5 Tips for Weight Loss During Perimenopause

Perimenopause occurs prior to menopause when you begin to experience the symptoms of menopause but you still have your monthly period, even if only sporadically. Estrogen levels fluctuate wreaking havoc on the body and include increasing fat levels, especially around the mid-section. It is possible to lose weight during perimenopause by working around the factors associated with aging and loss of estrogen.

Reduce Stress

Lower levels of estrogen increase stress on the body. Increased stress levels increase levels of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol is responsible for fat accumulation around the mid-section. You can reduce stress with a healthy and balanced diet, relaxation techniques, such as yoga or meditation, exercise, journaling, hiking, or whatever else helps to relax you. Drinking alcohol may increase cortisol levels so should be used only in moderation.

Eat Less

The body needs less calories as it ages to function properly. Once perimenopause begins, calorie needs may drop. It might help to determine your daily calorie needs. This can be done with a baseline calorie calculator. You enter the proper numbers and the calculator does the rest. You need to burn 3,500 calories to get rid of one pound of stored fat. Take your baseline calories needs and subtract 500 to find how many calories you should consume daily to lose weight. However, you should never eat less than 1,200 calories a day for proper health and nutrition.

Exercise More

One reason for weight gain during menopause might be a decrease in activity levels. By getting enough exercise, you not only burn calories but reduce stress as well. It is important to note that you cannot exercise away just belly fat as fat levels decrease evenly throughout the entire body. Aim for getting at least 30 minutes of moderate activity in each day for at least 10 minutes at a time, even if it is just enjoying a short walk. 

Engage in Strength Training

Strength training may include the use of weights or simply your own bodyweight in order to increase or maintain muscle mass. The body burns muscle more quickly than fat, especially as you age. This lowers metabolism and increases fat stores in the body. By increasing muscle or at least preventing its loss, you can increase your metabolism to burn more fat. Strength training has the added benefit of increasing bone mass and reducing bone loss that might lead to osteoporosis.

Sleep More

Like eating, the body needs less sleep as you age but it is still important to get enough. Reducing stress and exercising will help improve your sleep. Sleep is essential to the weight loss process nearly as much as diet and exercise. Adequate sleep reduces snack cravings brought on by fatigue and allows your metabolism to work more effectively to burn calories.

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