According to WebMD, our metabolism slows down by about 5% for every decade of our lives after we hit age 40. This means that, on average, women have to cut 100 calories from their diet daily just to remain in the same shape. However, there are other easier and even surprising ways to burn those calories, like turning down your heat at home.
We at Bright Side gathered 8 efficient methods to stay thin or lose weight when you are over 40 years old. You’ll see that some of them have actually been there all along, and most of them are really not that difficult and can even be fun!
1. Do the right exercises
With the metabolism slowing down, it’s important not only to do your daily 30 minutes of cardio but to also include 4 to 5 resistance training sessions a week. Exercises like clams, step-ups, crunches, bird dogs, and push-ups are great for maintaining healthy muscle mass and burning even more calories.
Walking at least 10,000 steps per day is also a great way to aid your metabolism, keep fit, and lift your spirits.
2. Set realistic goals
No matter how appealing losing half of your weight in a week “with a magical diet/pill/slimming belt” might sound, you probably realize that it’s unrealistic. Moreover, even if something like this were to happen to you, it would do a lot more harm than good to your body.
That is why you should aim to lose 1-2 lb a week to spare yourself the physical and emotional stress associated with losing too much weight too quickly. This is a healthy and reachable goal that will also help you build healthy lifestyle habits (like eating and exercising properly) and stay in shape in the long run. Besides, no harm will be done to your body!
3. Get your vitamins
Our body has different needs for different periods of our lives. For women over 40, it’s essential to include calcium, vitamin B12, potassium, magnesium, vitamin D, Omega-3, and probiotics into their diet.
And it shouldn’t even be a bad or an unpleasant thing, since Potassium, for instance, can be found in avocados, dried apricots and, of course, bananas — and all of these, let’s face it, taste good! Calcium can be drawn from almonds and yogurt, and you can get the necessary dose of vitamin D by simply, well…tanning! Not such a horrible scenario! Just as long as you wear sunscreen.
4. Stay on schedule
Eating regularly, but frequently, should become a priority. Skipping meals messes up your metabolism: your body gets the signal to start storing up calories instead of burning them, and you get the opposite of what you were hoping for.
And don’t forget that eating a good breakfast is critical since it gets your body going for the whole day while nighttime snacks are bad both for your stomach and your weight.
5. Don’t forget to rest
“Beauty sleep” isn’t just good for you skin — it also helps your body stay healthier and leaner! Research proves that sleep deprivation fosters your brain to make bad decisions (snack on junk food, skip workouts) plus it messes with the hunger and fullness hormones, ghrelin and leptin, meaning you can easily overeat and not even notice!
So put away your phone and your computer before bedtime and let yourself get as much sleep as you possibly can!
6. Turn down the heat
As surprising as this may sound, it is actually true: cooler temperatures help us burn fat even while we sleep, because our body has to “work harder” to stay warm. Adults have 2 types of fat: the bad white one and the good brown one. Brown fat is responsible for burning down calories and generating heat. When our homes get warmer, the activity level of our brown fat is stalled.
Scientists advise keeping your home temperature at 19º. This may be a really cool way to lose several pounds!
7. Drink enough water
If you are prone to bloating, some people make a big mistake and cut down on their water intake. On the contrary: drinking enough water will actually help you cope with this problem, as well as increase the amount of calories you burn.
Water also helps your body detox. Drinking a glass of water before a meal reduces your appetite and the number of calories you consume. Drinking cold water will help you burn some extra calories since your body will use energy to heat it up. So water is just plain awesome, isn’t it?
8. Get your health checked out
Sometimes when you are over 40 and still not losing weight despite all of the efforts, it means that your liver needs detoxing or you need to take care of your thyroid. There might be other causes, of course, but those 2 tend to be the most common.
If this is the case, you should work together with your doctor. For your liver, a change of lifestyle and diet might be enough, while thyroid issues are more complex, but still definitely worth taking care of.
Now you see that even though losing weight when you are over 40 may seem like a challenge, there are many not-so-difficult and pretty pleasant ways to do it! Share with us in the comments which methods of losing weight work best for you!