Debunking Midlife and Menopause Myths
Thank you for being a part of b-untethered. We hope you are enjoying your summer! This month we are changing up our normal newsletter format to, instead, debunk 5 wretched midlife myths that we hear in the press and from some of our followers.
Have another myth that you wanna share? Pop over to our Facebook Group and chat about it with us!
A few other updates from us before we dive in…
We continue to work to improve your experience with our transform 6 program. We’re excited to announce that we’re moving to “cohorts”, that will start on July 25th. You will start the program with a selected group of women and be with that group for the duration. This is about learning and transforming in the support of a community. We are also continuing to add new topics to the program and love feedback and new ideas! Check out details and sign-up HERE.
Weight gain is inevitable in menopause
Truth: There are a number of reasons that can lead to weight gain during menopause including hormones, aging, lifestyle, and genetic factors. While not all of these factors are in our control, the good news is that we can use lifestyle changes to counteract the effect that aging and genetics can have.
As we age, we lose muscle mass, leading to a slower metabolism since muscle uses more calories than fat. We can counter this with regular strength training and high-intensity exercise. Also as we age, we need fewer calories and by adjusting our eating habits to eating quality over quantity we can help curb weight gain. b-untethered provides the steps and support to achieve these goals in transform 6. Come join us!
Belly fat is the same as fat in other parts of the body
Truth: Decreasing estrogen levels during the menopause shift influence where fat is distributed in the body, with more landing in the belly area. Because it accumulates around the organs, this type of fat is more harmful and can lead to health issues like insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and heart problems.
b-untethered’s recommendations for a 40/30/30 macronutrient ratio, shifting calorie consumption to earlier in the day, and focusing on high-intensity exercise may help reduce belly fat. We talk about these recommendations in depth in transform 6 and welcome your questions on these topics in our accompanied weekly webinar.
Total calories consumed matter more than the type of calories
Truth: Both the amount of calories consumed and their source make a difference in midlife weight management and health. You’d have to walk for one hour just to burn off the calories in just one slice of pepperoni pizza!
Making smart choices of nutrient-dense foods is important in midlife. At b-untethered, we have partnered with Sifter™ and we love using their website and app to make better choices. Sorting by the “Women’s Health – Midlife” criteria will help you choose more nutrient-dense foods in the grocery store.
In addition, as estrogen declines, our ability to handle carbohydrates declines as well. The solution is to lower carb consumption to 40% of calories and time consumption with high-intensity exercise for help. Eating protein at every meal and snack helps the body maintain muscle mass, which burns more calories than body fat.
Strength training causes women to bulk up and look like men
Truth: Lifting weights is not just for bulked-up competitors in a competition, or men grunting in the weight room deadlifting hundreds of pounds. Fun fact, it takes competitive weightlifters YEARS of consistent workouts to acquire these gains of muscle mass paired with heavy protein consumption and higher levels of testosterone. This is not the result of a regular routine of lifting weights!
Incorporating weightlifting into your workout regime will, however, result in an increase in metabolic rate as your body will consume more calories to maintain your muscle mass. Don’t be afraid to add some weights to your regular routine. You’re not going to turn into Arnold Schwarzenegger!
Once you hit midlife, it’s all downhill from there
Truth: This couldn’t be farther from the truth, and there’s research to back it up! The phenomenon is called “the paradox of aging” and it says that despite our obsession as a culture with staying young and the negative stereotypes of aging, life satisfaction and happiness increase as the decades pass by.
Now, this isn’t to say there aren’t hard times. A recent study showed that those in their 20s(supposedly the “prime of life”) are the most stressed while those over 90 are the least! As we age, our capacity for empathy and handling stressful events increases as we focus less on growth and more on meaningful relationships and activities. This changing mindset means that we stress less often and to a lesser degree and we focus on gratitude for the people and world around us.
While the wrinkles and forgetfulness are certainly not easy to cope with, keep in mind that more wisdom, meaningful relationships, and an ever-increasing capacity for handling life’s tough times are ahead. Check out the Ted Talk below from Laura Carstensen on “Older People are Happier”.