If you are 40 or older and you’ve noticed that it’s harder to lose weight than it was in your younger years, you are not alone. Nearly all women in their perimenopausal or menopausal years struggle with losing those unwanted extra pounds. The question is “why” does this happen to middle-aged women and what can be done about it?
The main reason that weight gain happens to women during their middle years is because the metabolism slows down, making it more difficult to burn calories. Additionally, estrogen levels fall during this time which can lead to insulin sensitivity or insulin resistance, making it more difficult for your body to control the amount of sugar in your bloodstream. When blood sugar levels are erratic, food cravings can occur, and unhealthy snacking is never a good idea when you’re trying to achieve weightloss.
There are “good” calories and there are “bad” calories. Ingesting too many calories from processed foods are considered “bad” calories and this is what leads to food cravings that aren’t the healthiest. A good way to ward off food cravings is to reduce the amount of processed food that you eat. Limit your carb intake to only a couple of servings a day and only eat carbs that come from high-fiber whole grains or fresh fruit.
Another way to keep food cravings and unhealthy snacking to a minimum is to increase the amount of protein and healthy fats by eating a handful of nuts, a cup of yogurt,sliced avocado, or some tuna packed in oil. These types of foods will not spike your glucose levels and they will keep you feeling satiated much longer.
Another method for losing weight is to cut back on the amount of food you eat per meal. Portion control can be managed by eating from a smaller plate or eating smaller amounts more frequently as opposed to eating 3 or 4 large meals a day.
It may seem unfair that you can no longer eat cheeseburgers, fries and milkshakes like you could when you were younger, but there are numerous alternatives you can eatinstead so you can still enjoy your favorite foods. Simply replace some of them with similar but healthier alternatives. In other words, instead of eating French fries, try a baked sweet potato. If you want a cheeseburger, try having yours wrapped in lettuce leaves and leave off the bun. If you like potato chips, try some beet chips or another vegie chip in its place or enjoy some carrot sticks to give you the crunch you are craving. For more tips on weight loss for women over 40, visit www.UniversityForWeightLossScience.com