At TheHealthBoard, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.
A high metabolism is often considered a blessing, but it can have many health effects aside from just making someone thin. Metabolism is the chemical process in the human body that converts food into energy. People with a high metabolism convert food much more quickly than the average individual, which can cause some health issues. They often need to eat larger quantities of food to maintain their weight, have difficulty gaining weight, and can suffer from blood sugar issues, irregular heartbeat, excessive sweating, and mood issues.
The higher a person’s metabolism is, the more calories he needs to maintain his weight. This often translates into eating more food than the average person. While eating more is not a health issues in and of itself, more often than not it means a person is eating less healthy foods than a person who has to limit his caloric intake. These unhealthy foods, often high in fat, can cause cardiovascular issues later in life as well as increase one’s risk for diabetes.
Those with a high metabolism often have issues maintaining or gaining weight. This is particularly difficult for women during pregnancy, because weight gain is essential to the health of both mom and baby. During pregnancy, a woman needs to supply not only herself with fuel but her baby. A woman with a higher than normal metabolism often needs to work closely with a healthcare professional to make sure she is consuming enough food for both her and her baby. While the phrase “eating for two” often does not apply to a woman with a normal metabolism, a woman with a high than average metabolism needs to keep this in mind.
This condition has a direct effect on blood sugar levels. Low blood sugar can lead to dizziness, irritability, irregular heartbeat and excessive sweating. When the body converts food to energy too quickly, this means there are more times during the day when a person’s blood sugar levels dip. Maintaining these levels is important for almost everyone, although those whose metabolism is fast often have more difficulty taking time out of the day to eat as often as they should.
While many of the health effects of a high metabolism can be countered by eating frequent meals, medical professionals also may prescribe medication to slow down metabolism. This condition can also lead to hyperthyroidism, a medical condition that causes the thyroid to produce too many hormones and push a metabolism even higher. While those with a high metabolism are often considered blessed with not having to watch what they eat, more often than not, they have to pay even more attention to their food intake than those with a normal metabolism.