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Definition of Metabolism & Rate of Calorie Burning
Metabolism - What is it?
Definition of Metabolism
The Scientific Definition All chemical reactions within organisms that enable them to maintain life. It includes all physical and chemical processes within the body related to body functions.
Processes of energy generation and use; including nutrition, digestion, absorption, elimination, respiration, circulation, and temperature regulation. The two main categories of metabolism are catabolism and anabolism.
Catabolism is any metabolic process whereby cells break down complex substances into simpler, smaller ones, while Anabolism refers to any metabolic process whereby cells build complex substances from simpler, smaller units. Anabolic reactions usually require energy.
The energy of catabolic reactions is used to drive anabolic reactions.
Simpler Explanation of Metabolism
In very simple terms, your metabolism is the rate at which your individual body engine operates as it performs all it's bodily functions, like the creation/building of various substances (heat, muscle, proteins, RNA, hair, nails, enzymes, storage fat, bones) and the breaking down of others (food, storage fat, etc.). Both the creation/building process (anabolic, as above) and the breaking down process (catabolic) occur simultaneously, every moment. The fuel for all the chemical reactions which make up the metabolic process, is food.
Metabolism is Basically Genetic
Metabolism is basically a genetic inheritance and varies from person to person. You may have a faster metabolism than normal, for a person of your size, or a slower one. In this connection, the words "metabolism" and "metabolic rate" are often used interchangeably.
How Metabolism/Metabolic Rate Affects Weight
Your metabolism affects weight loss, weight gain and weight maintenance, because it determines how many calories you need. If you have a slower metabolism (you burn calories more slowly) your body needs fewer calories.
So you may find it more difficult to maintain or lose weight on an average calorie-controlled weight loss diet. In such a case, you may have to increase your level of physical activity, as this is the only effective way to raise your metabolism/metabolic rate.
What Determines Overall Metabolic Rate
In simple terms, three factors contribute to your overall metabolic rate and thus the amount of energy (calories) you need to sustain your body weight.
1. Your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
2. Your Additional Physical Activity
3. Dietary Thermogenesis
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