When we talk about metabolism, we’re talking about the way your body uses calories from food to produce energy so that you can keep up with your regular, everyday bodily functions like breathing and digesting food. Energy needs vary by person, depending upon their metabolism (among other factors).
Whether you have a “fast” or “slow” metabolism is related to three factors in how your body uses calories – in other words, your total energy expenditure.
- Basal metabolic rate (BMR): This is your calorie needs you need at REST – meaning, you are using absolutely no muscles. It may be surprising to some, but this is 60-70% of your daily calorie intake, which means it plays a major role on your metabolism.  This can vary widely per person and is determined by things like age, muscle mass, gender, hormones, stress, fitness and other factors. People who identify with having a “fast” metabolism typically have a high BMR.
- Thermic effect of food (TEF): Your body uses energy to digest food, and this calorie use makes up TEF. This takes up about 10% of your daily energy expenditure. Different foods have different effects, with protein having the most impact, and carbohydrates then fat trailing behind. 
- Energy expenditure from physical activity (EEPA): This is what we traditionally think of when we think of calorie burn – the calories your body uses during physical movement and exercise. But it’s not just your big ride or dog walk – it’s any physical movement, including gardening, making diner, doing the laundry, etc. This accounts for roughly 20% of your daily calorie burn, but can vary depending on daily activities. 
3 Essential Reasons to Work on your Metabolism
It’s important to maintain a healthy metabolism!
- It controls bodily processes that maintain balance and support the repair and renewal of cells, tissues and organs. 
- A healthy and efficient metabolism helps the body more effectively absorb nutrients, and increases energy production and waste removal. 
- An efficient metabolism helps stabilize blood sugar levels, as well as control inflammation and – what we typically think of when we think fast metabolism – a healthy body weight. 
Not only can a healthy metabolism help your body perform at its best during sport, but it also plays a role in your longevity. Metabolism dysfunction is associated with an increased risk of chronic disease as we age.
3 Everyday Things We Can do to Boost Metabolism
Sleep is a wondrous tool for the body and lack of it can mess with appetite hormones, leading to increased caloric intake and can negatively alter glucose metabolism. [4, 5] Try for 7-9 hours of sleep. Check out our podcast on the importance of sleep for more info!
Eat Your Protein
While we won’t suggest to only eat protein, it does have the highest thermic effect, as we mentioned, when compared with carbs and fat, which means the body uses the most amount of calories to digest and absorb it.  Be sure to include a healthy protein source at every meal.
Add in High Intensity Intervals
Adding high intensity intervals followed by rest and recovery, can help increase post-exercise oxygen consumption, fat oxidation, and metabolic rate. [7, 8]
InsideTracker testing can help monitor 5 biomarkers related to metabolism
There are several blood biomarkers that contribute to overall metabolism
- Vitamin D
These are just five of many blood biomarkers that can quantify metabolic function. Routinely measuring these markers and more can determine where your metabolism is optimal—and what still needs work.
If you’re interested in getting lab tests done and understanding the results, check out InsideTracker’s comprehensive blood panel, which not only measures these blood biomarkers, but depending on your results, delivers personalized recommendations to improve metabolic health and several other facets of healthspan. Use code NUTRITION at checkout to receive 20% off any test!