As we age, it is true, our hormone balance shifts causing our metabolism to slow down but, gaining weight is not an inevitable part of aging.  Honestly, we really should not be using this as an excuse. When entering into your thirty’s, lifestyle changes such as career, marriage, family, and kids can end up dictating your schedule which can have a direct affect on ones eating habits. Stress from demanding work schedules or busy on the go families can make managing ones schedule a bit difficult allowing for those quick, not so nutrient dense meal options. Sticking to poor dietary habits in your thirty’s is the main factor that can result to weight gain.

 

In your twenties, losing a pound or two took a day, in your thirties it may take a bit more effort than just jumping on a treadmill for thirty minutes. Try to incorporate the following nutritional lifestyle changes to help even after turning 30

 

Eat more protein! Protein helps to develop muscle mass and it fires up our metabolism which keeps you full and satisfied longer after each meal. This will allow you to eat less. The goal is consume about 20-30 grams of protein per meal. Eating six small meals a day helps to keep your metabolism moving all day long. So, instead of just eating your protein in one large meal, most likely dinner, try spacing out your protein intake with all your meals and you will start to see a change to your weight. Eating such food items like:

  • Protein Shake for Breakfast
  • Salmon Salad for Lunch
  • Baked Chicken Breast with Winter Veggies for Dinner
  • Nuts or Dried Fruit for Snacks

 

Although you may feel drained by the end of the day, after work or running your errands, fast convenient food does not offer the nutrient dense meals needed for your body to function properly. In order to lose weight, you must avoid packaged and processed foods and incorporate whole, nutrient rich foods into your meals. Ways in which you can bring about change in your lifestyle but still have convenience are:

  • Plan your meals.  take a couple of hours from one day out of your week to make a menu and grocery list of the meals you want to eat for the week.
  • Prep Your Meals. set aside one day to prepare your meals in advanced so all you have to do is grab it and go.

 

Other factors that can help minimize weight gain after thirty are:

  • Drinking more water as it helps to fill you up and curbs cravings, allowing you to eat less.
  • Move your body, whether its standing at your desk while you are working for a few hours, taking a walk on your breaks, or scheduling time to do weight resistance exercises.
  • Avoid snacking off of your children’s plates.
  • Try to get at least 8 hours of sleep. Being sleep deprived, tense or stress can cause you to gain weight.

 

Even though our metabolism starts to slow down, and life’s obligations may get in the way, gaining weight should not be another factor that is associated when entering your thirty’s. Eating more protein in your six small nutrient dense meals per day will help you lose weight. Establishing a more balanced lifestyle will also help minimize weight gain. If this is an area in your life that you feel like you are struggling with, reach out to me, your local Orange County Nutritionist, and we can have a virtual session to help get you on a healthy path. Do not let the excuses get you down, there is hope past thirty.