As you age, it becomes harder for you to lose fat. About the time you begin to experience menopause, you tend to notice you’re a bit more tired around noon and you don’t always have the energy you need to exercise like you should. Part of the reason for this is that your metabolism is changing. Your hormone production is changing and slowing down. With metabolism and hormone changes come mood swings, a mess of unwanted pounds and feelings about the fact that you are getting older.
With the decline of progesterone, testosterone and other hormones, our body begins storing instead of losing weight. Although many focus on estrogen loss at this time of life, having sufficient testosterone levels can help women slim down by reducing blood glucose levels. By reducing the glucose levels, you promote weight loss and have a better chance of losing that oh-so-stubborn belly fat.
Your digestive processes also start to slow down, which means more nutrients are lost as your food remains exposed to the harsh acids for longer periods of time. This decrease in nutrients can lead to fatigue, lack of energy, and weight gain. If you want to keep your digestion up to par to lose fat, eat fresher foods more often. Make sure you are getting enough usable calcium in your diet. If you know your diet isn’t what it should be, start taking a dietary supplement that is designed to meet the needs of women over 40. Smaller meals and smaller portions will prevent your digestive tract from being overwhelmed and will actually allow your body to take in the nutrients it needs before they are destroyed by an acidic environment. Also, remember to eat your biggest meal towards the middle of the day so you have a chance to burn off most of the calories you take in.
Even if you don’t have the motivation to do so, find a way to stay active if you want to lose fat. While most women stay active due to work and family obligations, those who have a job where they sit for several hours at a time can find themselves sitting at home as well. When you’re at work, take a few minutes every hour to stretch. Either stand up or stretch while you’re sitting in your chair. A few minutes of solid stretching (where you can actually feel your muscles working) will improve your circulation, send fresh oxygen to your brain, and help to keep you motivated to move. Once you leave work, take a walk or go straight to the gym to burn off the frustrations of the day.
Keep a close eye on your diet. It’s important to eliminate the fats that can clog your cardiovascular system, but don’t eliminate the fats that help your body function better. Mono-unsaturated fats are necessary for good heart health. Omega three fatty acids like those found in fish, flaxseed, and olive oil will help your body to function more efficiently. A more efficient metabolism means more calories are burned and fewer are stored. In fact, eating the right fats will allow your body to burn more fat and less muscle. Add more protein to your diet as well. Many people don’t realize that when they don’t consume enough protein, the body pulls it from their muscles.
The only way to lose fat is if you make a conscious effort to not make the same mistakes that caused your weight gain in the first place.
Anyone can make positive lifestyle changes at any time. Sometimes, you may need something to motivate you. For others, it’s the realization that something needs to change if you want to improve your health. Making several changes at once can be overwhelming and lead to feelings of frustration. Don’t push. Take things one step at a time so you won’t be so easily discouraged. Losing weight while you’re in your 20s is a chore. Losing weight after you’re in your 50s and older is a challenge. It may be a little more difficult to lose fat, but it can be done.
If you are truly ready to commit to losing those extra pounds, take things one day at a time. Don’t allow yourself to be overwhelmed. If you slip once or twice, make up for it by taking a walk or a yoga class. Spend more time with family and allow yourself to smile. Losing those extra pounds should not be a life sentence of frustration. Instead, it should give you a new lease on life. One that allows you to be yourself and enjoy every minute of your time, no matter how you spend it. The more you focus on putting life into your years, the less likely you will be to stress over a few pounds. Before you know it, the pounds will be starting to melt away and your health will gradually improve.
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