Fasting in Menopause: The Best Tips for Weight Loss

menopause_and_fasting

“Avoiding weight gain or even losing weight during menopause is impossible.” This is a common and quite persistent myth.

In this blog post, you’ll learn what happens in your body during menopause and what symptoms you may experience. We’ll also show you how to maintain your weight or even lose weight during menopause – despite the major changes that take place in your hormone balance and metabolism during this time.

 

What happens during menopause?

“Menopause” – what is that exactly? The term refers to a process that begins in most women in their mid-40s and is usually completed by the age of 58.

During this time, the ovaries gradually produce less and less of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone until production finally stops entirely. The male sex hormone testosterone, on the other hand, is increasingly produced by the ovaries. During this gradual change in hormone balance, women often notice some changes in their bodies.

Typical symptoms of menopause are…

  • the absence of menstrual periods,
  • hot flashes,
  • decreased libido,
  • mood swings,
  • increased risk of heart disease,
  • shivering and sweating,
  • water retention,
  • fatigue.

Often menopause also causes a change in body weight.

On the one hand, this is due to hormones. These cause the body to react less sensitively to insulin and carbohydrates are metabolized worse as a result. At the same time, an age-related reduction in the basal metabolic rate is also responsible for this: The older we get, the more of our body’s own muscle mass we lose over time.

The consequence? The body needs and burns less energy!

The distribution of fat in the body also changes due to the change in hormone balance: Body fat now accumulates less in the “typically female body parts” such as hips and buttocks, and more in the body’s center, i.e. the abdomen.

The good news? Intermittent fasting is the ideal way to counteract typical menopause symptoms such as weight problems, fatigue and mood swings!

When you fast…

  • you strengthen your metabolism, prevent insulin resistance and promote fat loss,
  • you boost your immune system,
  • you improve your blood counts,
  • reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease,
  • you gain new energy and strengthen your mental health,
  • you promote the release of happiness hormones and prevent mood swings.

Intermittent fasting is a wonderful tool for menopausal women to alleviate unwanted symptoms or even avoid them altogether.

Wondering how to best incorporate intermittent fasting into your life? Here are our tips on how to benefit from the method in the best possible way!

 

The best intermittent fasting tips for menopausal women

1. Avoid long fasting periods (>18 hours)

Since your body is already struggling with some hormonal changes, you should not stress your body additionally with extreme fasting periods. This is especially true if you have little or no experience with intermittent fasting.

It is best to start with short periods of fasting (e.g. 12 or 14 hours) and see how you get on. If you feel comfortable, you can increase your fasting window a bit. If you are struggling, stick to shorter periods. It’s also perfectly fine to take a break from fasting from time to time.

You need to know: Fasting for long periods of time or one a daily basis does not automatically mean fasting in a more effective way and benefiting more. You can still achieve great results with shorter fasting periods – and without putting too much stress on your body.

2. Move your body regularly

Exercise and intermittent fasting make a great team – this is especially true for menopausal women! However, be careful not to push yourself beyond your physical limits when exercising. Rather, stick to light or moderate workouts, such as yoga, qigong or light fitness training. And take a break if you don’t feel well during a workout. Long walks are also a wonderful way to be more active and do something good for your body!

3. Drink enough water

Water has many important responsibilities in your body and supports your weight loss success. If you want to positively influence your progress, you should definitely make sure to drink at least 2-3 liters (65-100 fl. oz.) of water every day (not only on fasting days!).

Are you finding it difficult to drink enough water? Then use the water tracker in the BodyFast app and read our best drinking tips here.

By the way: If you suffer from water retention due to menopause, nettle tea is a good remedy. Nettle has the ability to reduce water retention and even improves the texture of your skin. You can also enjoy it unsweetened during your fasting period!

4. Stick to a nutritious diet

You may need less energy as you get older, but at the same time your need for nutrients will increase! One reason for this is that nutrients are often no longer absorbed as efficiently by your body.

Foods that are low in energy but high in nutrients are particularly suitable for your eating period, e.g. low-processed foods such as vegetables, salads, legumes, fruit, potatoes, whole grains, low-fat dairy products and lean meat.

Balanced meals are optimal: rich in protein (e.g. dairy, legumes, poultry, fish), healthy fats (e.g. avocado) with a carbohydrate source that tends to keep your blood sugar stable (e.g. whole grain bread or whole grain pasta).

This way, you’ll help your body produce hormones, refill your nutrient stores quickly after fasting, and stay full for a long time.

You can also find lots of inspiration for healthy meals designed for your everyday life with intermittent fasting in the BodyFast app!

5. Make sure you get enough and healthy sleep

Many women struggle with sleep disorders during menopause. Yet good and sufficient sleep is very important for your body. This also makes it easier to lose weight.

There are many ways to improve your sleep, whether with a warming bath in the evening, with yoga before bedtime or with the help of herbal remedies. You can learn more about this topic in this article.

 

How to reach and maintain your target weight despite menopause with intermittent fasting

For many women, menopause is a challenging time. Hormone balance changes, muscle mass is reducing and calorie consumption drops. This can be unsettling, making it difficult to lose weight and feel comfortable.

The good news is: with intermittent fasting, a balanced diet and sufficient exercise, you can still reach your goal weight and maintain it permanently.

Don’t be put off if you don’t make the progress you were hoping for right after your start with fasting. Intermittent fasting is a method that takes some time to unfold its full potential.

Start slowly and also focus on all the other numerous health benefits of intermittent fasting. This way you will stay motivated and reach your goal step by step.

Finally, an important note: If the symptoms of menopause (mood swings, hot flashes, etc.) extremely affect your daily life in a negative way, talk to your gynecologist. Together you can develop a holistic strategy to better deal with the symptoms.

 

Find the optimal fasting plan, delicious recipes tailored to your fasting lifestyle, supportive weekly tasks, daily motivational Coachings, and more in the BodyFast app.

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12 thoughts on “Fasting in Menopause: The Best Tips for Weight Loss

  1. Monica de Cassia Farah Reply

    Boa noite!
    Assinei meu plano ontem e sinceramente estou um pouco perdida do passo a passo, sabe?
    Por exemplo tem receitas de café da manhã, mas nesse horário estou em jejum…tenho meus dias com horários descontrolados, hoje por exemplo, almocei as 15:30 h, como devo proceder?
    Meu nome é Monica e tenho 59 anos , já passei da menopausa.

    • Svenja Taubert Post authorReply

      Oi Monika, é natural que você tenha muitas perguntas no início.
      Se você quiser saber mais sobre o método de jejum, dê uma olhada na seção de ajuda no aplicativo. Se você não encontrar as respostas que está procurando lá, sinta-se à vontade para nos enviar um e-mail (info@bodyfast.app).

  2. Magaly Reply

    Although I’m going through menopause, I have been able to see the scale going down. This is my third week and I feel great 😊

    • Valerie Dratwa Reply

      Hello Magaly, congrats on your success 🥳 We are happy to hear that our app is helping you achieve your goals. Happy BodyFasting!

  3. Nannette Reply

    I’m already on a hormone replacement regimen from my gynecologist. Will that affect my weight loss in any way?

    • Jenny M. Reply

      Hormones are a big factor when it comes to body weight. For all people with pre-existing conditions and/or medication, it’s wise to discuss with their doctor if and to what extent intermittent fasting can be an option for them.

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