Most Female Weight Gain Are Inevitable
Due To Pregnancy And Menopause
The Weight Gain Biggies
I wanna talk about female weight gain because it's a big concern - you're gaining weight, especially in places you never gained weight before.
And you just can't seem to lose the excess lbs as easy as you used to.
I will be talking on the 2 biggies that cause us ladies to gain weight.
Pregnancy and Female Weight Gain
You're pregnant. You've a baby. And your waistline is expanding like crazy.
Does this mean you've to kiss your waistline goodbye forever?
The trend seems to be that women are filling out, much earlier in their life than in the past and the pregnancy weight gain is a "danger time" for long-term weight gain. And having a baby simply accelerates this trend.
The female weight gain during this time averages 10-15 kg. This looks like no big deal but the danger is that what looks like a few kilos is more likely to set you on a downhill, health wise.
This is due to the fact that women (men too) would get steadily fatter throughout life. Sad to say, weight you gain during this time generally doesn't ever come off, unless you really make a change to get it off.
And you know the diseases associated with weight gain - diabetes, heart diseases, cancers, kidney ailments, high blood pressure.....
No one knows for sure the reasons for this type of female weight gain.
But I think circumstances like these could play a part in it:
- Squeezed times because of work and looking after a baby make it harder for you to exercise and eat right kind of food
- Sleep deprivation as a result of waking up at nights several times to feed your baby.
Not enough sleep increases your stress level and we all know when stress increases, your cortisol (a hormone produced by your adrenal glands that keeps you awake and feel alert and mobilizes sugar for energy) shoots through the roof. The result? You gain weight
- You might not get enough guidance on how much weight gain is appropriate during pregnancy. It's pretty easy to gain weight when you're pregnant.
After all, you don't know where your waist is. You don't have the normal controls like the tight feeling of clothes around your waist. You could put on far more weight than you need for pregnancy and retain a lot of it afterward
My comment: Pregnancy is certainly not a good time to try and lose weight. But you don't need to gain so much that you end up fat afterward......
- We ladies naturally carry more fat than men's. As fat burns slower than muscle, high calories tend to hit us harder
When you're in the healthy weight range, gains of 10 to 15 kgs are OK during pregnancy.
These are however conservative figures. Gains of 20 to 25 kilos are really not OK. Even a 15-kg increase is likely to add an extra 4 or 5 kilos of fat on you, which is quite a lot of weight.
Also, the fat reserves stored in pregnancy are used to produce breast milk.
Though you could lose weight (most women do) during breastfeeding, research suggests that nearly a quarter actually put on weight, possibly because you wanna compensate for the increased appetite breastfeeding brings.
Or you don't breastfeed long enough.
Don't Resign to Weight Gain just like that
OK. All these sound pretty depressing, right?
Well, you don't have to resign to overweight, over-tired, and out-of-shape just because of your pregnancy and now a baby.
Adopt a proactive lifestyle that could increase physical activity or exercise opportunity for you:
- If you got housework to do, do it all in one go, without stopping, say for 15 or 20 minutes
- Take your clothes out to the clothe line one at a time
- Park your car further away than you've to
- Join your kids in their physical plays as much as possible
You don't think this gonna help you lose weight? I've seen my friends losing amazing amount of weight just doing this. Of course, they also cut down their food portions and careful with what they eat.
So, exercise and eat healthy seems the right approach to combat your bulges.
If you've the time, do 3-4 times of cardio exercise , for at least 30 minutes continuously per 1 session.
This combo could be your savior in the battle against pregnancy weight gain.
Menopause and Female Weight Gain
Suffice to say that major weight gain often takes place during menopause. The decline in the female hormones estrogen and progesterone could result in an increase in food intake and weight gain.
In particular, the loss of estrogen causes your body to source needed estrogen from other places in your body.
Fat cells in your body can produce estrogen, so your body works harder to convert calories into fat to increase the estrogen levels.
As fat cells don't burn calories as fast as muscle cells, you pack on the unwanted pounds.
You could also experience an increase in the hormone called leptin, produced by your fat cells, which causes you to increase your food intake.
Your metabolism also slows down, affecting the rate you're able to burn off fat efficiently.
During this time, your body's hormones have a profound impact on your appetite, metabolism and fat storage. This is why it's so difficult to control your weight no matter what you do..........
You could still be exercising and eating normal, but the lbs seem to pile on like nobody's business.
Tough task to maintain your weight, let alone lose weight......
Most ladies could gain about 10 -15 lbs during menopausal years.
You won't be happy about this, but this female weight gain is considered as "normal" and "to be expected" by some researchers who say that 90% of menopausal women gain some weight.
But don't think you're at fault because you're greedy or overeat. No......Most of the time, it's caused by shifts in your hormones.
Menopausal Fat also Triggers Changes in your Body Shape
Besides weight gain, the other is a change in the overall shape of your body.
You'll notice that you don't distribute your weight like you used to. You begin to put on weight around your abs, instead of around your hips, thighs, and rear.
You become "apple shape" because your tummy become rounder and you may miss your old "pear" shape that you'd in your childbearing years.
It becomes harder and harder to re-distribute your weight evenly around your body.
The female weight gain doesn't stop here.
Insulin resistance can occur during menopausal years. This happens when your body turns every calorie you take in into fat.
If you go on a low-fat, high carbohydrate diet, the processed and refined foods may make your body resistant to insulin produced in the blood stream. This causes a female weight gain.
Dealing with female weight gain during menopause isn't easy. For most of us, exercise and eat healthy aren't enough.
So, what can you do?
First, accept the weight gain as something natural. An extra of a few lbs can help to lesson other symptoms associated with menopause, like anxiety and hot flashes.
Also, during menopause, weight gain is regulated by your body and helps prepare you against osteoporosis and other illnesses. Instead of stressing yourself out because of the weight gain, try to be more accepting of yourself.
Focus on being healthy and active, not trying to fit into your old clothes.
Don't abandon your exercise and eat healthy regime just because you can't beat the weight gain and the thinking "No matter how I exercise and eat, I'm putting on the weight anyway!"
Exercise, no matter what you may think, kick starts your metabolism into higher gear to burn off fat.
So, engage in active cardio exercise , 3-4 times per week for at least 30 minutes continuously in one session.
Go for strength training , to build up more lean muscle mass as lean muscle mass burns off fat faster.
Both cardio and strength training enhances your bone health too, hence helps to ward off osteoporosis.
And healthy eating cuts back unnecessary fat calories for you.
However, if your female weight gain during this period is excessive, then this could be a sign that something is wrong with your hormone levels, blood sugars or eating habits. Go check out with your doctor then.
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