Table of Contents
It’s no secret that aging can bring along its share of changes to your body. But that doesn’t mean you have to accept the effects of age on your physique. You can still get back into shape and feel healthy and energized, even if you’re over 50.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the reasons why it might be a bit more difficult to lose weight as you age and some simple steps that you can take to start seeing results right away. We’ll help you develop a comprehensive lifestyle plan to help you reach your goal of losing weight after 50.
The truth is that with the right tools, anyone can transform their health and wellness journey. Ready to get started? Let’s dive into how to lose weight after 50!
Creating a Caloric Deficit
The key to weight loss at any age is creating a caloric deficit. That means burning off more calories than you consume.
The first step to creating your caloric deficit is to calculate your total weekly calorie needs—the number of calories your body needs to maintain weight- when considering your basal metabolic rate (BMR) and activity level.
A simple online calculator can easily determine this for you. Once you know your total weekly calorie needs, aim to create a deficit of 500–1,000 calories per day below it.
Doing this while also ensuring you are receiving the proper nutrition is essential. To maintain your muscle mass, make sure you’re getting enough protein. The recommended dose is 0.8–1.3 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight, depending on your activity level.
Additionally, you will want to meet your daily requirements for micronutrients like vitamins and minerals and dietary fiber. Eating whole, unprocessed foods like fruits and vegetables and lean proteins like fish and chicken can help you maintain a healthy weight without compromising your nutrient intake.
To achieve a calorie deficit, you may also want to consider making adjustments to your activity level. Increasing your activity level can mean anything from purposely adding exercise to your daily routine to finding different ways to get more movement in your day, such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Even small changes like these can make a big difference when done consistently.
Finding the right balance between cutting your total calorie intake and increasing your activity level can be challenging at first, but it’s important to stick with it. Results may not come quickly, but they will come. You can achieve your weight loss goals with patience, consistency, and commitment.
Depending on your health issues, talk with a physician or nutrition specialist about the best approach for you. They will be able to help customize a diet and exercise plan that works with your lifestyle and helps keep you healthy while reaching your goals.
Eating Right for Your Age
When it comes to weight loss, nutrition is just as important as exercise. And as we age, our nutritional needs change. That’s why it’s important to adjust your eating to fit your age and personal needs. Here are some things to consider:
- Calorie Intake: It’s normal for our metabolism to slow down a bit as we age. That means you may need to adjust your calorie intake—even when eating healthy foods—to help maintain or lose your current weight. Consider tracking your daily calorie count for a month until you know how much food you can eat before going over the recommended daily intake.
- Protein: Protein helps aid muscle growth and maintenance, which is especially important for post-50 adults who may be less physically active than younger people. Many lean meats and fish are great sources of protein, but if you’re vegetarian or vegan, there are plenty of other options like beans and even protein shakes or bars.
- Fiber: Eating enough fiber helps keep digestion regular, reduce cholesterol, and control blood sugar levels. Some good sources of fiber include oats, apples, broccoli, beans, and lentils!
It takes time and effort to figure out the right balance of nutrition for your body, so don’t be afraid to seek professional help if you need it!
Working with a dietician can help you identify the right foods to fill your diet and ensure you get the right balance of nutrition to stay healthy and fit. If you struggle with portion control, meal prepping can help make sure you don’t eat too much or too little in a day.
In addition to improving your diet, staying hydrated is also important. Dehydration can lead to fatigue and headaches and increase your risk of other health problems. Aim to drink 8-10 8-ounce glasses of water daily, and don’t forget to drink before, during, and after physical activity.
Finally, if you’re going to indulge, indulge the right way. Making healthier swap-ins for less healthy meals can help you stay on track with your nutrition goals. For example, you can use plain Greek yogurt instead of sour cream for many recipes, try adding mashed cauliflower to dishes instead of potatoes, and use liquid-based cooking oils instead of butter or margarine.
Making small changes like these can help you enjoy the foods you love while still eating well and managing your weight. With the right diet plan and some perseverance, you can be sure to reach your weight loss goals after 50.
Making Exercise a Priority
You know you need to exercise, but it can be tough to stick with a program when you’re trying to juggle your family, friends, and a full-time job. But the truth is, prioritizing exercise is essential to weight loss after 50.
If you’re having trouble getting going on your weight loss journey, here are some tips to help you get started:
Set a Schedule
Create a plan for yourself and set aside some time each week to work out—even if it’s just 30 minutes a day. Find activities that require minimal equipment (like walking or swimming), or invest in some basic home gym equipment for use at home. You can also join an online fitness class or look for ones in your community that have been designed for adults over 50.
Find an Exercise Buddy
Having someone there with you to encourage and motivate you can make all the difference in sticking with an exercise routine. Ask your friends and family members to see if anyone else is looking for support with their fitness goals —you might just find someone who wants to join you!
Celebrate Small Wins
Finally, don’t forget to treat yourself every now and then when it comes to exercising. Recognize how far you’ve come, reward yourself for showing up each day, and celebrate milestones—it will keep you motivated and help keep your spirits up as you achieve your weight loss goal!
Reducing Stress Levels
Are you feeling stressed lately? It’s no secret that stress doesn’t do your body any favors, especially regarding weight loss. But don’t panic – there are some things you can do to reduce stress levels.
Here are a few easy steps you can take to reduce stress:
- Find time to relax: Make sure you’re carving out time in your schedule for activities that make you feel calm and relaxed. This could include yoga, meditation, gardening, or simply taking a nice walk outside.
- Get enough sleep: Sleep is an important part of the weight loss process – studies suggest that adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night.
- Practice mindfulness: When thoughts or emotions start to overwhelm you, practice mindfulness by taking three deep breaths and focusing on the present moment.
- Laugh more often: Studies have shown that laughing helps reduce stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. So why not watch your favorite sitcom, listen to a comedy podcast, or spend time with friends who always make you laugh?
Take care of yourself by reducing your stress levels, and watch as your body responds in kind with improved health and weight loss progress!
Building Muscle Mass
Building muscle mass as you age is essential to weight loss after 50. You can achieve this by eating healthy protein sources, like lean meats, eggs, and beans, and doing resistance exercises like weightlifting or bodyweight training. Adding this type of exercise to your routine will increase your lean muscle mass, boost your metabolism, and help you lose weight.
Here are a few tips on how to build muscle:
- Start out with low weights that gradually increase over time – this helps you avoid injury and burn fat without adding bulk.
- Do exercises that work your body differently – you should focus both on upper body exercises, like pushups and bicep curls, and lower body moves, like squats or lunges.
- Make sure to get enough rest – aim for eight hours of sleep a night so your muscles have time to recover between workouts.
- Listen to your body – if something hurts or feels off during a certain move, stop immediately and consult with a trainer or doctor if necessary.
By adding some resistance training into your routine as you age, you’ll not only help preserve bone density but build strong muscle mass that will go a long way toward helping you reach your weight loss goals.
Supplementing With Vitamins and Minerals
If you’re looking for an extra edge in your weight-loss plan, it might be worth supplementing with vitamins and minerals. As we age, it’s common to experience a decrease in our body’s ability to absorb nutrients from food. The good news is that taking supplements can help by providing additional vital vitamins and minerals that are otherwise hard to come by.
Which ones to take?
Talk to your doctor first when deciding which vitamins and minerals to take. They may recommend some of the following:
- Vitamin B12: This vitamin helps metabolize fat and carbohydrates, among other things.
- Vitamin D: Getting enough vitamin D can help reduce your risk of developing obesity and cardiovascular disease
- Calcium: Calcium is important for reducing inflammation in the body and helping with weight loss.
- Magnesium helps regulate metabolism, promote healthy digestion, and lower insulin resistance.
Make sure you’re getting adequate doses of these essential nutrients from your diet, but don’t be afraid to try a supplement if needed.
In summary, weight loss after 50 is certainly not impossible. You just have to take it one step at a time. You can start by setting realistic goals and committing to a balanced diet and consistent exercise. Track your progress and reward yourself along the way with your favorite non-food treats and activities. Be sure to talk to your healthcare provider about any health concerns and get their guidance on any medications you may need.
Sticking to a healthy lifestyle and gradually losing weight can help you to look and feel great. Once you’ve established healthy habits and found a routine that works for you, you’ll be in the best position to maintain your weight loss and stay fit and healthy.