How can exercise affect my metabolism?

Ms. Ashley Koff, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
No doubt what you eat and what you expose yourself to in your environment affects the extent to which your mitochondria (your body's energy currency) function and how much damage they endure, but people forget the influence that exercise has in this regard. Moderate intensity aerobic exercise for just 15 to 20 minutes, three to four times a week has been shown to increase the number of mitochondria in your muscle cells by 40 to 50 percent. That's not very much exercise for a huge increase in your energy metabolism (and ability to burn fat).

In a study done by a team from Mass General, the Broad Institute of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Harvard, fit people were found to have greater increases in a metabolite called niacinamide than unfit people. Niacinamide is a nutrient by-product that's involved with blood-sugar control. In fact, this team found more than 20 metabolites that change during exercise. These are naturally produced compounds involved in burning calories and fat, and improving blood-sugar control. Some weren't known until now to be involved with exercise. Some revved up during exercise, such as those involved in processing fat. Others involved with cellular stress decreased with exercise.
Mom Energy: A Simple Plan to Live Fully Charged

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Exercise can boost your metabolism. Building lean muscle mass by exercising can slightly increase your resting metabolic rate (the amount of calories your body burns while at rest). In addition, vigorous exercise can increase your metabolic rate for hours after exercise. This is known as exercise postexercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), but is often referred as "after-burn." Vigorous exercise requires your body to elevate your heart and breathing rates and increases your core temperature. During this elevated state your body is burning more calories until it returns to baseline levels.

Metabolism is nothing but the process in which the food we consume is converted into energy that is needed for the body to survive. Energy is not required only for doing activities. Innumerable activities are carried out in our body even though we may not be aware of those activities. Even if you lie down on a bed in a still condition, your body is working. The heart is functioning, the liver, the brain and brain nerves and other vital parts of the body are functioning. For this, you need energy and through the process of metabolism, you get that energy to sustain and survive in this world.

It has been found that about 60% of the energy produced from the food we consume is used to keep the body alive and its organs functioning normally. The balance 40% of the energy can be effectively used for other activities such as walking, running, or doing other day-to-day activities. Assume that if you do not do any work in a day other than eating at regular intervals, about 35% to 40% of the energy from the food remains underutilized or calories are not burnt, leading to obesity and such other problems related to over-weight.

Article Source:

By Robert Melkonyan

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

You don't need to run a marathon to boost your metabolism. In this video, Dr. Oz demonstrates an effective five-minute workout that anyone can do.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.