In your 20s and maybe even early 30s, you could simply ditch the junk food, drop the soda, eat “clean” and drop 15-20 lbs.
Today, though, in your late 30s, your 40s and even 50s, it isn’t as easy.
And, weight loss programs like Weight Watchers, Dr. Bernstein, Jenny Craig, Isagenix and even keto make your weight loss even harder. I mean, you might have lost some inches on one of these, but…did you keep it off 2+ years?
That’s because, not only are these diets not sustainable, not one of them addresses the reason why you’re struggling with weight in the first place.
All of these diets are superficial fixes to symptoms, not the deep dive into the root cause rebalancing your over 35 body needs right now.
Why Can’t You Lose Weight and Keep it Off?
You need to understand the ‘why’ behind your health struggles in order to fix your health and your weight.
It’s no longer enough to simply restrict calories or macros for a few months…this doesn’t keep the weight off. In fact, doing this makes the ‘why’ behind why you’re stuck so much worse.
There is no such thing as “quick and easy” weight loss. Ya, I get it – we all want instant gratification. And when the scale doesn’t move for a couple of weeks, we get frustrated and quit.
That’s why these popular programs are, well, popular…They set your body up for “quick and easy” weight loss because they have you dropping calories and/or macros to unhealthy levels. So, yep, your body is going to respond to what’s basically starvation by dropping weight…
Problem is, that weight you dropped? A lot of it is muscle mass. Not a good thing if you want long-term, healthy, sustainable weight loss!
You gained weight for a reason and, no, it isn’t the 2-3 glasses of wine on Saturday night or the one time you ate a burger last week.
You gained weight because of a number of hormonal and health imbalances that have been festering for years.
If you’ve struggled with weight for almost your whole life, your imbalances have been happening since you were a child.
If you never had a weight issue and suddenly your waistline is expanding, your imbalances were triggered by a recent event in your life.
The Root Cause of Your Expanding Waistline
Trauma, bad diet, yo-yo dieting, too much or too little exercise, a demanding career, a growing family, imbalances passed down from your mother, being a mom, driving in a busy city, too much noise pollution, toxins, not enough water, obsessing about a number on the scale…
The reasons for stress are way too many to list. But, whatever your life throws you, stress adds up. Our go-go-go society makes our stress levels so much worse, and now women are struggling with an array of confusing symptoms.
Low energy, cravings for sugar or salt, fatigue, poor sleep, PMS, pre-mature menopause, brain fog, anxiety, and, yup, weight gain.
Stress plays such a massive, impactful role in your health that it’s the very first thing I work with my clients on managing…And, it’s the one health concern we are constantly trying to improve throughout the 4 months we work together.
There is no quick fix for stress, but it is the #1 reason so many women struggle with unwanted belly fat.
The Stress – Belly Fat Link
Your stress levels and your stress hormones are linked to all the other hormonal and health imbalances that lead to stubborn belly fat and weight gain. It is possible that single hormonal imbalance may be the real cause of a certain type of fat storage (aka high levels of estrogen cause inner thigh fat).
BUT, I have yet to meet a woman who doesn’t have at least a moderate level of stress that’s making her estrogen levels soar.
Chronic stress lowers your body’s ability to detect leptin, your fullness hormone, and it increases the production of ghrelin, your hunger hormone. This is also called leptin resistance.
So, you tend to want to eat more and don’t feel full when you should. This makes carb binges really easy.
Chronic stress leads to higher levels of inflammation in the body.
Inflammation triggers the release of histamines, which, under normal circumstances, help to reduce inflammation…but overtime the body become intolerant to histamine, which can cause more inflammation, as well as allergies.
You can get caught up in a high cortisol – inflammation – high cortisol cycle, too.
When one is high, it triggers the other, and the cycle continues, make both worse.
Inflammation is one the main reasons you look and feel puffy and can’t drop the last 15 lbs.
With high levels of cortisol in your blood, stored energy (from glycogen and amino acids from muscles) is converted back into blood sugar.
Your pancreas releases insulin in order to move the glucose out of the blood.
Chronic stress leads to insulin resistance and high levels of insulin, which then causes more inflammation. Specifically, chronic low-grade inflammation activates and increases the expression of proteins that suppress insulin-signaling pathways, which leads to insulin resistance and high levels of insulin.
When insulin levels are high due to insulin resistance, this causes more and more testosterone to be produced by the ovaries.
Which, contrary to popular belief, is a weight loss killer for women!
Hopefully this is sinking in…
Stress is all around us, whether we realize it or not. Stress is the #1 reason for confusing health symptoms, including stubborn weight gain.
Triggers in our past can bump up stress to where it’s out of control, causing these symptoms.
Stress causes chronic inflammation, excessive hunger, high testosterone, and insulin resistance (which causes cravings).
In a nutshell?
Chronic stress is the root cause of your stubborn weight gain. Following low-calorie or low-carb diets that don’t address this underlying health issue only make your stress imbalances worse.
And this mean it’s even harder to lose the muffin top the older you get.
Inside my 40 or Less Method, I teach my clients how to eat to rebalance stress. We work a lot on stress management and proper exercise. These 3 things are what comprises a holistic nutrition health program.
If your weight loss program doesn’t talk about hormones and what your symptoms mean, stay far away.