Women going through menopause go through a number of issues. According to Dr. Anna Cabeca, OB/GYN and women’s health expert, menopause causes hot flashes, incontinence, vaginal dryness and of course, gaining weight! Weight gain is an issue even even when following your normal diet and exercise. What can we do about this?
How does aging affect the body?
Why does weight gain often occur after menopause and how does it affect the body? It’s usually a mix between aging and menopause itself, according to WebMD. Estrogen has a huge impact on the body. One of the functions of estrogen is that it helps regulate body weight. Reduced estrogen levels cause a person to eat more, be less physically active, and may lower metabolic rate, which is the rate at which the body converts stored energy into working energy. Lack of estrogen may also cause the body to use starches and blood sugar less effectively, which would increase fat storage and make it harder to lose weight.
Additionally, the degree at which you can use up energy during exercise declines. The way one exercised before has to change in which you need to increase the amount of time and intensity you’re exercising.
What can women do to work against it?
According to the website Everyday Health, there are ways to help avoid weight gain and stay healthy:
Start with a mix of moderate and vigorous exercise to burn off menopausal weight gain. Your routine should include aerobic exercises, like swimming, walking, bicycling, and running, as well as resistance or strength training. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), all adults need at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week, and two or more days a week of muscle-strengthening activities that work all of the major muscle groups, like the legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms.
Proper portions and proper meal times
Metabolism has slowed down when a woman goes through menopause, its crucial to watch the meals your taking. Research suggests when a woman goes through menopause, she is burning a couple hundred calories fewer than before in a day. What you can do is cut back on restaurant meals and takeout to help control the intake, but the timing and frequency of your meals can make a big difference to. Research shows to help decrease weight, eat three meals a day, starting the morning with a larger breakfast that contains protein and having a light dinner.
You don’t have to take out fats completely from your diet, but it’s important to choose what food you’re receiving it from. The healthiest fats are the ones that derive from vegetable sources like olives and nuts.
Insomnia is a common symptom of perimenopause. Inadequate sleep impacts our hunger hormones such as ghrelin and leptin. What you can do is head to bed around earlier and avoid eating right before you sleep because it may interrupt your sleep. Also, aim for a minimum of seven hours every night.