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It’s summer -- and you’re going to the beach in your bathing suit...or wearing shorts and tank tops...or at least thinking about it. At this time of year more than any other, you’re more aware of your body. Or it's the holidays -- and you want to look fabulous for those parties you're invited to. Or it's just any day, and you want to look and feel wonderful.
But you step on the scale, and the little arrow is higher. Or you look in the mirror and don’t think you look as good as you used to. You feel heavier. You feel like you look different.
It’s a common problem for women.
You’ve gained a few pounds.. Your body looks different. You’re noticing a new, very annoying, roundness to your tummy. Your waistline seems to have disappeared. The scale is becoming your enemy...yet you’re not doing anything differently than you used to. What is going on?!?!
Many books and articles insist that women put on weight during menopause because they’re older. It’s not a function of menopause, they argue. It’s a function of aging. Your metabolic rate drops as you age, which accounts for the weight gain.
Well, maybe this applies to the average woman in menopause who is in her 50s . But what if you’re in your 20s or 30s -- and you start noticing the creeping weight gain and new thicker body contours? Dozens of prematurely menopausal women I’ve spoken with have seen it happen to them as well. We’re not middle-aged. We’re still young. So, regardless of what the books say, it can’t be age that causes these changes. And it isn’t. It’s your hormones, plain and simple.
So there’s a good chance you’ll notice your weight going up -- even though there’s been no change in your diet or exercise habits. You might notice your body shape changing as well -- shifting from a "pear" shape to an "apple" -- as weight starts to accumulate more around your waist and abdomen instead of your hips, thighs and buttocks. You might notice your waistline disappearing, as your body becomes thicker through the middle. And, finally, you might notice that dreaded "buddha belly" -- a new rounder tummy, especially below your belly button, that just doesn’t want to go away.
Okay, so these changes aren’t life-threatening. . . but they do affect your ego at a time when you least need it. They also affect older women in menopause, of course. But, in truth, it’s often worse for women in premature menopause. The biggest difference? When you’re going through this in your 20s or 30s, the changes in your appearance are often more apparent than the changes an older woman in menopause goes through. (especially to you), simply because most other women your age aren’t experiencing the same thing. Other women in their 20s and 30s aren’t getting the so-called "middle-aged spread" that women in their 50s experience, but you are.
Why is this happening? Most of this is due to your hormone levels. Lower levels of estrogen may cause a variety of physical side effects. First, because estrogen is stored in fat, many researchers believe that, when you enter menopause -- whether naturally or through surgery, your body responds by holding on to fat cells in an effort to boost the lagging estrogen levels. The result? It’s tougher to lose fat and much easier to keep the pounds on.
Second, as estrogen levels drop, your level of androgens -- the so-called "male" hormones -- increases in relation to the estrogen. Unopposed by the higher levels of estrogen your body used to have, the androgens produce male characteristics -- in this case, the shift in body fat from your hips, thighs and buttocks to your midsection, resulting in the "apple" shape that is more common in men and in postmenopausal women (which, incidently, also increases your risk of heart disease.)
Third, low estrogen levels affect the production of collagen -- which results in drier. thinner skin, sagginess of tissue, and lack of muscle tone -- all of which contributes to a change in your body shape.
Low progesterone levels (in relation to estrogen -- which is popularly called "estrogen dominance") also cause a number of side effects. Among the more common ones: increased bloating and water retention -- which may not be actual fat, but makes you look heavier, and blood sugar fluctuations -- which can increase your appetite and slow your metabolism.
Finally, there’s the mood connection. As you know, declining hormone levels can cause mood swings, depression, anxiety. This is because the levels of serotonins and endorphins in your brain apparently drop in the face of fluctuating hormones. What raises serotonin levels in your brain? Certain foods, like chocolates. Often, when you go through premature menopause, you notice you have food cravings -- much like you did when you had PMS. But unlike PMS, your hormones don’t bounce back to regular levels, so you may have food cravings longer than in the past. . . and, unfortunately, cave in and eat more of the foods you shouldn’t, like fats, salty snacks and sweets.
Regardless of what some people have claimed, then, there does appear to be a biological basis for the changes in your body. It’s not in your mind. It’s in your hormones.
Centurion van help develop a customized program to address all of the above symptoms and get you ready for the beach.
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My wife was complaining about our sex life and I was always tired. I had gained a lot of weight around the middle. It all happened so quickly. After talking with a consultant at Centurion, I had my blood tested and my testosterone was extremely low. They gave me a few items including a cream I applied daily. Within a few weeks, I had lost seven (7) pounds, my bench press went up 40 pounds, my sex drive was back and my wife was ecstatic. I felt like a teenager again.