Metabolism refers to all the processes in your body that help you to function normally. The rate at which your body uses up kilojoules (or energy) to carry out these vital processes is known as your metabolic rate. You use 50–80 percent of your energy while you are at rest — this is your basal metabolic rate (BMR). The faster your BMR, the more efficiently your body burns up kilojoules.
Some medical conditions such as hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) can cause weight gain due to a slow metabolism – if you’re concerned, check with your doctor.
Better Health Channel: Metabolism explained http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Metabolism_explained
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Dolezal BA Potteiger JA. Concurrent resistance and endurance training influence BMR in non-dieting individuals. Journal of Applied Physiology. 1998; 85: 695-700.
Hensrud D. Slow metabolism: Is it to blame for weight gain? [online] Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. c1998-2010 [last updated 27 Aug 2009, accessed 17 Aug 2010] Available from: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/slow-metabolism/AN00618
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Last published 31 October 2010