One of the burdens many women experience as menopause nears is an increased difficulty in maintaining a consistent weight. In spite of keeping all other factors the same, some women will still notice an increase in weight or a difference in weight distribution.
Following a few practices can help you maintain your weight and discover how to lose weight during menopause. Consulting with a reputable medical specialist will guide you through the process and help you feel comfortable and confident again!
Does Menopause Always Cause Weight Gain?
Although menopausal women frequently report struggles with weight gain, the hormones involved in transitioning into menopause do not automatically lead to weight difficulties.
Menopause typically occurs at a time in a woman’s life when her body starts to experience the result of age and lifestyle factors. One of the major changes caused during this time is an overall loss of muscle mass that naturally occurs with age. As muscle mass is lost, the body needs fewer calories to sustain itself. Therefore, continuing to consume the same amount of calories that once helped maintain weight, will cause an increase in weight instead.
At a hormonal level, the fluctuation between high and low levels of estrogen can cause an increase in fat storage. This is especially noticeable in the abdomen as fat distribution can shift from the hips and thighs to the middle. Hormone fluctuation can also lead to symptoms that cause a disturbance in sleep, which is also another factor in weight gain. Some of these symptoms include night sweats, early awakening, hot flashes, anxiety, and generalized insomnia.
In addition to hormone fluctuations and muscle mass loss, many women of menopause become more insulin-resistant?another risk factor for gaining weight. Insulin resistance can also lead to other health conditions that worsen with weight gains such as type II diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
How Can Menopausal Weight Gain Be Prevented?
Although a variety of factors can lead to weight gain during menopause, excessive weight gain can be mitigated by participating in a few improved lifestyle choices. The right combination of muscle mass retention, calorie restriction, and healthy daily living practices can keep you on the right path. If you?re struggling with losing weight even after following these healthy lifestyle tips, it?s advised to meet with a professional doctor to determine an effective, safe, and comfortable weight loss plan.
- Muscle retention exercises. Although individuals generally become less active with age, focusing on a combination of cardio and weight-training exercises helps to retain muscle mass. Exercise bands or weights with a more significant number of repetitions combined with low impact cardio is your best bet. Exercise is also an excellent stress-reliever.
- Non-excessive calorie reduction. Since many women experience muscle loss, fewer calories will likely be needed to run basic bodily functions. Drastic calorie reduction can slow the metabolism, which can be detrimental to weight maintenance or reduction, but a slight decrease in calories can help keep you on track.
- Daily health practices. Sleep disturbances are common during menopause, so making an extra effort to keep a sleep schedule can help prevent stress to the body. Stress relief, in general, can be very beneficial to the menopausal woman, so helpful practices could include acupuncture, massage, meditation or different types of therapy. Keeping alcohol consumption reasonable and focusing on mental health are other vital practices to consider.
How To Get Help With Menopausal Weight Loss
If you are a menopausal or post-menopausal woman having trouble with weight maintenance, or interested in learning more about how to lose weight during menopause, set up a consultation with Dr. Catherine Vanderloos today. Consulting with a physician who specializes in gynecology and provides medspa services to patients, you can become acquainted with a variety of different ways to help navigate through weight loss and the menopausal years.
Contact Dr. Vanderloos’ practice today to set up an appointment or ask any initial questions you might have about the process.