Eating These Foods Could Be Slowing Down Your Metabolism, According to a Nutritionist

woman eating at a restaurant

Metabolism is a word that’s thrown around a lot, but until recently we had kind of resigned ourselves to the fact that we weren't really in control of it. It's all genetics, we thought. Right? Not entirely.

When we checked in with Samantha Cassetty, RD, the chief nutrition officer for magnesium brand OMG! Nutrition, she dispelled the myth that our metabolism is out of our control—and suggested ways to speed it up.

"Genetics do play a role in your metabolism, and so do certain medical conditions, like thyroid disorders," she told us. "But there are certainly factors within your control." The easiest ways to change things up? Food and exercise.

According to Cassetty, "Exercise accounts for up to 30 percent of the calories you burn, and if your exercise involves strength training, that extra muscle mass will give you a small but meaningful metabolic boost."

Food-wise, there are foods to eat more of—and some to avoid—in order to optimize your metabolic performance. "Multiple studies point to the fact that consuming whole foods over processed ones (such as sweets and refined grains) can help," Cassetty told us. In fact, one study at Tufts University that examined the metabolism of a small set of adults eating either refined carbs (like white pasta, crackers or bread) compared with whole-grain versions, those eating the intact whole grains experienced a small metabolic advantage.

So ditch the white bread and sign up for that boot-camp class you've been avoiding, OK? It's worth it.

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sarah stiefvater

Wellness Director

Sarah Stiefvater is PureWow's Wellness Director. She's been at PureWow for ten years, and in that time has written and edited stories across all categories, but currently focuses...