Menopause: Beware of ‘common’ exercise mistakes that can cause weight gain- dos and don’ts

The Natural Beauty Show discuss menopause

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When to comes to the menopause, there are a few things women can do to try and manage their weight. Exercise has long been a hailed weight loss hero for its ability to burn calories and mentally and physically stimulate the body.

But an expert menopause adviser detailed some key advice when to comes to staying active so as not to over-do it and create more problems further down the line.

Eileen Durward, explained how to incorporate exercise into a woman’s schedule in a way that doesn’t “drain” their energy and worsen their symptoms.

She revealed “gentle” forms of exercise are a better option.

“Look at different forms of exercise, ones that are seemingly more gentle can be really good for the menopause,” she advised.

This could include activities such as yoga, swimming and walking.

“Walking 20 minutes a day can be really beneficial, and these will keep your body going until your energy levels increase,” Eileen said

But for those who aren’t ready to give up their hard-core sessions, she has a solution.

“If you still want to exercise a little harder, make sure that you add in a good protein powder shake every day to keep your nutritional needs met,” Eileen explained.

“Especially if you are vegetarian or vegan – but make sure it is not full of sugar or artificial sweeteners.”

It’s important menopausal women understand their body’s capabilities while going through the hormonal change.

“There is a big difference between sensible exercise and over-doing it,” Eileen continued.

“I get so many women who are really fit and healthy and who, up to the menopause, would think nothing of running marathons, cycling for miles, doing hour long sessions at the gym every day and major stuff at the weekend, but who now are totally fatigued and wonder where their hard-earned fitness has gone.”

For this reason, she compiled some helpful advice for active women wanting to keep their fitness levels up through the change.

Switch up exercises

Try different forms of exercise that include both low and high-intensity movements.

Eileen revealed that if a person plans their menopause “wisely”, they will more than likely come through their “energy crisis” and be just as fit as before.

 Don’t exercise every day

She suggested having at least two rest days a week to allow the body to recharge.

Exercising daily can promote adrenal (hormones that help regulate your metabolism, immune system, blood pressure, response to stress and other essential functions) fatigue.

“If you do, this can affect your recovery time and your metabolism can slow right down,” Eileen warned.

“It is very common in the menopause for women to find that, even though they are exercising every day, they are putting weight on.”

Enjoy a rest

Studies have found that women’s weight gain during the menopause can also be caused by increased stress and anxiety levels.

They can affect the nervous system by “eating up” reserves of magnesium, which is needed for mood, relaxation, sleep and muscle function, which are all vital for exercise.

Eileen advised to have “lots of rest and relaxation” to help the body adapt to all the changes going on inside.

“I know fit ladies don’t want to give up their sport but in the menopause it may be necessary to wind down for a while in order to survive!” she said.

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