Preventing weight gain during menopause
Both sexes have gotten bigger, but women face special challenges …
September 19, 2019
Mayo Clinic News Network – Menopause is an important transition in women’s lives.
Use it as a reminder to take good care of yourself. Start by considering these fitness tips for menopause.
Below: Fat, French Fries, Facebook: How American Women Got So Fat
Exercise during and after menopause offers many benefits, including:
- Preventing weight gain. Women tend to lose muscle mass and gain abdominal fat around menopause. Regular physical activity can help prevent weight gain.
- Reducing the risk of cancer. Exercise during and after menopause can help you lose excess weight or maintain a healthy weight, which might offer protection from various types of cancer, including breast, colon and endometrial cancer.
- Strengthening your bones. Exercise can slow bone loss after menopause, which lowers the risk of fractures and osteoporosis.
- Reducing the risk of other diseases. Menopause weight gain can have serious implications for your health. Excess weight increases the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Regular exercise can counter these risks.
- Boosting your mood. Physically active adults have a lower risk of depression and cognitive decline.
How does exercise affect menopause signs and symptoms?
Being overweight or having a BMI greater than 30 (obesity) might be associated with hot flashes, but further research is needed.
Exercise isn’t a proven way to reduce menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes and sleep disturbances.
However, regular exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight, relieve stress and improve your quality of life. Read more.
Fat, French Fries, Facebook: How U.S. Women Got So Fat
“The increasing role sugar plays in the diet has become a popular explanation for the obesity epidemic. But many other causes have been blamed: salt, fat, French fries, Facebook, too little sleep, too much stress, chemicals in the environment …” – Vox
VOX – There’s no doubt that Americans are bigger today than they were in the 1960s.
But Christopher Ingraham at the Washington Post pulled out some staggering stats to demonstrate exactly how big Americans have become:
the average woman today weighs 166.2 pounds — which is almost the exact same amount as the average American man in the early 1960s.
Both sexes have gotten bigger since over the past 50 years. Men are 17.6 percent heavier — which translates into a roughly 30-pound gain.
“At 195.5 pounds, put five American guys in a room and you’ve gathered roughly half a ton of manhood,” Ingraham notes.
In the same period, women’s weight shot up from 140 pounds to just over 166 pounds — an 18.5 percent increase.
Overall, 30 percent of the adult population is now obese. Since 1980, obesity rates more than doubled among adults and tripled among children.
The most basic explanation for how we got so fat
Though both men and women each added about an inch of height to their frames, a lot of the weight gain can be attributed to the fact that Americans are eating a lot more — including more calorie-dense processed and restaurant food.
Food production increased since the 1960s, food prices went down, and people started taking in more calories — particularly processed foods.
The average American’s total caloric intake grew from 2,109 calories in 1970 to 2,568 calories in 2010. As Pew Research put it, that’s “the equivalent of an extra steak sandwich every day.”
But that’s not the only explanation … Read more.