Did you turn 40+ or 50+ recently and all of sudden your favorite jeans, pants or skirt no longer fit? Did you try to lose weight your ‘standby’ old fashion way – but nothing happened? Did even Atkins fail you? It’s not your fault. Why, because it’s just a slowing of your metabolism due to the hormonal changes our bodies encounters as we age – which by the way aging is a beautiful thing.
Older woman are privileged to begin a new phase in their lives involving more freedom (empty nests) and choices (lifestyle changes). We are also entitled to gain from our sisterhood, the best advice, strategies and methods to keep us healthy, attractive and full of energy (so we can enjoy those newfound freedoms).
As the In-house Author for the National Association of Prime Cougars, it is my job to keep our members In-the-Know and weight control is part of that responsibility. Over the past six months, I have researched and used the following 5 tips on easy weight loss and maintenance. I lost 10 lbs in 30 days – your results may be less or more – but there will be results! If you haven't already, you may want to select a complete multivitamin and multimineral supplement (for women 50+ look for the words 50 Plus Complete Senior. Publix Grocery Stores has a good one). Your local Whole Food Stores or Farmer’s Market should have all of the food items I will list for you.
As always, before beginning any weight loss programs, consult with your physician.
I am also a very serious coffee buff. By using a natural sugar substitute, Stevia and Organic Valley half-n-half, I cut out 600 calories a day from my morning love affair with the stuff and I honestly did not miss the ridiculous amounts of cane sugar and International House of Coffee Caramel flavor creamer I consumed each day.
1) Drink mainly water instead of soft drinks and especially avoid diet sodas. Artificial sweeteners (found in soft drinks, Splenda, Sweet-n-Low, Equal, etc.) cause our bodies to avoid using stored fat for fuel and short circuits our metabolic processes. They are also considered to be serious health risks. If you absolutely must have the taste of something sweet to drink, allow yourself 1 pkg. of Wyler’s 0 calorie instant drink mix (usually 8 single packets per box) until you can wean yourself.
2) Go Organic – maybe not for every single item you eat because of the serious financial shock of busting your food budget - but for the major impact foods: Eggs (Omega 3), Cheese, butter (no margarines) and Half-n-Half for your coffee (from free roaming cows grazing in pastures), berries, spinach* (best for salads and omelets).
By taking 1-2 tblspn of raw Organic Cider Vinegar (I use Bragg) before each meal, you revive your metabolism with hardly any effort.
3) Bake – not fry – your meats: fowl, fish (regular types but also sardines), seafood, beef, pork or lamb.
4) Ban white bread, whole grain breads, and pasta from your diet. They contain glutens that are empty in calories and work against your body. But, if you’re like me and love bread, you can eat sprouted wheat breads that have 0 to 2 net grams of carbs per serving and are more nutritious than your best oatmeal. For Real! This was my lifesaver. I lost 5 lbs the 1st week and a consistent 2- 3lbs per week after that - a total of 12.5 lbs.
For me, Julian Bakery was a lifesaver. I love their cinnamon raisin bread (2 net carbs per slice) and the sandwiches I made from 0 Smart Carb bread was fantastic. This bread can be purchased locally at Good Nutrition Food Stores, try Whole Foods or go online (see below).
5) If you do not have a workout plan already, add 30 minutes of cardio each day.
And NO you do not have to join a gym. It’s easy to walk a mile each day or put on a 30 minute dance tape (you make) and wiggle around for a while; for me the 70’s and 80’s music is my incentive. I use 2 lbs weights to help strengthen my arms – and before you know it, I’m finished!
Below is the sample menu I followed; you can play with it how you choose to plan your meals. Substitute a food item of your choice when making your meal plan. Each week, follow the guideline. You can even have raw organic nuts: cashews and almonds.
Side Note: There is a tendency towards constipation (okay, not too cool); however, I found that drinking a cup of cleansing tea every other day, kept me from developing any type of problem. I chose a natural green leaf brand, 3 Ballerina (no caffeine) which is sold at most Chinese Beauty Supply Stores; about $3.99 for a box of 30 tea bags – a full month’s supply.
Grocery List Staple Foods:
Bragg organic cider vinegar 1-2 tblsp per meal and Good Seasons Italian dressing mix, extra virgin olive oil
Try to keep your Carb intake between 20 – 30 grams per day
Organic eggs, cheese and/or (Organic Valley) cream cheese, butter, breakfast sausages/bacon (makes great omelets), Organic half-n-half (for coffee drinkers such as Organic Valley brand)
Organic strawberries, blue or black berries and spinach
If you are a bread lover, Julian Bakery low carb bread will be a life saver.
[I am an early riser, so at 5:30 a.m. I started with 1-2 cups coffee w/Stevia & 2 tlbsp organic half-n-half per cup and 2 slices Julian Bakery cinnamon raisin bread w/organic butter and organic cream cheese. OMG!]
7:30 a.m. 30 minute work out
8:15 a.m. Omelet: Two eggs, shredded cheese, browned sausage and spinach
*Instead of an omelet, you could make a bacon or sausage/egg/cheese/sandwich
Baked meat (fowl, fish, pork or beef), Spinach, tomatoes, cheese salad (can add shredded meat), Good Season’s Italian Salad Dressing (organic cider vinegar and olive oil)
Snack: Tuna salad w/lettuce sandwich (Julian Bakery 0 or 1 Smart Carb bread)
Beef, Pork, Fish or Fowl, Steamed spinach, ½ slice tomato, 1 packet Wyler’s drink w/ice
After Dinner Snack: 2 oz cashews or almonds
I also chose *Julian Bakery Dark Chocolate Almond candy bar (reduces to 2 net carbs) or 3 cookies (0 net carbs)
Use specialty foods only if your budget can handle it. I was able to keep my grocery bill in check because of the savings I gained from eliminating a bag of Gevalia coffee every week ($9.00 x 4: $36.00) Splenda (2 – 200 count boxes $4.99 x 2: $9.98), International Coffee Creamers ($2.99 x 4) and Whole Grain Breads that kept my weight up (3 x $3.99). I used the $69.91 to buy items above.
I kept my carb intake no more than 25 grams per day and my results were excellent; I hope yours will be too. Please come back and post your success so that others may be encouraged.
References in Order of Occurence:
 Raw Nuts: Cashews, almonds, walnuts (Do not buy dry roasted). Also organics butters (peanut, cashew, almond and walnut).
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