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A Metabolism Whisperer Shares Her Secrets for Burning More Calories

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A Metabolism Whisperer Shares Her Secrets for Burning More Calories
Rethink what you know about your metabolism. Photo Credit: erikreis/iStock/GettyImages

Maybe you're not familiar with the name Haylie Pomroy, but there’s a good chance you’ve seen her work. She is a registered dietician and wellness coach who has worked with celebs like Jennifer Lopez and Reese Witherspoon. In other words, you could say she knows a thing or two about whipping people’s metabolisms into shape.

In her latest book, “Metabolism Revolution,” Pomroy makes the case for how certain factors can make it easier for your body to hold on to excess fat. But once you take steps to fix them — which anyone can do, regardless of genetics — losing weight becomes easy. She’s a fervent believer that you don’t need to be blessed with a naturally speedy metabolism to have a slim, strong body. Here’s a look at her top tips to turn your body into a calorie-burning machine.

1. Forget About Your “Set Point”
End the struggle with the scale. Photo Credit: LightFieldStudios/iStock/GettyImages

1 Forget About Your “Set Point”

If you just can't seem to get below a certain weight, you might assume that the number on the scale is just your body’s natural set point. Even if it’s not the weight you want, it’s simply where your body is designed to be. So there’s not much you can do to change it.

Pomroy calls BS here, and she says you should too. “You are not predetermined to be a certain weight,” she says. Hitting your so-called set point just means that your progress has temporarily plateaued not that it's time to give up. And if you give your metabolism a good rev (with the tips to come), you can absolutely bust through it.

Read more: How to Find Your Happy Weight at Any Size

2. Eat More, Not Less
Eat more of the right foods. Photo Credit: SolisImages/iStock/GettyImages

2 Eat More, Not Less

If eating X amount of calories isn’t helping you lose weight, the standard thinking is that you need to trim that number back even further, right? Wrong. Eating too little triggers a hormonal reaction in which your body starts to burn fewer calories and stores away more of them as fat, Pomroy says.

“But when you eat a lot of nutrient-dense food, your body relaxes, realizes the emergency has passed and starts burning fat for fuel again,” she says. There’s no one-size-fits-all recommendation for how many calories you should be eating for optimal weight loss. It’s individualized based on things like your age, activity level and even previous dieting history. Working with a registered dietician, reading Pomroy’s book or using an app like LIVESTRONG.COM’s MyPlate can help you figure out the amount that you need.

3. Remember: Not All Calories Are Created Equal
Not all calories are the same. Photo Credit: jacoblund/iStock/GettyImages

3 Remember: Not All Calories Are Created Equal

Weight loss isn’t just about how much food you eat. It’s also about what kind. A diet that is heavy in refined carbs and sugar can spike micronutrient deficiencies, which can lead to metabolic dysfunction, Pomroy says.

That’s why it’s so important to stick mainly with whole, minimally processed foods. That means lean proteins and plenty of nonstarchy veggies, healthy fats and complex carbs. They’re rich in nutrients that feed your metabolic processes, helping your body burn calories more effectively.

4. Don’t Skimp on Breakfast
Breakfast is definitely an important part of the day. Photo Credit: Jelena Danilovic/iStock/GettyImages

4 Don’t Skimp on Breakfast

Eating a tiny morning meal (or skipping out altogether) so you can save up more of your calories for later on might seem like it makes sense. But from a weight-loss perspective, Pomroy says it’s pretty much the worst possible way to start your day. Why? Because skimping on breakfast forces your body to carry out its daily functions on zero fuel.

“In response, your adrenal glands will produce emergency hormones that tells your body it had better start stockpiling fat because who knows when you’ll get more food?” Pomroy says. To send your metabolism into fat-burning mode, aim to eat breakfast within 30 minutes of waking up. Try eggs scrambled with veggies and black beans or a wrap with veggies, eggs and turkey bacon.

Read more: Lose Weight With These 13 Easy Breakfasts

5. Make Snacks Part of Your Plan
Here’s your excuse to snack throughout the day. Photo Credit: nito100/iStock/GettyImages

5 Make Snacks Part of Your Plan

Nibbling mindlessly on cookies or chips is a surefire way to gain weight. But snacking strategically on wholesome foods keeps your metabolism revved — so you keep burning fat all day long.

“You should be eating at least five times a day,” Pomroy says. Try to space your meals and snacks out so you’re fueling up every two to four hours (except when you’re sleeping, of course). That might look like breakfast at 7:00 a.m., a snack at 10:00 a.m., lunch at 1:00 p.m., another snack at 4:00 p.m. and dinner at 7:00 p.m. Raw nuts, fresh fruit or veggies and nitrate-free jerky are all good choices.

Read more: The Magic Number of Meals a Day You Need to Lose Weight

6. Pump Up the Protein
Eat more protein. Photo Credit: vkuslandia/iStock/GettyImages

6 Pump Up the Protein

Of all the food groups, lean protein might be the most important for weight loss. It delivers the amino acids that your body needs to build and repair muscle tissue — which is crucial for keeping your metabolism running at top speed, Pomroy says. So you should never skimp.

In general, you should aim to have four to five ounces of protein at each meal. (Lean ground turkey, boneless, skinless chicken breast, tuna and salmon are good choices.) And try to pair proteins with green veggies whenever possible. They contain alkalizing compounds that work with the protein to promote a speedy metabolism, Pomroy says.

7. Don’t Let Carbs Be the Enemy
Carbs aren’t the enemy. Photo Credit: Amarita/iStock/GettyImages

7 Don’t Let Carbs Be the Enemy

Yes, protein is really, really important. But that doesn’t mean that carbs can never pass your lips again. The key is sticking with complex carbs (like brown rice, sweet potatoes or chickpeas), which deliver fiber to slow digestion and keep you full and energized for longer.

Also, don’t just have them whenever the mood strikes. “We use a systematic rotation of targeted foods, including carbs on specific days at specific times to maximize weight loss,” Pomroy says. For instance, having carbs with breakfast can give you an energy boost by raising your blood sugar after not eating all night.

8. Stop Stressing So Much
Banishing stress is easier said than done. Photo Credit: g-stockstudio/iStock/GettyImages

8 Stop Stressing So Much

Nonstop worrying doesn’t just wear you out. It can actually get in the way of your weight loss, says Pomroy. When you feel stressed, your adrenal glands start pumping out the hormone cortisol. That’s not a big deal if it only happens temporarily. But if you’re chronically stressed or anxious, your cortisol levels will stay elevated. “As a result, your body goes into fat-storage mode so that it’s ready for a crisis,” Pomroy says.

By finding ways to manage your stress (try meditating, yoga or one of these stress-busters), you’ll keep those cortisol levels low and stay out of fat-storage mode. “Our goal is to break the vicious cycle by telling your body, ‘Hey, everything is OK,’” Pomroy says.

Read more: 14 Surprising Foods to Help Soothe Stress

What Do YOU Think?
Tell us what you think! Photo Credit: fizkes/iStock/GettyImages

What Do YOU Think?

Are you trying to lose weight? What have ever you tried before? Have you heard of Haylie Pomroy or read her book? What did you think? What other tips would you add for boosting your metabolism? Share your thoughts and questions in the comments section below!

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