5 Tips for Seniors and Losing Weight

5 tips for seniors losing weight

We are bombarded by infomercials, radio ads, and banner popups on our browsers about the next greatest thing that will help you lose weight.  Keep in mind, that many of these programs are NOT designed for seniors or the elderly.  Here is one warning I found on a product called Hydroxycut at Wal-mart:

Who should NOT take Hydroxycut? Please do not take this if you are under 18. Do not take this if you are a sweet elderly man or woman. In fact, anyone younger or older than the age I’ve listed should run far away from this product, and never look back. Of course it is your decision to take it or not, but remember that this stuff can be very dangerous if your body cannot physically or mentally handle this product.

Wow that is a serious warning label!! It’s hard enough fighting the effects of aging on us. Muscle mass decreases from about 45 percent of your total body weight in your youth to about 27 percent by the time you reach age 70. What does that mean to you? The bottom line is that you burn fewer calories as you age doing the same activities, and the same number of them, that you did in your 20s, 30s, or 40s. The key to preventing weight gain is to compensate by adjusting your food intake, exercising, and generally becoming more physically active. (Sorry, no magical pill here…)

Here are some quick tips on habits you can start today that will help shed those pounds:

  1. Weight Training – WHAT? You want me to go lift weights? When you do weight-bearing exercises, you start revving up your metabolism—and it keeps burning for many hours after your workout. Also, the more muscle you gain, the more calories you’ll burn throughout the day, even when you’re not active. A good place for something like this is at a local CrossFit box where you are guided at a proper level with a trainer to prevent injury and slowly phase you into weight training and olympic lifting.
  2. Reduce Boredom – staying at home and staring at the TV all day may seem perfectly fine to you…. IT’S NOT…. Our bodies were never designed to just sit all day.  In natural selection we would just die, not collect our retirement check every month. If you are bored go for a walk, get up and start cleaning, harass your neighbors kids for being loud.  Doing something is better than wallowing in self pity and boredom. Get out of the house and experience life while you still can remember it.
  3. Disassociate Food with Rewards  – Many of us grew up getting a sweet dessert or food from our parents if we did something good, got good grades, did well on a sports team, had a good day at church.  We began at a young age believing that food was a reward for good behavior.  Food is not a reward.  Food is fuel for the body. Did you know that every 28 days your skin replaces itself, your liver 5 months, your bones 10 years.  Your body makes those new cells from the food you eat. what you eat, LITERALLY becomes you. (Food for thought). Read more mental tricks here.
  4. Physical Activity – I’m not asking you to run a marathon.  I’m just saying EVERY day find a way to get going.  Make a habit of walking a mile every day with your dog, or a friend, or at your local park. Go for a swim at your local YMCA or even join a ladies group for water aerobics.
  5. Find a Workout Buddy – You tend to stay on a schedule of walking or working out if you have someone that will harass you if you don’t come.  The power of humiliation is strong ever when you get older. Find someone that will answer the phone when you call them or has similar goals to you so you can work on them together.

Did we miss anything you feel would be good to add to this list?  Please let us know!!

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