Finding an optimal way of eating that pushes you towards your goals.
I get asked all the time about what exactly can I eat to guarantee fat loss.
The truth is there is no guarantee for fat loss, we don’t burn or store fat based solely on what we eat.
But there are certain foods that can cause you to eat less of them, and then not crave other foods later. Then there are the foods that can trigger you to eat more of them, or eat more later.
Let’s take WINE…
For some women ONE glass of wine makes them happy and satisfies them so that they eat less at that meal and other meals later. Which makes this more of a fat burning drink/food for some women. I would consider this a buffer drink/food.
Then for some women ONE glass of wine leads to 3 glasses of wine and craving more palatable foods and eating more at that meal and later meals more of a continuous meal.
Do you find you want dessert, chips, crackers, and cheese etc if so then that ONE glass of wine is more of a FAT storing food/drink and is really then considered a trigger food for her.
For me I don’t drink wine nightly as it effects my sleep which then effects my energy, mood and my food choices the next day.
For mid-life and beyond
- Number ONE is Stress can make us FAT and other lifestyle factors play a huge role, in fat loss
- Then DIET is 80% for some women and can be even up to 90% of the equation for some women.
For women in those middle years it is much more about stress for getting fat loss.
This is actually good and bad as we can do certain things for lowering our stress levels.
I’ll use myself when I was in my 50’s I was stressing myself fat, with doing to much exercise, not eating enough, and that spiraled down to me not sleeping well for years, and some pounds that I wanted to lose that would not budge.
When I lowered my stress by walking more, and cutting my aerobic exercise down to less than half, my body perceived this as much less stress, and released weight without me even changing my diet.
I started sleeping every night, so my body felt safe to release fat. Our bodies want to protect us they don’t give a wrap if we want to lose weight…
That is the magic of sleep…
We are hard wired for survival, so if our bodies think we are constantly running from a bear, or are in a famine, or starvation from dieting and exercising to much it will hold onto fat.
CHRONICALLY high cortisol can cause a shift of weight to our middles and slow down the metabolism to protect us.
Our hormones are involved as women we are much more sensitive to this stress response now that our hormones have dropped, so now its much more important to take a leisure walk, stay in bed that extra half hour instead of getting up at the crack of dawn to go sprinting or exercising.
Some ladies actually lose weight on vacation….
Because they are relaxing sleeping in not running around and they are NOT worrying about every morsel they put into their mouths.
SLEEP don’t underestimate its power as I did for years.
I was that woman that got up at 5 even if I did NOT sleep well to be out the door for my long long runs before it would get to hot.
Then walk the dog, lift weights and work.
Not sure what I was thinking my body was holding onto weight for dear life, and lowering my metabolism.
Then there are the hormones in our middle years…
As our hormones drop in our middle years the way we ate when we were younger, the way we dieted, and did exercise, just does not work anymore for many women.
NOW is the time to adjust our diet and thinking switching our diets to eating more protein, Fibrous veggies, 1-2 pieces of fruit, good fats, and a controlled amount of starchy carbohydrates.
Starting your day with….
Protein and veggies, eggs and veggies, omelettes, greens with hard boiled egg, protein, and 1-2 thumb size serving of fat.
I tell women I work with to go by their bodies signals…
How is your Mood, Hunger, Cravings, Sleep, Energy, digestion and I would write it down for a few days.
How long was I full, Did I get cravings, did my blood sugar crash, was I starving an hour later did I feel bloated, did I have low energy etc.. those are some of signals that your body may give you.
As for Exercise if you currently do none, I would not go out and try doing everything as your body will perceive that as to much stress for you. I would say if you never exercise first just go out and take walks, get in the habit. Even just a few days a week, and just move more, and get your sleep in order.
Then build up to resistance training 2-3 days a week, get used to that, then maybe high intensity training could be added in after you get in the habit of the first two things.
Walking lowers cortisol and makes us more insulin sensitive or sensitizes us to insulin. Also going longer between meals helps our insulin as we don’t want it constantly high, its normal to fluctuate.
Resistance training is great our middle years or anytime for that matter, once you get stress and sleep under control.
Resistance training circuit based using weights, fast paced, try 20 minutes a few days a week and sprinkle in some short cardio, because you love it. You can do 10-15 reps, doing 3-4 circuits, for about 20 minutes
Stress, and sleep, is huge for fat loss/weight loss.
Whatever you are doing now with your diet if NOT getting results give a new way a try what do you have to lose.
There are many ways to lose fat and feel our best, their is not one exact way that works for everyone. I help women lose fat and feel good eating low carb for them, fat amount for them, and what is low fat or high fat or low carb or high carb looks different for everyone.
And yes women in mid-life and beyond can fast, can do keto, or low carb, primal etc… BUT it will be different for each of us depending on our genetics, hormonal status, age, so many things to take into account.
I’m all for keeping it super simple and sustainable eating real food works for nearly everyone.
I know I didn’t get overweight from eating veggies and protein.
A diet of adequate protein, carbs ie –fibrous vegetables, greens, a serving or 2 of healthy fats.
Starchy carbs and fruits to your tolerance — maybe you do well with a cupped handful at only dinner, or only post weight training workout or only once a week. Some ladies as the hit the mid years are much more sensitive to carbs so that is where being the detective fits in.
Timing and amounts you could play with and dump the highly ultra processed refined highly palatable foods, refined vegetable oils, all the sugar-candy, dry starches and switch to small tubers, sweet potato, squashes and start out with a smaller serving and see if pushing you towards getting results or away from results.
I do believe we can start with the simple template above and adjust for us ….
Plus treating treats as just that treats–fitting them in to make your diet sustainable and the amount that pushes you toward your goals.
Eating many meals a day and snacks and not working then switch to having a time restricted eating window. pushing breakfast out further. If you snack all day and no results try eating 3 meals a day and no snacks.
Just changing up what you are doing if not working can get the ball rolling again. We all have habits and the body signals us to eat at our normal times.
I find for me a low starchy carb approach works great for me but eating plenty of veggies, Protein and healthy fats, and eating less often works now better than what I did 6 years ago. I always have a basic template and I change it up as needed.
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