Top tips to improve your metabolic rate and lose weight after 40?
Many women find their weight slowly but steadily increasing in their 40s and 50s and the diets they previously used to lose weight no longer work, in fact, they can end up gaining more weight!
As we get older our body composition changes, our hormones change, we have more stress in our lives and we are busy. So without hiring a personal chef, a personal trainer and quitting your job, how do you reset your metabolism and achieve your weight loss goals?
These are our top tips to improve your metabolic rate and lose weight after 40.
1. Ignore the scales
Our first tip is to ignore the scales, they are not telling you the whole story and this can lead to feelings of negativity and defeat. Instead choose other goals around your nutrition, fitness, clothing or energy levels to mark your achievements.
2. Review your nutrition
As we age our nutritional requirements change. We need fewer carbohydrates, especially simple carbs, and more fats and protein for our hormones and to protect our lean muscles. Addressing micronutrient deficiencies is also important. If you are low in iron, zinc, chromium, magnesium and/or B vitamins you will struggle to lose weight.
3. Burn fat
Body fat is simply stored energy. We want our clients to burn fat, and not lose muscle. This is another reason why the scales are not giving you a true picture. Muscle is denser than fat, so while you can be burning fat and increasing lean muscle, the scales can stay the same or increase. If you like to assess progress with statistics looking at your body composition is more helpful than the scales. In our clinic, we use Metascan body composition software to properly assess our client's body fat, lean muscle and hydration levels. This also provides helpful information so we can specifically target the areas they need to work on to achieve their goals.
4. Balance your blood sugar
If you have any blood sugar dysregulation, even just a small amount, your body will prefer to store energy as fat rather than use that energy. Read our article for simple ways to balance your blood sugar.
5. Love your liver
Your liver works hard making hormones, breaking down fat, removing toxins, and more. We are constantly exposed to toxins in our environment and while we can’t avoid them all we can look to reduce our toxic load by reducing coffee, alcohol, sugar, processed foods and the toxins in our skincare and household cleaning products.
Also love your liver by increasing foods to support your liver function like green leafy vegetables, bitter foods, sprouts, lemons and filtered water.
If your hormones are out of balance this may impact your ability to lose weight. Irregular periods, PMS, estrogen dominance and PCOS make losing weight a challenge for various reasons, but addressing the hormonal imbalance will help you achieve your goals.
7. Gut health
Emerging research is uncovering the link between gut microbiome and our body composition. Women (and men) with less microbiome diversity are more likely to have higher body weight, blood sugar dysregulation, hormone dysregulation and higher body fat. Your gut health also impacts other areas of your health including appetite, stress, anxiety and mood.
Our thyroid and the thyroid hormones it regulates are responsible for our metabolic rate. Our gut health, stress and nutritional status all impact our thyroid function. Thyroid status can be the missing link for many women struggling with hormonal issues and weight gain. Your thyroid can be impacting your ability to lose weight well before the markers that show up in your blood tests are sufficient to categorize your condition as a thyroid disorder such as Hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s disease.
Looking at your nutrition and addressing any micronutrient deficiencies assists in optimizing thyroid function and improving your metabolic rate.
There is plenty of research that shows the influence sleep has on your metabolic rate. The general consensus is we need 7-9 hours of sleep every night, but it is not just the amount of sleep that matters, it is the quality of sleep. Improving your sleep is an important factor in weight loss and general health and well-being for women in their 40s and beyond. Read our blog The importance of a good night's sleep for tips of how to improve your sleep.
Are you constantly busy, struggling to keep up with the demands of your life? Are you always stressed and tired? You may have elevated cortisol. When cortisol is elevated your body is less willing to lose weight. Working on ways to improve your stress response – your body’s ability to manage stress - will lead to a reduction in your cortisol levels, improve your energy and help you achieve your weight loss goals.
As I’m sure you know, exercise has many benefits for our health, not just weight loss. It burns body fat and builds lean muscles, improves moods and supports good sleep.
We need weight-bearing exercise now to help protect our bone density and reduce our risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis in our menopause years. Balance any high-intensity exercise with strength-building and recovery exercises like Pilates, yoga, walking or stretching to support muscle recovery and your nervous system.
For more tips on managing peri-menopause, menopause or hormones please read our blogs.
If you would like to know more about how the practitioners at Elemental Health can help you with your health goals call us on (02) 8081 0084 or book a discovery call to discuss your health goals.
|Tags:HormonesGut healthThyroid healthMenopauseWeight managementWomen's Health|