How To Lose Weight as an Older WomanBy Dr. Margaret Paul
July 19, 2010
Here is my personal formula for maintaining my weight and health as an older woman.
Leah called me for a phone session because she was menopausal and was having a very hard time losing weight. She had gained 12 pounds and was unhappy about it.
"Everything I used to do doesn't work anymore," she told me. "I used to be able to cut back on my food for a few days or a week and lose 5 pounds. Now nothing happens. Even with exercise. I don't know what to do."
I am not a nutritionist - I am an author and an Inner Bonding® facilitator. However, health and nutrition have been favorite subjects for me for the last 48 years. And I'm also an older woman who encountered the very same problem with weight as Leah.
So I want to share with you what has worked for me and for many other older women (as well as young women and men) I've worked with.
- The first thing I suggest you do is go to http://www.metabolictyping.com/ and take the metabolic typing online test. What this will do is let you know whether your body needs a lot of protein and little carbohydrates, lots of carbs and little protein, or whether you are in the middle, needing an equal amount of each.
- Once you know your metabolic type, then you need to spend a couple of weeks counting calories while eating according to your metabolic type, to get a clear experience of how much food you actually need. As we age, we need MUCH less food, and this can be challenging. I had to accept that my body needs much less food than before menopause. I don't know how it works, but I still have tons of energy eating much less food. It took awhile to accept this, as I love food, but now it seems normal to not eat much.
- The food you eat needs to be nutritionally dense, and preferably organic, to maintain weight and health. This means lots and lots of vegetables - regardless of your metabolic type. Vegetables are the most nutrient dense food there is, so to lose or maintain weight, we needs lots of veggies. Being a protein type, I don't do well on a purely vegetarian diet like a carb type can, but I eat tons of raw, cooked, and blended vegetables, i.e. green smoothies made in a Vita-Mix or Blendtec. My green smoothies contain not only lots of leafy green veggies, but added green nutrients as well, plus apples. They are powerhouse drinks! I eat grass-finished meats (lower in calories than factory-farmed meats and far more nutrient dense), organic eggs, raw dairy from our own cow share, organic chickens, sprouted bread, and occasionally other whole grains - all in limited quantities. If you are a carb type, then you can likely do without the meat and eat more whole grains and fruits instead.
- It is vitally important to stay connected with your feelings and to learn to connect with your personal source of spiritual guidance. If you are accustomed to filling your loneliness and emptiness with food, now is a great time to learn to fill it with love, which comes from your Source. If you have previously not learned how to take loving care of yourself, now is a great time to learn. You will likely not be able to eat less and in a very healthy way if you do not learn how to take full responsibility for your own feelings.
- Health, rather than weight, needs to be what motivates you. Creating vibrant health is so important as we grow older, at least it is for me. I love being healthy and I want to live to a healthy old age, without chronic degenerative disease. The only way to do this is to make sure that what goes into your body is nutrient dense and not loaded with chemicals, and that what goes into your mind is loving to you. My rule of thumb regarding what I eat is: if they didn't eat it 200 years ago, I don't eat it now.
- And finally, exercise. It is vital to find exercise that you love to do and do it daily. It can be a fast walk in nature, or dancing, or a sport, but you need to be consistent about it.
That's it! At 70 I have more energy that I did at 20, and I got sick far more often at 20 than I do now!
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What is more important to you in this moment - loving yourself and sharing your love with others, or trying to have control over not getting hurt - feeling safe from being rejected, smothered, taken advantage of, and from failure or loss? Today, make love your highest priority and notice how happy you feel!
By Dr. Margaret Paul