Middle Age Weight Gain in Women


Women need to and tend to gain weight during the time of pregnancy. Though gaining a ‘healthy weight’ during pregnancy is normal and essential but many tend to gain ‘extra’ pounds. Losing the extra weight becomes a struggle as nurturing a newborn is the top most priority for women who then are left with very little time for their fitness. And as a woman ages it gets tougher for your body to be tamed into action due to various hormonal changes which occurs naturally in a female body. After the age of thirty-five women tend to gain weight or find it difficult to maintain a healthy weight.

Weight gain and age
Weight gain with age generally occurs due to:

Reduced physical activity: As a woman ages, her physical active life goes for a toss. Ageing brings on various real life stress and pressure on a woman. With a home to manage and professional to life to juggle it leaves her hardly any time to have a fitness regime. Long working hours and sedentary work add on to weighty woes.
Increased calorie consumption: As one ages, the body processes calories differently. But a general pattern is seen that people continue to have the same diet and calorie consumption as in their earlier life. Since during middle age one’s calorie needs are very different from adulthood, the excess calorie consumption adds on to weight gain.
Reduced rate of metabolism: As one ages, the basal metabolic rate also dramatically falls down. Calories are not burnt as efficiently as earlier and hence add on to the weight gain.
High stress levels: Increased levels of stress accompany an individual as she ages due to added responsibilities and duties towards family and work. High levels of stress can cause hormonal changes which can lead to weight gain apart from emotional binging.
Hormonal imbalances: A woman undergoes hormonal changes many times in her life; especially menopause can make her gain weight due to imbalance of estrogen and progesterone.
Loss of lean body weight (which includes muscles and bones although not body fat): With ageing there is a loss of muscle tissue and when a woman stops exercising it adds on to more loss of lean body weight. This loss does not include fat deposits which make the person seem flabby and more prone to weight gain.
Tendency to gain weight
In women, there is tendency to gain weight before the onset of menopause due to the hormonal changes occurring in the body. Estrogen production may not be balanced with progesterone leading to weight gain and the thyroid gland may start functioning erratically giving rise bloating and fluid retention. After the age of thirty, a woman gets busy with her children and tending to her family needs which leaves a little time for her fitness. Stress levels also increase as the family grows and a working woman will have added worries in her kitty. Stress can be from death of a parent, marital problems or any other family or work issues. The same diet which was taken during younger days will not work anymore as the body starts processing the same foods in a different way now. The body is not as efficient in processing carbohydrates now which will add to weight gain. A diet with small portion of carbohydrate but rich in protein and other essential nutrients will be good for healthy eating. Erratic and unhealthy methods of dieting or crash diets may do more harm than any benefit. Low intake of calories will slow down your metabolic rate further adding to weighty issues.

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