We Are All Born With The Same Metabolism—But Here’s Why It Slows Down For Some

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Most people assume they’re either cursed or blessed with a slow or speedy metabolism, which they believe explains why some gain or lose weight more easily. However, new research shows that this is actually FALSE. 

After spending a decade doing research for his new book Eat to Beat Your Diet, physician and author Dr. Will Li says he discovered a recent study that indicates everyone is born with the same metabolism. In other words, we burn calories at the same rate. 

“It turns out metabolism is the new frontier when it comes to improving your health. And believe it or not, some of the biggest discoveries about metabolism have been made in the last two years. The new research actually tells us that our metabolism is hardwired in our body. Everyone has exactly the same, like an operating system in your laptop,” he says. 

Why Do Some People Gain Or Lose Weight More Easily Than Others?   

Dr. Li says it’s not your metabolism that causes these fluctuations; it’s the excess or visceral fat in your body that slows down its ability to burn calories.  

How Do We Speed Up Our Metabolism? 

But there’s good news! Dr. Li says we have the ability to change our metabolism through food. (In fact, certain foods activate your “brown fat,” which could burn down the bad stuff!

“What we eat and how we eat can make a big difference,” he says. (Check out his Spiced Chicken, Rice, and Kale recipe with metabolism-boosting and fat-burning ingredients) 

The New Research on Metabolism 

While the new research says we are all born with the same metabolism, the rate that we burn calories does drop over time. However, it’s not as much as you think.  

In the project, 90 scientists studied 6,000 people — ranging in ages from 2 days old to over 90 years old — in 20 countries. 

“That's the entire human lifespan. All right?” Dr. Li says. 

Dr. Li says they discovered that all humans go through four phases of metabolism throughout their lives.  

Phase 1 (Birth to 1 Year Old) 

“Our metabolism skyrockets, goes up, up, up, up, up, 50% higher than what your metabolism is going to be as an adult,” he says. 

Phase 2 (1 to 20 Years Old) 

In Phase 2, your metabolism goes down. 

Although most people assume teenagers have exceptionally fast metabolisms because “they're eating two or three dinners, they're bouncing off the walls, they're sprouting like a beansprout,” this is incorrect.  

Phase 3 (20 to 60 Years Old) 

Most surprisingly, Dr. Li says, is that your metabolism between the ages of 20 to 60 is actually “rock stable.” 

“We are hardwired not to actually have a slower metabolism when we reach middle age. That is a real surprise. And what that means is that 60 can be the new 20 if you allow your metabolism to do its thing,” he adds. 

Phase 4 (60 to 90 Years Old) 

In the final phase, Dr. Li says your metabolism slows down but just by 17%.  

Overall, while people assume a slow metabolism causes body fat and weight gain, Dr. Li reiterates that it’s the opposite.  

“It's that excess body fat, which we can get by eating a lot of junk food, not being as active. Life happens to us during middle age. We get distracted. And when we actually gain extra body fat, it turns out that extra body fat slows down your metabolism, actually crushes your metabolism,” he says. 

However, “the good news is that we have the power to actually resurrect our metabolism to what it wants to be by fighting body fat.” 

Be sure to also check out Dr. Li’s thoughts on intermittent fasting and food dosing.

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