Tuesday Tip: Menopause and fat loss ❤️
Menopause and peri menopause are unavoidable for all women and bring lots of new challenges when it comes to weight loss and maintenance. There’s a lot of fear and misinformation surround menopause and fat loss, and many women believe it’s impossible to achieve their goals post menopause. It couldn’t be further form the truth – and loads of my clients are proof of this.
So yes menopause/peri menopause causes a number of challenging symptoms and changes in the body. Aside from a whole range of general symptoms, when it comes to fat loss specific issues include:
⁃ lack of sleep (as a result of hormone changes and hot flushes etc )
⁃ Irritability/mood changes
⁃ Change in areas of fat deposition (increased belly fat)
⁃ A reduced bmr/ calorie requirement
⁃ Reduced muscle mass
Now whilst all of these are very real issues that do impact fat loss, none make it impossible and none change the basic premise and approach to losing fat – which is creating a calorie deficit. Lack of sleep will affect appetite, as will emotional changes, these both mean you may find it harder to control your calories and be more likely to overeat /drink. A reduced bmr and age related reduction in muscle mass also impact the number of calories you need. Changes in fat deposition mean more likelihood of fat gain around the mid section.
However none of these change the basic laws of thermodynamics – if you create a calorie deficit you will still lose fat (you just have to make sure you’re targeting the right calorie goal!).
But there are some things that will help enable you to create and stick to this deficit
⁃ prioritising sleep – try meditation apps, fans, cooling sprays etc
⁃ Resistance / weight train – this will help preserve /build muscle mass, protect bone density, increase calorie expenditure
⁃ Enjoy any food you want of course but ensure you’re including high fibre and high protein foods to help keep you full and satiated.
⁃ Be aware of hunger and try to learn whether it’s true hunger or emotional hunger. Real hunger tends to build slowly, and is ‘cured’ with any food. Emotional hunger tends to come on suddenly, drives you to your ‘comfort’ foods and isn’t satisfied.
⁃ Most importantly talk to your gp or a menopause specialist and don’t be afraid to use HRT to help manage symptoms.
Happy Tuesday 🤗