According to CDC, about 43.3% of women aged above 60 face obesity in the United States of America. However, being overweight in the years following 50 is not only because of your eating habits. Several other factors contribute to a faster weight gain as you grow than at younger ages.
Aging comes with loads of hormonal changes in the body. The menopause stage causes estrogen levels to drop, increasing fat mass. In addition, reduced responsiveness to thyroid hormone can lead to a lower metabolic rate. All these changes significantly affect the weight you gain, and the time it takes to lose it.
Women must understand that obesity can be life-threatening down the lane. It is the root of many chronic illnesses like type 2 diabetes, strokes, and high blood pressure. Motivation to make lifestyle changes might become scarce as a person gets older. However, they are necessary once weight gain begins to impact daily activities. We have prepared a list of ways women over 50 can lose weight efficiently. Let us look at it to clarify any questions regarding this journey.
1) Include physical activity in your routine
Exercising is the most common advice people give for losing weight. Its effectiveness has been tried and tested by millions in their lifetime. However, women tend to reduce physical activity as they get older. This is because a lack of strength and flexibility does not allow too much movement.
The fitness world may be bewildering if you are new to it. Hence, join a consistent and easy free weight loss program for women over 50 that will give you the guidance and direction you need to achieve your goal. Such programs also make it easier for you to determine which exercises and diet plans will be the best for your specific circumstances.
It is necessary to ease into working out as beginning high-intensity exercises can harm you. It can also lower your motivation level to continue exercising. First, focus on building stamina, balance, and strength. Some exercises that can help you do this are water aerobics, low-impact pilates, and chair yoga. You can move to more physically challenging exercises once your body has gotten used to it.
The loss of lean muscle mass lowers your ability to metabolize protein. Hence, you gain weight faster. A solution to this is increasing your training volume. Dumbbells and body weight strength training are ways to form muscle mass. Remember that exercising is not limited to dumbbells and pilates. It can be anything you enjoy doing that requires physical effort. For example, swimming, walking, and jogging are all excellent ways to help you shed those extra pounds and stay active. It all depends on what you like indulging in.
2) Change your dietary habits
Your body functions differently as you age. Metabolic rates slow down by 10% each year after you reach 20. While metabolism does not affect weight gain, it makes it difficult to lose the existing weight. In addition, your body slows down the process of burning fats and calories when you work out. Updating and changing your dietary habits as you age is necessary. For example, opt for lean meat like fish and more greens in your meals.
Experts recommend 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of weight for women over 50. Ensure that your intake of processed foods is minimal, with more substitutes for fatty and red meats. Just reducing the amount of food you eat will make you weaker. Therefore, it is not a wise way to lose weight. Instead, substitute your unhealthy junk with more nutritious items. Staying hungry will lead to more instances of binge eating.
3) Get a thyroid checkup
The thyroid releases a hormone that controls metabolism and digestive functions in the body. It plays a significant role in your weight gain and loss journey. The faster your body burns food for energy, the easier it will be for you to lose weight.
Thyroid disorders are prevalent in middle-aged women and are usually diagnosed after menopause. Hence, women who are over 50 years of age should get a thyroid checkup.
4) Improve your metabolism
We have discussed earlier the role of metabolism while losing weight. Here are a few steps that will help you improve its rate:
- Drink plenty of water: Staying hydrated is vital for many bodily functions. It helps remove waste from the body and helps calorie burning.
- Move around: We tend to find comfort lying down for long periods as we age. However, staying active and moving around is necessary to boost metabolism.
- Sleep well: Sleeping is related to several hormonal functions. Sleep deprivation can cause diabetes and disease in leptin levels. Leptin is a hormone that prevents feelings of hunger when your body does not need energy. Hence, its production is vital to people trying to lose weight.
- Increase green tea intake: green tea helps turn stored fat into free fat particles. This process makes the breakdown of fats easier.
5) Do not focus too much on the scale
It is human nature to frequently check the scale once we begin our weight loss journey. Unfortunately, this practice can prove to be emotionally harmful and demotivating. Not seeing significant differences in your weight might force you to stop making an effort. Also, you might resort to unhealthy ways of aching the result. Obsessing too much over the number is not the point here. The key is to better your lifestyle to ensure a healthier future. This mindset will be very helpful.
You might feel a little lost once you commit to losing weight. There are all sorts of advice available on the internet. But, ensure you follow the ones that feel healthy. It is wise to consult a professional if you are taking any extreme measures to lose weight. Remember that change comes slowly. Excepting it too quickly and opting for methods to do this is physically and emotionally unhealthy.