The average woman gains between 10 and 15 pounds during menopause. However, weight gain should not be seen as an inevitable part of aging or menopause. Usually a healthy diet and regular exercise can combat any weight gain during this time of life.
What Causes Weight Gain after Menopause?
As people age it is normal for them to have less muscle mass and to gain some fat mass. Because muscle mass uses more calories than fat, a change in muscle mass and fat percentages in a person can mean that they now need fewer calories. However, if a person does not consume fewer calories this can cause weight gain. It will seem like a person has gained weight when their exercise and diet regimens have not changed significantly.
Menopause can cause a woman's body shape to change. Usually a woman's fat is distributed throughout her body, and the hormone estrogen is responsible for this distribution. However, after menopause, when a woman has little estrogen in her body, her excess body fat re-distributes. Usually it redistributes to her abdomen, which can make a woman feel like she has gained weight when she hasn't.
What Can I Do?
There are a lot of fad diets and strange advice floating around out there that are usually not the best options when it comes to being healthy and losing weight. A person's best option for losing weight usually lays within eating healthier and exercising regularly.
An exercise routine
It is recommended that a person gets at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. However, if your goal is to lose weight, it is necessary to do more than that. Sports such as tennis, cycling, and running can be enjoyable ways to lose weight. However, you don't need to do an organized activity to lose weight. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, bike to work, or walk to the corner store instead of drive. Taking little steps like this can have a positive impact.
A healthy diet
A healthy diet filled with fruits and vegetables, fiber, lean protein, and whole grains is a keystone for weight loss. Cooking with these can be fun, but for those who do not have the time, there are many healthy and quick-to-prepare food options available. If you snack on junk food throughout the day, try replacing it with a piece of fruit, carrot sticks, or trail mix.
Although obesity is an epidemic in many places in the world, it can be fought. Finding ways to eat healthy and exercise can go a long way in helping you to lose weight. Read more about weight gain and the different weight gain treatments available.
- Mayo Clinic Staff. (2014). Metabolism and weight loss: How you burn calories. Retrieved November 16, 2015, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/metabolism/art-20046508
- Hensrud, D. (2015). Is it possible to be overweight because of a slow metabolism? Retrieved November 16, 2015, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/expert-answers/slow-metabolism/faq-20058480