Remember the Boy Scout motto about always being prepared? At 40 or older, you most likely have more things demanding your time and attention than ever before. To make it easier to eat lower calories and avoid stuffing your face when you’re starving, always keep your desk, pantry, car, and purse stashed with healthy snacks. Raw almonds and bananas are two of the easiest, but you can get more ideas with these 27 Healthy Snack Ideas Under $1. And whatever you do, do not hit up any vending machines!
Holiday weight – usually all but melted by Valentine’s Day – seems reluctant to budge when you throw your old tricks at it. If it seems that something important has shifted, you’re right. Your metabolism is slowing, and your muscle mass is decreasing. That’s a harsh reality, but there are some new tricks for you to learn to keep spry for years, even decades to come. We’ve listed 40 of them for you here so that you needn’t go gentle into that good night. Building Muscle After 40?!
With a jam-packed schedule, the “Your Song” singer relies on one go-to breakfast to kick off her day right. “I always have egg whites with salmon every morning without fail, I don’t eat anything else,” she told PEOPLE. “Or I have like boiled eggs with salmon. I always have a bit of protein and I don’t have normal scrambled eggs, I do egg whites.” And her regimented diet continues throughout the day. “I don’t have any breads, and I just have like chicken, and vegetables and I drink a lot of juices and a lot of water,” she added.
How My Day Went: An essential part of my morning is coffee and eggs. I will never, EVER be one of those people who is “never really hungry in the morning” or “always skips breakfast.” No matter how much I eat the night before, I wake up starving … and angry, and coffee and eggs are the only way to make it better. Breakfast is everything to me. Which is why prepping myself a caffeine-free, egg-free meal of hot water and lemon was … disappointing. But the taste was surprisingly pleasant, and the concoction did keep me fuller longer than I’d expected. I felt less of an impulse to snack mindlessly throughout the day.
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Guzzle water to bump up your metabolism. A 2003 study in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism showed that drinking water can increase the rate at which people burn calories. According to the findings, after drinking 17 ounces of water (slightly less than the size of a purchased bottle of water), the subjects' metabolic rates briefly increased by 30 percent.
Difficulty on a Scale of 1 (I Feel Great!) to 10 (It Ruined My Life!): 6. If I were interested in losing weight, this would be the way to do it. It’s not even that hard if you do enough supermarket prep and cancel all plans to hang out with people. Lean protein, lots of veggies (except for nightshades), no refined flour or sugar … actually I change my mind; this is impossible.
It's tougher than ever for celebrities to live and age under the scrutiny of public pressure, if their continual body-shaming is any evidence. And while some claim to eat cheeseburgers and work out whenever they feel like it, others are taking...unconventional means to trim their waists. Japanese potatoes? Baby food? Whiskey? Ahead, some of the strangest fad diets and anti-aging hacks stars have ever tried.
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Although it may not directly influence metabolism, wolfing down your food makes it more likely you'll eat more, says a study published by the American Dietetic Association. Another study found even among women who didn't diet, reducing stress and practicing mindfulness can prevent fat gain. "It takes about 20 minutes before a hormone called cholecystokinin (CCK) tells your brain to stop eating," says Virgin. "When you engulf a burger and fries, you don't give CCK enough time to relay the message to your brain, and you eat too much." In addition, says Virgin, speed eating also raises fat-storing insulin levels. "Just as important as eating the right diet is slowing down and becoming mindful when you eat."
There is no single diet plan that works for everyone. But a diet plan for your 40s should be one that you can use to reach your weight loss goals and then modify and stick to for life. Evaluate your current eating style, think about your past diet history and choose a diet that fits your needs. Evaluate commercial diet plans or create your own eating plan at home. How to Boost Your Metabolism By 50% After 40
Whether it’s playing with your dog, carrying the stroller for your family members with little ones, or exploring a nature path, it’s crucial to fit in extra activity when you can. “Metabolism and hormonal changes in your 40s create an ideal environment for excess fat storage in women – especially in the midsection,” says Marisa Moore, MBA, RDN, LD. “In your 40s, activity is essential.”
Weight Watchers is all about sustainable results rather than yo-yo dieting or quick fat loss that results in even more weight gain down the line — and that’s one of the reasons it’s regarded as one of the best diets available today. And the best part about Weight Watchers is that you can eat whatever you want as long as you stick to the “Points” system.
A lot of people can lose weight without breaking out the calculator at every meal. But as we age, our metabolism slows and we burn fewer calories per day than we did when we were younger, Bede explains. Because of this, it’s essential to ensure that you are not consuming more calories than you’re burning—so if you want to lose lbs, start counting. How To Lose Belly Fat After 40
The 49-year-old mum of four, Stephanie Seymour was one of the first ever supermodels. She recently came back into the spotlight for her criticism of GiGi Hadid and Kendall Jenner, calling them out as “not real models.” She has had an incredibly successful career staring in numerous sports illustrated campaigns, modelling for Victoria’s Secret, being on the cover of Vogue and being called one of the sexiest women alive many times.
Meals can feel fluid in your twenties. For example, maybe you had a few bites at happy hour, so you're not starving for dinner. Or maybe breakfast was an office cupcake, so you put off lunch. But those habits can lead to serious late-night munchies. Here's why: Your body is smart, says Ansel. When you don’t give it enough food during the day, it will demand it late at night, she says. Break the cycle by keeping a journal to see when you’re eating. “If you’re perpetually skipping certain meals, set an alarm on your cellphone to eat something healthy and satisfying, even if it’s just a Greek yogurt.”
Lifting weights is not only critical for increasing strength, but it will help you lose weight as well. Since muscle tissue is active, it requires calories to function, and increasing the amount you have will enable you to burn more calories overall. Create a weight-lifting routine filled with exercises that incorporate multiple muscles groups at once.
Another great idea it to get into a group fitness strength training class. This is a less intimidating way to get started and in most gyms you will find people of all ages and abilities attending; just ask the instructor if it is the right level for you. Strength training at home is another possibility. By joining GHU TV you are spending a minimal amount and getting the personal training of experts like Chris Freytag and others who will do the workout with you providing the expertise needed to do it correctly! Just pick up a pair of dumbbells, bring them home and get started. Keep in mind that if you are afraid to pick up the weights you can even use your own bodyweight to build strength through moves like push-ups, lunges and squats. Strength training for as little as 20 minutes two to three times a week can build enough muscle to increase your resting metabolic rate (RMR) over time.
Load up on low-fat dairy: Women who consumed milk, yogurt, and cheese three to four times a day lost 70 percent more body fat than women who didn't eat dairy in a study published in the January 2003 American Society for Nutritional Sciences Journal of Nutrition. The reason: Calcium, along with other substances in dairy, actually revs up your metabolism, telling your body to burn excess fat faster, according to study author Michael Zemel, Ph.D., director of the Nutrition Institute at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. And no, fortified o.j. won't do the trick. The best results come from dairy products instead of from other calcium-rich foods (like broccoli), calcium-fortified products (such as orange juice) or supplements. Women reap the largest fat-burning benefit when they consume three servings of dairy and 1,200 milligrams of calcium a day, Zemel's research shows.
And the alternative is much worse! “I’m not saying I plan to age without putting up a good fight (goodness knows I spend enough money on serums and creams each month), but beyond that I am proud of the life experiences, both good and challenging, that those lines reflect,” says Monique Honaman, author of The High Road Has Less Traffic: Honest Advice on The Path Through Love and Divorce. Her advice? “Own your lines and their story.”
If you're cutting calories to lose weight, add 200-300 to your daily intake once in a while, says Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham, a senior Yoga Medicine instructor. "The body will get used to a calorie deficit diet, adjusting by slowing the metabolic rate. By allowing yourself a day of indulgence (not overindulgence!), you're creating a healthy balance," she explains. "The extra calories raise leptin production, a hormone that regulates appetite and energy. This rise triggers thermogenesis, the body's natural tendency to create heat, which results in burning calories." Pass the dessert menu!
Metabolism: We’ve all got one, but some people’s are “faster” or “slower” than others’. And that matters, because the rate at which your body burns calories and converts fuel to energy can also affect how easily you gain or lose weight. It also says a lot about how at-risk you are for diabetes, and how much pep you’ve got in your step. While much of your metabolic rate is determined by genetics, age, gender and body size, there are some lifestyle changes that can, quite literally, speed up the process.
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Want to sleep better and lose more weight? Have more sex. A new study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine shows that for every extra hour of sleep women got, their sexual desire increased accordingly. And a separate study showed that the more sex you get, the better you sleep, and the more weight you lose. Now that’s what you call a positive feedback loop.
“Most 40-year-olds can remember the fat-free craze of the ’90s, when Snackwells was king,” says Shapiro. “Well, those days are over.” She advises that you leave the fat-free fake foods behind and enjoy healthy fats that add flavor to your meals and help you fill up with less. “Coconut oil, avocado, nuts, seeds, salmon are rich in vitamins and minerals that will keep you young and fill you up on smaller portions, and therefore fewer calories.” She says.
“Hormones dictate how our body utilizes the energy we give it,” says nutritionist Lisa Jubilee. “Between our reproductive, thyroid and growth hormones, appetite, insulin, and hunger hormone leptin and ghrelin, our bodies have to perform a tricky balancing act to keep us lean, energized and viable reproductive beings.” Those tasks have become much more difficult because of the hormone residues we consume via cage-raised foods. If you want to give your metabolism a leg up, Jubilee says, switch to organic, grass-fed, pasture-raised beef, eggs, and dairy products, thereby avoiding those nasty hormones at mealtime.
You deserve that glass of Scotch or wine, we know. But the unfortunate truth is that your body doesn’t metabolize alcohol as efficiently as you age. So, not only are you going to add on (or not be able to lose) weight because of alcohol, you also wind up looking older and sleeping worse. “[As you age] it will be increasingly difficult to get a good night’s rest with alcohol in your system and sleepless nights lead to carb and sugar cravings the next day,” says registered dietitian Martha McKittrick in 30 Foods You Should Never Eat After Age 30. Meanwhile, alcohol zaps moisture from your skin making fine lines more noticeable and speeding up your skin’s loss of elasticity.
"How can I eat this much satisfying food and still lose weight?" Brenda asked during our second meeting. For fat-phobic patients (especially those who lived through the low-fat brainwashing in the '80s), ketogenic diets—which are about 80 to 90 percent fat—can initially seem unbelievably decadent. Yes, that’s a lot of fat, but you’ll focus on filling, healthy sources like avocado, wild-caught fish, nuts, and seeds. Yay for foods that we love!
Many women have trouble sleeping during menopause due to hot flashes, night sweats, stress and the other fun stuff that goes along with low estrogen levels. Migraines anyone?? The bummer is poor sleep is linked to hunger and weight gain because of two more hormones: ghrelin (the “feed me” hormone) and leptin (the “I’m full” hormone). Here’s a short blog I wrote on that topic. If you’re sleep deprived, these hormones get out of whack.
Gluten-free breads and other products are fooling you with their healthy-looking labels. Studies show that gluten-free replacements of foods that normally contain the protein are not healthier than the real thing — and they’re more expensive. Often, these breads have significantly less fiber than bread made with real whole wheat. As you get older, fiber is one of the nutrients you need the most. It keeps you full and ensures that your digestion keeps moving regularly.
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Ditch the Sriracha and grab a bottle of cayenne instead! The fiery pepper contains a compound called capsaicin, which has been shown to act as a serious appetite suppressant. According to a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, those who supplemented their diet with capsaicin consumed 200 fewer calories during their next meal—which is why cayenne is one of our 50 Foods To Lose Your Gut.
Eat as many raw vegetables as you like—especially leafy greens. Throw them in an omelet, blend them into a green smoothie with some stevia and ice, make a huge salad with a drizzle of oil and lemon, or simply snack on some raw celery sticks. You should be eating 5 – 7 servings of veggies a day, and you can cram a lot of those into one big smoothie or salad.
Make sure you eat breakfast. Eating a nutrient-rich morning meal (like oatmeal with almonds and berries, or a spinach-and-feta omelet with a slice of whole-grain toast) shortly after getting out of bed literally wakes up your metabolism. "Eating breakfast gets the engine going and keeps it going," Hyman explains. It's hard to argue with these results: According to the National Weight Control Registry (an ongoing study that tracks 5,000 people who lost an average of 66 pounds and kept it off more than five years), 78% of those who keep it off eat an a.m. meal every day.
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"You don't have to go to the gym or go for a run, but be sure to move in some way," says Ann Kulze, M.D., a member of the Medical Advisory Board for the Wellness Councils of America and author of Dr. Ann's 10-Step Diet (Top Ten Wellness & Fitness, 2008). "A healthy metabolism requires regular movement, so don't sit for more than two hours without getting up."
Stress can interrupt sleep, which is essential to maintaining a healthy weight. Too little sleep makes you lose motivation for exercise and causes your body to pump out more hunger hormones. Stress and lack of sleep also cause your body to produce more cortisol, a stress hormone that also drives weight gain. Yoga, meditation and other methods of self care are ways to help manage stress so you can concentrate on dietary and exercise efforts to lose weight.
Omega-3s are widely celebrated for their heart-healthy benefits. And you’re likely aware of the so-labeled best source: Fresh-off-the-line salmon. (The farm-raised stuff generally has lower levels than the wild stuff.) But if you’re looking to boost your omega-3s to stratospheric levels, don’t sleep on chia seeds. According to The Institute of Medicine, you’re supposed to get at least 600mg daily, to reap any heart-healthy benefits. One tablespoon of chia seeds contains a staggering 2,250mg. And for more ways to live a healthier life, check out 20 Nighttime Habits Guaranteed to Help You Sleep Better.
"Everyone knows that doctors lack information on nutrition. This has been a big part of the problem. It has taken a passionate layperson such as myself to come up with a science-based program that works. Somersizing is based in science. Somersizing promotes eating real foods, including complex carbohydrates, and avoiding chemicals and preservatives.
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Most celebrities (and unfortunately, even us common folk) frequently drop weight by following unrealistic plans and by cutting out favorite foods. But why would you ever want to cut love out of your life in any form? The key to successful, long-term weight loss and maintenance is learning how to shift your priorities and still include foods you love, but make the majority of your foods those that will also make you love the way you look and feel. A diet should never be like a light bulb that you turn on and off. Like anything else in life, balance is the goal, not black-and-white thinking.
“I eat a salad every day. My need for cheese has to be controlled – that’s the thing I find hardest to resist! I also love peanut butter. If I have that on wholewheat toast in the morning, I don’t snack… I like to keep moving. I warm up every morning and do exercises and run up and down the stairs.” Choreographer and former Strictly judge Arlene, 74, slows down for no one!
It's essential for carrying the oxygen your muscles need to burn fat, says Tammy Lakatos, RD, coauthor of Fire Up Your Metabolism. Until menopause, women lose iron each month through menstruation. Unless you restock your stores, you run the risk of low energy and a sagging metabolism. Shellfish, lean meats, beans, fortified cereals, and spinach are excellent sources. My Diet and Exercise Routine! After 40!
Not getting enough quality shuteye has also been shown to slow metabolism in both men and women; this also may have to do with the brain’s secretion of cortisol when the body is under stress, says Celi. And even if you hit they hay early, that may not be enough. Research has shown that broken sleep (when you’re woken up frequently throughout the night) isn’t nearly as restorative as seven consecutive hours. So on top of crawling under the covers early, be sure to give yourself enough hours to get the rest and recovery your body needs.
Megan Fox is just one of a multitude of celebrities that tout the vinegar diet as a way to do just about anything from keeping off the pounds to preventing disease and even clearing your skin. Fox (along with another noted hottie, Miranda Kerr) has gone on record as far back as 2010 saying that taking a few shots of vinegar a day (namely, apple cider vinegar) helps her to lose weight, and "just cleanses out your system entirely."
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When it comes to the best workouts for weight loss, neither weights nor cardio can completely move the needle on their own. Interval training is the best way to shed pounds, increase your metabolism, improve your cholesterol profile, and improve insulin sensitivity. At the gym, sign up for a HIIT class, or turn your favorite aerobic exercise, (running, biking, even walking) into an interval workout by adding periods of intense speed (start with 30 to 60 seconds) followed by periods of rest (normal speed) for the same amount of time. Do this six to 10 times to complete a fat-slashing workout. As you get better, slowly increase the amount of time of increased intensity.
Having a salad for lunch or dinner fills you up with belly-flattening fiber and nutrients, and adding one more ingredient will really stoke your metabolism: salmon. You already learned the metabolism-boosting effects of protein, but with salmon in particular you'll also get a dose of omega-3 fatty acids. In a study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, supplementing diets with fish oil for six weeks increased lean muscle and decreased fat. Other studies have shown similar effects. Scientists speculate this reaction may be due to fish oil's ability to reduce levels of fat-storage enzymes in the body.
Bad things are bound to happen, but women over 40 know how to deal with them. “If you can find the key learning in a difficult situation you emerge from it better, more evolved,” Bernstein notes. “Every difficult situation and person is your teacher, if you have the eyes to see and the ears to hear. By going with the flow of the situation rather than fighting it, it makes the going easier and the learning faster.”
“I spent so much of my 20s and 30s getting hurt and offended by other people or worrying about what other people thought of me,” says Limor Weinstein, a psychotherapist, eating disorder specialist and founder of LW Wellness Network. “I wish I had known then what I know now about self talk. I am so much kinder to myself at 42 than I was back then and I am so much happier! I now know I am 100 percent responsible for my own feelings and I have the power to redirect my thoughts into positive ones that actually build me up—and in turn I can build others up.” And if you could use a nice happiness boost—no matter you’re age—be sure you know the 70 Tricks to Get Instantly Happy!
Thinking about having a cocktail — or two — before dinner? Think again. Having a drink before a meal causes people to eat around 200 calories more, several studies show. Drinking with dinner isn't such a good idea either: Other research has found that the body burns off alcohol first, meaning that the calories in the rest of the meal are more likely to be stored as fat. If you do have a cocktail craving, stick to wine, which packs only 80 calories a glass — or minimize the calories by drinking a white-wine spritzer (two ounces of wine mixed with two ounces of seltzer).
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Don’t you hate it when a super-sexy celeb is asked how they do it and the first thing they say is that they don’t exercise? Well, Megan Fox admitted to being just too “lazy” to attempt breaking a sweat. Instead, she downs shots of apple cider vinegar. This quick-fix diet trick, she says, “cleans out your system entirely. It will get rid of, for women who retain water weight from your menstrual cycle and all that, it gets rid of it really fast,"
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It isn’t so much the metabolism slowing in my 50’s as it is the bad habits associated with youth. A box of Mac and Cheese was not a bad choice when competitive and highly active, I needed the carbs. But the mindset that a full box is a single sized serving remains despite the slow down in activity and metabolism. That’s where the real challenge lies. Too many years of eating rabbit food only after it was processed into a rabbit (or steer preferrably) with potato or corn as the only acceptable vegetable.