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Anti-Aging Weight Loss: How to Lose Weight & Age Well

Did you know maintaining a healthy weight is the most important thing you can do for your health?

Nothing ages you quicker than excess weight! This article reviews simple strategies that support anti-aging weight loss.

Understanding Excess Weight and Aging

Carrying excess weight can accelerate aging and increase the risk of various health issues. 

As we age, our metabolism tends to slow down, making it easier to gain weight and harder to shed those extra pounds. 

Additionally, excess weight can contribute to inflammation and oxidative stress, which are known to play a significant role in aging and age-related diseases.

Man's large belly in a red shirt
Excess weight accelerates aging.

How to Lose Weight & Age Well

Below are strategies that as a dietitian I highly recommend to my clients interested in weight loss.

They are relatively simple and don’t involve drastic, unsustainable changes to your lifestyle.

1. Practice Mindful Eating

Try mindful eating as a weight loss strategy.  Simply put, mindful eating is putting your focus and attention on what you are doing in the present moment. 

Eating mindfully allows you to pay attention to what, how much, and why you are eating. 

Many of my clients come back saying “I never realized how often I ate while standing, or the number of times I grabbed a chocolate off of my co-worker’s desk”. 

For some individuals, the practice of mindful eating is all it takes to make healthy choices and see results!

a hear-shaped chalkboard with "mindful eating" written on it, surrounded by healthy foods.
Mindful eating is a simple weight loss strategy.

Mindful Eating Tips

  • Sit at a table or breakfast bar.
  • Turn off the TV.
  • Put away your phone, computer, iPad, etc.
  • Leave your desk for meal and snack breaks.
  • Avoid eating while walking or standing.
  • Check in with your thoughts and feelings.
  • Slow down; time yourself if needed.
  • Stop and reassess your decision to eat when you are upset, angry, or sad.
Woman smiling eating at a table
Minimize distractions to eat mindfully.

2. Keep a Food Journal

A food journal is an excellent tool! 

I advise keeping a food log for a few days, and then applying what you have learned. 

Some individuals find a benefit to logging their food daily, however, I find that most eat in a similar fashion from day to day. 

A few days is usually all it takes to identify a couple of areas for improvement!

Woman writing in her food journal on a couch
A food journal is an excellent tool!

Food Journals & Anti-Aging Weight Loss

Logging your food is about gaining insight into your eating habits, choices, and behaviors.  It promotes mindfulness as discussed above, which is a win-win! 

The food log is a great tool to pull out when you get off track or stall in your weight loss efforts! 

There are several apps for food logging, however, a pen and paper are all you need!

Food Logging Apps to Support Anti-Aging Weight Loss

Food app on an iPhone
Food apps can support weight loss!

Your mindset also has a big impact on weight loss. Check out this Age-Defying Dietitian blog post to learn more – “How to Manifest Weight Loss in 7 Steps“.

3. Create a Healthy Eating Environment

Our environments have a big impact on us.  If you’ve ever tried to lose weight in an environment with a lot of treats and temptations, you know exactly what I am talking about!

Take a look around!   What about your environment is a barrier to weight loss? 

You may need to toss that tub of ice cream, however, this doesn’t mean it’s off-limits. You can always go out for ice cream where portions and access are limited.

Take control of the things you can change, and slowly learn to manage the things you cannot control!

Check out these dessert recipes designed by dietitians to have some healthier sweet treats around when a sugar craving hits!

An open fridge with healthy foods
Your environment has a big impact on your goals!

Life sometimes gets in the way of healthy eating habits, and indulging is both inevitable and necessary. The important part is getting back on track. Check out this Age-Defying Dietitian blog post – “7 Simple Ways To Detox After Vacation“.

Kitchen Detox Tips

  • Clean up your pantry, fridge, and freezer.
  • Put healthy foods in view and make them easily accessible.
  • Cut up fruits and vegetables. Put them in clear containers.
  • Remove tempting treats.
  • If it is not possible to remove tempting foods, put them in the back of the pantry or avoid going into the break room.
Woman organizing her pantry
Put healthy foods in view!

4. Engage in Regular Physical Activity

Most weight loss occurs because of decreased caloric intake. However, evidence shows the only way to maintain weight loss is with regular physical activity.  

Current guidelines recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. Aim for 30 minutes most days of the week. 

Find something you enjoy and find an exercise buddy.  Exercising with another person can help provide positive reinforcement and accountability.

Photo credit: Health.gov/moveyourway – Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion

Anti-Aging Benefits of Physical Activity

  • Reduces risk of type 2 diabetes and some cancers
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Supports brain health and cognitive function
  • Improves mood and reduces anxiety
  • Strengthens bones, muscles, and joints
Couple cycling together
Physical activity has many health benefits.

5. Chew Your Calories

This is an oldie, but a goodie!  If you are drinking beverages with calories, congratulations you have already discovered an opportunity to support Anti-Aging Weight loss! 

Drink mostly water and low or no-calorie beverages.

Regular consumption of alcoholic beverages can also be a barrier to weight loss.

Check out the Age-Defying Dietitian’s blog post on Alcohol Alternatives to reduce or eliminate alcohol.

Woman drinking wine
Alcoholic beverages can be a barrier to weight loss.

6. Plan Ahead to Achieve Anti-Aging Weight Loss

Planning doesn’t have to be “meal planning” on Sundays with individually portioned plastic containers. 

It can simply mean having a loose idea as to how you will manage food for the day. 

Pack healthy snacks and don’t be afraid to pack a small cooler.  Many of us have no idea what our day might have in store for us. 

Having healthy options on hand benefits your weight loss efforts, and it saves you time and money.  

Make food a part of your day, not an afterthought or an inconvenience!

Check out this Age-Defying Dietitian blog post for some tips on how to make meal planning more manageable – “How to Simplify Meal Planning“.

Person writing their meal plan in a notebook.
Planning ahead sets you up for success!

Check out the Age-Defying Dietitian’s “Anti-Aging 7-Day Meal Plan” for some meal planning inspiration!

7. Practice the Plate Method

This is by far my most recommended eating habit for weight loss.  It’s simple and it works! 

Choose a smaller plate and fill up half of your plate with vegetables (or a mix of fruits and vegetables). 

Smaller portions feel different psychologically when eating off a smaller plate than with a larger plate.  

Most importantly this eating strategy includes small sustainable changes. We lose up to 8% of our muscle mass every decade!

Fad diets and very low-calorie diets result in decreased muscle mass, lowered metabolic rate, and saggy skin.

Fill half your plate with vegetables and/or fruit.

8. Change Up Food Order

Changing the order in which you eat has benefits.  Fill up on protein and vegetables first, and then eat your carbohydrates. 

Eating your food in this order fills you up faster!

This food order strategy also has the anti-aging benefit of reducing post-meal blood sugars.  As our birthdays increase, so does our risk for Type 2 Diabetes.

Take action now to reduce blood sugar!  

Eating breakfast is also linked to a healthy weight. Need some convenient breakfast ideas? Check out these 7 Healthy Aging Breakfasts!

8. Find Support with Anti-Aging Weight Loss

Research tells us those with a good support network are more successful at weight loss. These individuals also tend to keep the weight off.

Think about what support means to you, and work on creating that support!

Support can be a trusted friend to lean on when you are discouraged. It can also be a spouse who cooks healthy meals.

In-person and virtual weight loss groups are also a great option. Create the support network you need on your weight loss journey!

2 woman supporting each other in anti-aging weight loss
Lean on your support system to accomplish goals!

My Expert Opinion on Anti-Aging Weight Loss

Maintaining a healthy weight is an essential part of healthy aging.

Weight loss prevents and delays the onset of chronic disease and the decreased physical limitations associated with aging.

Anti-aging weight loss is a process of creating eating habits that you can sustain for a lifetime!

A couple celebrating on a bridge enjoying life.
Create habits you can sustain for a lifetime!

Hungry for More?

Interested in more information on healthy aging?

Check out the Age-Defying Dietitian’s Blog for more healthy aging content!

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