Dr. Gidon Frame outlines why we have weight gain in menopause and what can be done about it.
Does it seem that a healthy weight is much harder to lose or maintain now that you are in, or have gone through menopause?
You are not alone. About 30% of women ages 50 to 59 are struggling and are finding themselves to be not just overweight, but obese.
Is there a connection between hormone decline and weight gain?
Yes, declining thyroid, testosterone and growth hormone levels are associated with weight gain. In fact, obesity can make these conditions worse. Menopause and mid-life weight gain can occur at the same time, although, recent evidence suggests that weight gain occurs in most women regardless of Menopause.
Why can’t we just forget about it and accept the extra pounds?
Unfortunately, there is a long list of health issues that come with weight gain, particularly in this age range, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, just to name a few. If your waist circumference is over 35 inches then it’s time to make some fast changes.
It may also be more difficult to lose the weight now than it was in your 20’s and 30’s which is partly to do with dropping estrogen levels, as the body uses starches and blood sugar less effectively.
What can we do?
Calorie reduction is the key. Whatever eating program keeps you happy and healthy, is the one that will work. Most diet programs work in the short term. You need an individualized plan that works with your body type, metabolism, personality, and food tastes.
For some people, carbs are poison, for others, wheat, while it seems that some just eat too much of everything.
Always start by analyzing your diet and measuring your caloric intake, honestly.
Adding more exercise into your life will increase your muscle mass and raise your metabolic rate. You may need to do more exercise than you did in the past as the rate your body uses up energy during exercise, has declined.
What type of exercise helps?
A mixture of strength training, for example, weight lifting, weight machines, yoga, and gardening and low impact aerobics like cycling, walking, swimming and dancing.
Is Hormone Therapy (HT) right for me?
HT can help manage bothersome menopause symptoms and dramatically improve the quality of life for many women and men. Hormone Therapy can also help you manage over-eating and food cravings and help you exercise more easily and better.
A consultation with an experienced physician is vital to managing the benefits and risks.
Dr. Frame has a special interest and over 20 years of experience in Hormone Replacement Therapy for men and women and with a complete private medical assessment, you may find that help is closer and easier and safer than you think.
Age is a state of mind. Aging is a treatable condition.