Why you’re not losing weight after 40 and how to drop the extra pounds! Hint: it’s not dieting!

Hey guys. Welcome back to the show. Today we are going to spend some time talking about why you’re not losing weight after 40, and then how do you drop those pounds for good. Hint Hint have has nothing to do with dieting. In fact, it’s the opposite. It’s stop yo-yo dieting and start to try to figure out and trust your body and start to exercise. That’s what we’re going to talk about today. So come join me and listening to the episode and we will dig in further.
I know many of you have in fact, been on diets throughout your life. You may have started dieting when you were a teenager. You may have started dieting when you’re older, but I think for a lot of us, myself included, I have a history of dieting or some kind of restrictive eating or something that, you know, I’m restricting something that I’m eating related to the calories in it. I know probably many of you have felt the same way or have done the same thing, but I feel like we’ve never really talked about the complications or the results of a yo-yo dieting because it’s not usually something that, you know, we just do for a few years for a lot of people, it may be something that you’ve done your whole life and you don’t know life without you dieting. And it seems like an absurd concept that we would even talk about yo-yo dieting because you do it so often.
So what are some of the long-term consequences to yo-yo dieting? Well, for one, the yo-yo dieting leads to a disruption in some of the hormones that may trigger fullness, or that may trigger hunger. So you may notice that you may not be able to regulate. You may not trust your body first, when it feels full, you may not be able to recognize when you feel satiated and you may feel hunger that you feel like you can’t control. You may be somebody who has an unhealthy relationship with food because you, it has controlled you for so long. And you think about food all the time. And you think about the consequences of eating something that you deem as good or bad. And so that might be something? You could be somebody who has, you know, a harder time losing the weight, despite being on the same diet that you’ve been on in the past, because you have a decrease in your metabolism.
I think the best example of this is probably the most studied, which would be the participants who go on shows like the biggest loser. And so we know that those guys or girls that are on there say they, you know, their resting metabolism or their resting energy metabolism so what they require rest in terms of calories. So say there’s somebody who typically requires 2000 calories per day to maintain their body weight. Then they go on these shows and they diet and they’re eating nothing. And they are doing so much physical activity, right? While over time they lose the weight, right? But then what studies have now shown us is that now even despite the fact that they’re weighing less, even if they gain that weight back again, they never will require 2000 calories at rest. Again, for a lot of them, that deficit could be like up to like 500 calories.
So now say these participants have gained some weight back, maybe all of their weight back now, what they need at rest only be, you know, 15 or 1600 calories than they previously did before they lost all that weight. And so there are some of the consequences that happen. You know, you may be at risk of increased diseases because you’re going on and off a diet. For a lot of times, yo-yo dieting may result in a bigger weight to gain than you actually weighed when you started to lose the weight to begin with. You may notice the big thing is with metabolism, so you may notice that you have a decrease in metabolism and that’s going to be like, I just talked about with the biggest loser scenario that your body may not require as many calories as it did previous to losing weight.
So yo-yo dieting is not the answer. I will never recommend dieting. And so what do we do? You know, how do we manage this? If you’re tired of, you know, having the same weight on or feeling like you’re gaining weight, but you don’t know any other way, way besides yo-yo dieting. And honestly, like at what point at what point does dieting stop? I mean, when are you going to stop the dieting? You know, all these things, you know, that it doesn’t work. And we know that dieting in itself creates nonstop out of control eating and how that happens is typically we do things where we, you know, overeat and then we feel bad and then we under eat and then we overeat and then we under eat. And so the cycle continues that may even be as something as simple as like you have some kind of controlled eating during the week.
And then on the weekends, you’re going crazy with your eating and overeating. So let’s talk about some ways that we can really make this happen, that you can really lose the weight for the longterm. So when we talk about weight gain or we talk about, you know, eating in general, I think the biggest thing is trying to figure out what your body is telling you. And so many of us from years and years and years of dieting, we don’t know what our diet, our body is telling us. We don’t know when we’re full. We don’t know when we are hungry because we’re eating perhaps out of habit and we’re eating, you know, we’re not really paying attention. We’re maybe preemptively eating.
I know I do this thing where if I’ve eaten a really big lunch or a really early dinner, I’ll try to eat more and more before the night goes because I’m just so afraid I’m going to be hungry as the night progresses. But now I’ve recognized a little bit more how I’m feeling as if I’m actually hungry. And that has made a big effect in terms of weight. So for you really trying to figure out when you’re hungry and when you’re feel satisfied. That’s going to be a really big component in all of this because you know, you can do any diet in the world, but typical diets, aren’t going to tell you what you’re feeling or how hungry you are or how satiated you are. Diets are just going to tell you, you know, what to eat. But the whole missing a big missing component of that is trusting yourself with what to eat, knowing when you’re hungry, what to eat and really trying to figure out when you’re feeling satisfied.
The hunger fullness scale, which you can find on the internet is a really great tool that I would utilize in that. So that would be, you know, around mealtimes when you typically eat, looking at that chart. So it’s a one to 10 chart and you kind of want to be in the middle range. And it tells you when you look up that chart, how hungry you are. And so you’re either really hungry at one end of the chart or not hungry at all. And so that’s a way that you can really start to figure out how hungry you are. And then after you eat, waiting about 15 minutes and figuring out how satiated you are. Did what you eat, did it do enough to fill you? If it didn’t then go and eat some more because you know, that’s what your body’s telling you. And if you’re not hungry, well, then that’s great. You learned that you don’t have to eat more because you’re not hungry. And you’re really learning how to trust your body.
You know, kids like a really great example of this. They eat when they’re hungry and then they stop when they’re full. They, and you know, I think a thing that we forget is that our bodies are amazing and our body’s know exactly what to do, but over time, and I think with diet culture and just dieting in general, we don’t trust bodies anymore. We don’t listen to what it’s saying, but the body knows what to do. So there may be some days that you’re starving and you’re eating what would be considered a ton of calories, but maybe that’s okay because then a couple of days later, you’re not really eating that much at all. And so it’s just really listening to what your body’s saying and giving it what it needs instead of depriving it like you’ve been doing for all of these years.
Another way that I would start to, you know, help when it comes to figuring out if you’re hungry or not, would be to write down what you’re eating. So to write it down, but without judging it, just so that you feel like you have a plan when this was happening. And then also write the emotions down that you’re feeling. And I think that’s the biggest trick of it all. So writing down the food and what your intention is for the day of having a plan of eating and writing down the emotion that’s associated with what you’re eating. What that will do will be to help you identify why you’re eating. Are you eating because you’re hungry? Are you eating because you’re tired? Are you eating because you’re stressed? And so that extra step of writing something down will actually help you learn about your habits and behaviors. And it’s also going to learn to teach you what you do with that. So if, for instance, if you’re somebody who’s tired while it’s really important to know that, because now you know that you’re, you might be eating because you’re tired or you have a tendency to eat when you’re tired.
And now you can try to figure out a non like eating way, if you’re feeling actually full to compromise or to do something different than to eat, because maybe you’re not even hungry. And maybe the emotion that you’re feeling is that you’re tired. So identifying the emotion that’s surrounding the food and what you’re eating is going to be really important.
And I can help you with that. I am in the middle of starting my WHOLE HEALTH BALANCE BLUEPRINT 12-week program. I’m restarting it on May 1st. In that program, it’s a 12 week program where we go through all these things. We go through, you know, you know what to eat. You know it to eat, you know, what works for you. So we really start to dig into this emotional part of eating and how to counteract that and to switch from eating, to developing and non-food approach in dealing with food.
We talk about establishing routines and behaviors that will help you in the long-term when it comes to having trust in your body and maintaining your weight and just improving your overall health. If you’re interested in that, and you want to work with me, head on over to my website, TriciaRD as in Registered Dietician dot com. And there’s a link on there for the WHOLE HEALTH BALANCE BLUEPRINT.
Exercise, regular consistent exercise, is also really helpful when it comes to maintaining your health or improving your health in the long run, or just in general, helping with weight management. Why exercise is so important, it helps increase muscle mass. And for a lot of us, as we age, we have hormonal changes. So our muscle mass may be much less than it was when we were in our twenties. Especially after menopause, you may notice a redistribution in your body composition.
So you may look the same and feel like you weigh the same, but your clothes may fit you completely different. And that’s normal. That’s part of aging. And that’s part of post-menopausal because you may have more fat mass and less muscle mass. So what’s important is, is trying to figure out ways that you can exercise. And then also add some weight bearing activities like strength training into your routine to help increase muscle mass. Again, muscle mass is a really important because it will help increase the calories that you require at rest because you have more muscle. And as we age having, you know, adequate muscle mass is really important because it prevents osteoporosis and it just prevents, it prevents fractures. It prevents injury, things like that.
You know, I have a friend, Anna Marie, and she talks about all the time that her goal is to increase our exercise because when she’s in her fifties, she wants to go and she wants to travel because her kids are going to be older and she wants to be able to move up and walk up that mountain if she wants to. So I think instead of focusing on activity or, or exercises being something that we hate doing, or that’s going to make us look better, maybe be like Anna Marie, and think of how exercise is going to help you live the life that you want over the next couple years.
Think about it more in terms of its functionality and how it’s going to help you get, you know, help you to decrease your risk of disease and help you live the life that you really desire. Exercise is also important because it helps deal with any of the underlying emotions that you’re feeling. So exercise might be a really great way that you can manage any of the feelings that are leading to any stress eating or yo-yo dieting that you’re doing. So if you feel like you, you don’t know how to manage all these feelings, exercise a really great way to do it, and it doesn’t have to be anything crazy. It can be walking.
Research shows that walking is probably the easiest activity that people can do. And it’s the one that most people that have lost weight and been able to maintain it, have done. They just exercise, they just walk, they walk and they walk. And so again, it doesn’t have to be anything crazy. It just has to be something that will help manage your feelings and manage any of the emotions that you’re going through or that you’re struggling with, and it will help improve your overall metabolism.
And so, lastly, I just want to talk about this idea of you and knowing that you are the expert on you and you have all the skills that you need to slow down and listen to what your body is telling you. I can do so many podcasts on what works and what doesn’t work, but it’s individuals. So you know, your body, if you just stop and listen to it and start to trust it, you know what works for you. And that’s the big key here is to slow down and to start thinking about it.
There’s a really great workbook and I’ll leave this on my show notes too. It’s called Intuitive Eating Workbook. And it’s really great because it makes you sit down and really start to figure out what your relationship with food is. And to see are you putting food in good and bad categories and all of these behaviors that we’ve learned throughout our lifetime, that maybe aren’t that healthy when it comes to food. And then it kind of talks about challenging the beliefs related to it. So I recommend it. If it’s something that, you know, you’re really struggling on how to trust your body and how to trust your relationship with food it’s, it’s a really great book.
Thank you for listening. And I want you to know that this process of whole health, it is a gradual it’s gradual process. And the key to all of it is just being consistent. There are going to be times when it’s really hard to do, and you’re going to be going back to the whole, you know, I’m going to restrict to this food and I’m not going to trust myself, but just know that the more you practice, the opposite behavior, the more you practice, you know, getting away from yo-yo dieting and listening to how your body feels and incorporating some kind of exercise in here, the easier it’s going to become.
So just know that the process isn’t going to be seamless, and it’s going to come with lots and lots of bumps, but the key to any behavior change is to take action. So I encourage you to take some messy, imperfect, crazy, imperfect, and any other word related to imperfect action today. And you will over time, get to where you want to go. So I thank you for listening and I’ll see you guys back here next week. Have a great week.
If you found value in this podcast, please rate, review and subscribe on iTunes. Being a busy woman or mom doesn’t mean that we have to give up on our health wellness or self care. Together we can take tiny, imperfect steps towards creating the whole health we desire and deserve. You can find us at WHOLEHEALTHEMPOWER.COM or on Instagram @wholehealthempower. Thanks for listening. I’ll see you next week.
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