When it comes to weight loss, women and men are quite different.There is a lot of information out there on how to lose weight. Unfortunately, this information very often does not take into account our individual differences or our unique biology.
If you have a slow metabolism, you will burn fewer calories than someone who has a very fast one. If you are very tall, the amount you need to eat is different than it is for someone very short. Even more extreme, are the differences between men and women and the strategies that work best for each.
If you are female and you are trying to lose weight, then here are some tips that you might not have heard of or read before. In this article, I will show you ideas and techniques that work very well for women in their quest to lose weight. These are ideas that recognize the unique biological make-up of women and help them harness that biology to achieve the goal of weight or fat loss.
WEIGHT LOSS IDEAS FOR WOMEN
Below are several ideas for losing weight or excess fat which work very well for women. Of course, some of them work for men as well. If you adopt these techniques, you will be successful in your weight and fat loss.
Women may consider lifting weight as a “manly” thing to do. But weight lifting gives you resistance training whis is helpful in your weight loss. The biggest tip that every woman should know when it comes to weight loss, is that they should try weightlifting or another form of ‘resistance’ training.
Cardio exercises are all in vogue and so popular. But resistance training can help you lose weight. In other words, women would be well advised to drop the over-reliance on cardio exercise and start lifting some weights!
Many women worry about this because they think that they are going to get ‘too bulky’ and that the resultant look will be unattractive. But the unique biology of women makes it hard to become “bulky”. What’s more likely is that added muscle mass will simply speed up your metabolism.
Muscle is “metabolically active” and that will allow you to burn fat at a faster rate.
In fact, one of the main reasons men lose weight faster than women is because men tend to have more muscle.
An added advantage of lifting weights is that it can help women to gain the right proportions. Weight lifting will assist women to tone up- to increase their tone and definition in order to get rid of things like cellulite. It will even increase the production of fat burning hormones! The fastest way to get a more attractive body as a woman is to lift weights.
Consider Your Biology And Other Lifestyle Factors
Hormones play a large role in fat burning and muscle mass and the biggest drivers here include testosterone and estrogen. Estrogen, the female hormone promotes fat storage (hence the reason why women tend to be softer and more curvy). On the other hand, testosterone (the male hormone) is responsible to increase muscle mass (hence the reason why men tend to have more muscle mass). But remember that men have a little estrogen and women have a little testosterone.
Women are at a disadvantage already when it comes to burning fat because of this. But for women, other issues may make things even more complicated when it comes to weight loss. For instance, the menstrual cycle may cause hormones to fluctuate at different times of the month. Premenstrual syndrome is a condition that affects women about a week or two before their cycle. Women may experience bloating, moodiness, and headaches.  It can also lead to food cravings and overeating. This is not a good condition if you are trying to lose weight.
Another issue unique to women is the effect of hormone-based contraceptive medications. More of an issue is the role of contraceptive medication. Some of them can lead to weight gain (especially estrogen containing), although others may lead to weight loss (mostly progesterone only).
Then there are conditions like polycystic ovaries which only affect women and like hypothyroidism which is more common for women. If you find it very difficult to lose weight, consult your doctor.
And make sure that you are eating well and getting all of your nutrients in order to support your body’s metabolic function and hormone balance.
Finally, note that these hormones also impact on emotional eating – which studies confirm to be a larger issue for women versus men. Keep this in mind and try to maintain your emotional state while avoiding temptation as far as you can.
Easy Does It: Throw Away “All Or Nothing”
One thing that trips up women on a weight loss journey is an “all or nothing approach”. If I mess up and eat a piece of cake, the weight loss trip is over. Some beat themselves up for so-called slip-ups that they abandon the diet they were on and throw away their goal of weight or fat loss. Then they decide they might as well eat donuts and ice cream all they want because it is “over”.
We all make mistakes. Forgive yourself and move on. If you fail one class in your college course, do you quit college altogether? Of course, not! You learn from it and work harder. Same with eating “forbidden” food during our weight loss journey. When you slip up, dust yourself up, identify what made you eat what you have planned not to eat and find a way to prevent this from happening again.
Make water Your Friend
It is critical that you make drinking lots of water as part of your weight loss program. The traditional advice is to drink half of your body weight in ounces. This applies to men as well as women. But the angle for women, in particular, is that when they undergo hormonal changes, as during premenstrual syndrome, they may drink less water.
How so? Because during emotional eating, women tend to eat “junk” or unhealthy food and drink unhealthy drinks. They may drink more soda than water. This can lead to an increase in their caloric intake because of the “empty calories” in soda. In addition, by drinking less water, they may actually eat more by mistaking thirst for hunger pangs.
Drinking lots of water helps weight loss and general well being in 2 ways: thirst my masquerade as hunger. Drinking water makes you “full” and makes you less likely to snack. There are other great benefits of keeping hydrated which I covered in a previous post.
Embrace Baby Steps. Rome Was Not Built In a Day!
If you need to lose 45 pounds of weight, be realistic as to how long it might take. It is totally unreasonable to expect the fat to “melt off” in 3 weeks! Having a realistic goal keeps you interested and engaged in your weight loss journey. For instance, instead of saying you want to lose 45 pounds, you can set a goal of losing 1-2 pound a week. This is obviously more attainable. And you can tell yourself that you are going to do this for 1 year.
When you do gain 1-2 pounds in the first week, celebrate! This will motivate you for the next week.If you have exercise as part of your program, and you should, start with something easy and familiar. I have already alluded to lifting weights or resistance training.
For your cardio, do what is easy first. Walk! Almost everyone can walk, so why don’t you start with that? Before you buy an expensive gym membership, walk around your neighbourhood. Thirty minutes a day is all you need. If you can’t do 30 minutes, start with 10 minutes or 15 minutes and build on that. When you get comfortable with walking and you are doing it regularly, you may now consider going to the gym.
Set Up An Accountability System
Do you have someone to hold you accountable when you are executing your well-thought out weight loss program? A spouse, partner, sister, brother or friend? You need someone to encourage you when you feel quitting; a person to share your success with you so that you can be more encouraged to continue.
For many younger people, they turn to social media. If you are the kind who engages on social media, let strangers (AKA your followers) be your accountability partners. Pour short term goals on social media- Facebook, Instagram or even Twitter! I bet you won’t want to look heavier 3 weeks after your “almost skinny” photo on social media. This way you will press on. You will persevere even through difficult times.
Women have peculiar challenges when it comes to weight loss that makes it more difficult for them to lose weight. I have presented some of the ideas on how to overcome these challenges and take your weight loss journey further.
I have emphasized the importance of resistance training such as lifting weights. I have also debunked the myth that lifting weight will make a woman less feminine. Drinking lots of water is critical to effective weight loss. In addition, I have stated that it is important that every woman on a weight loss program remember the unique biology of women and make needed adjustments.
It is important not to regard your weight loss goals as an “all or nothing” process. Set small goals and celebrate your victories. Don’t give up just because of a slip up. Take baby steps and go slowly but surely. Rome was not built in a day. Finally, find a family member or friend to hold you accountable and keep you on your chosen path. If you don’t have any such person, post your journey on social media. You Instagram, Facebook of Twitter followers will happily be your accountability partners!
Relax! It’s going to be fine.
If you need further information on how to lose weight as a woman, you can find it HERE.
Until next time, this is the Natural Medicine Ninja signing off.