Weight Loss and Menopause - Ellen Dolgen
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Weight Loss and Menopause

About this time of the year, it is time to peel off all those layers (sweaters, leggings, and coats) and take inventory to see if you also need to peel off a few of those extra winter pounds that crept up.  Some people get the chills when they hear nails on a chalkboard. I get chills right around this time every year when bathing suits make their way to the forefront of conversation again.

It is estimated that 90% of menopausal women ages of 45-55 gain between 12-15 pounds. Sadly, those excess pounds seem to accumulate around the abdomen. Sound familiar?  Did you suddenly become a member of the sisterhood of the shrinking pants?

Here is a simple explanation: During menopause, these changes occur because of changes in hormone levels – estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.  The symptoms of menopause can be similar to underactive thyroid disease.  Women with underactive thyroid levels often experience weight gain.  If you want to read more about this checkout -MENOPAUSE MONDAYS® Blog: Are you experiencing Menopause Symptoms, Symptoms of Thyroid Disease, or both?

My experience with diets is that they don’t work!  The best way to attack those excess pounds is to develop a new eating plan and evaluate your exercise program.

For women in mid-life, intermittent fasting seems to be a game-changer. Intermittent fasting does not focus on what you eat, but rather on when you eat.  You pick specific times to eat while fasting for a certain number of hours each day.  This can help your body burn fat and give you more energy to boot! Sound good?

There are several ways to do Intermittent Fasting. I found that meal skipping was the easiest.  I tried the 16-hour fast.  This basically means that I eat for 8 hours and do not eat for 16 hours.  I started by skipping breakfast and just having water and black coffee in the morning. My first meal of the day is lunch around noon.  I finish all eating by 8 PM. If we have a late dinner out, I just adjust the time I have my first meal of the day. No biggie.

Breaking my breakfast habit was a bit strange at first.  I was taught that breakfast was the most important meal of the day….whatever you do…be sure you eat breakfast.  So, I was a bit worried that I would not have enough energy to work out in the morning or be able to think clearly. However,  the opposite was true!

It was astounding to me, how many times I went to go get a snack after 8 PM.  Who knew I snacked so much at night?  It didn’t take long to break that habit. Remember one must still eat healthy foods. The weight loss was so effortless and my energy level so high, that this eating plan has become my new lifestyle.  My husband decided to join me as he saw my results. He had the same success.

Before you decide to give Intermittent Fasting a try…. be sure to speak with your healthcare professional to make sure that this kind of change in your eating aligns with your personal health needs.

Our body is our temple. There are so many types of bathing suits out there to choose from – one-piece, bikini, tankini… panini? – there’s one you’ll always have, and that’s your birthday suit. Maybe talking about bathing suits doesn’t have to be akin to fat-talking. I’m going to try to push aside that annoying negative voice in my head, alter my opinion, and force myself to thank the summer season for making me think about my eating and exercise habits.

Suffering in silence is OUT! Reaching out is IN!

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*EllenDolgen.com does not recommend, endorse, or make any representation about any tests, studies, practices, procedures, treatments, services, opinions, healthcare providers, physicians, or medical institutions that may be mentioned or referenced.


2 thoughts on “Weight Loss and Menopause”

  1. Marna Brown-Krausz

    Thank you so much for these blogs. I have found that intermittent fasting is exactly what helped me lose weight when I began to gain so much extra weight after reaching menopause. That, along with good food choices and regular exercise, have made all the difference and I am back to my weight when I was in my early 20s and I have lots of energy as well.

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience with intermittent fasting, Marna. Sounds like it has worked well for you. I find that I have lots of energy, too. It is wonderful.

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