maintaining a healthy metabolism.

  1. Reduce Stress

Stress can slow metabolism and lead to unhealthy eating habits.

  1. Exercise Regularly

Regular physical activity boosts metabolism and improves overall health.

  1. Consider Environmental Factors

Limit exposure to chemicals that can disrupt metabolic functions.

The Role of Functional Medicine

Functional medicine tests, like the Hormonal, Adrenal & Metabolism test, provide insights into metabolic imbalances. This comprehensive analysis examines various factors, including hormones, insulin levels, and Vitamin D, offering a detailed view of your overall health. This test, coupled with a personalised approach to diet and lifestyle changes, can significantly transform your metabolic health.


Understanding the signs of a slow metabolism and adopting strategies to boost it are crucial for maintaining a healthy weight and overall well-being. Embracing a balanced lifestyle, focusing on nutrition, exercise, and stress management, and considering the role of functional medicine can truly revolutionise your metabolism. Imagine a vibrant world where every bite, every workout, and every stress-busting technique propels you towards a metabolic makeover!


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Martínez-Gómez MG, Roberts BM. Metabolic Adaptations to Weight Loss: A Brief Review. J Strength Cond Res. 2022 Oct 1;36(10):2970-2981. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000003991. Epub 2021 Mar 3. PMID: 33677461.

Westerterp-Plantenga MS, Nieuwenhuizen A, Tomé D, Soenen S, Westerterp KR. Dietary protein, weight loss, and weight maintenance. Annu Rev Nutr. 2009;29:21-41. doi: 10.1146/annurev-nutr-080508-141056. PMID: 19400750.

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