How Can Metabolism Affect Your Health?

woman working out

Every January sees a massive surge in gym memberships and fad diet plans, as we pledge to ‘undo’ the indulgences of the festive season. But rather than punish yourself with a gruelling regime, why not take time to explore the way your body works, using personalised data to tailor a bespoke plan with realistic goals? Seán Kinane from Health Matters in Dublin can test your metabolic rate, using the only mobile machine in the country. This involves a simple, 14-minute gas analysis (meaning you breathe into a tube; there’s no physical activity involved). Seán then uses those findings to make recommendations around calorie intake and exercise. But what exactly does metabolism mean, and how can we use it to reach our goals?

A Unique Approach

“The test measures your resting metabolic rate”, Seán begins. “Everybody burns calories to stay alive, so when we test you, we get the baseline of calories your body requires every day.” The results of the test, he says, are totally personalised. “What’s so good about it is that it’s unique to you; there’s no guesswork. We could get ten people in the room, and every single one would have a different calorie range and requirements.”

woman and man with clipboard

Nutritional Advice

Of course, test results probably aren’t going to mean much without professional interpretation. Seán helps you make sense of the data and put a nutritional plan in place. “It’s all well and good having this information”, he says, “but if you’re not going to use it, you won’t get results. Based on your results, we give advice on how much food you need to intake in order to achieve your goal,” he says. “We educate you about calories and where they come from, the main food groups – protein, fat, carbohydrates – and the type of training you’re doing. For example, lots of people don’t like doing weight training, but it’s actually the best way to boost metabolism.”

man lifting weights

Choose Your Goal

As Seán explains, his clients usually have one of three health goals. “First of all, people want to achieve weight loss”, he explains, “while the second goal is weight gain.” The third will probably strike a chord with anyone working a busy nine-to-five lifestyle. “It’s around energy – people finding they don’t have enough of it to get through the day. They might not be overly concerned about their weight, but when you go through their diet with them, they might be borderline going into their weight loss zone. That’s not going to be good for someone who has an energy slump every day at 2pm.”

Interested in finding out more about your metabolism and its effects on your health? Visit myhealthmatters.ie.