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Perimenopausal - Not losing any weight - help?

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  • Perimenopausal - Not losing any weight - help?

    This is for any other perimenopausal women who have a significant amount of weight to lose. Has anyone found success with this plan? I am 45 years old with about 75 pounds to lose. I have had previous success on the Zone, but still fought hunger quite a bit (down 40 pounds from The Zone).

    I have been following the plan now for 6 weeks and initially lost 4 pounds which are now back. Maybe I am eating too much?

    I have been tracking for 10 days now on and this is the general theme (though some days are higher and some days lower - this is about average):

    Carbs = 50-60
    Fat = 90-100
    Protein = 100-110
    Calories = 1700-1800

    Is this just too much food? Too much fat? Certainly not too many carbs. I only eat fruit every other day (blueberries - 1/2 cup).

    I am walking 4 hours per week and have been doing 'lift heavy things' workout 2x weekly for the last three weeks (minus pullups because I don't have a bar yet). I have not done any sprinting.

    The only dairy I have is heavy cream in my coffee, no legumes, no grains whatsoever, sugar is in the form of dark chocolate which I eat nearly every day about 1 oz (72-85%). Large salad every day. Some nuts most days (macadamia or almonds).

    I am open to suggestions. I really wanted this plan to work for me, but I am beginning to get frustrated. Thanks much!

  • #2
    I am peri also- 44yo. I have some tummy flab to rid. It's the toughest thing to give up the fight. Have you had your hormones done? are you estrogen dominant? taking anything as far as supplements? progesterone cream?

    Food: LOTS of leafy greenies- supper sides, salads for lunch
    Ease up or cut out: Nuts, and cheese
    Increase coconut oils, pastured butter
    Increase heavy lifting to three times a week
    get one sprint session either biking, eliptical, running at least once a week-

    40lbs + your primal loss is substantial weight loss. Your body will not let go of the fat super fast at this point. especially given that you are peri and your age. Remember, Primal is a lifestyle, not a race to lose weight. Can you post a specific menu for us to see? that might help.


    • #3
      Thanks -- I do eat lots of leafy greens and use coconut oil or pastured butter for cooking. I use only olive oil for salad dressings.

      Yesterday's Menu:
      1 whole egg + 1 egg white (organic) scrambled in 2t pastured butter
      2 slices (9g protein) lean Canadian Bacon
      Coffee w/1T heavy cream
      Large Salad of mixed greens
      1/8 yellow and orange pepper sliced
      green onions
      1T sliced almonds
      4 oz. white chicken breast
      2T Mediterranean salad dressing (12g fat from olive oil)
      4 sq dark chocolate (6g carb/11g fat)
      1.5 oz. chicken (white)
      1 cup mixed cut fresh veggies (2 baby carrots, pepper slices, raw cauliflower)
      1oz. dry roasted almonds
      1/2 serving Meatballs with creamy coconut curry (MDA recipe from a week or two ago)
      1/2 cup blueberries
      3T coconut milk (full-fat)

      Per Fitday: 1403 cal/94 fat/48 carb/91 pro/15 fiber


      • #4
        I'm 49, been perimenopausal for about two years, and have lost 30 lbs doing CW low fat and 33 lbs after I discovered MDA last November - a total of 63 lbs.
        I know what works for some doesn't work for everyone as we are all different with different health influences, thankfully losing weight has lowered my blood pressure to the point that I no longer need any medication.
        I found after some tinkering that I can't eat a lot of nuts or fruit and chocolate is a rare treat.
        At the moment I have a little dairy, mainly heavy cream in my coconut oil coffee in the morning, and cottage cheese on salads.
        At main meals I try to balance a higher carb veg with a lower one i.e. sweet potato with broccoli, and keep under 50g per day.
        I worked out my protein requirements according to my lean body weight which for me at 5' 3" and total body weight of 148 lbs works out at about 70g.
        Fat, no more than 90g per day and I loosely watch the calories.
        The weight loss has been a steady 1-2 lbs a week. I still have about 18 lbs to go.
        As for exercise... not my favorite occupation, I'm afraid I've been a bit lax over the winter, given the choice of a knitting pattern and a ball of wool or a walk in the cold and dark after work, the wool has won. However I have hopped on the stationary bike for a sprint every now and then. Its difficult after being so heavy (200+ lbs), for so long, to summon up the impetus for regular exercise, but I'm working on it.


        • #5

          I had to double-take your post to make sure I wasn't responding to something I had posted myself a few weeks ago, LOL!

          I have the same issues. You can take a look at my journal and see what I have been going through; I won't repost it all here. Paleobird has some good insight into why she thinks peri-women may need to be more calorie-conscious than men or younger women, and I tend to agree. As soon as I figured out my BMR, cut down calories to around 1500, and got my protein/fat/carbs back into balance, I started to lose weight. For me (my N=1 experiment), I have to take all that into account. I can't just "throw out the scale," or "eat till you are full," or any of that free-form stuff. Something is going on here that is different for my nearly-50-year-old body that doesn't apply.

          Here's a good post by Dr. Michael Eades on carbs, calories, and weight loss that helped put it into perspective for me: The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D. Low-carb and calories

          And here's a good calculator that was recently shared on another Forum thread that got me back on track to losing weight (I hope): BMR Calculator

          For what it's worth, your eating habits look fantastic, but you may have to cut calories and increase your workouts. Obviously something has got to give for you to jumpstart your weightloss.

          Hang in there. I'm sure this will work for you, it's just a matter of fine-tuning!
          Everything I eat has been proved by some doctor or other to be a deadly poison, and everything I don't eat has been proved to be indispensable for life. But I go marching on. ~George Bernard Shaw

          Starting Weight (1/3/2011): 189
          Current Weight: 173

          Goal: To be in the best shape ever by age 50! (5/11/2012)


          • #6
            More fat.

            Lose the leaner cuts to up the fat. trade canadian bacon for real bacon, use chicken thighs instead of breasts. omit the nuts, omit the chocolate for now. No fruit. all fat, moderate protein, and up the exercise. That should get things moving for you.....


            • #7
              I'm just lurking because although I'm not perimenopausal (40yo), I have been stuck for a Looooong time now. Thank you PrincessGrok for the simple instructions. I have tried everything, and just out of sheer frustration and some PMS, I have started eating too much dark chocolate at night the past week. It hasn't caused any weight gain, but I'm still stalled. I hope your suggestions work out for Stephanie, I know I'm going to try cutting out the fat and berries as well. I eat the fattier meats already, but I think I am eating too much and my body doesn't need to burn my body fat for fuel. Sigh! I feel like I have been "Tweaking" for months....oh, I have been.
              My Journal


              • #8
                You might want to try IF.

                2 Years of Intermittent Fasting | The Lean Saloon


                • #9
                  I am 48, and with ~ 3 lbs of body fat left to drop. (Started out needing to lose ~12)

                  Intermittent Fasting has made a huge difference for me. It helped me let go of my habitual hunger (ghrelin-induced) and really listen to my body.

                  I tracked & restricted calories for 6 weeks and that worked fine, but I was getting bored using FitDay. I found LeanSaloon and dropped breakfast. I have an eating window of eight hours (usually 11-7.)

                  I prioritize protein and mostly eat high CLA-grassfed beef & dairy, but I no longer track anything--I have a good sense of portions and my macros now. I eat ~ 20 g of dark chocolate daily.

                  I have been using Pro-Gest for over a year and am feeling like I no longer need it, after going Primal, supplementing with D and magnesium to sufficiency.
                  Last edited by Dragonfly; 03-24-2011, 08:08 AM.
                  Ancestral Nutrition Coaching
                  Pregnancy Nutrition Coaching
                  Primal Pregnancy Nutrition Article


                  • #10
                    Just some things to add to the already great info!

                    Have you had your hormone levels checked? Have you had your thyroid checked (a complete check, T3, T4, free T3, Free T4, Reverse T3 and antibodies??)? Have you checked your vitamin D or are you supplementing?

                    These are some things that can also cause your body to hold onto weight if they're off. They might be just fine... but a lot of times they tend to go awry at the same time as perimenopause and so the docs tend to not test and just give you the "you're just getting older and you're going to gain weight" speech. It's never bad to do a little checking to make sure things are in order in the engine before blaming everything on the gas.

                    For me, I can't do grains AT ALL or most dairy either or I won't lose weight. It causes inflammation for me and that just tells my body I need to heal, not drop fat.

                    I say this a lot around here (really a LOT), but sometimes if you're coming from a lifetime of eating not the right stuff... there are some issues that have built up that need healing before you will see weight loss. A bit of reading, learning, testing and tweaking might be necessary...
                    sigpic "Boy I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid


                    • #11
                      I'm past it now, but periMen caused my sleep to go from seven to no more than four hours a night, which sent my weight climbing higher and higher--a 30# gift of the shutdown! I finally went on very low dose plant-derived HRT, which helped. I know a few women who have slipped into menopause with hardly a blink, but most women I know have had a hell of a time. If I could go back ten years I personally would immediately go primal, then cut the carbs drastically, quit exercising so hard, do more natural supplements sooner (I think red clover and black cohosh helped me the most, more even than hrt), and accept that this is a change that has many complications. What works for one person won't work for everybody. Btw, I found my longtime gyn to not be much help; had to figure it out as I went along. I changed to a younger gyn who worked with me trying bioidenticals, then the plant derived pharma hrt, etc. You will have to read, do trial-error, and figure it out for your body.
                      This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. Ralph Waldo Emerson

                      Any given day you are surrounded by 10,000 idiots.
                      Lao Tsu, founder of Taoism


                      • #12
                        For those of you who have had success with IF, how to you handle the nausea? I have tried to do IF... a couple of times it went okay until around 1pm but most of the time, I am so nauseous by 9:00 a.m. that I end up eating a small meal.

                        Thank you to all who have offered help and advice.


                        • #13
                          I am having the same issue with sleep... or lack thereof. I have never been a great sleeper, but it is not at all uncommon for me to get only 3 or 4 hours for a couple of weeks. When total exhaustion sets in, I sleep well for a couple of nights and it starts all over again. Doc says this is the perimenopause. I wonder if it is impacting my ability to lose weight.


                          • #14
                            I never really planned an IF. I eat normal supper, ( we eat later, like usually 7-8pm in the evening) and get up and have black coffee in the morning, or cold water. I ususally get "busy" take the dog to the park, do my emails, log in to these forums, whatever. Take a shower, do a load of laundry, etc. by then it's early afternoon! Now granted I work from home, so it's a little easier, but really, if you don't "THINK" about it, it's pretty easy. I break my fast with an easy meal, like a harb boiled egg, or a coconut milk smoothie, go work out, and come back and fix a bigger meal. My longest IF is 18 hours.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Stephanie A. View Post
                              I am having the same issue with sleep... or lack thereof. I have never been a great sleeper, but it is not at all uncommon for me to get only 3 or 4 hours for a couple of weeks. When total exhaustion sets in, I sleep well for a couple of nights and it starts all over again. Doc says this is the perimenopause. I wonder if it is impacting my ability to lose weight.
                              Yes, absolutely. A fatigued body is stressed, and the old limbic brain yells: Feed me, Now! I went through periods of bingeing on junk for the first time in my life.
                              This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. Ralph Waldo Emerson

                              Any given day you are surrounded by 10,000 idiots.
                              Lao Tsu, founder of Taoism