Many people in their 40’s and 50’s begin to notice unexplainable and unshakable weight gain the sort that stubbornly gathers around the waist.
Midlife is a time of considerable stress. By the time you reach your forties and early fifties your career is often at its peak, children are in school or university and doing all kinds of extra-curricular activities and maintain work/life balance is a daily challenge.
Life has never been busier and the demands on everyone in this age group can be huge. Add to this the dreaded middle age spread and you have a recipe for disaster.
Hormonal changes at midlife in men and women can promote considerable weight gain. High cortisol levels in response to surges of adrenalin (the fight or flight hormone) are commonplace in today’s fast paced society. High cortisol levels lead to weight gain around the waist.
Declining levels of progesterone, testosterone and oestrogen can all crewe the perfect storm of weight gain when coupled with stress.
When a woman goes into Perimenopause (10+ years before actual Menopause when all periods cease) her levels of progesterone can fluctuate wildly before finally ceasing altogether at Menopause. If she is stressed her levels of progesterone will be even lower. This frustrates weight loss efforts considerably.
Conversely, higher oestrogen levels as a result of lower progesterone promotes weight gain on the waist and hips.
For men abdominal weight gain produces high oestrogen levels which makes it difficult for men to build muscle or burn fat. Men also experience male menopause otherwise known as Andropause in their forties and beyond and this leads to declining free (or bioavailable) testosterone levels. This very gradual drop in testosterone reduces stamina and endurance needed to sustain more strenuous activities and exercise. thus, exercise which once worked well for weight loss, has a reduced impact once a man enters Andropause.
As the body ages it loses muscle and bone mass and increases fat mass. This results in higher levels of visceral (abdominal) fat mass which is a risk factor for high blood pressure, Type II diabetes and high cholesterol levels.
The fat cells in the abdomen are not like other fat cells in the body. Contrary to popular belief, these fat cells don’t multiple… they expand. The danger with this scenario is that these fat cells become so large that they begin to leak fatty acids into the bloodstream which is how they increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
hormonal deficiencies and dysregulation plays a massive role in the body’s ability to maintain a healthy weight. Everything in the body is interconnected and like a domino, affects everything else.
The naturopathic approach to weight loss is to take everything into account. We are interested in getting the most holistic view of our clients as possible so that we leave no stone unturned.
This includes assessing a client’s overall body composition so that we have a detailed report of their visceral (abdominal) fat mass in conjunction with their muscle mass, bone mass, hydration levels, metabolic rate and physique. Armed with this knowledge we can create a tailored treatment plan to achieve the best weight loss outcome for each individual client.
Here at Feeling Healthy we will work with you to create personalised wellness plan tailored to your life and unique goals. Check out our Body Composition Mastery Program here. Or call reception on 9687 5333 to book in to see a Naturopath today and take the first positive steps towards a healthier and happier life!