It’s a story we hear often: A patient comes to us in distress, because their weight loss plan just isn’t working. They didn’t have any problems losing or maintaining their weight in their 20s, or even 30s, but now it’s a different story. Every effort is met with seeming resistance from their scale. What’s going on?
As we age (past 35 or 40) it’s normal for metabolism to slow down. That’s because we lose muscle mass, and muscles are a major user of energy in the body. Hormonal fluctuations are also to blame.
But that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to endure the “middle-aged spread”! It does mean that you need to pay even closer attention to your lifestyle.
Become more mindful about your eating patterns. Luckily, age also brings wisdom, self control, and patience. Once you learn more about nutrition and how to create healthier eating habits, you might find that it’s easier to maintain those habits now. We can help you learn about portion sizes, the right amount of protein to consume, and which types of foods to (mostly) avoid.
Increase muscle mass. Aerobic exercise (like jogging, walking, or swimming) are great for your heart and help you burn calories. But anaerobic exercise (weight training) helps you to build muscle. Make sure you incorporate strength training into your exercise regimen, even if you’re not trying to build huge, bulky muscles. Just toning the ones you have will help you to fight against age-related muscle loss, which slows your overall metabolism.
Watch out for leisure activities. You’re probably enjoying the peak of your career, and you’ve made considerable progress at building a solid social life. Sometimes this can translate into too many restaurant meals (and their infamously large portions) and calorie-laden cocktails. It’s okay to enjoy the success you’ve built; just be mindful of large portions and pack up half your meal to go. As for alcoholic beverages, choose light beer or wine, over cocktails with lots of added sugar.
If you’re struggling with your weight loss plan or interested to learn more about our methods, call us to schedule an appointment. We can screen you for underlying conditions that sometimes make a weight loss plan more challenging, help you discover the potential pitfalls of your current plan, and then introduce you to an eating plan and exercise schedule that works for your body type and lifestyle.