Monday, January 1, 2018

Surprising Signs Your Metabolism May Be Off

Have you ever been jealous of that younger friend who can eat just about anything and doesn't seem to gain any weight? While it may be tempting to blame the disparity on metabolism alone, this likely isn't the case (don't forget about physical activity and muscle mass). After all, the rate at which your body burns calories is only one facet of what your metabolism actually does.

According to Devin Vicknair, Ph.D, behavioral health coordinator at GMC's Center for Weight Management, you can thank your metabolism for powering everything from breathing and blinking to circulation and hormone production. Basically anything that requires energy, you metabolism works to support. So, how can you tell if your metabolism is running smoothly? Not too slow and not too fast--just right. 

Whether you suspect your metabolism to be a slow poke or a speed racer, Dr. Vicknair suggests you watch for these sneaky signs to be sure it's not out of whack:

  1. You're extra tired or wired. If that cup of coffee used to do the trick, but now you can't seem to shake the exhaustion, it may be a sign that your metabolism is struggling. If you're constantly battling fatigue, it could be the result of blood sugar irregularities, thyroid problems or stress--all of which impact metabolism. On the contrary, you may feel restless, have unexplained weight loss and poor concentration if your thyroid is overactive.
  2. You can't get enough sugar. If your body is struggling to convert sugar in the blood stream into energy for cells, you'll continue to crave more and more sugar. Unfortunately, your body will keep signaling for more sugar even if your cells received the energy they needed.
  3. You're irregular. While there are many factors that can impact your period, like excessive stress, exercise and overeating, issues with your metabolism may also play a roll. For instance, a common symptom of hypothyroidism, or a slow thyroid, is an irregular period.
  4. You're backed up. Your digestive health is often a good indicator of overall health. So, despite your best efforts to eat a balanced diet and stay hydrated, if your bowels are still running slow, this may be a sign of a struggling metabolism.
  5. You're shedding. It's normal to lose hair while showering and brushing your hair, but if you notice that your hair is extra brittle or is falling out, this could be the result of a hormone or metabolism issue. You may also shed excessive skin cells associated with extremely dry skin.
  6. You can't get comfortable. Your metabolism plays an essential role in regulating your heat levels. If you can't seem to find that perfect temperature and you're always too hot or too cold, this may mean that your metabolism is off.
  7. You always have to go. Pee that is. Of course, there are a number of conditions that can cause a spike in bathroom visits, your metabolism may be one of the culprits. When your metabolism is running at a higher rate, it has an increased amount of waste (or water).
  8. You're battling acne. While there are many different kinds of acne, one type in particular may be the result of a slow metabolism. Hormonal acne, the result of irregular hormone levels, could signal a sluggish metabolism.
Keep things running smoothly.

If weight loss is your New Year's resolution, it's important to be sure that your metabolism is revved up and ready. And if a change in your diet and exercise routine aren't, GMC's Center for Weight Management can help. Utilizing a unique approach to weight loss, the Center for Weight Management offers a clinically proven medical weight loss program, comprehensive surgical weight loss options and an individualized aftercare program, to help you look and feel your best.