Menopause brings a new season of life with many great experiences to enjoy. There are also some challenges that menopause brings, including a tendency to gain weight.
Women who have struggled with their weight all their life find that the weight loss battle becomes more difficult during this time. Other women who have never had to worry about their weight start to notice extra inches creeping up around their midsection and are wondering how to lose the weight.
Losing weight after menopause doesn't have to be impossible. There are plenty of effective measures you can take to keep the pounds off. Let's take a look at some of them here:
Hormonal Changes Make Losing Weight After Menopause Challenging
During menopause, the body's blood levels of the hormones progesterone and estrogen begin to decline. This drop in levels slows down the metabolic rate which makes it more difficult for women to lose weight.
Many menopausal women carry extra weight around their abdomen specifically. Weight gain in the midsection can increase blood levels of testosterone. Higher levels of testosterone also make weight loss more difficult.
Loss of Muscle Mass
As we age, our overall muscle mass declines and our fat percentage increases. Even beginning as early as the mid-30's, muscle mass starts its decline. With the loss of muscle comes a slowing of metabolism since muscle burns more calories than fat does, even in a rested state.
Menopausal women as a whole tend to exercise less frequently than younger women which is often due to low energy levels, a change in lifestyle, injuries or sore joints. But regular exercise can help retain muscle mass.
To combat a drastic loss of muscle mass, women approaching menopause should make a regular effort to lift weights and exercise their muscles.
A Lack of Sleep
One of the reasons that losing weight after menopause is difficult for many women is because they often aren't getting quality sleep. Others can hardly sleep at night at all. The fact is, quality of sleep tends to decline for women as their female hormones drop. Poor sleep quality can make losing weight very difficult.
Make getting to sleep easier by going to bed at the same time each night and waking up on time. Keep your room dark and cool and distractions out of sight.
Since hot flashes are common as women adjust to hormonal changes during menopause, sleep in lighter clothes and blankets to keep cool.
Magnesium supplements are also a great option to help you relax and quiet your mind so you can enjoy deep sleep.
More Time Eating Out
There are some menopausal women who find that their schedule has opened up more at this stage in life and so they're more inclined to eat out with friends and family, especially if they've retired from work.
Restaurant meals are almost always higher in calories and carbohydrates than meals prepared at home. Many menopausal women who live alone or with a partner only stop cooking daily. This shift in eating habits promotes weight gains.
Meals that are high in sugar and carbohydrates should be avoided to make losing weight after menopause easier. Find ways to eat healthier meals that are rich in nutrients and satisfying to give you a boost in energy and prevent avoidable weight gain.
Insulin resistance becomes worse with age. Insulin is a hormone created by the pancreas which enables the sugar in the bloodstream to enter the cells where it is then used as energy.
As we age, those who are overweight and don't make exercise a part of their regular routines find that insulin becomes less and less effective. When this is the case, the glucose that was once easily converted into energy is more likely to be converted into body fat.
One of the most common signs of insulin resistance is extra weight around the middle. Other common signs included raised blood fats (triglycerides) and raised blood pressure.
Feelings of Depression
Sometimes the changes associated with menopause can cause a woman to feel depressed and not like herself. There are many emotional and physical adjustments to be made as your body and mind make the transition. And though the process is a normal part of life, for some women it can be a difficult one.
Don't be afraid to seek out therapy or friends during this time to discuss your feelings and your struggle. Your doctor can also help you find solutions to alleviate feelings of depression at this time.
Find Help Through Healthy Eating
All these efforts can help you keep your weight in check as you transition into menopause and make new adjustments to your lifestyle. Along the way, never underestimate the power of healthy eating in every aspect of your life.
Eating healthy, nutritious food will not only aid you in losing weight after menopause, doing so will alleviate your mood, boost your energy, and help you sleep better at night.
This is where we come in. The Dinner Dude began with the sincere desire to help those who struggle with their weight and want to live free from the symptoms that often come with weight gain.
Our team is here to create delicious meals that provide you with the nutrients your body needs and the tastes you crave. We've been serving the community for over a decade and our customers have become our friends. No matter your reason for struggling with your weight, we're here to help! Contact us today to make an order!