It’s no secret that weight gets harder to manage as we age. Metabolism, muscle mass, and natural hormonal changes play a big part in women’s weight loss after 40.
Many women feel that no matter how hard they exercise and how diligent they are about controlling what they eat, losing weight after 40 is an uphill battle where results are often hard to come by.
Weight loss for women after 50 can become even more challenging as the body’s natural aging process, loss of muscle mass, and decreased activity levels makes burning calories and fat even more difficult.
Keep these tips in mind to achieve healthy, lasting weight management results no matter what your age:
1. Keep Activity Levels on Par With Current Eating Habits
You don’t have to train for a marathon to maintain a healthy weight—but you do want to keep in mind that as the body ages, a natural decline in metabolism often makes it more difficult to indulge in calorie-rich snacks without compensating with some form of calorie-burning activity.
Losing weight after 50 becomes increasingly difficult since overall activity levels tend to decline as we age. The trick to keeping weight in check is to find a realistic balance between healthy eating habits and regular exercise to keep those natural, age-related changes in metabolism in check.
2. High Energy Depends on Consistent Blood Sugar Levels
Eating frequent, smaller meals throughout the day can have a beneficial effect on energy levels and help keep blood sugar consistent. Without major shifts in blood glucose levels you can keep fatigue at bay and maintain healthier, more productive activity levels.
Try eating at least five small meals a day to keep the body feeling fuller, longer—and always avoid going for more than three to four hours without a healthy snack. The goal here is to avoid putting your body into starvation mode, which can have the detrimental effect of shutting down the metabolism and causing it to go into “emergency” mode, where the body’s natural response is to hold on to calorie and fat stores rather than burning them.
3. Try to Eat in Line With Your Body’s Natural Wake and Sleep Cycle
Experts agree that eating a good breakfast can aid in boosting the metabolism and help accelerate weight loss. Unfortunately, the opposite is also true—eating after 8 p.m. can often be detrimental to maintaining a healthy weight.
The timing of meals can be one of the most difficult things to manage during a busy day—and life often gets in the way of any predetermined eating schedule. If you find yourself hungry in the late evening hours, focus on clean eating: simply keep those carbs to a minimum and indulge in a metabolism-boosting protein and veggie-rich meal instead.
4. Trick Your Metabolism to Burn Calories With Fat-Fighting Snacks
Losing weight after 40 is not really about how much you eat, but what you eat that really matters. Foods that are low in carbohydrate and high in protein can actually help you burn calories and boost weight loss by building muscle.
Experts agree that having a solid core and lean muscle mass can actually help the body burn calories even while resting—making your body a consistent fat burning furnace by default.
5. Incorporate Strength-Training Exercises That Build Muscle to Burn Fat 24/7
Muscle mass naturally declines with age, making it more difficult to keep that calorie-burning furnace running like it used to. The more muscle mass the body has, the more efficiently the metabolism can burn calories and fat.
In order to compensate for a decline in muscle mass and to help burn calories and fat even while at rest, refine your workouts to incorporate muscle-building activities a few times a week. Simply incorporating some basic strength training exercises can have a huge impact on fat stores and overall calorie-burning performance.
6. Get a Good Night’s Sleep to Rev Your Metabolic Engine
Lack of sleep can have a detrimental effect on body weight due to the disruption of certain hormones. Research has shown that our metabolism is most active while we sleep and that getting less than six hours of rest per night can actually have a negative effect on our glucose levels—which impairs the body’s ability to regulate weight gain.
7. To Maintain a Healthy Weight at Any Age, Focus on Achievable, Realistic Cardio Goals for Lasting Results
Our metabolic engines thrive on the slow-and-steady approach where consistency is key. Start small and focus on activities you enjoy to achieve big results—if you hate running but love walking with a group, commit to the activity that you know you’ll look forward to in the long run.
The best way to deal with the natural aging process and related weight management issues is to meet it head-on with gradual lifestyle changes that improve your quality of life and overall health in the long term.