You might have never given any thought to how connected your metabolism is to the seasons or to how your body’s natural rhythms need nourishment, but autumn is a time when your metabolism requires a different type of nourishment. These 7 tips will help support your autumn metabolism.
As summer fades into the warm hues of autumn, our bodies undergo subtle changes in response to the shifting seasons. One of the key factors that influence these changes is metabolism. Metabolism is the complex set of chemical reactions that occur within our bodies to convert food into energy. Understanding how metabolism adapts during the autumn season can help us make the most of this time of transition and maintain our health and well-being. There are several factors that affect your metabolism:
- Age: things start slowing down after age forty
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Deficiency of Calcium or Iron
- Underactive thyroid
- Sleep deprivation
As the weather cools down, our bodies work harder to maintain a stable core temperature. This increased thermogenic effect can slightly boost metabolism as our bodies burn more calories to stay warm. However, the effect is generally modest and varies from person to person.
Seasonal changes in food availability can influence our eating habits. Autumn is a time when many delicious, hearty foods come into season, like pumpkins, apples, and root vegetables. These nutrient-dense foods can positively impact metabolism, providing essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber that support overall health. Eating smaller meals more often helps avoid insulin spikes, cravings, and overeating. Eating a nutrient-rich breakfast jumps starts your metabolism and keeps it going. Scrimping on calories and skipping meals can cause the body to go into starvation mode which slows down metabolism to conserve fuel. One study found that people who skipped breakfast were more likely to experience unhealthy weight challenges1. Eating plenty of high-quality, clean proteins like Sunwarrior’s plant-based proteins helps boost the metabolism by causing a natural thermic effect. It digests slowly and requires up to 25% more energy in the process. Protein helps build muscle, which burns more calories, even when you're resting. Also consume plenty of high-quality Omega 3 like Sunwarrior's, which is important in balancing blood sugar and regulating metabolism. If you feel like you need an extra boost you definitely want to try Sunwarrior's Thermo Greens.
The shorter daylight hours and cooler temperatures of autumn may lead to changes in physical activity patterns. While some people may decrease their outdoor activities, others may engage in seasonal activities like apple picking and corn mazes, which can help maintain or even increase metabolic activity. Maintain your physical activity routine, even as the weather changes. Try indoor workouts or take advantage of the crisp autumn air for outdoor activities like hiking, biking, or brisk walks. Aerobic exercise increases metabolism in the short term, while strength training boosts it long term by as much as 50%. Muscles burn over 15 times more calories per day than fat. The more intense the workout, the more it resets your thermostat and the longer it lasts. 30 to 45 minutes, two to three times per week should be sufficient.
Ensure you get enough restorative sleep. A consistent sleep schedule and a relaxing bedtime routine can help regulate hormones that control appetite and energy expenditure, supporting a healthy metabolism. If you find that it's hard to relax enough to get to sleep, try some yoga in a bottle: Sunwarrior's Magnesium.
Seasonal changes can affect our hormonal balance. In autumn, the body's production of melatonin, the sleep hormone, increases due to longer nights.
As the weather cools, we may not feel as thirsty as we do in the summer. However, staying adequately hydrated is essential for metabolism. Water is required for many metabolic processes, so be sure to continue drinking water regularly throughout the autumn months. Herbal teas and warm water with lemon can be comforting choices for hydration during autumn. A University of Utah study found that a dehydrated person burns 2% fewer calories. At a minimum drink one glass of water before each meal2.
Chronic stress can negatively impact metabolism. Practice stress-reduction techniques like meditation, yoga, or deep breathing exercises to keep your stress levels in check.
So as the leaves fall and the temperatures drop, our metabolism undergoes subtle shifts to adapt to the autumn season. While these changes may not be dramatic, they underscore the importance of paying attention to our bodies' needs during this time of transition. By embracing a balanced diet, staying active, prioritizing sleep, and managing stress, we can support our metabolism and maintain overall health throughout the autumn months. Remember, the key to a healthy metabolism is not just about what you eat but also how you nourish your body in harmony with the season's rhythms.