Our bodies constantly burn calories, even when we’re doing nothing. This resting metabolic rate is much higher in people with more muscle. Every pound of muscle uses about 6 calories a day just to sustain itself, while each pound of fat burns only 2 calories daily.
The body burns many more calories digesting protein as it uses for fat or carbohydrates. Although you want to eat a balanced diet, replacing some carbs with lean, protein-rich foods can boost the metabolism at mealtime. Healthy sources of protein include lean beef, turkey, fish, white meat chicken, tofu, nuts, beans, eggs, and low-fat dairy products.
Eating more really can help you lose weight – eating more often, that is. When you eat large meals with many hours in between, your metabolism slows down between meals. Having a small meal or snack every 2-4 hours keeps your metabolism working, so you burn more calories over the course of a day.
Spicy foods contain chemical compounds that can kick the metabolism into a higher gear. Eating a tablespoon of chopped red or green chili pepper can boost your metabolic rate. The effect is likely temporary, but if you eat spicy foods often, the benefits may add up.