Metabolism involves those physical and chemical processes dedicated to the maintenance of life. These include:
- ENERGY PRODUCTION
- CELL RENEWAL
- WASTE ELIMINATION
In other words, metabolism is a process through which your body breaks down used cells, does some housekeeping, and then rebuilds itself, one cell at a time – all day every day till the day you die. AND metabolism is a dynamic, ongoing process that is shaped by past and present INPUT.
Diane Schwarzbein, M.D., in her book , says this about metabolism:
In popular terminology, metabolism is defined as the amount of energy a person's body burns. However, burning energy is only a small fraction of what your metabolism does. Metabolism is the combined effects of all the varied biochemical processes that continually occur in your body on a cellular level. These processes enable every individual component of your body to function, making it possible for you to think, digest food, move and perform all the functions of a living, breathing human being. Some of these functions include: bone and tissue regeneration, elimination, fertitlity, functions of all internal organs, mood, vision, hormone production, heart pumping and talking. . . Regeneration processes are divided into two categories: Those that build the body up and those that break the body down. Your body is made up of dynamic tissues such as nails and hair that your body constantly replaces. This breaking-down process is essential for clearing out old cells and cellular material (enzymes, hormones, neurotransmitters) to make room for the new. pp3-4
Certain cells, such as skin cells, have a life span of only a few days - while all the cells of our teeth are replaced about once a year, and the largest of our bones may take somewhere around 12 years to be completely replaced.
IN OTHER WORDS, you are being gradually - but constantly and completely - “rebuilt” on a cellular level EVERY 12 YEARS OR SO till the day you die!! INPUT TODAY BECOMES THE CELLS OF TOMORROW. THAT IS BIOLOGY.
THE GOOD/BAD NEWS IS THAT YOU CAN CHANGE YOUR METABOLISM!
Metabolic rate differs not only from one person to another, but also from one TIME to another in the SAME person AND it varies with the total nutrient mix. Know that in our "modern" world it is relatively easy to destroy metabolism, and exceedingly difficult to rebuild it. Often, rebuilding efforts will require a series of steps, like "peeling layers off an onion."
METABOLISM IS AFFECTED BY:
- Hormone balance
- Nutrition levels
- % of lean muscle mass
- State of health, including presence of allergies and toxicity
Regardless of the individual factors involved, acheiving and maintaining a healthy, high performing metabolism requires at a minimum:
- A personally appropriate, REASONABLY balanced intake of MACRONUTRIENTS (Protein, fat and carbohydrate)
- A personally appropriate, properly balanced intake of MICRONUTRIENTS (vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, etc.)
- Plus a personally appropriate exercise program that builds lean muscle mass. (Simple exercise works and can include anything from stretching and deep breathing to walking, bike riding, even housekeeping, etc. - depending on your physical capabilities and time constraints.)