woman beats menopause weight gain by following these expert tips

更年期体重增加和如何Beat It

Struggling to lose weight after menopause weight gain? We asked for support from Igor Klibanov, a personal trainer and 7-time fitness author who specializes in helping women lose weight during menopause. 

Menopause Weight Gain

Igor Klibanov
Igor Klibanov

If you’re a woman between 45 and 55, you’ve probably observed some unfavorable changes such as menopause weight gain.

  • Your clothes are getting tighter, and you’re unhappy with how you look in photos.
  • You don’t like the weight around your stomach and love handles.
  • You don’t get as much sleep as you used to.
  • You have low energy levels.

Menopause fat loss is about more than just exercise and nutrition. It’s also about stress management, hormonal balance, and digestive health.” -Igor Klibanov


To make things worse, what worked for you to lose weight in your twenties and thirties no longer does. Not to mention all of the various health changes that might occur, such as:

  • 潮热
  • 恶劣的集中
  • 干性皮肤
  • …and more.

Menopause Weight Gain: Why Is It So Stubborn?

So, what is it about losing weight after menopause that makes it so difficult? There are several variables to consider:

Factor #1: A decrease in muscle mass

Muscle mass decreases naturally as we age. So, after menopause weight gain, even if you’re consuming the same sort and amount of food as you were in your twenties and thirties, you’re not burning as much energy if you’ve lost muscle.

Consider it this way. For every pound of muscle you have, you burn about 6 calories each day. Consider losing 10 pounds of muscle. It may not seem like much. You now burn 60 calories per day less than if you had kept those 10 pounds of muscle. 

Factor #2: Inadequate Sleep

Sleep can be disrupted as a result of hormonal changes. Either:

  • You’re having trouble falling asleep
  • You fall asleep easily, but wake up frequently during the night
  • You can’t get back to sleep after waking up around 4-5 a.m., or…
  • You fall asleep quickly and stay asleep for a long time, yet you don’t feel refreshed when you wake up.

In any event, poor sleep can cause a number of scenarios to occur that contribute to menopause weight gain:

  • You move less which burns fewer calories. Even small actions can add up to hundreds of calories every day.
  • Reduced workout intensity or just skipping the gym entirely.
  • Increased cravings for foods that are bad for you.

Factor #3: Increased Insulin Resistance

Insulin levels fluctuate when estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels fluctuate. Insulin resistance, on the other hand, indicates that your body generates a lot of insulin but doesn’t use it properly.

As a result, you experience menopause weight gain and it may be tough for you to shed body fat.

Factor #4: Hormonal Changes

Last, but certainly not least, the most obvious changes happen regarding estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels. We used to think that menopause was only a case of insufficient estrogen. This isn’t the case, however. We’ve come a long way in understanding the hormonal changes that occur during and after menopause and how they relate to menopause weight gain.

According to Dr. Joseph Collins, there are 12 different hormonal profiles depending on testosterone, progesterone, and estrogen levels.


  • Woman 1 may have a high estrogen level, a normal progesterone level, but a low testosterone level.
  • Woman 2 may have low estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels that are normal.
  • Woman 3 may have normal estrogen levels, as well as excessive progesterone and testosterone levels, etc.

And here’s the weird part: both high and low amounts of these hormones can cause the extra body fat you see with menopause weight gain.

Women with low testosterone, for example, will gain a lot of weight. High testosterone, on the other hand, will do the same (since it’s generally accompanied by high insulin). Estrogen and progesterone are the same way. Both high and low amounts will result in a significant increase in body fat. We want to be like goldilocks: not too high, not too low – just right.

The “But Why My Stomach?”Thing

Another strange issue happens during and after menopause weight gain. You may have observed that you were a “pear shape” before. That is, you accumulated fat mostly in your buns and thighs, as well as maybe the backs of your arms.

But after menopause weight gain you took on an “apple shape”, gaining weight in your stomach, while maybe losing fat in your buns and thighs.

什么给?Why is there a change in body fat distribution? Your hormones are to blame. The location of your body fat tells a lot about your hormone profile. 

For example, high estrogen levels are indicated by a pear-shaped body profile, while cortisol and insulin are better represented by an apple-shaped profile. 


So now we know four factors that contribute to menopause weight gain. There are indeed more. However, what alternatives do we have for coping with these main problems, right now?

Solution #1: 力量训练

What should we do to prevent and reverse menopausal weight gain if the first culprit is a loss of muscle mass? The obvious answer is to reverse muscle loss. The only form of exercise that can build muscle mass is strength training. 

Solution #2: Get More Sleep

Poor sleep, as previously stated, causes a ton of issues. So get some rest and quality downtime. Turn off devices an hour before bed, lower the lights, and try natural sleep aids like melatonin.

Solution #3: Hormonal Optimization

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) has been shown in several trials to enhance body composition. However, before considering HRT, you should consider the dangers and benefits, as well as other systems that may need to be improved (such as the liver, adrenals, and so on).

Speak to a healthcare professional who is integrative in their approach to treating menopause weight gain and other menopause-related symptoms. You might also want to ask them about natural hormone balancing supplements such as Wild Yam Root which can be used as a progesterone booster.

Improving Menopause Weight Gain – Expectations

So, what kind of outcomes can you expect if you improve all the aforementioned factors? Thankfully, there isn’t much of a difference in fat loss pace between menopausal and younger women.

In one study, researchers looked at two groups of women with similar body composition. The age difference was the sole difference between the two groups. The average age of one group of women was 43, while the average age of the other was 58. Both followed the same workout and eating plan and dropped the same amount of weight (on average, 14.7 pounds).

Looking to the Future

In conclusion, what might have been simple before menopause got more complicated. But not crazy complicated.

The stuff that you could get away without before (strength training and sleep) might be catching up to you at menopause. Those two things are a big part of the solution. Combine that with effective testing of your hormones, and optimizing them, and you’ll be on track to a healthier, slimmer you.


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