There are some foods that are rich in certain nutrients that help to speed up the metabolism. Metabolism is essentially the rate at which the body breaks down calories and performs other necessary functions.

People who boost their metabolic rate may be able to lose weight and reduce their risk of obesity and health problems related to it.

Best foods to boost metabolism

Read on to discover the best metabolism-boosting foods.


Proteins are essential for boosting your metabolism. Foods that are high in protein help to burn more calories and promote muscle growth.

Eggs are a good source of protein, with each large, hard-boiled egg containing 6.29 grams (g), making them a good choice for people who want to improve their metabolism.

Protein intake can help to increase metabolic rate due to the body expending more energy to digest it, as opposed to fats or carbohydrates. This energy expenditure is referred to as the thermic effect of food (TEF) or diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT).

People who ate more protein had a higher metabolism than those who ate less protein, according to some research.


The seeds of the flax plant are a source of nutrition that includes protein, vitamins, and other essential nutrients. Some people see flaxseeds as a food that has positive health effects beyond the basic nutrition it provides.

Eating flaxseeds could help improve your metabolism and help with metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is when you have a group of conditions that increase your risk for things such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

The NCCIH is currently funding research on the potential benefits of flaxseeds for metabolic syndrome.

A study from 2019 showed that mice who ate flaxseeds had an increased metabolism. This is most likely because flaxseeds contain a good amount of fiber and protein, as well as essential omega-3 fats, antioxidants, and other essential nutrients.

The fermentation of flaxseed fiber in the gut leads to an improvement in the gut’s bacterial profile. This, in turn, leads to better metabolic health and may protect against obesity.

Studies suggest that flaxseeds and their nutrients may also help treat or protect against:

  • arthritis
  • autoimmune diseases
  • cancer
  • cardiovascular disease
  • diabetes
  • neurological disorders
  • osteoporosis


Lentils may help reduce the symptoms of metabolic syndrome.

A 2016 review that looked at 41 studies involving animals found that eating lentils and other legumes can help prevent and treat metabolic syndrome.

Lentils can help to increase your metabolism because they are a good source of protein. They also contain a decent amount of fiber, which can help to feed the beneficial bacteria in your gut.

Chili Peppers

Eating spicy foods that contain fresh or dried chili peppers can increase your metabolism and make you feel fuller. A compound in peppers called capsaicin is responsible for these health benefits and more.

Eating capsaicin, the chemical that makes peppers hot, modestly boosts metabolic rate, according to a 2015 study.

The research also found other potential benefits of the compound for weight management, such as increasing the speed at which the body metabolizes fat and reducing appetite.

Capsaicin, the main ingredient in chili peppers, has been shown to help the body burn an extra 50 calories each day, building on existing research from 2012.

Capsaicin may also have a number of other benefits, including reducing pain and inflammation, acting as an anticancer agent, and providing antioxidant benefits. Some researchers suggest that the compound may help treat conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease.


Suggestions for including ginger in meals include adding grated ginger root to cooked dishes or marinades, using candied ginger in baking, or drinking ginger tea. If you want to increase your body temperature and metabolism, as well as control your appetite, try adding ginger to your meals. You can grate ginger root and add it to cooked dishes or marinades, use candied ginger in baking, or drink ginger tea.

A review of studies from 2018 found that ginger may help with weight loss and improve some metabolic markers in people who are overweight. The study found that ginger may help reduce body weight and fasting glucose levels, as well as increase levels of HDL (good) cholesterol.

The anti-inflammatory properties in ginger may help reduce nausea for pregnant women and those undergoing chemotherapy treatment.

Green Tea

Green tea has received a lot of attention in recent years as researchers have found out more about its potential health benefits.

A few studies suggest that green tea extract may help to increase fat metabolism both when a person is at rest and during exercise. However, other research reports show no significant effects. Also, scientists cannot say for sure that drinking green tea would produce the same results as taking green tea extract.

A 2013 study of 63 people with type 2 diabetes found that drinking 4 cups of green tea per day can lead to significant reductions in body weight, BMI, waist size, and systolic blood pressure.

Other proposed health benefits of green tea include:

  • anti-inflammatory effects
  • antioxidant properties
  • antimicrobial activity
  • anticancer effects
  • benefits for heart and oral health


Coffee can stimulate metabolism thanks to its caffeine content.

Caffeine intake affects energy expenditure and metabolism, but it is important to be careful about how much caffeine you consume.

Though decaffeinated coffee does not have the same benefits as standard coffee, it is still beneficial. Adding cream or sugar will increase the calorie content which may work against the caffeine’s positive effects on metabolism.

Brazil Nuts

Brazil nuts are an excellent source of selenium, a mineral that’s essential for metabolism, reproduction, and immune function. They’re also high in protein and healthy fats, which can help people feel fuller.

Selenium is important for the thyroid gland for several reasons. The thyroid gland regulates the metabolic function and produces several vital hormones.

This means that eating just one Brazil nut a day could help you reach the recommended daily amount of selenium.

People should eat no more than 400 mcg of selenium per day in order to avoid selenium toxicity.

The research also suggests that Brazil nuts can improve the cholesterol levels for people who are healthy. Abnormal cholesterol levels are usually a marker for metabolic syndrome.


Glucoraphanin, a substance found in broccoli, may improve metabolism.

Glucoraphanin has been shown to help with “retuning” metabolism, lowering blood fat levels, and reducing the risk of many age-related diseases. Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables may also be effective in preventing or slowing down several forms of cancer.

If you want to see more significant changes in your metabolism, look for Beneforte broccoli, which contains high levels of glucoraphanin.

Dark, Leafy Green Vegetables

Spinach, kale, and other leafy greens may improve metabolism due to their iron levels. Iron is a vital mineral for metabolism, growth, and development.

Leafy greens contain non-heme, or non-animal, iron. To increase the body’s absorption of this type of iron, try pairing leafy greens with a source of vitamin C, such as lemon, tomatoes, or winter squash.

Leafy greens provide magnesium which is a mineral that helps with metabolism and is involved in over 300 processes in the body.

Fenugreek Seeds

If there’s one magic ingredient that can speed up your metabolism and help you lose fat, it is fenugreek. A study conducted on high-fat-fed obese rats published in The Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology found that fenugreek seed extract helped improve metabolism by decreasing adipose tissue in the body and increasing digestive enzymes, antioxidants, blood glucose levels, and insulin sensitivity.


To have good health, it is important to drink lots of water. You should drink 3 liters of water each day. If you exercise regularly, you should drink even more water. Drinking enough water helps clean toxins out of your colon, makes your gut healthy, and lowers inflammation. German scientists found that if you drink 500 mL of water, your metabolic rate goes up by 30% and you use 100 kJ more energy.

Yerba Mate Tea

Yerba mate tea is delicious and it can help you to lose weight. It has been shown to improve satiety levels and increase metabolism.

Drink yerba mate tea twice a day to help your metabolism and lose a few extra pounds.


This spice is not only good for enhancing the taste of cakes and pancakes, but also for promoting weight loss. Cinnamon helps to increase insulin sensitivity, reduce blood pressure, and lower blood sugar levels.

The most beneficial way to use cinnamon is to purchase Ceylon cinnamon, grinding it into a powder form, and storing it. This powdered form of cinnamon can be used in teas, salads, and soups.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has gained popularity in recent years as weight loss agent. It is said to help boost metabolism by balancing the internal pH, lowering serum triglyceride levels, and reducing BMI value.

Advocates suggest that to get the health benefits of apple cider vinegar, mix one teaspoon of it in a glass of water and drink it in the morning.


Garlic improves the taste of food and has many health benefits. Allicin, a compound found in garlic, helps fight cancer, reduces blood pressure, and protects against the common cold. Garlic also helps prevent fat synthesis and increases thermogenesis. In addition, garlic improves insulin sensitivity.

The benefits of garlic are bountiful, so be sure to add it to your next meal! Some ideas include putting it in your salad dressing, soup, grilled chicken or fish, sautéed mushrooms, or lentils. No matter what you choose, you’re sure to enjoy the many benefits garlic has to offer.


Apples are good for our health, as we have all heard many times. This is because apples contain antioxidants, dietary fiber, and flavonoids, which help reduce inflammation, improve metabolic rate, lower LDL (bad) cholesterol, fight cancer, and improve lipid profile and insulin sensitivity.

An apple a day can help you lose weight without needing to go to the gym or deprive yourself of good food.


Yogurt is a good source of good gut bacteria, which aids in better digestion. It also helps to control your appetite and regulates your blood glucose levels. As a result, your cells will function at optimum levels, giving your metabolism the much-needed boost.

Adding yogurt to breakfast, smoothies, or salad dressing can be a good idea.


Whether you’re eating hot dogs, sandwiches, or salads, mustard is a great way to add flavor. It’s also a good source of healthy fats and can help boost your metabolism by breaking down fat.

If you want to add mustard to your curry, you can buy mustard powder. Just be careful not to add too much, as it can make the food taste bitter.

Goji Berries And Strawberries

Both goji berries and strawberries are full of nutrients that can help your body to burn fat, and flush out toxins. These berries are considered to be two of the best foods to eat if you are trying to lose weight by boosting your metabolism.

You can eat these foods as part of a healthy breakfast or snack, but don’t eat too many of them at once since that can cause a sudden increase in blood sugar levels.

Citrus Fruits

If you drink a glass of warm water with the juice of a whole lime or half a lemon regularly, it can have a great impact on your overall health. This is because lime is a good source of vitamin C, which is a natural antioxidant that boosts your immunity and helps with basic cell functions. Additionally, all citrus fruits are good for boosting your metabolism and helping you lose weight.


Many herbs that are commonly used in cooking, such as cilantro, oregano, rosemary, thyme, dill, and fennel, contain large amounts of antioxidants. Antioxidants help to improve the body’s metabolic rate by reducing the harmful effects of free oxygen radicals. Therefore, there is no need to be hesitant about adding plenty of dried or fresh herbs to your food. Not only will they make the meal more aromatic and enjoyable, but they can also help you to slim down.


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About Rhoda ...

Rhoda is an award-winning dietitian, mature age model, and CEO of Sayvana Women.  

She is the creator of the Elegant Eating Solution, an affordable program that helps women avoid weight regain and feel great about themselves, without restrictive eating.

Elegant Eating is based on the science of protein leverage and follows the unique R.E.M.A.P approach to successful aging.

Learn More About Elegant Eating and How to Get Started

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