What do weight gain, mood swings, hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia and all have in common? Perimenopause and menopause!
What is Perimenopause
Perimenopause is the transitional time that occurs prior to menopause. During this time, estrogen levels fluctuate, and progesterone levels decline.
Women enter perimenopause anytime between their mid-30s and early 50s, and it lasts an average of 4–11 years.
The symptoms of perimenopause include:
Hot flashes, night sweats
Irregular menstrual cycles
Changes in mood
What is Menopause
Menopause is officially recognized when a woman hasn’t had a menstrual cycle for 12 months.
Many women experience the worst of their symptoms during perimenopause while others find that their symptoms worsen in the first year or two after menopause.
So What’s the Skinny … or Where is the Skinny?
During perimenopause, progesterone levels fall while estrogen levels become erratic. These hormonal changes impact mood and metabolisms resulting in issues with weight maintenance and weight gain. It is estimated that women gain approximately 2–5 pounds during the perimenopausal transition phase. Women who are already overweight, struggle with weight issues, or suffer from obesity are likely to gain more weight.
As menopause takes place later in life (the average age being 51) there is the added element of muscle mass loss which impacts the metabolism and weight gain. Peri and menopausal hormonal changes also impact the appetite which can lead to a higher caloric intake.
That’s the bad news. The good news is that there are measure you can take to avoid weight gain, maintain weight and even lose weight!
How to Prevent Weight Gain During Perimenopause and Menopause
Reduce your carb intake and choose healthier carb sources: Cutting back on carbohydrates – especially refined carbs – can help reduce the increase in belly fat, which drives metabolic issues.
Make the foundation of your diet a balance of lean protein, healthy fats, and fruits and vegetables.
Add good weight: Working out with weights will help to maintain and rebuild muscle that is lost with age. Muscle mass is good for burning fat around the clock.
Sleep: A good night’s sleep is linked to better food choices, lower caloric intake, hormonal balance, and increased energy.
The (Smaller) Bottom Line
Menopause is emotionally and physically challenging. Eating a well-balanced nutritious diet, and getting the right kind of exercise and rest support weight maintenance and weight loss. Whether you are in menopause or in perimenopause, LunaFit in Altamonte Springs, Florida can help support you in being your best you! Eating well and staying (or becoming) fit is the best fountain of youth for combating the effects of perimenopause and menopause.
At LunaFit in Altamonte Springs, we offer Nutritional Coaching, Group Fitness Classes, Personal Training, Meal Prep, and more! Check out our class schedule then contact us to learn more about how you can get a FREE trial group fitness classes!