Last week I discussed why calories tell half the story... the left side of the energy balance equation. Calories in = BMR (basal metabolic rate) + TEF (thermic efffect of food) + TEA (thermic effect of activity) This week, I'll discuss how you can manipulate the right side of the energy balance equation so you can eat more without gaining fat. BMR is the energy required for you to function at rest (doing nothing). Two simple ways to increase your BMR is to 1, gain more muscle. The more muscle you possess the more calories your body will require to function at rest, meaning you can eat more. 2, coffee. Coffee has been shown to increase your BMR by 3-11% for a "regular" consumption quantity. The more you consume, the great the effect - but as always practice moderation and introduce coffee throughout the day, opting for green tea in the early hours.
Put simply, the thermic effect of food (TEF) is the energy required to digest and process what you eat. For everything that you eat, a portion of it is "used up" to break it down and absorb it. What you may, or may not, know, is that some foods require more energy to do so. Protein: Up to 30% of the calories are burned during digestion. Carbohydrates: Up to 10% of the calories are burned during digestion. Fats: Up to 3% of the calories are burned during digestion.
What this means is, if you consume 100 calories of protein, only 70 of them are actually "useable" and the rest are "burned away". So, if you are looking to lose fat, ensure you're consuming plenty of protein! The recommended daily intake is 1g per lb of bodyweight - I personally prefer to go slightly higher than this if I'm trying to lean down, as it's not just super filling, but 30% of it "doesn't count". Finally, the thermic effect of activity (TEA) describes how much energy you use when you're not at rest. To put it simply here... the more you move, the more you can eat! Get your steps in, incorporate resistance training into your exercise routine, and finally cardio - whether that be LISS (low-intensity steady-state) or HIIT (high-intensity interval training).