Fresh Tips On How To Control Perimenopause Weight Gain

December 10, 2020.

With the start of a new year and new decade just around the corner, it is time to start setting fresh, attainable goals. Achieving a desirable weight is one of the most sought after new year’s goals. Feeling good in your own skin boosts your confidence and self-image. As you bring perimenopause with you into this new decade, bring along these helpful hints for reaching your weight loss goals in 2021.

Try Different Types Of Exercise

First things first – Weight loss gets harder as you get older and you have to employ different strategies to get fit in perimenopause compared to your 20’s and 30’s. If you find that you were able to maintain a desirable weight running 3 days a week before perimenopause, you likely have noticed that are no longer keeping the scale in check. Switch up your routine to target different muscle groups and to tap into different forms of calorie expenditure.

Here are a few ideas to toss around:

  • Pilates

  • Zumba

  • Hiking

  • Swimming (A great option if you have joint pain!)

  • Yoga

  • Barre

  • Aerial Fitness

  • Cycling

  • Sex (That’s right – get busy when you are in the mood. We know it can be rare to feel like having sex thanks to low libido in perimenopause).

  • Resistance training

  • Aerobics

The key to shedding pounds in perimenopause is frequently switching your routine and pushing yourself a little bit more each time. Lacking the motivation to get moving? Find a fellow perimenopause babe to help hold you accountable and inspire you to tackle your goals.

Be Strategic About Diet

In most situations where weight loss is desirable, there needs to be a calorie deficit. That is, more calories need to be expended than consumed. However, as we get older our bodies expend less energy while at rest. Therefore, we are more likely to store caloric energy as fat as we age.

Low-calorie diets can be quite beneficial for weight loss, especially when we are younger. However, as we age, eating a very low-calorie diet can actually be harmful because consuming too few calories can deplete muscle and bone mass. Furthermore, most women who adopt a very low-calorie diet rebound because our bodies need more calories to maintain healthy functioning. Try these diet strategies instead:

  • Eat healthful foods

  • Eat protein-rich foods

  • Try the Mediterranean diet

  • Consider a vegetarian diet (make sure to get your proteins in!) or perhaps start with meatless Mondays

  • Don’t drink your calories

  • Hydrate

Take A Critical Look At Your Habits

Do you find yourself pulling up to a drive-through window around the same time every day? Do you find comfort or reward in certain foods? Some of our most habitual habits tend to be the very thing that adds on the pounds. Keep a habit journal for a short period of time so that you can identify some of your behaviors that may be leading to an increase in weight. It is not uncommon to find comfort and reward in sweet treats. In moderation, these things can be lovely. Taking a step back and looking at your habits each day can reveal some patterns that may lead to weight gain.

Get Some ZZZ’s

Getting enough sleep is critical for your overall well being. Studies suggest that a lack of sleep is related to an increase in the hunger hormone, ghrelin. Therefore, you are likely to eat less when you get more rest.

Disclaimer: This is not medical advice, does not take the place of medical advice from your physician, and is not intended to treat or cure any disease. Patients should see a qualified medical provider for assessment and treatment.

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Julia Walker
perry expert Julia (RN, BSN, BA) is a registered nurse based in Colorado. Julia's nursing background in women’s health has ranged from neonatal and postpartum care to labor and delivery, to outpatient gynecological medicine for both adolescent and adult populations. She specializes in helping women optimize their health during perimenopause and beyond.

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