Joylux is proud to share this blog from our friends at XO Jacqui. We believe in supporting other women and are happy to introduce you to this women-owned startup dedicated to healthy aging with a protein powder that supports the unique needs we as women have.
Our bodies really shift in the lead up to menopause, or what I call the “Power Pause”. And the magical part is that each of us will have an experience of our reproductive cycle downshifting in different ways. Some of us will have hot flashes, some of us will have joint aches or constipation, weight gain… I could go on and on.
We do share two impactful symptoms of menopause that I want to dive into today, the loss of lean muscle mass and decrease in bone density due to the drop in estrogen levels. When estrogen levels decline during menopause, bone resorption (the process of breaking down old bone tissue) increases, and bone formation decreases, leading to a loss of bone density.
A decrease in muscle mass is due to a decline in anabolic hormones, such as testosterone and growth hormone, which are essential for muscle growth and repair. And the resulting changes in body composition, an increase in body fat and a decrease in lean muscle mass, can lead to a slower overall metabolic rate, making it harder to keep weight off.
So now that we know what happens to us we can talk about ways to reverse it and keep it.
Regular exercise, specifically weight-bearing exercises are vital to maintaining bone density and muscle mass.
- Maintain bone density. As estrogen levels decline during menopause, bone density decreases, increasing the risk of osteoporosis and fractures. Lifting heavy weights puts stress on the bones, which stimulates the process of bone formation and helps maintain or even increase bone density.
- Maintain muscle mass. Muscle mass naturally declines with age, and women lose muscle mass more rapidly during and after menopause. By lifting heavy weights, women can help maintain muscle mass and strength, which can improve balance, reduce the risk of falls, and make everyday activities easier to perform.
- Improve metabolism. As women age, their metabolism naturally slows down, making it easier to gain weight. By lifting heavy weights, women can increase their metabolism and burn more calories at rest.
- Reduce symptoms of menopause. Regular exercise, including strength training, can help reduce symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, mood swings, and sleep disturbances.
It's worth noting that lifting heavy weights doesn't mean lifting the heaviest weights you can find. It means lifting weights that challenge your muscles, but that you can still perform with good form. Consult with a qualified personal trainer or strength coach to develop a safe and effective strength training program that is tailored to your individual needs and goals.
Eat or Drink Your Protein
Eating enough protein during this vital period in our aging journey is tricky. Protein-rich foods such as meat, fish, and poultry are ideal but not for 3 meals a day, every day. Vegetarian and vegan diets can also make it challenging to consume enough protein since plant-based proteins are often incomplete, meaning they lack one or more essential amino acids.
The amount of protein a woman needs daily during menopause to maintain muscle and bone health can vary depending on age, weight, activity level, and other factors. However, a general guideline for women during menopause is to consume at least 1 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.
For example, if a woman weighs 70 kilograms (154 pounds), she would need at least 70 grams of protein per day. It's also essential to spread out protein intake throughout the day and not consume it all at once. Studies suggest that consuming 20-30 grams of protein per meal can optimize muscle protein synthesis, which is the process of building new muscle tissue.
That’s where protein powder comes in. Protein powder is a quick and convenient way to get the protein your body needs to maintain that lean muscle mass and bone density. Plus, it’s easy to add to smoothies, oatmeal, or even baked goods.
But, not all protein powders are created equal. It’s important to choose a high-quality organic protein powder that is free of additives and fillers, with no added sugar. Look for a protein powder that is made with a high-quality protein source such as brown rice organic protein powder that stabilizes blood sugar and doesn’t cause bloating.
Adding protein powder to your diet can help alleviate symptoms and maintain overall health and well-being. Not only can it help maintain that lean muscle mass and bone density, but it can also help with weight management and keeping you feeling fuller for longer.
So lift that weight, drink that shake and flex those muscles and feel those super strong bones leading you through menopause with confidence and ease. It’s your birthright!