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Menopause: Making Peace With Change

Friday, February 5, 2016

Hormones and Your Waist

Have you noticed that you are unable to button your pants as easily? Your weight may not even have fluctuated much, but there it is, the dreaded thicker waist. Just doing a bit less? Trying the turkey and chicken instead of burgers and steaks? As your waist to hip ratio rises, your get thicker in the middle and even if you can button your pants, it's that you are getting that muffin top look. Whether or not you have a good or even relatively healthy 'overweight' BMI, if you have too thick of a waist it is called central obesity,  as measured by waist circumference (men – greater than 40 inches [102 cm]; women – greater than 35 inches [89 cm]). Your BMI is a measurement of your weight to your height, and gaining muscle will adversely affect your BMI even though you may be getting both leaner and more healthy! Fat mass gains to the BMI, however are not healthy. And fat added to the abdomen is not good. Just measuring the waist, or measuring how your waist changes relative to your heart has traditionally been a good measure of your heart health.  We know that many of us have a number in mind for our waist measurement, but just having a healthy Waist to hip ratio has been thought of as what we you like to see for the best health. Now there's a new way to measure it called the SAD (sagittal abdominal height) or just the 'abdominal height'. Its the measure of your abdominal thickness when you are laying down.
 Hormones are actually not necessarily the biggest factor in terms of  weight gain, but they are a factor as we age and perimenopause induces side effects such as poor sleep, fatigue, and change in fat to muscle ratio in our body. Some French Canadians have came up with a solution. Subtle impairment to the metabolism seems to be the blame, more than the specific place you are in menopause. At Women's Health Practice we have blood panel testing that will give you more in depth information regarding your cholesterol as well as information regarding your insulin levels and your ability to process sugar. Call or email to schedule your appointment today!
. In a report in Menopause in the winter of 2010, Dr. Andre Lemay and co-workers discovered that abdominal fat that menopausal women report also is related to increased triglycerides and decreased high density lipoprotein cholesterol, even fasting insulin levels were noted to be elevated in this group of women. In essence these women became pre-diabetics. For most of our women prediabetes is measure by Hba1c of greater than 5.6 and less than 6.5. And before any of the formal definitions of diabetes were met, a large percent of  women with the abnormal Hba1c levels were found to have insulin resistance. Fasting insulin is an quick and accurate way to measure insulin resistance and can be used to have a positive intervention on your diet. It may mean taking diabetes medication, exercising more, exercising differently, controlling your hormones, and eating a fairly strict diabetic diet, but if the biologic basis is right, then this is a solution that has evaded patients and doctors for decades!

For more information read Menopause, Make Peace With Change.This book is about the menopausal transition focusing on changing menstrual cycles, changing hormonal levels, and menopausal changes in sexuality. Written by a female physician for women to help them understand how they can achieve the best health, beauty and vigor through understanding and managing the menopausal transition. It is a must read for women who proactively want to understand the discussion about menopause, normal changes versus medical conditions, the use of medications, and answers to questions they may have regarding health decisions they will need to make.

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Thank you for your comments and questions. This blog is not intended to replace medical care, but is informational only. We hope you will become a follower or visit Womens Health Practice. We offer a variety of unique services including MonaLisa Touch, Coolsculpting, Labiaplasty, and Gynecoloigic Clinical Research Trials. For more information on menopause see http://www.amazon.com/Menopause-Make-Peace-Change

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