If this is happening to you, you are definitely not alone. One of the foremost menopause symptoms seems to be weight gain and a change in body shape. Though you may not be happy about this, it is important to know that this weight gain is normal. About 90% of menopausal women gain some weight between the ages of 35 and 55. Research now shows that weight gain during menopause is caused by shifts in your hormones, not greedy eating.
Most women will gain about 10 to 15 pounds during their menopausal years, mostly around the hips, thighs and rear. Most of this weight will come on gradually, about a pound a year, during perimenopause.
As you enter the early stages of menopause, maintaining weight becomes more and more difficult, and losing weight becomes almost impossible. This may be caused by fluctuating hormones.
Your body’s hormones have a direct impact on your appetite, metabolism, and fat storage. This is why it is so difficult to control your weight during menopause. No matter what you do, fluctuating estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone levels will fight you all the way.
During menopause, estrogen, progesterone and testosterone levels may decline and become out of balance with each other. The imbalance of these hormones can be responsible for many of the symptoms of menopause including weight gain.
It is important to learn to accept weight gain during menopause as something natural and even good. A little extra weight can help to lesson other symptoms associated with menopause, such as anxiety and hot flashes, and helps protect you against osteoporosis and other illnesses. Some women, however, put on excessive weight during menopause. This could be a sign that something is wrong with your hormone levels, blood sugar, or eating habits.
Karen Roth, MS, NC holds a Masters degree in Holistic Nutrition from Hawthorn University and is an active member of the National Association of Nutritional Professionals and the Menopause Type® Network. To learn more about balancing hormones, contact Karen Roth at: 818-400-5410 or visit www.karenrothnutrition.com