Some people can eat anything they want and stay skinny. Others count calories meticulously and still struggle to maintain their weight.
Most people attribute these individual variations to a naturally fast or slow metabolism. Interestingly, research shows that it’s not a gender or genetics that most determines adults’ metabolic rate: it’s percentage lean muscle mass (
If your phentermine stopped working and you’re looking for some new ways to boost metabolism naturally, consider some of the habits and foods below.
Does Phentermine Increase Metabolism?
Phentermine is a sympathomimetic amine that suppresses appetite and boosts energy to promote weight loss. It does not increase metabolism.
How to Boost Metabolism for Weight Loss
Even though genetics affect resting metabolism to some degree, lifestyle choices are the most important predictor of obesity.
Here are five ways to boost metabolism and make the most of your weight loss journey, both during and after treatment with phentermine:
1. Workout Regularly
Exercise is vital for metabolic health. Lean muscle tissue is more metabolically-active than fat tissue, so the more muscle you have the more calories you burn at rest.
Unfortunately, weight loss – especially rapid weight loss – cannibalizes important muscle tissue. Muscle mass also decreases naturally with age (2).
So, to maintain muscle mass and metabolic rate, it’s beneficial to strength train at least 2-3 times per week. Building muscle also helps protect joints, reduce injury and support proper posture.
Research also shows that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is particularly effective for boosting metabolism. This type of workout increases metabolic rate because it helps preserve lean muscle mass, produces a powerful “afterburn effect” and improves aerobic fitness (3).
2. Eat Breakfast
Starting your day on an empty stomach is like hitting pause on your metabolism.
Fasting for extended periods of time sends a message to your cells that they need to conserve energy in case there’s not another meal soon. As a result, when you skip breakfast and extend the overnight fast, your body holds onto fat stored in your cells instead of working to burn it off.
More, a 2013 study found that obese women who ate bigger breakfasts lost more than 2x as much weight as those ate big dinners, even though both groups ate the same number of calories each day (
3. Drink More Water
Hydration is important for a lot of reasons. One reason it’s so beneficial for weight loss is that drinking plenty of water promotes satiety and increases fat burn (
Plain water is the perfect drink for weight loss. Steer clear of sweetened, caffeinated and alcoholic drinks while taking phentermine.
4. Rest Up
Sleep may seem like the least-likely activity to boost metabolism, but research shows that just one night of disrupted sleep significantly slows metabolism (
Do you regularly skimp on sleep? Long-term studies indicate that people who consistently sleep less than 5 hours per night have higher BMIs on average.
Click here to read more about sleep and weight loss.
5. Get Sexual
A healthy sex life is good for overall health, and even better for weight loss. In addition to the workout & immediate calorie burn, sex also releases hormones which lift mood, reduce stress and even suppress appetite.
Metabolism Boosting Foods for Weight Loss
Certain foods have also been shown to boost metabolism and promote further weight loss. Here are five foods that help boost metabolism:
Eggs are high in B vitamins, fat-burning choline, and protein. Eating enough protein helps boost metabolism, stabilize blood sugar levels and increase satiety.
One large egg has 78 calories and 6 grams of protein.
Salmon is high protein and relatively low in calories. It’s also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help protect heart health, improve insulin sensitivity and decrease belly fat.
A 3-ounce fillet of salmon has 180 calories and provides 19 grams of protein (7).
3. Green Tea
The main antioxidant in green tea, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), encourages fat breakdown at a cellular level. Drinking green tea has also been shown to boost metabolic rate and may help suppress appetite [8,9].
Some weight loss supplements also contain green tea extract to promote fat burn. Taking a supplement, like 5 Star Fat Burner, is another way to reap green tea’s benefits – even if you are not too keen on the drink’s flavor.
4. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is a powerful antioxidant and rich in essential minerals including iron, magnesium, copper, manganese, potassium, phosphorous, zinc and selenium.
Regular consumption of dark chocolate has been associated with decreased LDL (bad cholesterol), increased HDL (good cholesterol) and reduced insulin resistance (a major risk factor for heart disease and type 2 diabetes). Dark chocolate may even sharpen cognitive function (10).
To reap the health benefits, choose a chocolate bar that contains at least 70-85% pure cocoa.
5. Herbs and Spices
Spices do more than just add an extra kick of flavor to dinner. They’re also one of the best ways to boost metabolism for weight loss!
Some spices that promote weight loss include:
Ginger is a strong antioxidant. It may help lower blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure, and has also been suggested to help relieve muscle soreness (including menstrual cramps) and nausea (11).
Another natural antioxidant, turmeric can help regulate blood pressure and glucose. Some studies suggest it may slow weight gain, but more research is needed in human subjects (
- Cayenne Pepper
Capsaicin, the spicy ingredient in chili peppers, increases calorie burn at rest (
13). Research also reveals that adding chili peppers (or chili pepper) to meals decreases intake and curbs cravings, especially in people who don’t usually eat spicy food ( 14).
In a recent study, overweight and obese women that ate one teaspoon of cumin per day for three months lost about 30% more weight than the no-cumin group, plus saw significant drops in body fat percentage and triglyceride levels (
Recent research suggests that garlic could naturally speed metabolism, while the spice’s strong flavor works to suppress appetite and reduce cravings.
Cinnamon helps the body process sugar more efficiently. Some research suggests it may also slow gastric emptying (how fast food moves from the stomach to the intestines), which helps you feel fuller for longer (16).
- Lazzer, S., Bedogni, G., Lafortuna, C. L., Marazzi, N., Busti, C., Galli, R., . . . Sartorio, A. (2010). Relationship Between Basal Metabolic Rate, Gender, Age, and Body Composition in 8,780 White Obese Subjects. Obesity, 18(1), 71-78. doi:10.1038/oby.2009.162
- Kinucan, P., & Kravitz, L. (n.d.). Controversies in Metabolism.
- Stiehl, C. (2017, March 15). Is the Afterburn Effect Too Good to Be True?
- Jakubowicz, D., Barnea, M., Wainstein, J., & Froy, O. (2013). High Caloric intake at breakfast vs. dinner differentially influences weight loss of overweight and obese women. Obesity, 21(12), 2504-2512. doi:10.1002/oby.20460
- Thornton, S. N. (2016). Increased Hydration Can Be Associated with Weight Loss. Frontiers in Nutrition, 3. doi:10.3389/fnut.2016.00018
- Benedict, C., Hallschmid, M., Lassen, A., Mahnke, C., Schultes, B., Schiöth, H. B., . . . Lange, T. (2011). Acute sleep deprivation reduces energy expenditure in healthy men. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 93(6), 1229-1236. doi:10.3945/ajcn.110.006460
- Delaware Sea Grant. (2018). Seafood Health Facts: Making Smart Choices.
- Westerterp-Plantenga, M. (2010). Green tea catechins, caffeine and body-weight regulation. Physiology & Behavior, 100(1), 42-46. doi:10.1016/j.physbeh.2010.02.005
- Corleone, J. (n.d.). How Much Green Tea Should You Drink to Lose Weight?
- Gunnars, K. (2018, June 25). 7 Proven Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate.
- MacMillan, A. (2017, May 25). How Ginger Fights Body Fat, Obesity and Diabetes.
- Cespedes, A. (n.d.). Turmeric & Weight Loss.
- Symon, E., & Cronkleton, E. (2016, November 30). How Does Cayenne Pepper Help You Lose Weight? (N. Butler, Ed.).
- Ludy, M., & Mattes, R. D. (2011). The effects of hedonically acceptable red pepper doses on thermogenesis and appetite. Physiology & Behavior, 102(3-4), 251-258. doi:10.1016/j.physbeh.2010.11.018
- Zare, R., Heshmati, F., Fallahzadeh, H., & Nadjarzadeh, A. (2014). Effect of cumin powder on body composition and lipid profile in overweight and obese women. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 20(4), 297-301. doi:10.1016/j.ctcp.2014.10.001
- Leech, J. (2018, July 5). 10 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Cinnamon.