“Metabolism” has been a scientific buzz word in the health arena for a while, but recently we’re hearing more about “metabolic rate” as it relates to our overall fitness. The truth of the matter is that “weight loss” is something people are always going to be interested in. No matter how “fit” you are or how much you weigh, chances are that you’re interested in losing a few pounds of body fat and increasing your lean mass. Metabolic testing is a tool to help you understand the process of how to reach your fitness goals. It offers you an important part of the thermodynamic equation that needs to be manipulated in order to change your body weight and composition. For those who have dealt with stubborn weight issues and fitness uncertainties, metabolic testing can be a huge game changer. The best news: it’s convenient and affordable.
What is “metabolism” and what does “metabolic testing” tell us?
Metabolism is responsible for breaking down the calories you consume and turning them into the energy your body needs to function. The higher your metabolism is, the easier it is for you to lose weight and maintain that level of weight loss. One way to determine the speed of your body’s metabolism is by testing your resting metabolic rate (RMR) through metabolic calorimetry.
When you find out how much energy it takes to just “maintain” when at rest (RMR), you can better estimate how much energy you need to take in and burn to maintain a healthy weight. This takes the “guess work” out of the “calories in, calories out” recipe.
Metabolic testing gives you information about approximately how many calories you burn each day.
Based on this information, you may decide to alter your physical activity or eating habits, so that you burn more (or less) calories daily.
Metabolic testing can be valuable, but the results should only be looked at as part of an overall fitness or wellness program.
What are the influencing factors in our metabolisms?
There are many factors that influence our metabolism, including but not limited to; age, body size and composition, gender, hormone levels, general activity level, regular exercise (especially strength training), the macro nutrient make-up of our dietary intake which can be found here, as it relates to the Thermo-Effect of Food (TEF), medication, acute illness or chronic disease states.
Finicky at most times and very personal–metabolism varies from person to person, and family member to family member. Similar physical characteristics can vary significantly in metabolic differences.
How is metabolic testing done?
Metabolic calorimetry testing is fairly easy and typically takes less than 30 minutes to accomplish.
The equipment used may vary. Some tests use a mouthpiece you breathe into. Others require you to recline under a plastic hood that’s attached to a monitor by a tube. This test measures your RMR.
At Mission Accomplished we use the MedGem/BodyGem which is an easy-to-use, handheld indirect calorimetry device that accurately measures oxygen consumption (VO2) to determine resting metabolic rate (RMR)—the number of calories your body burns at rest. Knowing your RMR helps you understand your unique metabolism so you can develop a personalized plan to reach your goals.
If you have been struggling with weight loss or maintenance, are looking for new ways to push your body, or simply want to try something new for your physical fitness and overall wellness, metabolic testing could be what you’re looking for. With this information, you gain a serious advantage and control over your health and wellness. You will understand better what’s happening inside so that you can work on yourself through the factors you can influence on the outside, giving you a more holistic way of approaching your fitness and management of your ideal body weight.
At Mission Accomplished metabolic testing is included in the New Client Initial Fitness Consultation and Program Development as well as our Personalized Nutrition Set-Up packages! Start by making an appointment with Kim at Mission Accomplished. You will be given simple instructions to follow prior to the testing.
Begin your new year with solid information to support your health and fitness goals!