Menopause is a natural part of every woman’s life. It is a process that can span over several years and ends in the cessation of a woman’s monthly period. Between 42 and 56 is the average age range of women who experience menopause. It is not uncommon for some women to experience early menopause even before they reach their 40s. Aside from irregular periods, menopause brings forth numerous symptoms, including hot flashes, fatigue, vaginal dryness and night sweats. Weight gain is also one of the common symptoms of menopause that many women find devastating. If you wish to balance menopause and weight loss, read on to learn how.
Menopause and Weight Gain
If you are currently undergoing menopause then you have probably noticed how it’s becoming more and more difficult for you to maintain your current weight. Even if you are getting the same amount of exercise and eating the same diet, it seems that you just can’t fight the bulge. Weight gain is almost inevitable for women who are menopausal, but what causes it? Weight gain during menopause is primarily caused by the changing hormones in your body. For instance, as your levels of estrogen go down, your body begins looking for other sources of estrogen. Unfortunately, fat cells are good sources of estrogen, so your body starts storing these cells in excess. Have you noticed how most of the weight you gain goes directly to your middle section? That is the effect of the hormone androgen, which increases in your body as you reach menopause. Like estrogen, progesterone is also a hormone that starts to go down during menopause, causing you to retain water and experience bloating.
Weight Loss During Menopause
Just because your hormones seem to have a mind of their own doesn’t mean you should give up and just let the pounds pack on. Even though you might not exactly retain the figure of your younger years, there are several things you can do to fight the middle age bulge and enter your later years looking your best. Here are some tips to help you lose weight even as you go into menopause:
- Do not get into crash diets. Trying diets that promise to slim you down fast may seem like a tempting idea under the circumstances, but they can actually do more harm than good.This is because starving yourself only slows down your metabolism which will cause you to gain more weight in the long run.
- Cut down the calories. Many menopausal women are baffled about how they gain weight although they eat the same amount of food. The answer? Your body requires fewer calories as you age, so the amount of calories that you used to consume in your 20s or 30s are actually excessive as you enter menopause.
- Improve your diet. Avoid refined sugars, fatty foods and other junk food. Instead, load up on fresh fruits and vegetables.