As you get older and enter menopause, you’ll find that it’s increasingly difficult to maintain your usual weight. In fact, you put on a lot of belly fat during this phase. While it’s inevitable to gain weight during menopause, it isn’t irreversible. By paying attention to your situation and making deliberate attempts to adopt healthy habits and an active lifestyle, you can knock off that excessive weight and return to your former weight. Read on to find out how to lose menopause weight fast during menopause and lead a healthy life.
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Causes of weight gain during menopause
During menopause, you go through a series of hormonal changes that are instrumental in your gaining weight in the abdomen region and on your thighs and hips. However, these hormonal changes alone do not cause weight gain, but it is also due to a sedentary lifestyle, the aging process and genetics.It works like this: With age, muscle mass is vastly reduced while fat is on the increase. When muscle mass reduces the rate at which your body utilizes calories, it can be all the more difficult for you to stick to your healthy weight. If you ignore all physical activity and eat as before, you will put on weight.Another key factor that influences weight gain during menopause is genetics. If your parents or siblings are heavy around the abdomen in mid-life, you’re going to depict the same picture. Other factors include work stress, death of a partner or spouse, financial problems, kids leaving home, divorce, etc.
How to lose weight after menopause
Here are some tried and tested ways of keeping your weight down during menopause:#1. Exercise regularly:
If you lead a sedentary life, it’s very likely that you will put on weight after menopause. On the other hand, if you turn physically active, you can maintain or reach a healthy post- menopausal weight. So, if you want to lose weight after 40,
ensure that your exercise regimen includes aerobic exercises that help burn fat and give you improved heart health; strength training for improved lean body mass and the ability to deal with bone density loss; and stretches to give you a full range of motion. High Intensity Interval Training is also good if done twice a week for 30 minutes. This exercise boosts body metabolism and burns fat faster. Weight lifting done twice a week also helps prevent muscle loss.#2. Stop drinking coffee, take to green tea:
Everyone knows that green tea is far healthier than coffee. In fact, caffeine is known to have a negative effect on the body, what with its instant stimulation that gets the body into a “fight or flight” mode. This increases the stress levels and adrenaline content in the body, making the production of estrogen and progesterone go absolutely haywire. To prevent this, drink two to three cups of green tea every day. You’ll find that it increases your metabolism and reduces your appetite.#3. Increase your diet of plant-based foods:
Once you reach menopause, the deposits of fat move from the thighs and hips to the stomach. However, this means dangerous diseases like stroke, heart disease and breast cancer. To counteract this, it’s best to increase your diet of plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and an exercise program that can bring down your weight and body fat deposits.By eating plant-based foods, you will get increased amounts of minerals, vitamins, fiber and antioxidants while lowering your calorie content which in turn will bring down your weight. The phytoestrogen content in plants work to reduce bone density loss and night sweats that are characteristic of some menopausal women. For best results, reduce meat and dairy products and high-calorie fats and choose olive oil and low-fat foods. Ditch mayo and go in for avocado, vegetable salsa and salads instead of cakes and bakes.Another form of plant-based foods worth including in your diet is fiber. Fiber-rich foods are good for you now as they give you a feeling of fullness faster than traditional foods and you feel this way for longer. Hence, you don’t eat unnecessarily, which in turn helps losing weight after menopause.#4. Drink vegetable or fruit juice:
Juices can reduce your appetite, but more importantly, if you pick the right vegetable or fruit, they can increase estrogen levels in your body. Freshly squeezed apple juice, tomato juice, or carrot juice contain phytoestrogens, which will naturally increase estrogen levels.#5. Increase your intake of calcium:
Menopausal women must take about 1,200 mg of calcium each day to counter the loss of bone mass when calcium is excreted from the body. If not taken in natural form, it can also be taken as a supplement. Calcium is also known to reduce body weight. Add non-fat milk to skimmed milk when you make soups and sauces or yogurt. Also, remember to eat green leafy vegetables whose calcium content is high.#6. Drink a lot of water:
Whether you feel tired and aren’t all that active or you feel thirsty often or you eat a diet rich in fiber, you need to drink plenty of water on a daily basis. On the whole, it’s good to drink about 8-10 glasses of water through the day, between breakfast and dinner. Not only do you feel hydrated, but you also don’t eat unnecessarily as water gives you a feeling of fullness.#7. Don’t drink sugary drinks and sodas:
These drinks contain empty calories, a lot of sugar and offer low feeling of fullness. Though diet sodas are low in calories and sugar-free, they also contain artificial sweeteners that stimulate sugar cravings. Instead of falling prey to these drinks, stay with water which is refreshing, free of calories and nourishing for your skin. Instead of these drinks, stick to lemon juice or plain good ol’ water.#8. Start drinking soy milk instead of cow milk: Rich in
phytoestrogens, soy milk must be had the moment one experiences menopause as it has the potential to restore the required estrogen levels and reduce one’s weight.#9. Sleep adequately:
Menopause can disturb your sleep patterns like nothing else can, so exercise regularly so that you sleep well. Also, don’t sleep late as this increases the hormone ghrelin’s levels that in turn increases one’s cravings for carbs–something you should avoid eating at night. Also, keep away from your phone, laptop and other things that can disturb your sleep. And yes, don’t have a cup of coffee at bedtime or it will snatch your sleep.#10. Reduce your intake of alcohol:
Since alcohol is very high calories, desist from drinking it. This worsens when sugary drinks are added to it. It may also bring about some menopausal symptoms, so keep away from it.#11. Speak to a dietician:
When you consult a dietician, you’ll be shocked by the food your fridge holds that aren’t good for you and that can be done away with for healthier ones.#12. Build a schedule for small things:
Find a time of day that you can devote every day for exercising or taking a walk or gardening or any other activity that you find interesting and aids in weight loss. Stick to this time at least for the majority of the time and see how it helps in the overall picture of weight loss.
Tips to lose weight effectively after menopause
Don’t ever imagine that just because you’re menopausal and are gaining weight that you can’t get it off ever. There are ways which you can adopt to get rid of this excessive weight. Here are a few tips you can use:
- Increase your hormonal health: You can do this by taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and improve your quality of life, besides also preventing any weight gain.
- Do low-impact aerobics: If there are certain activities you like to do, go ahead and do them. Perhaps, a brisk walk of about an hour a day, or cycling or swimming, playing tennis or badminton, or swimming or dancing interest you, so why not do what you love most?
- Increase your energy and heart levels: You can increase your energy and heart levels by dancing for an hour or more a day. You’ll find that apart from these benefits, you also lose weight.
When you’re trying hard to lose weight, you can easily be frustrated if your efforts don’t bear fruit soon. At such times, be patient. After all, remember that when you put on the weight, it was equally gradual, so taking it off means that much time and effort too. Aim for a steady weight loss, even if it’s as small a figure as one kilo, but keep at it and over time, you’ll see how it all adds up.Invest in a lifestyle change rather than something superficial done for a short period of time. Only then will you reap the rewards you seek. Now that you’ve read through all the facts regarding weight loss at menopause, you know how to lose menopause weight fast, so go ahead and try them out.You can read more about losing menopausal weight over here