A lot of women are so concerned about weight problems. You are entering a unique stage in your life that brings many physical and emotional changes to you. You will experience a change in the levels of your hormones. These hormonal changes affect your metabolism. Menopause and weight gain usually go together. You will notice that you begin to gain additional weight because of a slower metabolic rate. Other underlying reasons for gaining weight include decreased physical activities, genetics, stress, etc.
What causes weight problems?
Physical activities. As you age, your metabolic rate reduces. You don’t burn calories the same way as you were in your younger years. Most women in their 40s also decrease their physical activities like going to the gym, or biking or even taking time to have brisk walking in the park or neighborhood. They become more sedentary. Because of this, you begin to lose muscle mass, making your body composition more of fats than muscles. Fat is not easily burnt compared to muscles. That is the reason why you gain weight.
They say what is not used, you will lose. What you need in your 40s and 50s are strong muscles. What you need to do is strengthen them by building them up. During your menopause stage, exercise, biking, brisk walking, etc., will help you maintain a muscular composition rather than fat accumulation. Make it your weekly routine to get out and do your muscles a favor. It will be more fun if you join your friends and get fit together.
Genes also plays a major role. If your family members, especially your parents, have a bulging belly, you also have a big risk for having such when you age.
Emotional stress can also contribute to having additional weight during your menopause stage. The changes would be stressful enough that it strains your activities and your relationships. This is quite stressful. As an effect, you have poor sleep and more time awake. Sometimes, being awake late at night means more chances of grabbing food and do stressful eating.
Gaining weight during menopause affects how you will look physically and increases the risk of having health problems later on. High cholesterol, heart disease, hypertension and diabetes are among the common health problems you will develop because of weight gain during menopause.
Now, what women would usually think about at this point is how to lose weight fast. It’s undeniable that this thought has crossed the minds of millions of women around the globe. You should not fret too much because you can do things to address weight problems and related issues.
Strategies to prevent and reverse weight gain:
- Your weight is 80% of what you eat. So, make sure you eat clean food as much as possible. Avoid fast foods, processed foods, those with sugar and gluten. It is not only eating less and exercising more; it is about giving your body the right food it needs.
- If you have a hard time losing weight, please let your nutritionist or another health practitioner help you check your hormone balance. You need to rule out other health issues, like Thyroid problems, that cause weight gain.
- Unexplained weight gain or loss is a common sign that you have Thyroid problems. Weight gain is often associated with low levels of thyroid hormones. This condition is called hypothyroidism. On the other hand, if the thyroid produces hormones beyond the expected levels, it is called hyperthyroidism. Thyroid disorder has symptoms that manifest, like menopause symptoms. That is why you need to check if the symptoms you have is really that of menopause and not a thyroid issue.
- Eating Less is More! You don’t need to deprive yourself of food that you love. You need to eat healthily. Some methods can help you manage your natural female weight gain, especially during menopause. One helpful method is the intermittent fasting, where you eat in small portions between eating windows. Learn more about it from this website, too!
- Manage stress. This is easier said than done. But what you need to realize is that you are capable and deserving to live a good life. Learning how to manage stress is one of the best ways to do it. Stress disturbs our metabolism. This is the last thing we needed during menopause. Metabolism is already slow at this stage; stress will further slow down metabolic rate and even disturb the normal body processes. So when you feel stressed, make sure that you take extra effort to fight it back. Divert your thoughts to more productive and energizing activities like going out with friends, having a movie date or joining social groups. Allow your mind and body to relax and take some time off from all your activities and thoughts.
- Respect sleep. The modern lifestyle keeps you up even in late hours when you are supposed to be at rest. Do not deprive yourself of sleep if you want to ensure the desirable effects of proper diet and exercise. During the day, you work, eat and experience a lot of things. It is during sleep that your body takes full control. Your body’s turn is now to respond to all those activities you have done during the day. So never think that lack of sleep will make you lose weight. It will have the opposite effect. You must respect your body’s normal rhythm for it to respond accordingly.
- Equip yourself. Go out and don’t stop learning new things. Now is the time that you need to learn more and understand menopause as a whole. If you do so, you will be less fearful about things that are happening inside you. You will even appreciate every circumstance that comes along, and you can easily manage the big changes that might still be coming your way. You always have to keep in mind that menopause is not a disease but a life stage that brings unique changes. You only have to adjust and adapt to it. Meaning, you will consider alternatives to ease yourself with what’s happening inside your body.
Address Weight Problems with Exercise
Now, it is not just about keeping a good shape but also good health. Do what benefits your body and avoid what harms it.
Believe you can do it because with the right mindset and positive attitude, your body will surely cooperate!
Listen to Debra Atkinson giving advice on how to lose belly fat! (8.34 min long)
Belly Fat After 50 is about more than eating and exercising. Often they don´t count at all. You may be eating too little and or exercising too hard or too much. The real answer is it all depends. It’s a combination of your hormones, your stress, where you carry your fat and how. What else is going on with you is always a factor.
Debra has been speaking on fitness and life-enhancing topics for more than 25 years. Personal responsibility for physical activity and nutrition is the common theme in her message, whether that message is for greater productivity at work, decreasing stress levels or improving life satisfaction. She calls herself a Barely Boomer and frequently speaks about Active Aging.
Debra Atkinson has also written a book Navigating Fitness After 50: Your GPS for Choosing Programs and Professionals You Can Trust. After 30 years of watching people, women especially, make the same mistakes repeatedly; taking the roller coaster of weight loss, weight gain…, and their linear thinking about eating less, move more, to extreme…, she sat down and wrote it. Inside it, you’ll learn how to rethink your weight training, how to ditch the diet and stop counting calories while you focus on making calories count. If you’re working with a personal trainer or considering it, this will tell you what to ask, demand and run away from.
You can also go to her website for more information.
Podcasts to Enjoy While Managing Weight Problems
Here’s an informative podcast of Heather Robinson with her guest Brooke Castillo to learn more about managing your weight problems. Learn about how to feel your emotions instead of converting them to an eating problem. Also, know that what you do will not always make you who you are. Learn more about these and more from the podcast entitled How to Make Changes in Your Life from a Place of Happiness.
Also, listen to Life Coach, Brooke Castillo, talk about the aspects of weight loss and hunger, why we tend to over eat, and some tips to fight off weight problems! Here’s Episode #71: Weight Loss and Hunger for you to enjoy and learn from. To listen, learn more and feel good about yourself, get educational lessons from The Life Coach School at your convenience!
There’s no shortage of weight loss tips wherever you read. I follow some of them, and they’ve worked for me! But I want to share my best-kept secret to a healthy weight in menopause. It’s understanding what menopause is about and what goes on inside your body. Looking over your life can also help big time.
You might be under stress, or you may be holding emotions inside. These can drive you to crave unhealthy food and eat more than you need. Whatever it is that you’re doing in your life, don’t forget to slow down and refocus!