You can’t lose weight: nutrition and sports for women after 40
Age-related changes in the body always occur imperceptibly. It would seem that just yesterday, it was possible to throw off a couple of kilograms without much effort. And suddenly it turned out that the extra weight refuses to disappear, despite all the measures taken. Why does it happen? And is it necessary to put up with such a development of events, attributing everything to age?
A woman’s body after the 40th anniversary undergoes many changes, but they are not necessarily negative. And even though new information is sometimes more difficult to digest, more and more fatigue appears after the usual load, with which you have recently coped well. But after 40 years, a woman grasps the essence of what is happening better, can control emotions and sees cause-and-effect relationships more clearly. So, will extra pounds be impossible for a woman who has crossed the 40-year mark?
What happens after 40 years?
Is aging inevitable? The reason lies in the hormonal restructuring of the body, which cannot be avoided. It all starts with a decrease in the level of estrogen – female sex hormones that can affect all processes occurring in the body, including body fat. How to know about it?
First of all, there are changes in appearance. Since estrogen affects skin cells’ ability to regenerate, the process slows down when its level decreases. The skin becomes tired and dull, wrinkles appear, and the hair does not look as attractive as before.
At the same time, metabolism slows down, and blood supply to tissues worsens. Calories entering the body are burned worse, making reducing fat accumulation increasingly difficult. What to do to lose weight after 40 years of calories burned 300 fewer calories daily than at the age of 20? Many women in adulthood gain about 500 g in weight annually without even changing their diet. That is why diets or fasting courses that worked before do not help now. A week on kefir does not save now, but what you eat at night will certainly be postponed.
Changes in hormonal levels often accompany increased anxiety, sleep disturbances at night, and drowsiness during the day. Increasingly, there is a desire to relax instead of walking or doing other physical activities. But during this period, many diseases begin to make themselves felt. At this age, varicose veins appear, the first sign of which is a feeling of fatigue and pain in the legs, dysfunction of the thyroid gland, which also affects well-being, and other deviations. So there is a desire to replace the previously familiar physical activity with a relaxing holiday on the couch.
How to lose weight after 40? Start with small steps.
- Give up fast food: it contains a huge amount of calories and a minimum of nutrients;
- Limit the consumption of mayonnaise, fatty meats, sausages, muffins, etc. – foods high in fat and carbohydrates;
- Fresh vegetables and fruits should dominate the diet – they contain a sufficient amount of vitamins and minerals but few calories;
- Reduce the intake of salt and spices – they stimulate the appetite;
- Nutrition should be fractional, 5-6 times a day in small portions;
- The last meal – 2 hours before bedtime at the latest.
But is it possible to lose weight after 40 if you have to give up half of the products that make up your usual diet? But many products are no less tasty but safe in terms of extra pounds: salads, cereals, low-fat cheeses, etc., which have been undeservedly forgotten with the advent of fast food outlets.
Diet for women after 40 – how to lose weight at home
Is there an effective diet following which you can lose weight for a woman after 40? Today there are a huge number of diets, but they, as a rule, either need to take into account age and state of health or assume the rejection of any products, which is not always acceptable. Perhaps, guided by certain rules, it is better to create your diet, considering age, health, and taste preferences.
- High Protein Foods First
Give preference to foods rich in protein; its use increases metabolism and muscle mass (in combination with physical activity) and ensures rapid satiety. This means that you can adjust your weight without feeling hungry. Chicken, beef, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, and legumes can be added to every meal, combined with herbs. 85-100 g is enough per day.
- Don’t give up fat!
Not all fats are harmful; contained in butter or olive oil, salmon, tuna, and nuts improve metabolism and eliminate skin problems. Some foods contain omega-3 unsaturated fats that help with weight loss.
- Carbohydrates – yes!
Carbohydrates are also needed, but their source is important. Carbohydrate-containing buckwheat, oatmeal, vegetables, and fruits will help control weight, which cannot be said about the fast carbohydrates that come with pastries, sweets, and pasta. In addition, the first group contains trace elements and vitamins important for the body.
- Add calcium!
Providing the body with calcium – found in foods, not only helps to reduce weight but also prevents the development of osteoporosis – age-related bone tissue restructuring, which depends on estrogen levels. Adults need 1000 mg of calcium per day. This amount is contained, for example, in 100 gr cheese, milk, or kefir; seafood, legumes, and nuts are also rich in calcium. Vitamin D is necessary for calcium absorption; its source is herring, liver, salmon, yolks, and butter.
- Vitamin B12 in the fight against body fat
With a lack of sex hormones, an imbalance occurs in the formation of fatty tissue (lipogenesis) and the breakdown of fats (lipolysis), leading to fatty deposits, including cellulite. Vitamin 12 affects metabolism and regulates the metabolism of lipids and carbohydrates. Its source is milk, cheese, cod, shrimp, liver, beef, pork, and eggs.
Portions and Calories
A diet of the above products is unlikely to cause negative emotions. But, of course, portion size matters. With age with reduced metabolism, it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain weight with the usual calorie intake. But here, there are two solutions: either speed up the metabolism by adding a physical activity or reduce the portion size. Try slow chewing away from the TV or computer; the person should experience a slight feeling of hunger when leaving the table.
Is it possible for a woman over 40 to lose weight, given the amount of calories consumed? Of course, you can use the recommendations of the Ministry of Health, according to which 1370-1440 kcal is enough for a woman per day. However, no specific age, weight, or physical activity is considered here. For example, with a sedentary lifestyle, the number of calories should be less.
|Women (basic exchange)|
|Body weight, kg||18-29 years old||30-39 years old||40-59 years old||Over 60 years old|
|45||1 150||1 120||1080||1030|
|50||1230||1 190||1 160||1 100|
|55||1 300||1 260||1 220||1 160|
|60||1 380||1 340||1 300||1230|
|65||1450||1410||1 370||1 290|
Average basal metabolism (kcal/day)
The calorie intake can also be calculated using numerous formulas that are easy to find on the Internet. Counting grams and calories are not your forte? Then use the hint:
- Mentally divide the plate into four parts.
- Fill half with vegetables (except potatoes), ¼ with some high-protein products.
- In the rest, put potatoes, pasta, or porridge, adding a little fat.
Fruits and dairy products can be left for snacks throughout the day.
Sports for women after 40 years – how to lose weight if there are no skills
Any diet works only in combination with physical activity to reduce weight by limiting oneself in nutrition, but leading a sedentary lifestyle is unlikely to succeed. For those accustomed to training in a fitness center, the problem of excess weight is usually irrelevant. And what about those who go in for sports at 40+ years old since there is no other way to lose weight?
For older women, cardio workouts are suitable, but we are talking about something other than long-distance running; such an approach will only bring harm. Much more useful is the alternation of intense and relaxed running. Optimal – 2-3 times a week for 30 minutes. On other days, you can arrange cycling, swimming, and dancing.
For those who have never played sports, you can start with hiking. Try Nordic walking, a method accessible to all ages and requires no physical training. Also, for women after 40 years old to lose weight, fitball classes may be suitable. In addition, with the help of an exercise ball, you can strengthen the back muscles, which is useful for bothering pain in the spine.
Do not turn weight loss into an express method.
With age, many diseases begin to appear that can provoke weight gain. Therefore, before starting a body weight correction program, visit an endocrinologist. In addition, after age 40, there is a risk of developing osteoporosis, and intense physical activity should be approached with caution.
The main thing: do not turn weight loss into an express method. A sharp weight loss will immediately affect the appearance. Therefore, hunger strikes or severe restriction of proteins, fats, or carbohydrates is unacceptable. Yes, the kilograms that have disappeared in this way will quickly return, taking more with them. The best option is to reduce weight by no more than 5 kg per month.
And remember, the 40-year threshold is a conditional concept. Every woman is unique; for some, the transition to maturity begins earlier, and for others, it takes closer to 50 years. And it’s not at all necessary to wait for the onset of a certain period; you can take care of yourself by adjusting your diet and physical activity at any age – this will not bring harm.