Strategies To Fight Weight Gain After Menopause

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It’s not your imagination.

Weight gain after menopause is real and sometimes diet and exercise alone simply does not work anymore.

As expected, more of the women who got specific diet and nutrition counseling lost weight. But Gibbs and colleagues wanted to know what worked for any of the women who managed to lose weight, regardless of which group they were in.

Early on, some of the more obvious diet strategies worked — eating less fried food, staying away from restaurants, avoiding sweets and eating more fish. But these approaches didn’t work for the women in the long term, Gibbs reported in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

“What we found at four years is that the women who changed their eating behaviors to eat more fruits and vegetables, who ate less desserts, less sugar-sweetened beverages and less meats and cheeses were more likely to have greater weight loss or less weight gain long term,” says Gibbs, an assistant professor in the Department of Health and Physical Activity.

Building lost muscle with weight training and avoiding sugar are probably the two biggest ways to jump start weight loss.

Regular exercise and a healthy eating along with good sleep habits contribute to well balanced hormones.

There is no quick fix. Real lifestyle changes are key.

Soy Offers No Relief for Symptoms of Menopause

For middle-aged women searching for a safe alternative to hormone therapy to prevent bone loss and ease the symptoms of menopause, they are in for another letdown.

The latest in a series of disappointing studies finds that soy supplements, an increasingly popular substitute for hormone therapy, do not stave off hot flashes, night sweats, and other uncomfortable menopausal symptoms.

Nor did the supplements reduce the aging-related bone loss that can lead to osteoporosis, the study found.

“Isoflavones, the plant-derived estrogens found in soy, are very weak estrogens, so it is not surprising that they have not shown to be as effective…as hormone therapy,” says the lead author of the study, Silvina Levis, MD, the director of the osteoporosis center at the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine.

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