Weight Gain During Menopause

Weight gain seems to be something everyone fears, but when it comes to middle age, it seems there is little one can do to avoid putting on the pounds. However, this is far from being reality. Women do not have to gain a lot of weight when they begin menopause. By learning what causes women to gain weight during the menopausal years, a lot can be done to stop the scale’s ascent to higher numbers.

Menopause Weight Gain

The key to minimizing weight gain during menopause is the same as it is any other time of your life - eat a healthy diet, exercise and get enough sleep.

As the human body begins to age and as women enter menopause, one thing seems to happen consistently – muscle mass decreases. This can be due to a number of reasons. One of the most common reasons this occurs is that women stop doing activities that use their physical strength. They might stop doing weight training and yoga, perhaps because of fatigue or aches and pains. But the more a woman can exercise, the easier it will be to retain muscle mass and thus maintain a faster metabolism which can prevent the onset of mid-life weight gain. Each pound of muscle gained not only takes up less space than a pound of fat, but it will also burn an extra 100 calories a day, even when the woman is sleeping.

Speaking of sleep, as women grow older, they might begin to sleep less. Often, this is due to stress and to other life situations in which their career or other responsibilities may cause them to go to bed later and wake up earlier. Not only does this cause a woman to begin to lose her focus and her sharpness, but it can also cause weight gain. When someone is tired, they often turn to food in order to boost their energy. While this works in the short term, it can add to weight gain if done on a regular basis.

In addition, research has shown that losing out on sleep can cause a person’s cortisol levels to increase, which then can lead to weight gain, especially in the midsection. By getting at least seven hours of sleep a night, or as much sleep as it takes for the woman to feel awake throughout the day, they can avoid weight gain.

Of course, in menopause, hormone levels fluctuate and they can begin to cause troubles in terms of weight gain. Whether these hormone fluctuations lead to food cravings or to a lack of energy to exercise, women who maintain a regular diet that’s low in fat and calories while also exercising regularly can help to steady their hormones and gain less weight, if any at all. If weight gain becomes significant even as a woman is eating well and exercising, the woman may want to see their doctor to see whether there is a hormone that needs to be supplemented (for more information, see this interesting article about Hormone Replacement Therapy).

The key to minimizing weight gain during menopause is the same as it is any other time of your life – eat a healthy, balanced diet, get plenty of exercise and get enough sleep. No matter what age, most women can achieve and maintain a lower body weight by making these lifestyle changes.

Other Related Posts and Articles you May Find Interesting: “Menopause Diet”, “Menopause Diet Plan”, “Age and Weight Gain” and “Managing Weight Loss After A Hysterectomy”.


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2 comments to Weight Gain During Menopause

  • Judy Cleise

    It is nice to see people talking about the natural ways to avoid weight gain with menopause. I am not a big supporter of HRT but I really like the tip on getting additional sleep to help lose weight.

  • Janet

    This is very interesting, even I have experience menopause weight gain and it was hard for me to overcome it not until I followed the steps you gave: eat a healthy, balanced diet, get plenty of exercise and get enough sleep. This are really very effective. Thanks!

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