Stuck in The Middle
Are the rolls around your middle expanding faster than a balloon at a birthday party? Have you exchanged yoga pants for all your clothes and embraced the tunic?
The middle age spread, the muffin top, the roll around the middle. Call it what you will, it’s the fat roll that hangs out around your middle like a parasitic wood tick and won’t budge! The mass around the middle is the subject of many menopause and aging jokes, but the bottom line is, it’s an ego killer and more weight around the middle can be medically dangerous.
Because weight gain is a menopause problem mostly associated with women, and linked to the decline in hormone levels and other changes that menopause brings, we don’t hear men talk about their middle age weight gain much. But studies do show that men gain weight, almost as equally as women when we age.
Even though hormones are mostly to blame for the bloat, the loss of muscle mass also adds to the accumulation of fat. Most of us know that beginning around age 30, we start to lose muscle mass, we can see it in the softening of our muscles and many of us find it more difficult to maintain the muscle tone we did so easily when we were young.
Muscle mass impacts the way metabolism works and less muscle means more fat. Muscle burns more calories than fat does so the more of lean muscle you have, the higher your metabolism rate will be. Less lean muscle also leads to a decreased ability in processing carbs. Without the active lean muscle burning the fuel that carbohydrates give us, the fuel source is stored as fat. Even if you eat exactly the same thing and do the same amount of exercise, loss of lean muscle mass will cause you to gain weight with age.
Removing the Spare
Some tried and true action you can take to help the unavoidable weight gain as we age and journey through menopause.
1) Lift it!
The more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn. Period. So, pump it up, keep it burning and lift those weights. Your middle will be all the better for the muscle.
2) Change Your Diet
To encourage more muscle mass and less fat, add fiber to your diet. Keep your metabolism running by lowering intake of high carbohydrate food and upping your intake of fiber rich vegetables and grains. Blood sugar levels stay steadier with more fiber and fiber rich foods stave off hunger and help rid fat from the body.
3) Get More Sleep
We’re so tired. It does matter. The quality of your sleep affects weight gain and metabolism. The hunger hormones, leptin and ghrelin are regulated by the amount and quality of sleep we get per night. Making sure you are getting the proper rest each night will help keep low leptin levels at bay.
4) Chill a Little
Stress hormones, like cortisol is linked to the storage of fat around the middle.
Of course, it isn’t’ as simple as saying it, but reducing stress causes your body to reduce the amount of cortisol it produces. Sleep is affected by stress as is hunger and anxiety levels. Plan ahead and allow for time to relax and recharge to give your metabolism a better boost.
5) Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Thirsty can feel like hungry and often we eat when we are really thirsty. Water helps the body function more efficiently and it fills you up, making you less hungry.
Fiber rich foods and water will help your body maintain proper water balance and work to regulate metabolism.
6) Correct Hormonal Imbalances
Natural hormones manufactured by using plant extracts have fewer side effects and are designed to help women with hormonal imbalances with little to no side effects.
For information about how hormone balancing therapies can help you fight the battle of the bulge, contact us MedStudio® private medical clinic and learn how they can help you restore your hormonal balance and feel more like yourself.