Small changes to your morning can have immense weight loss and health benefits without much effort at all. These involve increasing your basal metabolic rate (or kickstarting your metabolism). Metabolism refers to the number of calories the body needs to burn while resting and has to do with a variety of factors including age, gender, muscle-to-fat-ratio etc.
While people can be genetically gifted with a fast metabolism, there are ways to speed up your metabolism so that you are burning calories while going about day-to-day activities. Yes, you can burn calories while doing absolutely nothing!
Having half a lemon squeezed with a glass of water first thing in the morning will actively benefit you on your weight loss journey. It suppresses appetite and reduces bloating because of the pectin (soluble fibre) and polyphenols, which in turn will reduce caloric intake. Not only that, a study conducted by Florida State University also found ties to lemon water and increased fat metabolism, increased HDL (good) and reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol as well as reducing inflammation in the body. In fact, a separate study found that lemon juice reduces the impact of a meal on your blood sugar levels by as much as 30% meaning sustainable energy all day long and reduced cravings.
General health benefits are found aplenty in lemon water, the most important of which is the improved efficiency of extracting nutrients from food. This is because the atomic structure of lemon juice is similar to stomach acid which tricks the liver in producing more bile. This slows down the digestion process which has the added benefit of extracting nutrients from food more efficiently and therefore compliments lemon’s high vitamin C content – reaching as high as 187% of your recommended daily intake for just one lemon.
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
ACV has many properties which allow you to burn fat with minimal effort. A 12-week study was conducted in Japan where 144 obese Japanese adults consumed either a placebo, 15ml or 30ml of vinegar. The results were as follows:
Body Fat Percentage
This is because as little as one tablespoon of ACV mixed with a glass of water will decrease insulin while increasing glucagon levels. By lowering insulin, your body will store less fat while increasing glucagon allows for existing fat to be burnt as energy for your body. In other words, it minimises additional fat storage while burning existing fat away as energy. To illustrate ACV’s effectiveness even further, a study showed that insulin was lowered anywhere between 19-34% and significantly lowers blood glucose levels after a high-carb meal.
ACV is also effective in suppressing appetite and reducing cravings. A study done in 2007 by the BMC Gastroenterology showed that acetic acid delays the emptying of your stomach which in turn reduces the release of ghrelin, the hormone that causes a feeling of hunger. Furthermore, another study done in 2005, published by the Journal of the America Dietetic Association found that drinking vinegar after a high-carb meal resulted in the participants consuming 200-275 calories less throughout the rest of the day. This will make your weight loss journey more comfortable and enjoyable experience.
ACV also has general health benefits such as being a natural antibiotic because of the main component found in vinegar - acetic acid. Upon contact with harmful bacteria, it will assist your immune system in removing them as well as fostering the growth of healthy bacteria. This has a flow on effect to your skin, digestion and immunity without the harmful side-effects that medicine can give you.