Related Topics: Diet, Features, Menopause, Weight Loss

Losing Weight After Menopause

Bioidentical natural progesterone helps weight loss by regulating thyroid and acting as a diuretic, but what else can you do to shift those stubborn pounds?

Dr Andrew Weil

For many women, gaining weight after menopause seems inevitable, and losing it nearly impossible. However, a new study from the University of Pittsburgh suggests that a few simple changes can make a big difference.

Researchers followed 465 overweight and obese postmenopausal women for four years to evaluate weight-loss strategies that worked best. The women were divided into two groups. Those in one group underwent intensive nutrition and exercise counseling, while those in the other group received a more general weight loss program. All of the women kept a daily record of what they ate, and where they ate, for the duration of the study.

When the investigators reviewed all the factors that made the difference for the women who successfully lost weight, they found that the winning strategy was replacing meats and cheeses in the diet with fruits and vegetables. Eating fewer desserts and drinking fewer sugar-sweetened beverages also proved important. The effect of substituting fruit and vegetables wasn’t noticeable at the study’s six-month mark but had the greatest impact on sustained weight loss and prevention of weight gain over the long-term, the researchers reported. The study was published in the September 2012 issue of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

My take? Emphasizing fruits and vegetables and minimizing meats and cheese in your diet is a strategy I have championed, whether or not you are overweight. My anti-inflammatory diet (which is not focused on weight loss but can help you shed unwanted pounds) calls for an abundance of fruits and vegetables and for decreasing consumption of animal protein other than fish and high quality, natural cheese and yogurt. This “eating plan” provides steady energy as well as vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, dietary fiber and protective phytonutrients. And, as the Pittsburgh study showed, you can help yourself lose weight when your plate is full of fresh produce.

Summary:

Oestrogen dominance is a major factory for many women in gaining weight, so ensuring good hormone balance gives you a great start to getting that weight under control through diet and exercise.

To learn more about Andrew Weil’s work visit his website at www.andrewweil.com

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Please feel free to discuss this article in the comments section below, but note that the author cannot respond to queries made there.
Comments 8
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Sara | 9:24 pm, October 24th, 2012

Interesting! I am 47 years old. After being in immense pain from andymiosis endo,cysts and friboids I had full hysterectomy 3 years ago. Ihave put on half a stone around my middle which is a lot for my petite frame. I am in terrible pain with my muscles, I teach ballet and fitness. If I dont exercise my pain level is tolerable on the days I do I suffer immense stiffness so even getting of the sofa is painful! I am working at the lowest level posssible. My rhymatologist believes it is hormone related as my flexability has vastly reduces as well. I have the first signs of arthritis in my hands. I have Alopecia Universaltits since age 12, allergies, excema,asthma. I am about to embark on an inflammatory diet, that said I am almost on that diet due to IBS and my AU.Any advice how to help this pain and put my life back on track would be appreciated I am seriuosly running out of steam to fight these illnesses! I am trying to research but getting more confused and frustrated.
Many many thanks!

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Irene | 1:51 pm, October 30th, 2012

Hi, I’ve given up all prossessed food, all sugar and fat plus most dairy. There are things left to eat believe me. I would suggest you take fish oils and evening primrose oil daily. I swim three times a week and do a mile each time. I can’t seem to lose my fatty menopause belly but I do feel alot better. I have Arthitis too. Excercise your hands a couple of times a day to stop them stiffening. Eat healthily, find a good exercise plan. Vitamins are great and I take about 8 different one’s. B12 & Folic acid gets rid of tiredness and brain fatigue. You need to take this for about 6 months before it starts working. I hope you feel better soon. Let me know how you’re getting on. Good Luck

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Sara | 7:49 pm, October 30th, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to reply!:)I just detoxed for three days and dont feel quite so exhausted today. I started ant inflammatory diet yeasterday, eating fish which I dont partically like but I am sure I will learn too! Thank you for your suggestions I will add those to my new regime. I am trying apple cider vinigar for the arthritsis and not going out without my gloves.Also added molases for minerals. Will let you know how I get on .
Again many thanks :)

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Irene | 6:52 pm, November 1st, 2012

I’ve been looking for natural ways to treat my arthitis. I’ve been getting too many side effects from my painkillers. I tried Extra Virgin Olive Oil but I was concerned about more weight gain so I gave it up. I’ve been taking Rosehip for the last three weeks and the pain seems to be going down. Usually I have to take the tablets every 8 hours although alot of time I can’t wait that long. The last two days I can go about 14 hours. Feels like a miracle. Your detox sounds good. What sort of thing do you do? Good luck with the fish, I think it has to be oily fish and definitely not deep fried.I can’t eat fish but I can tolerate Cod liver oil. I’ve never tried cider vinegar and I’ve no idea where I would get it. It’s horrible being in pain. I hope you feel better.

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Sara | 2:56 pm, November 2nd, 2012

Sounds good about Rosehip will try that, thanks. I did smoothies, almond milk and fruit for breakfast and lunch, then cooked veg for dinner for 2 days. I wasnt working so I could rest as often you can get headaches and feel tired when detoxing! After that I have just eaten fish, steamed veg or,salad, cooking in olive oil, herbal teas including 2 cups of green tea a day and I have lost 4 pounds in 4 days which I think is mainly fluid but I dont feel so bloated around the middle! It has taken about 4 days but I now wake in the morning not feeling exhausted which is soooo nice :)
You can get apple cider vinigar at health shop it should be Mothers which means sediment in it, so I was advised.
Yes been in pain is so depressing I hope you feel better too. Painkillers can make you feel so off colour, they play havoc with my stomach.
Best wishes

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Irene | 3:49 pm, November 5th, 2012

I’m not sure about the Melotonin but I have been reading about it recently. I like the idea but I have been on sleeping tablets since 2005. I wonder if that might make a difference. I’ll do some more research. I will try those exercises for my feet. My feet are constantly frozen. Anything that might help my feet might help my legs. I have restless legs syndrome. This is the worse part of how I feel. My bed feels like a battleground most of the time. I do alot of exercises but nothing for my feet so far. Just come out of the local swimming pool so i’m not up to it yet. When I have a bath I rub and massage my feet with soap. I don’t know if it helps but it feels good. I’ve just bought up the last five tubs of rosehip they had in the shop. It’s the sort of place where once it’s gone, it’s gone. Thanks for the advice Sara.

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Irene | 12:58 pm, November 10th, 2012

Is that something to do with hair thinning out? My GP suffers from that too. She tries to hide it the best way she can. Is that due to the menopause? I guess you take iron supplements. My hair has changed too. It gets ultra greasy every day. Have to wash it every day. It looks like someone has thrown a whole pot of wet – look hair gel on it. I think stress can cause hair loss.I don’t think scientiists bother too much with things like this as they don’t pose a threat to physical health.They can make your llfe uncomfortable though. I hope you’ managing to cope. All the best.

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Sara | 10:23 pm, November 10th, 2012

It can be thinning but mine is autoimmune, unfortuatly the most aggresive type, I lost all scalp hair and body hair at 12 yrs. It has been challenging espscially as a child but I have learnt to live with it :)
Menapause can play a huge part in thinning hair. There has been some progress made lately into finding the genes that cause not sure I will ever see a cure. Yep there is not enough money around for research for what is considered a cosmetic problem unfortuatly many or the women I know with it have a really hard time
x.

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