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People often make a connection between the metabolism and their weight shifts. Those people who find it a very difficult to gain weight no matter how much they eat or what type of food they consume are considered to have a very fast metabolism, and the other way around. And although it is true that there is a connection between these two things, it does not really function the way the general public usually thinks it does.

What is the metabolism and its functions?

Metabolism includes a number of biochemical processes which happen inside the organism, but it is best known to transform food into energy. Every single body process, whether it happens inside the body, such as blood circulation, or it happens outside, such as running, and even breathing, requires energy. This energy is gained from the calories that are obtained by the intake of food and once they are inside the body, they are mixed together with the oxygen, which leads to their conversion to energy.

But of course, not all calories that enter the body are put to such good use. There is a particular amount of them which is required for this process and it depends on every person individually, and it is called the basal metabolic rate, or the metabolism. The rest of the calories that enter the body are simply excessive and may cause weight gain.

Which factors are included in determining the basal metabolic rate?

First of all, the basal metabolic rate is defined by the person’s build and body size. The bigger the body, the more calories it requires to burn, it’s as simple as that. Another important factor is the sex. It is a well-known fact that the weight of men includes more muscles, while that of a woman includes more fats. Therefore, men require more calories to burn. The final factor of basal metabolic rate is age. The muscle weight drops significantly in older people, and a great deal of it is replaced with fat, which means that the calories are burned considerably slower.

In addition to these factors, calories are also spent on digestive processes, as well as physical activity.

What is the connection between the metabolism and weight gain?

The metabolism is a completely natural body process and it does not cause weight gain, no matter how slow it may function in some people. The excessive weight is gained because the amount of calories which enter the organism is much above the necessary. For some people it might be somewhat difficult to set a limit between the calories that the body actually requires and those that are consumed out of sheer desire or craving. That’s why the best solution for those who feel that they need a considerable amount of calories a day is to exercise as regularly as possible, so that they can burn all that extra fat. 

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