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Shrink your “meno-pot”: 4 little-known strategies to reduce post-menopausal belly fat Most Liked Hot Conversation

One of the less-than-lovely things about being over 50 and going through menopause is the shift in where we store fat. If you’ve noticed your waistline getting bigger, that’s why! That nasty “meno-pot” is not only unattractive, it can be dangerous. Unlike fat in other parts of our bodies, abdominal fat (especially fat deposited deep in our abdomen) can increase our risk for heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

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Now, we can’t wave our hands and make this phenomenon disappear (it’s a hormonal thing, girls), but there are ways to decrease amount of fat in your post-menopausal waistline–or peri-menopausal waistline, for that matter.

  1. Change your cardio workout
    Interval training has been shown to decrease body fat more effectively than moderate intensity workouts done at a constant, steady pace. After a good warm up, work HARD (about an “8” on a scale of 1-10) for a short time (30-60 seconds) followed by a recovery period (1-3 minutes) at a lower exertion level. Continue for 6-10 intervals. Choose whatever cardio activity you like and do this type of a workout in place of a couple of your “moderate” workouts each week.
  2. Lift weights
    Research has shown regular, full body strength training (utilizing a weight that fatigues your muscles) can decrease abdominal obesity in women. Another bonus of a good strength training program is increased muscles mass (good for burning a few additional calories every day!).
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  4. Add mono-unsaturated fats to your diet
    A recent study conducted by scientists at Reina Sofia University Hospital in Cordoba, Spain, found that test subjects who ate a diet rich in monounsaturated fats did not experience an accumulation of belly fat as did test subjects on diets w/out the monounsaturated fats. Mono-unsaturated fats are found in olive, peanut, and canola oils as well as avocados.
  5. Get enough calcium
    A 2004 study of calcium supplementation and dairy consumption showed that increasing dietary calcium significantly improves weight and fat loss and increases the percentage of fat lost from the trunk region (increasing dairy consumption got even better weight loss results than supplementation alone).

There you have it: four little-known ways to decrease unsightly (and dangerous!) belly fat–and I never even mentioned the words “sit-ups”!

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Posted in health & fitness, live it! lists.

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  5. Food for thought: What to eat during menopause

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24 Responses

  1. Generic Image rose 6 says

    South Beach diet is also great for getting rid of fat around the waistline.

    3 like

    • Generic Image shulamit says

      I found that pilates are a great way of reducing fat around belly.  I know started curves, courtesy of my insurance and that may also do the trick. Does anyone have experience with that.

      1 like

  2. Adornments by Milani Adornments by Milani says

    So, how come there is no mention about a tummy tuck:)

    4 like

  3. Generic Image magred says

    enjoy these topics very much!! why avoid machines at gym?

    thank you!!!

    0 like

    • CoachBecky CoachBecky says

      Thank you, Magred!  I enjoy writing them.  Are there any other topics you’d like me to write about??

       

      Coach Becky

      0 like

  4. Generic Image 2girlsandmom says

    I thought I was the only one with this spare tire that appeared overnight. Thanks for the helpful tips to try to deflate it!

    1 like

    • Generic Image khalilswife says

      ABOUT 6 MONTHS AGO MY BELLY GREW AND MY THIGHS.. IN FACT THE FAT POCKETS ACTUALLY HURT.. MY WHOLE BODY ACHES AND THE FAT POCKETS/LUMPS ARE VERY UNUSUAL.

      IS IT REALLY POSSIBLE TO LOSE THIS FAT? I FEEL SOOOO DISGUSTED AND I HIDE MY BELLY WHEN MY HUBBY N I MAKE LOVE..I HATE MYSELF LIKE THIS

      0 like

    • Generic Image NancyJ207 says

      Just went through menopause and BAM instant belly barrel, I can’t stand it!! I want to be 50 and fabulous, not fat n fifty

      2 like

  5. Generic Image fyredown says

    What I hate is that when I sit, my belly extends further than my boobs…..thank goodness for the newer fashion of longer shirts with fuller waists….not quite maternity looking but certainly fuller to hide this shelf. I am finding that as I gain around the middle, I seem to be loosing thru the backside and legs so I am currently wearing smaller-sized pants. Definately a shift is taking place. When will it stop? Exercise doesn’t seem to keep up with this.

    1 like

  6. Generic Image shulamit says

    what do you think about curves..I have added it to my yoga pilates zumba and swimming and still have body fat but maybe not dangerous.

    0 like

    • CoachBecky CoachBecky says

      I can’t comment specifically on Curves as I haven’t exercised at a one before, although I’m familiar with their basic format.  What I can tell you is this: Regardless of  your exercise choice, intensity matters.  There is nothing at all wrong w/lower intensity exercise, however,  if you’re trying to lose body fat, short spurts of HARD exercise followed by recovery periods does seem to offer better fat loss results.  Interval training combined with strength training (preferably not a completely machine-based routine) that fatigues the muscles is the ideal exercise recipe for fat loss success.

      I hope this helps!

      Coach Becky

      1 like

      • Generic Image shulamit says

        i haven,t lost weight, as a matter of fact even gained 3 lbs during the month and half doing curves but have lost 9 and a half inches.  of course with curves i have classes in yoga pilates 5 times a week  once zumba and on weekends swim laps.. so that should account for something as well.

        1 like

  7. Generic Image says

    this sounds right for me. I especially think that the cardio piece is key.  Fun is essential. I lost my menopot for a while learning to row last year. I lost 25 pounds through this sport, which is very high intensity  mixed with low intensity and distance.  Those women who are successful at rowing enjoy driving hard and relaxing, balancing and breathing. It’s a great sport for women of any age and shape.  The best part is the comraderie and the humor around getting in shape and over 50.  I row (scull and sweep) with women from 35 to 65 and I’m sure there are women older than that as well.  Join me at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/realwomenonhealth tomorrow evening to share your 3 tips on staying well at any age!   We’re kicking off National Women’s Health Week with a wellness share-a-thon!

    0 like

  8. Generic Image dscrnc says

    Any suggestions for women with fibromyalgia, in regards to physical work out.  lifting a weight that fatigues muscles results in horrible pain that lasts for days…also, causes DAYS of fatigue….

    0 like

    • CoachBecky CoachBecky says

      Hi,

      Fibromyalgia is one of those “exceptions” to my rule of “lift hard” for boomer women.  However, I still believe that women with fibro should strength train.  I’ve worked successfully w/several women with fibromyalgia over the years .   Sometimes it’s best to work with your doctor to get pain managmenet and stress management under control first, and then slowly begin to add in strength training.It would be a 5 page article to go over all my suggestions here, but, in a nutshell, make sure you start strengthtraining after a very good warm up, and start with very light weights.  For some women, pool exercises are a good place to start.  Before beginning any  strength training program, you should consult your doctor.

       

      Coach Becky

      0 like

    • newme newme says

      HI AND I HAVE FIBRO ALSO I HAVE BEGUN WALKING AND I USE A WALK AT HOME DVD TAPE I STILL HAVE PAIN IN MY MUSCLES AND AT TIME I  HAVE TO BE PULLED OUT OF BED BUT MENTALLY I HAVE TO TRY TO PUT PAIN ON BACK BURNER AS MUCH AS I CAN TRY WALKING AND TRY TO BUILD YOURSELF UP WARM WATER HAS ALWAYS BEEN A COMFORT FOR ME ALSO A SPA MAT YOU CAN GET AT WALMART HOPE I’VE HELP SOMEWHAT I FEEL YOUR PAIN.

      0 like

    • Generic Image Gabriela says

      I do weights with my fibro. Some days it almost kills me, but I keep going,

      0 like

  9. Generic Image Nora says

    Does anyone know of an exercise DVD that specifically targets the unique “problem areas” of the over-50 crowd?

    0 like

  10. blumagali blumagali says

    i am also faced with the battle of the tummy!  i have always yo yo’d with weight but since my periods ended my body weight shifted to where it never had been big before. at whatever size i’ve been, i always had a waist. now i have a belly.

    i guess i am relieved that others are struggling with this, but i feel sad about it.

    i’m going to try different suggestions i find here and will add what i discover, too.

     

    0 like

    • Generic Image Todd29 says

      NO-ONE WILL LOSE WEIGHT UNLESS THEY WANT TO!  Stop dieting; keep track of everything that you eat each day.  Secret information will help you to get the body that you want.  Each day keep your body properly hydrated with plain water and definitely limit your sodium intake.  Keep mindless grazing to a minimum.  Remember; eat to live, don’t live to eat!  A daily regimen is needed by everyone and that regimen includes proper nourishment.  Diets and diet aids do not help anyone!  The only way to successfully lose weight and get the body that you deserve is by using secret information.  This information is in the book Lose Weight Using Four Easy Steps which can be ordered through the website http://www.bbotw.com  Everyone who has gotten a copy of these secrets has lost weight and become healthier. 

      0 like

  11. Generic Image Ladylou says

    For me the dairy consumption really increases my belly fat – and I would like to know how much cardio you recommend on a weekly basis for a 62 moderately active female.

    1 like

    • CoachBecky CoachBecky says

      Hi there, Ladylou,

       

      I recommend a minimum of 3 interval cardio workouts per week (alternating between bursts of higher intensity work and lower intensity recovery periods), as well as one or two additional moderate cardio activities.  Remember, because of the higher intensity, these types of workouts are shorter.  Here’s a sample idea:

      Walking warm up for 5 minutes.

      Walk FAST (or jog) to the point you get nearly out of breath for 30 seconds

      Walk at a moderate pace for 60-90 seconds.

      Repeat this HARD WORK/RECOVERY format for about 10-15 minutes

      Finish with a 5 minute walking cool down.

       

      Hope this helps!

       

      Coach Becky

       

      P.S.  You say dairy consumption increases your belly fat.  Any chance this could be gas accumulation due to lactose intolerance as opposed to body fat??  Just a thought……….

      0 like

  12. Generic Image BreatheDeep says

    I tried Curves some years back and got no benefit from it. Didn’t loose any weight-I know circuit training is supposed to work, but all of the equipment that I used was set at one resistance=not specifically for me-not a fan…also accumulated this tire around my waist and it horrifies me-I do not feel good about it and it seems to have appeared overnight. Some encouraging news-I fell on my knee at work and went to rehab where I read an article on aging and exercise-seems that all studies were historically done on aging people that did little in the way of exercise-naturally the results sucked. But they have also done studies on aging people that stayed active in sports. a 90 year old woman who still competed in swimming-a 65 year old man who still runs,etc…some were only seconds behind people half their age…moral is “IF YOU DON’T USE IT…YOU LOSE IT”…I do not want to be one of those from our past generations, who took to the sidelines as they aged. I don’t mind aging but I do mind looking like crap…I’ll let you know how I do with this disgusting belly…to be continued…

    3 like

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