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Is It Possible To Lose Weight After Menopause

Weight Gain During Perimenopause And Menopause

Losing Weight After Menopause Isnt Fair But *You* Can Still Do it!

Why is it so much easier to put on pounds as you get older? During perimenopause , estrogen levels start to decline. That hormonal shift slows your metabolism, says Dr. Pattimakiel. Every year we get older, our metabolisms slow down. Then around menopause, its common to see a significant drop.

That sloth-like metabolism means even if you eat the same healthy diet you ate in your 30s, youre more likely to gain weight. It also makes it that much harder to drop pounds youve already put on. When your metabolism is slower, its harder to lose weight, she says.

As if thats not frustrating enough, mid-life pounds tend to settle around your middle. Unfortunately, extra fat in the abdomen increases the risk of heart-related problems, Dr. Pattimakiel says. So its worth making some changes to keep your weight in the healthy zone as you get older.

Manage Stress With Relaxation Techniques

Diet, sleep, and exercise are not the only things that influence weight. Daytime stress and life-stress can raise cortisol, possibly making it harder to drop those excess pounds.31 Though its hard to prove, we believe that yoga, relaxing exercise like Tai Chi, meditation, and relaxing hobbies can all help.

Menopause Symptoms Worsen Weight Problems

“During the menopause transition, night sweats, sleep disturbances and problems with mood are common and may affect a woman’s ability to adhere to a healthy diet and regular exercise program,” Pinkerton says. “Whether you are just trying to stay awake or combat a low mood, the candy bar may seem like a great energy booster.”

Similarly, she says, an exercise class may be a bit too daunting after a night of not sleeping well. The combination of poor food choices and lack of movement can lead to a gain around your midsection.

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Keys To Weight Loss After Menopause

Fewer Desserts, Sugary Drinks Linked to Long-Term Weight Loss

âI was working out as hard as I ever have, but I was gaining weight,â the Atlanta-based film production executive says. âItâs a constant struggle.â

Now 52, Williams says she has recently revamped her diet to include more fruits and vegetables and less sugar and white flour — and she’s managed to lose a few pounds.

Foods To Avoid To Avoid After Menopause

Losing Weight After Menopause: Is It Possible?

1. SUGARReducing or removing sugar from your diet is my first recommendation when it comes to weight loss after menopause. When we eat sugar, opioids and dopamine are released, which make us feel really good and crave it even more. It triggers the pleasure center of our brains, as well as the reward center, which makes it a difficult addiction to crack. Sugar consumption can lead to issues like weight gain, heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, and it can also wreak havoc on your hormones, and make you feel tired and sluggish. Beware of ingredients like sucrose, fructose, and pretty much any other words with ose at the end as they contain sugar. Use natural sweeteners like honey and maple syrup instead.

2. REFINED CARBSCutting back on refined carbs foods like cookies, cakes, pastries, candies, fast foods, breaded or battered foods, sugary cereals, pastas, bagels, and pizza can also be beneficial with weight loss after menopause. Refined carbs are absorbed into the bloodstream quickly, causing spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels, which can perpetuate cravings for high carb, sugary snacks.

3. PROCESSED FOODSProcessed foods such as deli meats, bacon, sausages, potato chips, and microwave meals are definitely convenient, but they tend to be high in sodium and sugar, which can lead to bloating and water retention. Avoid these foods as much as possible if youre trying to lose weight!

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Hormonal Causes Of Weight Gain After Menopause

Menopause results in rapid changes in a womans reproductive / sex hormone levels, including estrogen and testosterone. And these hormones play a key role in how the body both burns calories and stores fat.

During menopause estrogen levels decline, which decreases the rate with which the body burns and converts stored energy . Simply put, low estrogen levels slow down the metabolism, which increases fat storage on the body.

Additionally, lower estrogen levels result in less fat breakdown, which results in further fat accumulation and weight gain. And, if the balance between estrogen and testosterone gets out of balance, an excess of androgens can increase the risk of obesity.

Finally, to compound the problem, the levels of the hormone leptin which signal the brain to feel full after eating also drop. So, women actually do feel hungrier as a result of menopause, which leads to eating more.

Frustratingly, in addition to weight gain, fat distribution also shifts in the perimenopausal woman as well. So, waist circumference also increases disproportionately in women after menopause at a greater rate.

Losing Weight After Menopause Is Tough Here Are Tips That May Help

Stress changes hormones so we store more fat. Be aware that shifts in mood including increased irritability — can accompany menopause.

    For Mary van den Berg-Wolf, 63, an internist in Bala Cynwyd, a ski accident and the resulting knee injury proved a wake-up call.

    Knowing that every extra pound she carried translated into six pounds of additional pressure on that aching knee, she was determined to lose some of the 20 or so pounds she had gained between the ages of 45 and 50.

    “My experience with weight loss was always trying to lose a couple of pounds, trying to be healthy, eating a low-fat, high-carb diet and thinking of it as calories in, calories out,” said van den Berg-Wolf. She often found herself cutting back on lunch and then devouring a box of low-fat cookies later in the evening.

    And not losing weight.

    Her experience, as many women can attest, is common. Shedding pounds after menopause is usually harder. But it’s not impossible, said Janine Kyrillos, director of the Jefferson Comprehensive Weight Management Program at Bala.

    “People are resigned to gaining weight as they get older, and they assume that’s what’s going on,” said Kyrillos. “But there are lots of subtle things happening, including lack of sleep and increased stress levels.”

    “If people pay more attention to what’s going on in their lives, it doesn’t have to be a fait accompli that they’re going to gain weight,” she said.

    But what if none of these measures helps?

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    Why Menopause And Weight Gain Go Hand In Hand

    Most women will gain about five pounds during the menopausal transition, Pinkerton says. While it might not seem like a lot, these five pounds may be compounded by a future weight gain or previous weight gain you’ve been trying to lose.

    However, most of these causes are related to aging, not menopause. It just so happens these events all occur at the same time. That’s why menopause often gets the blame.

    Here are some factors that contribute to weight gain during midlife and menopause.

    Is There Need For Hormone Therapy

    How to Lose Weight During/After Menopause

    HRT is basically replacing your lost estrogen levels. It is using estrogen and progesterone to treat common and normal symptoms of menopause.

    Women can undergo a hormone therapy if they are experiencing hot flashes or even pain thats going over the normal limit. Of course, it is necessary to talk to your doctor before you choose anything. There are benefits of hormone therapy but there are also risks.

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    Which Exercises Can Help

    Regular exercise offers many benefits before, during, and after menopause. Data shows that regular exercise can reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, as well as lower the risk of depression and cognitive decline.

    But specific exercises can be especially beneficial when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off during perimenopause and menopause:

    When it comes to shedding pounds during menopause, variety and consistency are key. In other words, incorporating several different exercises into your routine regularly will be the most effective in helping you lose weight and keep it off. Studies show that a combination of aerobics, strength training, and balance exercises is the most effective strategy to help manage weight and reduce symptom severity and psychological distress during menopause.

    Exercise can benefit your health and body in a variety of ways, including weight loss and especially during menopause. Finding the right approach for you can help set you up for great health now and for years to come.

    Further reading:

    Your Homework For This Week

    So I hope this has been helpful for you, and let me know your success stories if youre actually trying to lose weight. So I think this week your little task will be try and get 10 minutes to half an hour everyday of some kind of exercise. It could be just running up and down the stairs. It could be just skipping. Buy a skipping rope. Its great exercise, and its amazing how fit you can get just doing that for 10, 15 minutes a day. So do let me know how you get on, and I will look forward to seeing you next week on A.Vogel Talks Menopause. And next week, I think, will be a question and answer session, so I look forward to seeing you then.

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    Find A Friend Or A Group To Exercise With

    To attack belly fat and any other menopause weight gain, youll need to burn between 400 and 500 calories most days of the week from cardiovascular exercise, such as walking briskly, jogging, bicycling, dancing, or swimming, Peeke says. Need motivation? Find a friend who needs to exercise as much as you do, and set a date to work out together. Research published in April 2015 in the British Journal of Health Psychology found that actively looking for a new workout partner and exercising together is beneficial for both exercise and emotional support.

    If you dont have a buddy to join you on your weight loss mission, it may be time to try a group fitness class at your local gym or community center. Data published in November 2017 in the Journal of Osteopathic Medicine found that participating in regular group fitness classes resulted in a significant decrease in stress and a rise in physical, mental, and emotional quality of life compared with exercising regularly on your own or not engaging in regular exercise at all.

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      I had a hysterectomy and both ovaries removed eight years ago at 33 years old due to endometriosis. When the surgery was performed I weighed 145 at 5’8″ and worked out occasionally. I don’t take hormone replacement and my thyroid has been checked out. My weight has now ballooned to 190 and I am a borderline diabetic with borderline high cholestrol.

      I spend an hour and half in the gym at leat three times a week . On the off days, I try to walk at least a couple of miles. My normal calorie intake is around 1200 -1400 a day. I don’t eat alot of fried foods or sugar. This has been my routine for at least 6 months with no movement on the scale or lose of inches.

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      A Drop In Estrogen Levels

      Changes in levels estrogen contribute to weight gain.

      Estrogen is one of the primary sex hormones in females. It plays a role in:

      • physical sex characteristics
      • regulating cholesterol levels

      During menopause, estrogen levels dip substantially.

      Low estrogen during menopause does not directly cause weight gain, but it may lead to increases in total body fat and abdominal fat. Doctors associate excess weight during middle age with heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

      Hormone replacement therapy may reduce the tendency to gain abdominal fat.

      Weight Loss After Menopause: 14 Foods To Eat And Avoid

      This post may contain affiliate links.

      While the idea of bidding adieu to your period and all of the associated symptoms of PMS it causes may sound exciting, the transition to menopause can be a rocky road for many women. It can cause hot flashes, irritability, mood swings, insomnia, fatigue, and weight gain, and if that isnt bad enough, these symptoms can last for up to 10 years before menopause officially occurs. The good news is that focusing on the right foods and eliminating the wrong ones can help balance your blood sugar and hormones, reduce cravings and help you feel satiated for longer periods of time, build lean muscle, and boost your metabolism, all of which are key to weight loss and maintenance. If youre looking for tips to help with weight loss after menopause, were giving you the low down on the best and worst foods for your waistline.

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      How Many Calories In Cheat Meal

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      This inability for the skin to contract as well as it once would have, due to the weakening of the fibers over time, is what leads to excess or saggy skin during weight loss. Often, the more weight that is shed, the harder it will be for the skin to revert back to normal. Detractors cite nutritional deficiencies and eating disorders as potential side effects. Other diet and PAGG supplement regimen issues include headache, muscle weakness, cramps, and diarrhea, typical symptoms experienced on most low carbohydrate diets. Other supplements that receive honorable mention are pre-and probiotics for gut health and Cissus quadrangularis, an indigenous medicinal plant of India used for bone health and weight loss.

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      Hormonal Changes And Weight Gain

      Menopausal Weight Gain || Possible Causes + Solutions

      As you approach menopause, the levels of estrogen in your body drop rapidly. At the same time, levels of a hormone called androgen increase . This can cause a hormonal imbalance, which in and of itself can cause weight gain.

      People who have a hormonal imbalance may also experience a new level of hunger. You may also notice that youre hungry for different types of foods. Just like your periods might make you crave salty, sweet, and carb-rich foods due to hormonal shifts, menopause can do the same.

      The average weight gain for women during and after menopause is around .

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      Blame Low Estrogen Levels

      As women go through perimenopausethe multi-year period that precedes the total cessation of menstrual cyclestheir ovaries gradually produce fewer female hormones, particularly estrogen. By the time a womans menstrual cycles have stopped, her body produces almost no estrogen.

      Its this lack of estrogen that seems to trigger a shift in fat. Almost all women gain weight as they get older, but studies have found that women who have entered menopause have significantly more visceral fat, or fat located deep in the abdomen, than similar-aged women who have not yet experienced menopause. Some women remain the same weight before and after but notice a significant challenge in their silhouette. In almost every case, women add inches to their waist after menopause.

      Women who use hormone therapy to treat menopausal symptoms tend to have less visceral or belly fat than other menopausal women, which lends support to the theory that lack of estrogen drives the accumulation of belly fat. Unfortunately, when women stop hormone therapy, they gain belly fat.

      Update Your Healthy Sleep Strategies To Rest Better And Fight Weight Gain

      Insomnia is an extremely common symptom of perimenopause, which is the period of time when womens bodies transition toward their final menstrual cycle. And according to the North American Menopause Society, that transition phase can last for four to eight years. All that time spent waking up unrefreshed means youre probably feeling too exhausted to head out for a workout, too. Its imperative to get sleep as you get older, says Peeke. One of the things that truly helps combat the menopot is high-quality sleep.

      Inadequate sleep impacts our hunger hormones, ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin and leptin become dysfunctional when you dont get enough sleep, so good luck trying to lose weight if you dont fix that problem, says Peeke.

      Palumbo says that you should close your kitchen and brush your teeth by 7 p.m. This will keep you from eating late, which can keep you from getting restful slumber and cause you to pack on the pounds. You shouldnt be eating before you sleep, because it will interrupt your sleep, she says.

      Aim for a minimum of seven hours of shut-eye, although this varies from person to person and over time. Keep your bedroom cool to offset hot flashes and night sweats, and turn off all glowing screens for at least an hour before you want to fall asleep. If you really cant fathom doing that, wear amber-lensed glasses to counteract the sleep-disrupting effects of blue light, or see if your device has an amber light setting, says Peeke.

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