Thoughts on Better Aging

Why Drinking Alcohol Makes Menopausal Weight Gain Worse

May 20th, 2016

Alcohol can worsen the decline in metabolism women already experience at menopause.

Have you picked up a bit of a spare tire at menopause? Are you trying to diet your way back to your pre-menopause figure? If so, you probably don’t plan to chow down on donuts, pizza, or cheeseburgers any time soon.

But here’s what you may not realize:

Many alcoholic drinks are almost as highly caloric as those fattening treats.

For example, a pina colada has a similar amount of calories to a donut, while a pint of lager delivers around as many calories as a slice of pizza, and sipping a frozen margarita will give you about as many calories as a cheeseburger.

It’s not just calories you have to worry about when drinking alcohol—though it is true that alcohol is packed with empty calories, and juices, sugary sodas, and other mixers certainly don’t help.

Alcohol can cause weight gain by changing your metabolism.

Here’s how it works:

To your body, alcohol is basically a poison. Alcohol cannot be stored like other types of food, and your body wants to get rid of it as quickly as possible. To make this happen, other metabolic processes such as fat oxidation take a back seat to alcohol metabolism. Your metabolism stops processing fats and sugars as efficiently as it should, and, over time, this can lead to weight gain.

Menopausal Women Don’t Need More Problems with Metabolism

If you’re going through menopause, your metabolism has already been handicapped by hormonal changes:

  • Declining estrogen production in the ovaries causes the body to focus on converting calories to fat
  • Declining testosterone makes it more difficult to build muscle, and the less muscle you have, the fewer calories you will burn
  • Low thyroid may also contribute to a slower metabolism in many menopausal women
  • Excess cortisol from stress tells your body to conserve calories, especially as belly fat

How to Get Your Metabolism Back on Track

The good news is, you don’t necessarily have to give up alcohol in order to boost your metabolism. However, you should definitely limit alcohol intake to a “moderate” amount—which for women is considered one alcoholic drink per day. If you’re trying to lose weight, it would also be wise to opt for lower-calorie drinks such as red wine, vodka & soda, or gin & soda.

You should also consider using bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to correct the hormonal imbalances that have slowed your metabolism at menopause. Renew Woman™ can provide the safe and effective treatment you need. We base all treatments on lab tests of relevant hormones and we provide individualized dosages to bring your body chemistry back into balance. To learn more, call us at 800-859-7511.

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