Along with a range of targeted meal plans for pregnancy, vegetarian, vegan, keto and for those with PCOS, The Healthy Mummy has introduced a specific Hormone Balancing Meal Plan to the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge. Designed by a team of Healthy Mummy nutritionists, the Hormone Balancing Meal Plan is aimed to help those 40 and over with weight loss as their bodies go through hormonal changes. Find out what hormonal changes occur for women 40+ and how this specifically selected meal plan can best provide nutritional support to maximise your health and ability to lose weight.
How your body changes over 45
Forty-five is the age when a lot of women start noticing some pretty big changes. Lean muscle mass can start to decrease whilst body fat increases. Sleep patterns can change, as well as energy levels. And we can find ourselves having changes in our moods, whether that be more anxiety, anger, or apathy. Why does this happen? Hormones. Forty-five is a common age where women’s hormones start to shift and get ready for the next stage of life. Menopause will happen to all of us but it doesn’t have to be unbearable. There are things we can do now, to support our bodies and hormones in preparation for this next stage.
What is the secret to losing weight after 40?
There is no quick fix or secret for weight loss over 40 or at any age. Yes, absolutely it can be hard to lose weight and maintain lean muscle mass due to changes in your hormones. Now is the time to plan for long-term health not just quick weight loss. You may have excess kilos you have gained over the years and we are here to help you along your weight loss journey, even long after menopause. The Healthy Mummy App can help you by recommending the correct number of calories you should be consuming, show you how to increase your weight training or strength training to support muscle mass and keep you stronger during your weight loss. Plus our Hormone Balancing Meal Plan was specifically designed by nutritionists to support healthy weight loss after 40.
5 dietary changes that can help balance your hormones
Below are five dietary changes the Hormone Balancing Meal Plan takes into account to support our hormones when we’re in our 40s or above and trying reach our weight loss goals or maintain a healthy weight.
1. Increase Protein
As we age muscle mass can be harder to build and maintain. Therefore, it is essential that we consume enough protein for muscle growth and repair. But that’s not all it does. Protein is essential for hormone production. The amino acids found in protein are the building blocks for hormones such as estrogen, insulin and thyroid hormone. Protein also influences the release of our hunger hormones, such as ghrelin. Eating protein decreases the release of ghrelin, helping us to feel satisfied after eating so we don’t overeat and gain weight.
Get the recipe for this Protein-Packed Chicken Burrito Bowl Here
2. Include healthy fats
Healthy fats such as medium-chain triglycerides found in coconut, Omega 3 fatty acids found in oily fish or monounsaturated fats found in extra virgin olive oil and nuts are beneficial for many reasons. Similar to protein they have a positive effect on our hunger hormones making us feel fuller for longer and they are also an essential building block for our sex hormones. These types of healthy fats have also been found to reduce insulin resistance, reducing weight gain and the development of diabetes.
Get the recipe to these Healthy Chewy Coconut Oat Bars here
Mum Julie 48, has lost 55 kilos and has transformed her life.
Get Julie’s Story here
3. Increase fibre
Fibre is essential for hormone metabolism. It is needed to excrete the hormones we no longer need out of our bodies. Good sources of fibre include fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains, flax seeds and psyllium husks. Flax seeds, in particular, have been found to have beneficial effects on oestrogen in women, reducing hot flushes, as they contain phytoestrogens. The added benefit of fibre is that it also helps to lower cholesterol levels which commonly increase with age due to the decrease in sex hormones.
Get the recipe for Rosemary Flaxseed crackers here
4. Support your liver
One of the livers main jobs is to help regulate the balance of sex hormones, adrenal hormones and thyroid hormones in the body. The liver breaks down these hormones once they have done their job. Liver function may be compromised by the consumption of alcohol, certain medications, high-sugar or deep-fried foods, infections etc, and this can lead to poor hormone metabolism. To optimise liver health it is important to eat a healthy diet, including lots of cruciferous vegetables (these include cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and Brussel sprouts), as well as reducing the consumption of alcohol, refined sugars and deep-fried foods.
Get the recipe for Roasted Cauliflower and Turmeric Soup here
Helen 47 has lost 18 Kilos and lowered her blood pressure and cholesterol
Get Helen’s Story here
5. Support blood sugar levels
The majority of women diagnosed with type 2 diabetes receive their diagnosis after the age of 45. One contributing factor to this is our sex hormones. Sex hormones affect how our cells respond to insulin. During menopause or peri-menopause, you may find your blood sugar levels change more than before, leading to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. To help regulate blood sugar levels, it is important to eat protein with every meal, reduce your intake of refined carbohydrates and eat 6 small meals throughout the day as recommended in our meal plan. Recipes that contain cinnamon such as our Easy Apple & Cinnamon Porridge (available on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge) can also help regulate blood sugar levels.
You are not alone!
Many women struggle to lose weight after 40 and we know it can be difficult to lose weight but it is important to remember you are not alone on this journey. The Healthy Mummy is here to help you achieve your goals and get serious about losing weight and maintaining long-term weight loss even when your metabolism slows. We have created an over 45 Facebook support group so you can get advice and support from other women. Having a strong support system can make losing weight feel a little easier and reduce stress that women experience when starting a new diet and exercise plan. Knowing you always have somewhere to turn for support, tips and tricks, general advice, and lets face it to feel a little less alone while achieving weight loss success and making time to exercise.