Home Weight loss and diets Understanding the Causes of Weight Gain During Menopause 
Weight loss and diets

Understanding the Causes of Weight Gain During Menopause 

Causes of weight gain during menopause

To all women who read this post, have you ever experienced sudden weight gain and don’t even know what’s going wrong? You are not alone. Women may find it more difficult to maintain their normal weight as they age.

During the perimenopause stage which occurs a few years before menopause, weight gain frequently begins. Weight gain with menopause is common. By maintaining an active lifestyle and paying attention to good eating habits, you might be able to reduce it.

The relationship between weight and menopause will be covered in this read, along with some practical methods for weight loss throughout the shift.

Understanding menopause in women 

Menopause is the end of your menstrual cycle. If you haven’t had your period in a year, you are likely to be in menopause. A lot of women believe that weight gain is a normal component of menopause.

Hormonal changes occur during four distinct times of a woman’s life. Among them are before menopause, perimenopause, postmenopausal, and menopause.

But ageing and changing lifestyles are more likely to be blamed. Menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, insomnia, or low mood, can make it difficult to exercise and eat healthily, which may lead to weight gain.

When does weight gain with menopause begin?

It usually peaks during the perimenopause, which is the period just before menopause. You will continue to experience menstruation during the perimenopause. But it might be evolving, with symptoms like weight gain, mood changes, and hot flashes accompanying it.

These symptoms, which are caused by changes in the amounts of progesterone and estrogen your body produces, can begin seven to ten years before menopause. Hormonal variations can cause rapid weight gain in addition to other issues.

Causes for weight gain during menopause 

Experiencing weight gain during menopause is normal. But what causes this weight gain? The following are the major factors that contribute to weight gain in women during menopause:


Women between the ages of 45 and 55 typically gain about half a kilogram annually. Loss of muscular mass with age lowers your metabolism and makes you acquire weight. Therefore, you are likely to gain weight if your diet remains unchanged.

A sudden drop in estrogen

Frequent aerobic activity can help you lose weight. Estrogen levels fluctuating are a major factor in weight gain.

One of the main sex hormones in females is estrogen. It contributes to physical traits of sex, controlling the menstrual cycle, preserving bone density, and controlling cholesterol levels

The menopause causes a significant decrease in estrogen levels.

Although low estrogen during menopause does not directly cause weight gain, it can result in increases in body fat overall, particularly in the abdomen. Medical professionals link type 2 diabetes and heart disease to middle-aged obesity.

Distribution of fat and estrogen 

After menopause, your waist may accumulate fat instead of your hips and thighs due to decreased estrogen levels. Belly fat makes up 15–20% of a postmenopausal woman’s total body weight, whereas 5–8% of a premenopausal woman’s weight.

Genetic factors 

Genetic factors may contribute to weight increase around menopause. You most likely will if your parents or other close relatives are overweight in the midsection.

Life pressures 

Various life pressures, such as job demands or caring for elderly parents, can make it difficult to prioritize your health during menopause. Poor sleep is also a factor in weight gain during menopause.

Is this weight increase dangerous?

Gaining weight during menopause can negatively impact your health. Being overweight, particularly in the middle of your body, raises your risk of certain health problems, such as breathing issues, heart-related issues, and diabetes type 2.

Additionally, being overweight increases your risk of developing some cancers, such as endometrial, breast, and colon cancers.

Which diet is ideal for gaining weight during menopause? 

Studies have demonstrated that a Mediterranean diet helps reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome, osteoporosis, dementia, cardiovascular disease, and several types of cancer. It can also help maintain a healthy balance of gut flora, which aids with digestion.

The plant-forward diet restricts sugar, sodium, processed carbs, trans and saturated fats, and processed meals. It is rich in anti-inflammatory nutrients.

It consists of whole foods that are high in fibre, antioxidants, and nutrients, which work together to promote good health and the maintenance of a healthy weight.

Tips to lose weight gained during menopause 

Menopause results in vast changes in women both physically and emotionally. Since you can control all these things by following certain practices, a few healthy practices are listed below:

Move more 

Engaging in physical activity, such as strength training and aerobic exercise, can assist you in maintaining a healthy weight and shedding excess weight. Gaining muscle improves your body’s ability to burn calories, which helps you maintain weight control.

Experts advise moderate aerobic exercise for the majority of healthy adults. This entails vigorous aerobic exercise, such as jogging, for at least 75 minutes per week or at least 150 to 200 minutes of brisk walking.

Strength training activities should also be performed at least twice a week. You may need to exercise more if you want to reach specific fitness objectives or lose weight.

Schedule some time for self-care

Engaging in enjoyable activities can aid in your physical fitness. Yoga, gardening, and other energetic pastimes might be examples of this. You might also sleep better if you move more. It might be simpler to exercise more as a result.

Examine your sweet habit

Check your sugar intake often and keep it in control. Avoid overconsuming Sugar-sweetened liquids, including juices, soft drinks, energy drinks, flavoured waters, and sweetened coffee and tea.

Additional sugar-containing foods include cakes, pies, cookies, doughnuts, ice cream, and candies.

Limit your alcohol intake

Drinking alcohol increases the number of calories in your diet and increases your chance of gaining weight. Be in the company of friends and family who encourage you to eat a balanced diet and get more exercise. Even better, come together and modify your way of life as a team.

Prioritizing sleep 

It is essential to get enough good sleep if you want to keep your weight in check and stay healthy overall. A poor night’s sleep can make you gain weight. Changes in circadian rhythms and the quality of sleep can have an impact on hormones related to appetite,

composition of body fat, and energy expenditure.

Reducing weight gain associated with menopause can be achieved by concentrating on obtaining enough restorative sleep.

Mindful eating

Eating with awareness can help alter eating habits and possibly stop weight gain. A person can learn to recognize internal hunger cues instead of only exterior ones by practising mindful eating.

Emotional eating and binge eating can be useful strategies. Meal tracking can assist an individual in determining the unhealthy items they frequently eat and the situations in which they do so. Specific dietary adjustments can be made with the aid of this information.

Wrapping up 

Menopause can be emotionally and physically exhausting. On the other hand, consuming a well-balanced diet, getting adequate sleep and exercise, and avoiding weight gain can help lower the risk of illness.

Try your best to accept the changes that come with ageing, even if it could take some time to become used to the processes going on in your body.


  1. How long does menopause weight gain last?

It varies from woman to woman. Some may experience temporary weight gain, and a few may struggle for a long time.

  1. Is stress a factor for weight gain?

Yes. Chronic stress will trigger hormonal imbalances and increase the craving for high-calorie foods, resulting in weight gain.

  1. Can lifestyle changes give good results in reducing menopause weight?

Yes. Following proper diet and exercise and getting enough sleep will aid in good results.

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