The best foods for losing weight during menopause

October 18 marks World Menopause Day to raise awareness, break the stigma and highlight the various support services available for those experiencing menopause.

As most women go through menopause their metabolism slows down, meaning that they don’t need to consume as many calories as they once did.

Some people may want to use the menopause as an opportunity to lose some unwanted pounds.

Here are some foods women should be eating to assist them in losing weight during menopause, and some they should look to avoid.

Calcium is really important not just for those experiencing menopause, but people’s diets in general. Calcium-rich foods can help strengthen bones and keep them functioning healthily.

READ MORE: Recipe for ‘super tasty’ mushroom pasta is menopause-diet friendly – ready in 15

Greek yoghurt is a healthy alternative for breakfast or lunchtime. It’s packed with calcium and protein, as well as supporting gut health and healthy body composition. Pair it with some fresh fruit and nuts (particularly almonds) for a delicious, refreshing and healthy combination.

Speaking of almonds, they are a good source of fibre and protein. Fibre helps regulate bowel movements, lower cholesterol and helps control blood sugar levels. Almonds also boast an excellent fibre-to-calorie ratio and help feel fuller for longer.

Leafy green vegetables are essential to a healthy diet focussing on gradually losing weight. Spinach in particular is a superfood that is one of the best sources of magnesium – a vital mineral needed for a number of bodily functions as well as reducing levels of stress and anxiety. 

Cabbage and Kale are two other versatile leafy greens that you can look to incorporate into your weight loss journey.

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Lean proteins such as chicken, egg, lentils, quinoa and tofu are foods that will help to lose weight during menopause. All of these foods are guaranteed to make you feel fuller for longer, as well as upping your protein intake. 

Feeling fuller for longer is a great way to make sure you don’t overeat, which is a very common cause of weight gain. Portion control is a great way to keep your calorie intake in check. Often psychological tricks such as using smaller plates will assist you in eating less without noticing yourself feeling hungrier.

Stimulating your metabolism, removing body waste and naturally suppressing your appetite are a few reasons why drinking water is such an important aspect of losing weight. Aim to drink 1-2 litres a day, and more if you are exercising strenuously.

Alongside adding these foods into the diet, it is recommended that walking 10,000 steps a day is the magic number needed to lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle. Whilst ideal, it may not be attainable for everyone for a number of reasons. However, any amount of walking is better than none. Make healthier decisions such as taking the stairs where possible and you will gradually start to see an improvement.

This may not be the news you wanted to hear, but excessive alcohol consumption during menopause will not help lose weight. Alcohol can disrupt sleep (an important time for losing belly fat) and add excess calories to your diet. 

In fact alcohol and caffeine can make hot flushes worse. Women don’t have to cut out coffee and alcohol completely, but drink them both in moderation.

Sensible consumption should be okay for most people, but some may notice that the effects of caffeine and alcohol make their symptoms of menopause worse.

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