Is your body getting the required dosage of metabolism boosting vitamins it needs very much? Perhaps, you already know that a person’s metabolism normally slows down with age, the body’s ability to burn as many calories and produce usable energy wanes. While for some, engaging in an exercise routine helps, to others, getting into an ‘organised’ diet regimen allows more visible improvement!
There are also those who choose the road less travelled, that is, using fat burners to increase metabolism. Did you know that a simple diet consisting of few small meals containing the following metabolism boosting vitamins can turn a sluggish metabolic rate to its desired active form? To get you started, here are the top 5 vitamins with corresponding food sources to jumpstart your healthy metabolism-boosting diet regimen.
1. B-Complex Vitamins
A diet that is deficient of B-complex vitamins such as thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, folate, Vitamin B6 and B12, biotin and pantothenic acid can leave one sluggish, listless and fatigued. When one lacks energy, the body’s metabolism also slows down making it store more fats and unwanted weight. Gaining weight is the least of your concerns when this happens. When you lack energy, depression and life threatening diseases can set in. But you can get the bulk of your required B-vitamins by consuming the following food sources.
Foods high in B-Complex Vitamins are:
- Thiamin – ham, dark leafy greens, whole grain cereals, wheat germ, green pea, almonds, pecans (1.1mg/day for women ; 1.2mg/day for men)
- Riboflavin – yogurt, cheese, milk, spinach, asparagus, dark leafy greens, chicken, fish, eggs, whole grain cereals (1.1mg/day for women; 1.3mg/day for men)
- Niacin- fish, white meat, legumes, pasta, fortified cereals, peanuts. (16mg/day for men, 14mg/day for women)
- Folate – think “foliage”; dark leafy greens and fresh fruits (400micrograms daily for men/women)
- Vitamin B6 – poultry, seafood, leafy greens (1.3mg/daily for men and women)
- Vitamin B12 – shellfish, beef, soy products, cereals (2.4 micrograms daily)
- Biotin– liver, egg yolk, salmon, lean pork, avocado, fruits and veggies, cheese, whole grain foods (5mg daily)
- Pantothenic Acid – yogurt, avocado, lentils, split peas, sweet potatoes, broccoli, mushrooms (5mg daily)
L-carnitine is an amino acid that promotes burning of fatty deposits. Usually produced in the liver with the assistance of essential amino acids such as lysine and methionine, this is then absorbed in the muscle tissue and transported as fatty acids into the cell’s mitochondria. From there, energy is produced to aid in flexible and active mobility. The most important function of L-carnitine is its ability to transport triglycerides into the bloodstream and into the muscles to be burned as energy.
Food sources: lean beef, low-fat pork, fish and shellfish, skinless chicken and turkey, garlic, collard greens, parsley, kale, bananas, pineapple, apricots, bee pollen, rice bran, nuts and seeds (3-5grams daily)
Ever wonder why milk formula and various fat-burning drinks are fortified with iron? As part of the protein in red blood cells or haemoglobin, iron transports oxygen to the muscle tissues enabling them to burn fat and release energy. Low iron levels always equate to low metabolism. A common nutritional deficiency among kids and adults alike is iron-deficiency anemia hence, the need to bulk up on iron-rich foods and drinks come highly recommended by professionals.
Food Sources: lean meat, liver, tofu, oysters, clams, mussels, chickpeas, fortified cereals and milk, pumpkin seeds, soybeans, beans, lentils, spinach, sardines, veal, ham, halibut, tuna, (19–21mg/day in men; 17–19 mg/day in women)
Commonly known as Coenzyme Q10 or simply CoQ10, this antioxidant is needed for the most basic cell function. It is directly involved in producing energy in the cell’s mitochondria by stuffing it with needed oxygen to enhance muscle strength and efficiency. It particularly strengthens the heart muscles enabling a person to exercise longer and burn more fat.
Food Sources: organ meats such as liver, kidney, and heart; beef sardines, mackerel, spinach, cauliflower and broccoli (30 to 200mg daily – recommended supplementation)
Creatine is a nitrogenous organic compound that stores and supplies energy to all cells in the body, particularly the muscles. Widely used by athletes, distance runners, and bodybuilders, it functions as an ergogenic to enhance training and performance. Your body’s natural source can often be depleted due to an insufficient diet. It must also be noted that muscles cells can only store creatine in small amounts to prevent kidney issues.
Food sources: meat, particularly muscle tissue and organ parts, from cows, pigs, lamb, fish and poultry. (recommended dosage – 0.03g/kg of body weight for a month)
It cannot be helped that some people’s metabolic rate can be sluggish even with proper nutritional intake. Somehow their bodies just don’t seem to ‘cooperate’! When this happens, many people find taking additional vitamins supplements to balance their daily recommendations. Common ingredients in these metabolism-boosting vitamin supplements are green tea extracts, acai berries, glucomannan, Vitamin B12, and hydroxycitric acid. Before you pop that magic pill though, make sure to consult with your physician as some metabolism-boosting supplements can lead to certain heart conditions, insomnia, mood swings and arthritis. It is also highly recommended reading the label to prevent allergic reactions.