The Keys to Weight Loss Over 50

Nearly one-third of the population in the United States is obese. This is a scary statistic, especially given the known health problems associated with being overweight, including Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and even some cancers.

Adults age 40 and over make up more than 40% of that statistic, and are at a higher risk for becoming overweight because of changes in the body as it ages. Hormones play a big role in the development of body fat, and unfortunately for both men and women, our hormones change naturally as we age, and can result in putting on extra un-wanted pounds that can lead to major health concerns.

Blame Your Hormones

Whether you're a man or a woman, your hormones are going to make it easier to gain weight, and harder to lose weight as you age. Women will experience changes in estrogen levels during menopause that will decrease their resting metabolic rate. This means that they will burn less calories while at rest, which can lead to an in crease in body fat. This also means that any weight put on during or after menopause will be more difficult to lose.

Because menopause is a drastic and rapid change in women's hormones, body fat content and metabolism are affected more dramatically than in men. However, men still experience a big shift in their hormone balance as they age, with a decrease in the production of testosterone. This change is more gradual and can happen over more than a decade, and it results in less muscle mass, and a decrease in resting metabolic rate and calorie consumption during exercise. This means that the same exercises men performed when they were younger now burn fewer calories.

Weight loss over 50 is more difficult for women than men because men have more lean muscle than women, meaning even though both sexes tend to gain weight after 50, men can shed pounds faster and easier than women can. This can be disheartening for women that are trying to lose weight with a male partner, but just because it is more difficult, doesn't mean it is impossible, and because of the benefits of maintaining a healthy weight as we age, it is important to persevere.

Solutions for Weight Loss Over 50

It is important to let go of the idea that you are inevitably going to be heavier when you're older. Even though hormonal changes will make it more of a challenge, you can maintain a good weight and live and healthier lifestyle if you implement a healthy lifestyle and diet.

So what can you do?

Plain and simple, you will have to amp-up your exercise routine, eat less, and pay attention to what you eat. If you don't already have an exercise plan in place, get started on one and gradually increase your training until you are doing 45 minutes of cardio 4 times per week, and some form of strength training 3 times per week. An exercise plan like this will help you lose pounds, and also increase metabolism and muscle mass.

To lose weight, you will also need to eat less, consuming less calories than you are burning each day. This means amping up your activity level and eating less at the same time. Also pay attention to what you are eating - if you fill up on lean proteins, fresh vegetables and fruits, and whole grains, you will feel full and won't need to consume as many calories. Avoid eating calorie-dense foods such as processed and fried foods, and sweets, which are also lacking in nutrients and bad for your overall health. Try to avoid unnecessary snacking, especially at night when your metabolism is slowed down. Instead of snacking, drink a glass of water or hot herbal tea to satisfy hunger and quench thirst.

The best course you can take is to pay more attention to your diet, and to be more responsible when it comes to avoiding extra calories throughout the day. However, it is also important to make regular trips to your doctor as you age. Doctors should be checking men for abnormally low testosterone levels, and both men and women should get tested for resistance, which can occur as we age, and can result in elevated blood sugar and added abdominal fat.

If you need additional information, or would like to schedule a free in-home consultation to discuss your family's in-home care needs, contact us today at 1-844-505-0004. American In-Home Care refers qualified and compassionate care providers that can help with many services, including Companion Care, Personal Care, and Alzheimer's and Dementia Care.


Source: Melone, Linda. "The Best Ways to Lose Weight Over 50." Next Avenue. Mar 23, 16.