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How to Safely Lose Excess Weight After 50

Nov 01, 2023
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Struggling to shed those extra pounds now that you're over 50? Keep reading to understand the unique challenges of weight loss during this phase of life and discover tailored strategies that can help!

Have you noticed that maintaining a healthy weight or losing those extra pounds feels more challenging now that you’ve turned 50? You definitely aren’t alone in this experience!

Difficulty shedding pounds after 50 is a common phenomenon, often linked to natural changes in your body's metabolism and hormone levels. As you age, your metabolism slows down, meaning you burn fewer calories than you did in your younger years.

This shift can lead to weight gain—even if your eating habits haven’t changed significantly. Hormonal changes, especially for women going through menopause, also play a pivotal role. 

Lifestyle changes and loss of muscle mass also contribute to weight gain post-50. With age, there’s a natural tendency to be less physically active. This can lead to muscle loss, which can further slow your metabolism.

At Triad Internal Medicine in Asheboro, North Carolina, our compassionate and skilled board-certified providers have extensive experience helping individuals at every age achieve optimal health. We offer personalized weight loss guidance to help meet the needs of people who are 50 and beyond. 

Keep reading for information about how to safely achieve your weight loss goals. 

1. Try mindful eating

As we age, our metabolic rate naturally slows down, necessitating adjustments to our dietary habits. Mindful eating becomes a key practice in this stage of life. It isn’t just about limiting your calorie intake but focusing on consuming nutritious and wholesome foods. 

Opt for foods rich in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants while minimizing the intake of processed and sugary items. For instance, incorporate more leafy greens, lean proteins, and whole grains into your meals while cutting back on sugary snacks and beverages. 

These intentional dietary choices will not only provide your body with the nutrients it needs but also aid in managing your weight more effectively.

2. Remember movement matters

Physical activity is a key part of weight loss at any age, and it's even more crucial as you grow older. Consider engaging in a mix of cardiovascular exercises, strength training, and flexibility workouts. 

Simple, consistent activities like brisk walking, swimming, or practicing yoga can significantly contribute to weight loss while offering other health benefits, including improved mood and increased energy levels. 

The goal here isn’t to engage in high-intensity workouts but to maintain consistency in incorporating physical movement into your daily routine. 

3. Stay hydrated for health

Hydration plays a pivotal role in weight loss and overall health. Often, feelings of thirst can be mistaken for hunger, leading to overeating. 

To safely lose weight over 50, make it a habit to drink adequate water throughout the day. Not only does this practice aid in digestion and keep your skin looking vibrant, but it also supports your metabolism and helps you feel fuller, preventing the consumption of extra calories.

4. Focus on your sleep

Sleep is often an underrated factor in the weight loss equation, especially for individuals over 50. As we age, our sleep patterns might naturally change, but the importance of getting enough rest cannot be overstated. 

Adequate sleep helps regulate hormones related to hunger and satiety, specifically ghrelin and leptin. When you’re well-rested, you’re less likely to feel continuously hungry and more likely to be satisfied with moderate portions.

Try establishing a consistent sleep schedule, going to bed and getting up at the same time each day to regulate your body’s internal clock. You’ll also want to create a bedtime routine that signals it’s time for sleep, and avoid screen time for at least an hour before bed. 

5. Your emotional health matters

Chronic stress is a silent enemy of weight loss, and when you’re older, you may experience more stress, which can lead to emotional eating. Turning to emotional eating means that you may find yourself reaching for comfort foods that are typically high in calories and lacking nutritional value. 

To combat stress and safely lose weight, engage in relaxation practices like meditation, deep breathing, or simply taking a stroll in a peaceful environment. Being able to manage stress well can prevent emotional eating and facilitate a positive mindset that is conducive to weight loss.

6. Consider medical weight loss

If lifestyle modifications aren't yielding the results you desire, considering medical weight loss might be a wise next step. Your provider at Triad Internal Medicine gives you personalized dietary and exercise guidance.

In addition, for patients with additional health concerns or those who need added help achieving their goals, your team member may suggest different medications that help support weight loss, including:

  • Phentermine
  • Orlistat
  • Saxenda
  • Semaglutide (Wegovy)

These medications can offer the additional support you might need to achieve your goals, all while under the careful supervision and guidance of qualified healthcare professionals.

Are you over 50 and ready to get started on your weight loss journey? Schedule an appointment online or over the phone with a provider at Triad Internal Medicine.