What is the Metabolism process?-Types, Process, Rate

May 4, 2024 Lifestyle Diseases 45 Views

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What is the Metabolism process?

Metabolism process refers to the metabolic or chemical processes that take place as the body converts the foods and drinks you consume into energy. It is a complex process combining calories and oxygen to create and release energy. This energy helps the body to perform its various functions such as breathing and digestion.

The body of a person needs a minimum number of calories, which is referred to as the basal metabolic rate or BMR, to perform the different body functions. Factors such as age, sex, physical activity, health conditions, and muscle mass can affect metabolism.

In this article, we will be discussing the function of metabolism process, types of metabolism, the factors that influence metabolism, and ways to regulate metabolism.

  • What does metabolism do?
  • What are the different types of metabolism?
  • What is metabolic rate?
  • What are the factors that affect metabolism process?
  • How to have a healthy metabolism?

What does metabolism do?

Your metabolism process will never stop, even while your body is at rest. It is constantly providing energy to the body to perform various basic body functions, like:

  • Breathing
  • Digestion of food
  • Blood circulation
  • Growth and repair of cells
  • Management of hormone levels
  • Regulation of body temperature

What are the different types of metabolism?

Metabolic process reactions can be of two different types:

  • Catabolic metabolic reactions: They involve the breakdown of the larger food molecules into smaller molecules. These types of metabolic reactions usually help in releasing energy. For example, the digestion of food is a type of catabolic reaction that gives the body energy.
  • Anabolic metabolic reactions: They help create larger molecules from smaller food molecules. These types of reactions use energy from the body. For example, muscle building or gaining bone mass is a type of anabolic reaction.

The consumption of energy from food and beverages helps the body perform its daily bodily functions.

What is metabolic rate?

The metabolic rate of the body or the total energy expenditure of the body can be divided into three different components, including the following:

    • Basal metabolic rate (BMR): The body needs energy even at rest to keep all the body systems functioning properly. The BMR of the body refers to the largest amount of energy used daily, which is generally about 50 to 80% of your daily energy use.
  • Thermogenesis or thermic effect of food: The body uses energy to digest the foods and drinks consumed and also helps in the absorption, transportation, and storage of the nutrients received from the food. Thermogenesis usually accounts for approximately 5 to 10% of your energy use.
  • Energy used during physical activity: This is the energy consumed by physical activity and will vary depending on how much physical exercise you do in a day. For a moderately active individual, who performs about 30 to 45 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity in a day, this component will contribute to approximately 20% of daily energy use.

What are the factors that affect metabolism?

Some factors can impact your metabolic rate. These factors include the following:

  • Body size: Larger-built adult bodies have a larger BMR and more metabolizing tissue.
  • Age: Metabolism usually slows down with age due to the loss of muscle tissue, as well as due to neurological and hormonal changes.
  • Gender: Usually, men have faster metabolism as they are larger in size compared to women.
  • Amount of body fat: Fat cells will burn far fewer kilojoules or calories compared to the other organs and tissues of the body, leading to a slower metabolism.
  • Lean muscle tissue present: Lean muscle helps burn calories faster and increases the metabolism of a person.
  • Dieting or fasting: Eating very few calories a day will encourage the body to slow down the metabolism process to preserve energy.
  • Growth: Infants and children usually have higher energy demands per unit of their body weight due to the energy demands of growth and the extra energy required to maintain their body temperature.
  • Genetics: The metabolism of a person may partly be affected by the genes of the person. Some types of inherited metabolic disorders that could affect metabolism include Gaucher disease, Wilson disease, maple syrup urine disease, hemochromatosis, Tay-Sachs disease, and mitochondrial diseases.
  • Temperature of the environment: If the temperature is too high or too low, the body will need to work extra hard to maintain the normal body temperature, which increases the BMR of a person.
  • Illness or infection: In case of an illness or injury, the body needs to work extra hard to build new tissues to create an immune response, thus increasing the BMR of a person. ( Know more about- What are Staph infection ? )
  • Nervous and hormonal factors: The BMR is controlled by the hormonal and nervous systems. Hormonal imbalances can impact how slowly or rapidly the body burns calories. For example, Endocrine disorders like hypothyroidism and Cushing’s syndrome can slow down the metabolism of a person.
  • Physical activity: Muscles need a lot of energy to burn. Regular physical exercise can help increase muscle mass and teach the body to burn calories at a faster rate.
  • Dietary deficiency: Certain dietary deficiencies, like a diet low in iodine levels, decrease the thyroid function and slow down metabolism.
  • Caffeine and nicotine: These substances are known to increase the BMR of a person.

How to have a healthy metabolism?

Some tips can help you increase your metabolism process, such as:

  • Avoid skipping meals
  • Eat a diet rich in healthy carbohydrates and fats, lean protein, and lots of fresh fruits and vegetables ( Know more about- Diet plan for immunity )
  • Do strength training or weight-resistant exercises to help build muscles
  • Quit smoking 
  • Get adequate sleep
  • Limit alcohol and sugar consumption

We hope that we were able to answer all your questions regarding metabolism through this article.

If you want more information about metabolism, you can contact a good general physician.

We only aim to give you information through the article and do not recommend any medication or treatment in any way. Only a qualified doctor can give you good advice because no one else is better than them.

You can get in touch with some of the best doctors in India at Manipal Hospital Old Airport Road Bangalore to guide you to have a healthy metabolism.


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