8 Ways To Lose Weight After 60
There’s no sugar coating it (literally and figuratively) — trying to lose a few pounds after 60 feels a lot like trying twice as hard to do half as much. While shedding some unwanted weight in our senior years can be a challenge, it’s far from impossible. All it takes is a little determination, a few new habits, and realizing each stage of life requires a slightly different approach to health. To help you tackle weight loss after 60, here are a few helpful tips on how you can realistically accomplish the feat, stay in shape, and feel good about yourself.
When it comes to exercise, strength training usually takes a back seat to cardio workouts — especially among older adults. However, the importance of incorporating weights into your exercise routine goes deeper than the muscles alone. It strengthens the tendons, ligaments, and bones, which helps prolong mobility and agility as we age. Because our metabolisms slow as we get older, we also lose muscle mass, which then contributes to an even slower metabolism. Therefore, strength training not only helps reverse the cycle of a slowing metabolism and muscle loss, but it can also ignite the cycle of weight loss while decreasing the risk of injury, improving balance and coordination, and increasing energy levels.
Curb your carbs and sugars
There are plenty of healthy reasons to cut carbs and sugars, but one of the biggest reasons specific to older adults is insulin resistance. This is when cells in the liver, muscles, and fat don’t respond to insulin and fail to take up glucose from the blood, creating high blood sugar. This, in turn, leads to pre-diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and Type 2 diabetes, making it much harder for the body to shed the extra weight. The solution? Cut the carbs and sugars from your diet and eat more proteins, (good) fats, and leafy greens.
Drinking water won’t directly help you lose weight. But drinking water is often the cure for those who think they’re hungry — when they’re just thirsty. The prescription is to drink half your body weight (in pounds) in ounces of water. So, as an example, if you weigh 150 pounds, you should drink 75 ounces of water a day.
Add magnesium to your diet
Did you know magnesium is a metabolism-boosting mineral that helps synthesize proteins, carbs, and fats? More importantly, it activates adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the fundamental energy storage molecule in the body. As such, incorporating magnesium to your diet can help you avoid the energy crash often associated with electrolyte depletion, as well as make sticking to a low-carb regimen a little easier. The simplest way to boost your magnesium levels is to take a daily multivitamin or extra supplement, eat more greens and nuts, add magnesium citrate powder to your water, or minimize your sugar intake — as it depletes magnesium.
Overeating has long been a coping mechanism for dealing with stress. Think about it — when you’re anxious, it’s that quart of ice cream in the freezer that seems to call the loudest. However delicious the comfort food may be, the extra calories are rarely a substitute for effectively managing stress or weight. Instead of eating, try taking time to relax. This can be as simple as finding a moment to breathe, doing a little yoga or tai chi, going on a walk, meditating, or praying. The trick is to engage in a healthy activity that will simultaneously help cut down on the needless snacking while also helping you find a moment of calmness or balance in your life.
Soak up some sun
In addition to curbing your carbs and managing your stress, getting a daily dose of vitamin D is another way to deter frequent trips to the kitchen. Not only is vitamin D involved in calcium absorption, immune function, and protecting bone, muscle, and heart health, but it also functions to help regulate hunger signals. In other words, get outside and bask in the knowledge that you’re controlling your appetite.
Get good rest
Quality sleep has tremendous effects on overall health and wellness. For one, a good night’s rest can result in having more energy for daily activities, including your strength training workout. Additionally, when you sleep, your body produces the human growth hormone (HGH) — and HGH is an essential hormone to your strength, energy, and quality of life. It is recommended that senior adults get 7–8 hours of sleep. The best way to do this is by creating a regular bedtime routine. You may also want to avoid anything with a screen immediately before you hit the sack.
Perhaps one of the best things you can do is to go easy on yourself. Too often we have the habit of working ourselves too hard or worrying if we don’t lose weight as quickly as we’d like. In other words, go at your own pace. After all, if you push your exercise routine to the point of exhaustion, chances are you will be too sore (or tired) to enjoy everyday activities. Likewise, if you cut your calories too much, your metabolism may slow; or even worse, your weight loss may lead to muscle loss. The goal is to keep yourself healthy — not make yourself miserable.
At Summit Vista, we realize safety, health, and well-being are an important consideration when exploring your retirement living options. That’s why we make our community the maintenance-free experience you desire with the peace of mind you’d expect for a happy, healthy future that’s free of concern. For more information about the benefits offered in a Life Plan Community, speak with your retirement counselor, or call 801-758-3131 today!