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have gained 15 lbs since Sept. Am 55 and going through Menopause but am taking no pills. My daughter suggested a cleanse. Not sure where to start? Thanks for any advice

By December 30, 2009 - 9:31am
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I know what you mean! I also have put on about 15 pounds this fall, and as I look back to ask why, I realize that I am comfort-eating (we have recently moved twice and only just now starting to settle in) and that my exercise has totally fallen by the wayside.

Being around the house more is killer, I think. Whenever we are bored or a little bit at loose ends, it feels so easy to just grab a bite of something as a snack, a time-out, a holding pattern while we figure out what to do next. And I don't know about you, but there's a small television in the kitchen, so I often find myself standing in front of it munching on something almost without realizing it.

When we used to find our identity in a certain business, I think it's very very hard to find our new identities while we work part time and spend more time in the home. We are used to being out in the world, interacting with all kinds of people, fitting the rest of our world (meals, exercise) around our job schedule. It seems that the busier we are, the more we get done.

This is a new year, and I plan to make better choices and recommit to my exercise plan. Diets don't work for me because I end up being obsessed with food, but if I simply try to make a better choice each time I am eating food, I will do well. Meaning, when I want a cookie, perhaps I can choose an apple. When I want a blueberry muffin, perhaps there is a low-fat one available.

While you are working to fit into this new world, get back into your exercise program -- it will make you feel great. And don't worry TOO much about those extra pounds. Slow, steady, good choices, paired with that exercise plan, should help. If you go on a weight loss plan (Weight Watchers, for instance), a loss of 1 to 2 pounds a week is common; you could get rid of that 15 before shorts season! I don't know about you, but that's definitely motivating to me!


January 1, 2010 - 9:14am

Hi, Noelle,

Weight gain is a common side effect of menopause, but 15 pounds since September suggests something more is contributing. That's a weight gain of about a pound a week, which would be 3,500 extra calories that you're taking in but not using up per week.

Have you changed anything recently? Have you been eating more or exercising less?

You said you are taking no pills. Does that mean hormonal pills? Or does it mean that you don't take any medicine at all?

Have you had more stress in your life recently?

A cleanse is simply a process by which you restrict your diet, drink large amounts of water and perhaps tea, and hope to flush out toxins. They are somewhat controversial; some people swear by them, others say they are useless. There are dozens on the market; it would be impossible for us to tell you whether one is good or not, or right for you.

Can you pinpoint anything specific that might be causing the weight gain?

How long have you been in menopause (defined as an entire year with no period)?

December 30, 2009 - 9:58am
(reply to Diane Porter)

Thank you. Had a partial H 13 years ago. closed my business am having trouble finding my place while working part time with my husband. Thinking about things more closely yes I am eating more sugar (sweets) with being around the house more. And the exercise has slipped substantially. Oh my I think I am answering my own questions!!

December 30, 2009 - 3:39pm
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