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Why Am I Gaining Fat in My 40’s? Body Contouring Tips for Over 40’s

Aging can throw us different types of curveballs. However, gaining weight and many failed body contouring attempts in your 40’s is an unexpected one. As women, we often have changes happen to our bodies that are confusing or unanticipated that others don’t talk about. Therefore, when it happens to us it can catch us off guard.

It is not uncommon for women to gain weight or have stubborn fat by the time they reach their 40’s. Hence, non-invasive body contouring treatments are becoming an increasingly sought-after option by women in their 40’s to assist with the removal of unwanted and stubborn pockets of fat.

4 Causes of Fat Gain in Your 40’s

Slowing Metabolism

With each decade, our metabolism slows down. As a result, it renders our go-to diet and exercise routines ineffective. The habits of our 20-year-old selves no longer serve our 40-year-old bodies. As a result, we need to adapt to the change or unwanted fat will continue to develop.

Living a sedentary lifestyle and eating out every weekend may make you feel like living in your younger years once more, but now makes it easier to gain weight and harder to lose it.

glass of wines on the table which is not good for someone who is over 40's

Alcohol Consumption

Expanding on a slowing metabolism, consuming alcohol is a huge contributor to slowing your metabolic rate as your body works hard to digest the alcohol rather than your food.

Recent studies have shown that people in their 40’s have a higher level of alcohol consumption than any other age group and drink at riskier levels. This is a large contributing factor to weight gain for the age group as it affects metabolic rate and overall health.

Cut Down Alcohol Consumption

If you notice your waistline expanding or stubborn pockets of fat, it may be time to consider the amount of alcohol you are consuming, not just for your weight but for your overall health.

Postpartum

Women struggle to shed unwanted fat after birth. During your postpartum journey, your body changes to provide for a child, breastfeeding takes nutrition from the body to give to your baby.

Our diets change with the new busy lifestyle. The never-ending work that comes with taking care of your children, reduced sleep, and forgetting about our own health.

By letting care for ourselves go by the wayside after a baby, often it can be difficult to get the desired fat loss we are looking for from diet and exercise.

a mother and her baby during a sunset
a lady sitting near the window looking outside in the morning

Menopause

A major contributing factor for weight gain after women in their 40’s is perimenopause and menopause. The most common cause of weight gain is the changes in hormones that menopause brings.

Menopause causes a drop in estrogen levels which influences the distribution of weight in the body, and weight gain is associated with changes in blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Actually, It Begins with Perimenopause

Perimenopause (the transition phase into menopause) is when the effects of weight gain begin, and many women in their 40’s are well into perimenopause by this stage in their lives.

This is the time to begin a regular exercise routine and healthy eating habits in order to decrease weight gain.

Is Exercising and Dieting Enough for Body Contouring?

Your 40’s is not the time to start yo-yo dieting or to follow fad diets, nor are they sustainable ways to keep weight off. As we age, finding sustainable ways to control fat loss are the best option, rather than exercising for hours a day and tracking every calorie that we consume.

a lady doing an exercise routine to slim and lose weight

Exercise Routine

It is recommended that women in their 40’s exercise 2 to 3 times per week in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle and to curb additional weight gain. There are many different forms of exercise that can help with fat loss and control.

HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) is a great cardio workout for a good sweat and weight loss. Weight training builds muscle and increases muscle mass. It has been proven to keep your metabolism healthy.

a bowl of vegetables for breakfast

Incorporating a Healthy Diet Helps in Body Contouring…

Eating all the foods you love in moderation is a sustainable method to keep your weight under control. Fueling your body with healthy, nutritious foods will see your body responding positively. Avoiding fad diets or challenges that provide an unsustainable way to live is key during this time as you want to strive for long-term results.

… Except for Stubborn Pockets of Fats

Altering your diet and upping your exercise will assist with some weight changes. However, time constraints and ever-changing hormones can definitely make it feel like an uphill task. Sometimes these methods don’t provide the targeted results we are looking for and we are still left with the pockets of fat that we had set out to lose.

Benefits of Non-Invasive Body COntouring Treatments

CoolSculpting

CoolSculpting (also known as Fat Freezing) is an FDA-approved non-invasive fat removal treatment that uses Cryolipolysis to target stubborn pockets of fat. It targets small sections of fat and freezes the fat cells and destroys up to 27%* of the cells in the localized area.

It uses a vacuum-like apparatus to apply controlled cooling at -10°C to -13°C, to localized areas of the body. CoolSculpting is becoming more common as it is a non-invasive treatment to assist with fat removal, particularly the stubborn fat women find difficult to lose later in life.

How Does It Work?

The targeted areas of fat under CoolSculpting techniques crystallize and then die and are then excreted through the body’s natural waste elimination system over the course of 3 months.

a women going through a coolsculpting for her body contouring treatment

This is beneficial to women in their 40’s struggling with uncontrolled weight gain as it can be targeted to specific areas of the body. Often the weight is gained around the abdominal, hip, and waist areas, which you can’t necessarily target just through a healthy diet and exercise. CoolSculpting procedures are known to significantly reduce fat in just a few sessions, making it a cost-effective and non-invasive treatment for weight loss.

a photo of a SculpSure machine treating a patient

SculpSure

SculpSure aka Laser lipolysis, is an alternative method to CoolSculpting that still provides an effective non-invasive solution for fat removal.  uses laser technology to gently heat and destroy fat cells.

The applicators are surrounded by a cooling plate so that only the targeted area is affected for optimal results. The body contouring application heats fat cells up to between 42-47°C. The process damages them and they are excreted naturally from the body through in 8-12 weeks.

Destroys Fat and More

Not only is SculpSure beneficial for fat loss, but it penetrates deep into the cells and stimulates collagen production, making it an effective treatment to tighten the skin.

Laser lipolysis assists women in their 40’s in a comfortable and non-invasive way to remove fat, a feeling not dissimilar to laser hair removal.

Body contouring through SculpSure is particularly effective to the abdominal area. Because other than inch reduction, treatment also improves the appearance of stretch marks.

This is also effective for women who are close to achieving their goal weight through diet and exercise but are unable to budge those stubborn pockets of fat.

Choosing Your Treatment

Both CoolSculpting and SculpSure are some of the more popular and effective non-invasive ways to remove stubborn and unwanted pockets of fat. Women in their 40’s with unwanted pockets of fat that won’t budge can benefit from both procedures.

Our bodies take longer to recover as we age. Therefore, these non-invasive procedures can be more beneficial than traditional surgical fat removal procedures. However, a detailed assessment and tailored consultation will help you ensure that you get the right modality for your needs.

Speak to Us

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important. However, if you’re struggling to budge those few pockets of fat gained through post-partum or menopause, SculpSure or CoolSculpting are safe, easy, and non-surgical alternatives.

References: 1. Du, D., Bruno, R., Dwyer, T., Venn, A., & Gall, S. (2017). Associations between alcohol consumption and cardio-metabolic risk factors in young adults. European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, v. 24, i. 18, 1967–1978. https://academic.oup.com/eurjpc/article/24/18/1967/5926633?login=false 2. Rupe, H., (2021). Gaining Weight in Your 40s? Tips From a GYN. WebMD Women’s Health. https://blogs.webmd.com/womens-health/20210129/gaining-weight-in-your-40s-tips-from-a-gyn 3. Department of Health, State Government of Victoria (2018). Menopause and weight gain. Better Health Channel. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/menopause-and-weight-gain. 4. Wing, R R., Matthews, K A., & Kuller L H. (1991). Weight Gain at the Time of Menopause. Arch Intern Med, v.151, i. 1, 97-102. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/article-abstract/614449. 5. Chilukuri, S. & Mueller, G. (2016). “Hands-Free” Noninvasive Body Contouring Devices: Review of Effectiveness and Patient Satisfaction. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, v. 15, i. 11, 1402-1406. http://takfam.ir/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/VANQ-STUDY-1-BTL_Vanquish_ME_CB_JDD-multi-product-study_ENUS100.pdf 6. American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (2021). How to choose between Liposuction and Noninvasive Fat Reduction Procedures. https://www.americanboardcosmeticsurgery.org/cosmetic-medicine/how-to-choose-between-liposuction-and-noninvasive-fat-reduction-procedures/