How to lose weight after Menopause
Handling weightloss after menopause is a herculean task.It is hard enough to lose weight without the added stress of the aging process. When menopause strikes (sometimes few months/years prior), it becomes harder to achieve weight loss. On the contrary, women tend to put on weight at this point in their life due to hormone changes in their body. It is also known that weight gained around this time, rather than being stored around the hip and thigh region, is stored around the abdomen. This kind of fat (belly fat) makes you more prone to other ailments such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and metabolic syndrome.
Menopause is something that every woman must face and it starts around a period when a woman hasn’t had her monthly cycle for over 12 months usually around the age of 40 and above. During this period, the body undergoes a lot of changes. These changes might result in weight gain.
Here are a few changes that may result in weight gain during menopause;
- Decreased physical activity:
As you age, the level of physical activities you engage in per day begins to decline rapidly. Your body no longer makes use of energy so the energy is instead, stored as fat around the abdomen.
- Loss of muscle mass:
Loss of muscle mass can as well be attributed to the aging process. It could also be a result of physical inactivity.
- Hormone changes:
During menopause hormone levels begin to fluctuate. Either way, whether estrogen levels are extremely high or extremely low, the result is always increased storage of fat.
- Insulin resistance:
As women age, their body becomes more insulin resistant. Increased insulin resistance makes weight loss seem an impossible feat.
The approach to weightloss during and after menopause is a calorie deficit diet. BE CAREFUL. One can easily slip from a calorie deficit diet to a very low calorie diet. A very low calorie diet is the worst kind of diet for menopause. It may lead to fast weight loss but its effect on the body’s muscle mass and metabolic rate makes it rather hard to keep the weight off over time.
HELPFUL TIPS FOR WEIGHTLOSS DURING AND AFTER MENOPAUSE
- Opt for protein meals. Protein gives a feeling of satiety making you full faster and effectively suppressing any cravings.
- A cup of green tea a day may help you burn fat as a result of the caffeine and EGCG content of green tea.
- Find a way to unwind. Stress is bad for weight loss and often leads to elevated cortisol levels and increases the risks of heart disease.
- Eat high-fiber foods. High fiber foods not only increase insulin sensitivity but also, suppress appetite resulting in weight loss.
- Work your body. It may be difficult at first but you’ll find that the more you work and engage your body, the stronger you’ll feel. Take long walks, dance, do something so far as your body is moving.
- Don’t leave exercise out. Your muscles and bones will thank you if you make out time to do some resistance training and aerobic exercises 3 to 4 times a week. You’ll be able to lose more weight this way.
NOTE: during and after menopause, the body finds it even harder to lose weight at rest so the weight you lose when you work out, is what you get.
- Learn to stay hydrated at all times. Drink the recommended 8 glasses of water a day.
- Rather than three heavy meals a day, you can eat several small meals a day.
- Stay as far away from sugar as possible. This includes foods that have added sugar or preservatives.
- Get more sleep. The tendency to gain weight is high when you’re losing sleep so you will do well to get more hours of sleep.
- Adding dairy products to your diet may help you boost your muscle mass even as you lose weight. That way, your body is losing weight (fat), while gaining muscle.
Most of these tips, as you may have noticed, revolve around a lifestyle change. In order words, losing weight during and after menopause calls for an overall lifestyle change. The reason for this is to ensure that you not only lose weight but you keep the weight off. It is prudent to consult your doctor or caregiver every step of the way through this process for a more effective and suitable process.