If you're in your 40s and it seems as if you're gaining weight regardless of what you do: eating less, exercising more, starting new diets, we have some bad news for you - it may be hormonal. It seems highly unfair that women spend the majority of their lives at the call of their hormones only to hit the mid-life mark and have them wreak such havoc again. With the onset of menopause just a few years away, hormonal changes are beginning now, slowing your metabolism down, causing undue stress and adding to your weight gain. The good news is by controlling your stress levels and jump-starting your metabolism, you can lose weight and feel great after 40.
Recently discussed on The Dr. Oz Show, metabolism starts to wind down after age 40 by approximately 5% every 10 years. A flagging metabolism is one of the main causes of weight gain for women over the age 40. Combined with chronic stress, for example from the uncertain economy and high unemployment rates, it's no surprise that women are gaining weight and unable to lose it regardless of how hard they work. To address weight loss after 40 is much different than other decades - here are 5 tips to to restore balance and lose weight in your 40s.
Don't let aging get you down - being in your 40s doesn't mean you have to let your hormones and metabolism slow you down. Feeling and looking great can be as simple as implementing 1 or all 5 of these tips!
- Focus On You
Chronic stress may lead to elevated levels of the hormone cortisol, which in time, can do some heavy damage on the body by slowing down cell regeneration, destroying healthy muscles and bone tissue and compromise your metabolism even further. Therefore, it is highly important to take at least 20-30 minutes out of each day to focus on yourself, doing something that makes you happy, brings you pleasure or peace of mind. It can be anything from yoga, meditation to scrapbooking - the most important person to remember here is you. Lowering your stress levels can not only help with your metabolism and weight gain, it is great for your mental health as well.
- Get Moving
Exercise! We know your energy may not be as high in your 40s as it was in your 20s but exercising is cyclical in nature - the more you do it, the better you feel and the more you'll want to do it. Motivation to exercise is often difficult in this stage of your life but it may help to think of it as an in/out equation: what you're eating is going to stay on your body until you move enough to lose it. Regular exercise controls weight and increases heart health. Another factor to consider is regular exercise alleviates stress so commit yourself to a small amount of time every day for a fitness activity that you enjoy - it can be swimming, pilates, walking, dancing - just make sure you do it!
- Balance Your Hormones
Hormone imbalance is one of the biggest issues for women over 40. Similar to adolescence, your hormones are running amok and balance is completely off. One day, your estrogen may be through the roof and the next day, it can hit all time lows, resulting in mood swings, adult acne, and weight gain. Talk to your physician if you're over 40 and experiencing hormonal imbalance - there are prescriptions that can correct estrogen levels or bioidentical hormone replacement could help restore hormonal equilibrium.
- Clean Up Your Diet
Eating the right food at the right times is key in weight loss and restoring hormonal balance. Make sure you're eating plenty of "clean" protein (approximately 5-7 grams of fat per serving) and don't skimp when it comes to quality: you should buy the best cuts of lean protein, staying away from high-fat proteins. Be sure to get your intake of healthy fats such as Omega-3s from fish, nuts and fresh vegetables. Change up the idea that you should be eating 3 square meals a day to eating 5-6 small meals a day. Keeping your body charged encourages it to use energy as you need it, instead of storing it as fat. Eating healthy cleans your system, balances your hormones and helps you lose weight.
- A Little Help From My Friends
What you can't achieve with your diet, don't be afraid to add vitamins and supplements! We recommend a daily multivitamin, especially if you're in your 40s, but there are also many other vitamins and supplements that can help boost metabolism and help you lose weight:
- Raspberry Keytones
- White Kidney Bean Extract
Becoming a savvy supplement shopper means you can find better deals on your supplements, helping you achieve the weight loss goals you've set.