The Best Weight Loss Plan For Seniors
So you retired from working after 40 years and gained a little weight after a couple of years. No big deal, right? Wrong! Actually gaining weight at any age is unhealthy, especially if it goes to extremes. Getting older is not an excuse to gain weight, and if you‘ve been experiencing this, you might want to consider this – your body can’t take metabolize the way it used to and you are going to have to change your habits. No, it’s not a good excuse to say that you’re old and set in your ways either. Weight loss for seniors is one of the keys to a longer, healthier life with fewer trips to the doctor and more fun times with family and friends.
When it comes to weight loss for seniors, there is one thing to really keep in mind. Those extra pounds didn’t just happen all at once. That weight accumulated gradually over time. Yes, those late night snacks, the extra piece of cake or that other piece of pizza have all come back to haunt you. Now you’re at a weight you’ve never reached before, you’re slower, more tired and your body aches from carrying around the weight. These are not signs of age, they are signs that you are overweight and that you need to make some changes for your own good.
You could just say that your body has slowed down in your old age and that you just don’t digest things as efficiently as you used to – and you would be right. This is because as you age, your muscle mass decreases and that translates into a slower metabolic rate. Add to that the fact that you’re not out running around as much as you did when you were younger and it’s no wonder you’ve got a few more pounds to carry. The worst part of it is that as you get older, you burn fewer and fewer calories for the same activity. That means senior weight loss would depend on an increase of activity with a similar level of caloric input.
Senior weight loss is best accomplished by not focusing dieting, but rather, focusing on healthy eating and regular exercise. There are several ways that seniors can get their weight under control that don’t require much more than a little pre-planning and thoughtful choices. One of the best suggestions is to shop for food after you have already eaten. Going shopping when you’re hungry can lead to impulse buys of cookies, snacks and other fattening and unhealthy foods. Grab a quick lunch while you make a list of things you really need and you’ll not only make healthier choices at the grocery store, but you’ll also save money.
Fill up on fiber, such as fruits and vegetables they will make you feel full and satisfied and not add on extra pounds. For dinner, steamed or raw vegetables on half your plate and equal parts of protein and starch on the other is one way to assure that you’re getting a balanced meal. Any meal that is not loaded with fat and empty calories is a good way to promote elderly weight loss. That doesn’t mean that seniors shouldn’t or can’t enjoy pizza or a fast food burger and fries once in a while, but only occasionally. Even if you do eat a fatty meal, remember to have fruit for dessert and to adjust other meals in the day accordingly. It’s really all about controlling what you eat, not depriving yourself of anything.
Exercise is one of the most effective means of weight loss for seniors, but it can be tricky to find the appropriate exercises. One way to gauge your own fitness level is to look at the way your body behaves as you are moving. First, let’s imagine that we have a scale that measures activity level from 1 to 10. In this scenario, 10 is the most vigorous and 1 the least. When participating in moderate activity for you, when you would determine to be a 5 on our scale – you can still talk or sing a song without being out of breath. Activities that push to level 8 on the intensity scale increases your heart rate and you won’t be able to talk more than a few words. Only exercise to the point that your tolerance allows you to.
Physical activity is extremely important for senior weight loss, but how much exercise is enough? Experts say that 30 to 60 minutes of activity that increases your heart rate is sufficient each day to maintain your weight and keep you healthy. 60 to 90 minutes per day for elderly weight loss and maintaining senior weight loss is also recommended. That doesn’t mean that it’s got to be done all at the same time. A few minutes here and there spread out during the day is fine, it’s the idea of moving around, burning calories that counts.
Everyday household chores are a great way to exercise without any special effort. Sweeping the floor briskly, running a vacuum cleaner, mopping, dusting, all these things burn calories and encourage weight loss for seniors. It’s important to remember, only do what you’re physically able to do, stop when you’ve reached your limit and rest. Continue on later in the day after you’ve had a healthy lunch or snack, it’s not a race.
Elderly weight loss experts agree that low impact activities and exercises such as walking, biking, and swimming are very effective. Additionally, strength training, when done properly can replace fat with muscle in a short amount of time because muscles burn calories when they are used, it’s what fuels them. Adding balance and flexibility exercises to your regimen will also help to prevent falls.
Senior weight loss can be challenging, but there is always a way to overcome such challenges. A balanced diet, smart, regular exercise and the will to succeed will take you far on the road to a healthier trimmer you. Remember that f you’re thinking about starting a new fitness program, it’s best to consult with your doctor first to make sure you’re medically able to. As long as you get the OK, go for it! You have nothing but unwanted weight to lose and a new, healthier life to gain.