How to Lose Weight After Surgical Menopause

By Erin Monahan

A woman's metabolism naturally slows down after menopause but it is still possible to lose weight. If your menopause is surgically induced, either through a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) or oophorectomy (removal of the ovaries), you'll need to take some special precautions as your body heals.

A woman's metabolism naturally slows down after menopause but it is still possible to lose weight. If your menopause is surgically induced, either through a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) or oophorectomy (removal of the ovaries), you'll need to take some special precautions as your body heals.

Don't worry about weight gain for the first few weeks after surgery. Be sure to drink plenty of water to help flush the fluid caused by post-surgery swelling out of your system.

Four to six weeks after surgery, create a food journal and record your food intake for seven days. You can find calorie counts and even record your intake using tools on websites like eDiets and SparkPeople.

Add up the calories in your journal at the end of seven days and divide by seven to get your average daily intake of calories.

Subtract 500 calories from that number. If your average daily intake is 2000, your new number will be 1500. This is the number of calories to consume daily. Do not go below 1200 calories.

Include two glasses of lowfat milk in your daily food intake, as calcium is an important nutrient in post menopausal women since a decrease in estrogen has been linked to an increase in osteoporosis.

Include two servings of lean protein to help preserve muscle mass.

Round out your diet with fresh fruits and vegetables, at least six cups of liquid per day (water is best, but caffeine-free beverages are also acceptable), and a multi-vitamin.

Try to walk slowly for 15 minutes twice a day. Walking helps the healing as well as weight loss. Remember to walk slowly until you are feeling better, and stop if you get winded or are in pain.

Weigh yourself in one week. Following this plan, you should lose about one pound per week.

Tip

When your doctor gives you the go-ahead, you may add light weights to your walk, either carrying them or doing bicep curls.

If you follow this plan for one month and have not lost weight, consider having your thyroid tested as hypothyroidism becomes much more common in women following menopause.

Warning

Check with your doctor before beginning any weight loss program.

Stop what you are doing if you are in pain or feel light-headed, and seek medical attention.

Do not consume fewer than 1200 calories per day.

References

About the Author

Erin Monahan is an author and editor with over 25 years experience. She has written on a variety of topics including celebrity interviews, health reporting and parenting. Her work has appeared in daily newspapers and national magazines, including "Wondertime," and on websites such as Kaboose.com. She was recently named one of the top writers in Pennsylvania. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Simmons College.

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