So many questions about weight loss after menopause! It is very common to find women over the age of 40 gaining weight especially that annoying belly fat. Hormonal changes, stress, insomnia, and other menopause-related conditions cause persistent weight gain in women after menopause.
Around this stage, weight loss seems impossible in many females no matter how hard they try. Diet and exercise alone may not give you the desired results of weight caused by menopause.
In order to achieve weight loss after menopause, you should watch your diet, exercise regularly, and generally reduce stress levels.
What is menopause?
Menopause is the end stage of a woman’s menstrual cycles. It describes a period of changes a woman goes through just before or after stopping to have menstrual periods marking the end of her reproductive years.
When a woman is born, she has all her eggs stored in the ovaries. In the ovary, hormones like estrogen and progesterone are produced. These hormones control her menstrual periods and release of eggs from the ovary.
Menopause happens when the ovary no longer releases eggs every month and menstruation stops. Menopause is a healthy and regular part of every woman’s life and happens at around 40 years of age but it may vary in different women.
What causes weight gain during menopause
Women during menopause have accelerated weight gain and may find it hard to lose weight. Some factors for weight gain are caused by the stages of menopause and others by the aging process.
These factors also cause weight loss difficulties during menopause;
A drop in estrogen levels contributes to weight gain. Estrogen is one of the primary sex hormones that plays a role in physical sex characteristics, regulating menstrual cycle, regulating cholesterol levels. Though reduced estrogen levels don’t have a direct effect on weight gain, it however leads to increase in total body and abdominal fat.
Getting inadequate sleep increases weight gain chances. Menopause coupled together with poor sleep can spike and cause weight gain. Poor sleep could cause weight gain at any age, however, it gets rather prominent during menopause due to hormonal changes.
Genetic factors also play a role in weight gain during menopause. If your parents or close relatives carry extra weight during menopause, it may also follow you during menopause.
Metabolism decreases with an increase in age. People around the age of 40 usually have metabolism naturally decreasing. Since it plays a major role in burning calories, its reduction causes weight gain if calories are not burned at a fast pace.
It may not be a result of menopause but people tend to become inactive as they age. Inactivity leads to weight gain since fewer calories are burned.
Loss of lean muscle
This is due to a decrease in physical activities thus burning fewer calories.
How can I achieve weight loss after menopause?
Failing to lose weight while on a weight loss plan that involves a good diet and exercise can be stressful. Especailly when you put in much effort but get slowed or no results at all.
What if diets and workouts are not all there is when it comes to weight loss during menopause? Here is what you should do in order to lose weight during and after menopause.
Watch your diet
Just like any other weight loss plan, a diet is essential too in order to achieve weight loss after menopause.
Eating nutrient-rich foods that are low in calories will help you achieve weight loss. In order to lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories than the body uses. In short it should be a calorie deficit.
This doesn’t mean to starve yourself but rather choose foods that are low in calories yet nutritious to help your body meet its nutritional demands.
Fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein sources are some of the foods to eat while on a menopause weight loss diet. To further learn about the healthy foods for weight loss, you can read Weight loss-friendly foods. (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
Eating for weight loss is partly and mostly a matter of eat that and avoid this. During weight loss after menopause too, there are foods that you should avoid.
These in most cases are foods that are full in calories yet with none or fewer nutrition values. Refined carbs food sources normally carry a lot of calories and added sugar which is linked to weight gain. Examples are white bread, pastries, such as cakes, cookies, and donuts, processed meats, such as hot dogs and foods with a lot of added oils or sugar.
Restricting these types of foods from your diet will help you achieve weight loss faster. To learn more about foods to avoid for weight loss read this article.
2. Increase activity levels.
Doing exercises and keeping active is one of the best and healthy ways of burning calories and fat for weight loss. It is important to do exercises during and after menopause. Exercise is known to burn fats, calories, improve moods and help to keep the body healthy.
Doing the right exercises helps to burn calories and fat. For women in menopause, you can do running, brisk walking, lifting weights even yoga helps burn fat.
You can read our article on yoga poses for weight loss. This article will show you some of the common yoga poses and how to do them. Some of the common questions about yoga are answered in this article. You can find it here.
It is a matter of staying active through any exercise that makes you sweat. Although you may not be running, involving in a fast-paced dance will help you lose weight. Using the stairs instead of the elevator is something that you can start with.
Research shows that cardio is capable of reducing body fat while preserving muscles during weight loss. Read about the Best exercises for fat burning for women that will help you achieve weight loss. In this article, you will also be able to answer questions like; what exercise burns the most belly fat.
3. Get enough sleep.
Menopause is linked to poor sleep that in turn increases weight. Getting enough sleep will help you lose weight faster. Lack of sleep in women during menopause is linked to night sweats, stress, and other effects caused by reduced estrogen in the body.
Since it may be hard to get sleep during menopause, you can try herbal teas that can help cure insomnia. Mongolia bark tea, passionflower tea, chamomile, peppermint, and many other teas discussed in this article. The best tea for a sleepful night.
Doing regular exercises is also known to help you achieve a sleepful night. Sticking to a regular sleep schedule will set your mind to a routine that will help you achieve sleep faster.
Many other activities like taking a warm bath before bedtime, doing relaxation exercises, and others discussed.
Related article: How to Relieve Insomnia Without Medication by One medical
4. Find stress-relieving activities.
Since stress is a major cause of weight in women during menopause, getting involved in stress killing activities can help you lose weight.
Stress killing activities like workouts, getting social, meditation, going out into nature, and laughing will help you curb stress.
5. Practice mindful eating.
Changing your eating behaviors to mindful eating can help you lose weight. Concentrating on your food can help you consume less food compared to eating while distracted like watching tv or while on the phone.
Serving your food on a small plate can also help you eat less thus fewer calories consumed.
6. Get support from family and friends.
Being assisted and getting help from family and friends. This is through dieting, exercising, or controlling stress levels.
Getting into a support group or having a partner can help motivate you. Various social media groups are also set up to give tips, motivate and allow interaction with people in the same situation as you are.
Don’t hesitate to join a group or get an app for menopause weight loss to keep you motivated and provide you with tips.
7. Keep track of food and weight.
Recording the number of calories and foods consumed can help you choose healthy foods and trash unhealthy foods.
People who keep track of the foods they eat and weigh themselves regularly are able to keep a healthy weight loss plan.
What is the average weight gain during menopause?
It is estimated that women averagely gain around 10-15 pounds during menopause.
This is just an estimate. A woman may gain more or less than 15 pounds. Some can gain even up to 30 pounds whereas others may not gain any weight.
Therefore, there is not a one figure weight gain for women in menopause but figures vary due to age, body type, genetics, diet, and activity levels.
How can I increase my metabolism after 50?
With age, metabolism tends to reduce making weight loss a lot difficult. However, a slowed metabolism shouldn’t be a weight loss hinderance with the following metabolism-boosting tips;
- Drinking a cup of coffee can help boost metabolism. Coffee has the ability to raise your metabolism.
- Getting enough sleep of about 7-8 hours is able to cure metabolic related issues.
- Eating more proteins helps muscles support a metabolic rate.
- Taking time to do some yoga poses will help boost your metabolism and help you lose weight.
- Staying active helps boost metabolism.
- Drinking cold water is known of boosting metabolism with 48 ounces of cold water helping you raise metabolism and burning extra 50 calories.
- Adding eggs in your diet can help boost your metabolism since they have essential amino acids that help boost metabolism.
- Restrict diet drinks from your diet because artificial sweeteners reduce metabolism.
- Eating zinc-rich food sources is also known for boosting metabolism.
Is an extremely low-calorie diet safe for menopause women?
When weight loss tends to be delayed during weight loss this is due to the decreased energy expenditure and the number of calories burned. This is when many people opt for low-calorie diets.
But is an extremely low-calorie diet safe for women in menopause?
Here is what you should know.
A low-calorie diet may be one of a quick solution but it might be one of the worst mistakes.
In addition to a high risk of nutrient deficiency, a low-calorie diet tends to cause muscle loss and a decline in metabolic rate.
A low-calorie diet is also linked to a faster weight regain in case you abandon it.
Talking of health risks associated with a low-calorie diet, poor bone health, and loss is among. It also increases the risk of osteoporosis.
It is better to go for a diet plan that will have foods rich in essential nutrients and has a few health risks involved.
Learn how to choose a weight loss diet for weight loss by reading through this article. Best diet planning for weight loss for women
The bottom line
Although weight loss after menopause may have a few twists, it’s not entirely different from any normal weight loss.
Engage your normal weight loss procedures of good dieting, exercising regularly, drinking enough water, and other healthy habits.
A mindful eating and diet check should be a must and try to avoid fad diets but rather choose diets that will provide long term weight loss and health.
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