As women get older, many realize that losing weight is not as easy as it used to be. It can be discouraging when weight loss goals aren’t met after putting the work in. Diets that used to work in the past don’t seem to be as effective. Women in their 40s have to approach weight loss from different angles because their bodies are changing and don’t respond to the same weight loss routine. Here are some things women over 40 need to know about losing weight.
#1: Pounds Don’t Drop Off Like They Used To
If you are in your 40s, it is unfeasible to expect weight loss to happen like it did in your 20s. It’s important to acknowledge the progress you make, even if it is less than what you want. Unrealistic expectations can frustrate you and make you second-guess your weight loss routine; and that can lead to giving up.
#2: Perimenopause & Menopause
Women enter perimenopause in their 40s and can reach menopause by their early 50s. During this hormonal bodily change, hot flashes and mood swings can occur, but weight may silently creep on or weight loss may become difficult. It is best to assess your eating habits and see if a dietary intervention needs to be made. Try replacing meat, dairy products, processed foods, and added sugars with plant-based foods like fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, and whole grains.
#3: Thyroid Dysfunction
While we are in the realm of hormones, let’s talk about the thyroid. If the thyroid isn’t functioning properly, it may be the cause of weight gain or why you can’t lose weight. The thyroid regulates your metabolism by producing the thyroxine hormone. A healthy metabolism is crucial for weight loss! Consider getting a blood test to measure your thyroid hormone levels. We also have natural remedies to help keep your thyroid healthy.
#4: There Aren’t Quick Fixes, But That’s OK!
The fact that there aren’t quick fixes for weight loss actually gives women over 40 an advantage. That’s right! Many women turn to diets or 1-week weight loss regimens to drop 10 pounds, only to return back to old habits. It’s best for women over 40 to make long term decisions that not only help with weight loss, but also ensure a healthier, longer life.
#5: Change Your Eating Habits
The body can’t process junk food or the diets you are used to like it did 20 years ago. It’s hard to make a dietary change because we are conditioned to eating certain foods. Try to make small changes to see how your body reacts to healthier, plant-based foods. Keep track of your eating habits in a food diary to document positive or negative effects. Don’t drastically change your diet overnight, but casually make these changes to revamp your health.
Weight loss for women over 40 is all about making small changes that are long lasting. Remove tempting foods from your environment, be more mindful of what you put in your body, and watch your caloric intake. Be persistent and don’t get discouraged.