Munich (dpa / tmn) – You feel drained and without energy, even though you are really healthy? This could be due to a poorly functioning metabolism, also called metabolism.

But don’t worry: It can usually be easily cranked so that the body optimally breaks down, converts, and rebuilds the nutrients such as carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and the like in the cells and everything runs smoothly in the organism.

Breaking down and building up – the metabolic processes

Many equate metabolism with digestion. “That is not entirely true,” says nutritionist Prof. Matthias M. Weber from the University Medical Center of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. Metabolism means all biochemical processes that take place in the body’s cells. Digestion is only a preliminary step.

A distinction is made between the catabolic and the anabolic metabolism. Catabolism means degradation: nutrients are broken down into molecules and chemical compounds. Carbohydrates become simple sugars, proteins amino acids, fats fatty acids and glycerides. This is how energy grows.

Anabolism means building: This process helps, for example, to repair cells. Amino acids, fatty acids and glucose become proteins, fats and carbohydrates. “They help fight infections and repair injuries, for example,” explains internist Prof. Johannes Georg Wechsler. He is President of the Federal Association of German Nutritionists.

Among other things, proteins, fats and carbohydrates ensure muscle building and cell renewal.

Excessive energy intake starts in the long run

Excess energy that the body does not need is stored to a certain extent – it ends up in the fat or muscle cells, where it waits for access. Problem: Those who regularly consume more energy than the body actually needs gain weight. If you want to prevent this or at least keep it within limits, you should exercise regularly and thus burn calories.

And how does it work with losing weight? “Last but not least, a balanced and wholesome diet is important,” emphasizes Matthias M. Weber, who sits on the board of the German Society for Endocrinology. Whole grain products, oat bran, legumes and vegetables stimulate the metabolism. This also applies to low-fat protein, which is found in lean meat and fish, for example.

Drinking a lot also brings digestion and thus metabolism to life. According to the German Nutrition Society (DGE), an adult should consume at least 1.5 liters a day, ideally water or unsweetened tea.

Avoid the escape mode

On the way to optimal metabolism, stress relief also helps. Because stress puts the body in a kind of escape mode and thereby upsets the metabolic processes. Even small breaks and rituals in everyday life can help here – breathe consciously or take a few minutes of fresh air at the window, for example.

“A good night’s sleep also makes a decisive contribution to a well-functioning metabolism,” says nutritionist Weber. According to him, if the metabolism runs smoothly, it even helps to stay young in a natural way. “Without a doubt, this will give you years of life.”

Important NOTE: The information is by no means a substitute for professional advice or treatment by trained and recognized doctors. The content of t-online.de cannot and must not be used to independently make diagnoses or start treatments.

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