I took a seasonal holiday job a number of years ago at a women’s clothing store whose clientele were mainly women age 50 and older. In training, the store manager, showed me how I should dress customers with low hanging belts to give the illusion of a waist.
The ladies were all lovely, but I was a bit perplexed. If they weren't happy with their shape, why not try to change it rather than camouflage it?
With my fitness background, I tended to look at their bodies differently. As a Pilates instructor, I saw many menopausal and post menopausal women get their waist back and tighten up their middles and their belts. They beat the bulge.
Women at this stage of their life are often bombarded with so much information, it is tough to literally “figure” out what really works.
So what exactly causes belly fat during menopause? The Mayo Clinic says aging plays a role.
“Muscle mass typically diminishes with age, while fat increases. Loss of muscle mass also decreases the rate at which your body uses calories, which can make it more challenging to maintain a healthy weight.”
They suggest diet and exercise, which I agree can play a major role in helping with menopause. However, what we may think is the right diet and the right exercises, may not be the “right” answers at this point in a woman’s life.
MayoClinic.com also says that hormones and hereditary are major factors.
“Many women notice an increase in belly fat as they get older — even if they aren't gaining weight. This is likely due to a decreasing level of estrogen, which appears to influence where fat is distributed in the body. The tendency to gain or carry weight around the waist — have an 'apple' rather than a 'pear' shape — might have a genetic component as well.”
So how do you combat menopause, belly fat, hormones and heredity? This may seem like an overwhelming feat, but if you break it down into eating specific foods, avoiding others and incorporating the right type of exercises, you’ll give your belly more than a one-two punch.
Here are 10 ways to beat belly fat bulge:
1) Avoid Refined Carbohydrates