10 Thermogenic Foods to Boost Your Metabolism

Metabolism is a tricky thing.

Metabolism—your body’s method of deriving energy from the food you consume—occurs at different speeds in different people, has varying levels of efficiency and requires differing amounts of energy. In other words, your individual body, the food you’re metabolizing, along with other variables affect how you process the foods and drinks you consume.

In fact, some foods require more energy than others in order to be metabolized. Processing the food you eat burns calories (win-win, right?). Foods that require more energy to burn than others are called thermogenic.

“If you consume a typical boneless skinless chicken breast, containing approximately 300 calories, roughly 100 of these calories will be burned away during digestion,” FitDay explains.

So what foods should you be eating in order to maximize your metabolism? Try some of these delicious and healthy options.

High-Protein Foods

Of the three macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fats), proteins are the most thermogenic. The Thermic Effect of Food (TEF) in fats is 3 percent, while it’s 7 percent in carbohydrates and 30 percent in protein, according to eMed.


Jalapeños are a great example of a spicy food that can boost metabolism without many added calories. Spicy foods may boost metabolism by up to 20 percent, according to eMed, and the capsaicin found in jalapeños can also speed up the heart rate while reducing cholesterol.


In addition to their protein content, eggs also speed up metabolism with B12. The vitamin is known to help the body break down fat, according to Fitday.


A high-protein grain, oatmeal’s protein content makes it thermogenic. It’s also high in dietary fiber, which can minimize blood sugar spikes while promoting healthy nutrient absorption and digestion.


Just like jalapeños, ginger can stimulate metabolism because of its spicy content. It can also increase circulation and expand the blood vessels.

Green Tea

Green tea just may be the world’s healthiest drink. Its caffeine content boosts heart rate and metabolism, and its polyphenols are also known to be thermogenic.


Fish is high in protein and low in fat, making it a particularly efficient thermogenic source of animal protein.


Like ginger, garlic has fat-burning properties. It also regulates insulin production, helping to control blood sugar levels.


Some research has shown that water itself is great for metabolism. A study monitored the metabolic rates of adults as they drank varying amounts of water, according to eMed. While the mechanism for the results isn’t yet fully understood, the adults who drank water regularly had higher metabolic rates than those who didn’t.

Chili Powder

Because spicy foods boost the metabolism, it can’t hurt to sprinkle chili powder on your meals.


Sophie A
Sarah A2 months ago


Kelly S
Past Member about a year ago

fish are friends!

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus C2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Sarah Hill
Sarah Hill2 years ago


Quanta Kiran
Quanta Kiran3 years ago


federico bortoletto

Grazie della condivisione.

Jim Ven
Jim Ven3 years ago

thanks for the article.

Danuta Watola
Danuta W3 years ago

Thank you for sharing

Veronica B.
Veronica B3 years ago

Thanks for sharing!!

DebbieSiteIssue S.
Past Member 3 years ago

Great, thanks for sharing