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Senior Health

Here you will find informative articles on the topic of senior nutrition. Topics covered range from senior nutrition and weight loss to the relationship between BMI and quality of life for the elderly.

Weight Loss Tips for Men 50 and Up

Achieving the body you had at 20 may seem far-fetched, but losing weight after 50 for men may be easier than you think. See how to lose weight after 50 with these minor changes.

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Achieving the body and metabolism you had at twenty years old may seem far-fetched, but losing weight after 50 for men may be easier than you think…

From eating more (yes, we mean that) to simply getting extra sleep, see what minor changes you can make to lose weight after 50!

Men and Aging

Weight loss after 50 may be a tougher feat for a number of age-related factors, including a slower metabolism that is often compromised with muscle loss. In fact, men can lose about 10 pounds of muscle by the age of 60 with further decline as years go by.

As a domino effect, bones and joints may have to work a little harder related to reduced muscular support. The strain added can increase aches and pains thus furthering the motivation to be and stay active.

Whereas men generally need more calories than women related to muscle mass and body weight, they can experience changes in hormones similarly to women in menopause. Testosterone is the renowned hormone associated with "manhood" and strength and unfortunately, men experience reductions in testosterone during the natural aging process which can reduce metabolism even more.

Although achieving the body you had as an athletic teen or twenty-year-old may seem a little far-fetched, weight loss after 50 can still happen despite conflicting age-related factors. Put the ball back in your court with these simple steps!

How to Lose Weight After 50

1. Eat Colorful Foods

Being nutrient-rich and packed with fiber, gravitating towards more colorful fruits and veggies can increase greater feelings of fullness, thus reducing the risk of overeating and controlling overall calorie consumption.

In addition to fruits and veggies, whole grains are excellent fiber choices. Their inclusion promotes a healthy weight for men of all ages, supports bowel health, and reduces cholesterol and heart disease risk, all while minimizing nutritional deficiencies that may be more prone with advancing age.

Men are encouraged to consume 38 grams of fiber daily, which can also be obtained with beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, and other plant-based sources.

2. Consume Adequate Protein

Protein is important for weight loss, as the macronutrient supports lean muscle, lends greater satiety than carb and fat, regulates hunger hormones, curbs blood sugar fluctuations, increases energy expenditure, enhances fat burn, and supplies metabolic-supporting B vitamins.

Protein intake recommendations vary based on a number of factors, including age, weight, gender, and activity levels, though adults are often encouraged to consume at least 10 to 35 percent of total daily calories from protein sources. To support overall fitness and a healthy weight, men should consume at least 56 grams of protein per day, which aligns with the dietary reference intake (DRI) of 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram (g/kg) of body weight.

Consume lean and plant-based proteins to reduce overall calorie and fat intake fat, especially from lean beef, chicken, turkey, fish, eggs, beans, lentils, and other legumes. 

And since the World Health Organization (WHO) International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) recently announced red meat is probably carcinogenic, specifically colorectal cancer with some evidence for pancreatic cancer and prostate cancer, they advise limiting red meat consumption to two servings per week.

3. Strategize Fluid Needs

While the importance of hydration is essential throughout the entire lifespan, growing older heightens the risk of dehydration predominately related to a decreased thirst mechanism. Furthermore, thirst often masks itself as hunger, which can direct attention to food rather than a glass of water.

Adult men are advised to drink about 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids per day, in which water is advised to be the governing hydration source. Hydration can also be in the form of foods that are naturally rich in water, including watermelon, celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, and oranges.

But try to limit foods and drinks filled with empty calories, including soft drinks, energy drinks, and alcoholic beverages. And if you are to drink, men are advised to limit alcohol consumption to no more than two drinks per day.

As a bonus tip, check the color of urine if unsure if consuming sufficient water and fluid: A transparent yellow to a pale straw color indicates normal, adequate hydration.

4. Increase Physical Activity

Entering the gym maybe a little bit more intimidating at age 50 than it was as a muscular, younger male, though getting reacquainted with the weight rack can help counteract the loss of muscle and help support a healthy metabolism, while aerobic exercise helps torch calories.

Include weight and strength training at least twice a week and focus on the major muscle groups, including the back, chest, arms, and legs.

To elevate heart rate, burn sufficient calories, and lose weight faster, include a minimum of 150 minutes of aerobic activity weekly, or at least 30 minutes a day most days of the week. Cardio exercises that elevate heart rate include running, brisk walking, swimming, dancing, and cycling.

Though strength training paired with aerobic exercises is the ultimate power duo for weight loss and muscle maintenance and reducing the risks of developing diabetes and heart disease, simply make it an effort to increase daily movement. 

Even minor tweaks and short movement bouts can make a significant difference, which can be achieved by parking further away from the store’s entrance, taking the steps over the elevator, and taking the dog for a walk.

5. Get Quality Sleep Nightly

Yes, doing essentially nothing but recharging the mind and body can aid in weight loss after 50 and, well, at any age!

A deep sleep of seven to nine hours results in greater weight loss opposed to five to six hours, though sleeping patterns do tend to change during the normal aging process. Many find it harder to fall asleep at night and awaken throughout the night, with an average of three to four wake times.

Some may look to medications but additional sleep aid measures include staying consistent with bed and wake times, avoiding caffeine several hours before bed, avoiding naps throughout the day, straying away from TV time right before sleep, and exercising in the afternoon.

6. Try Out a Diet Delivery Program

Losing weight after 50 for men can be a challenge. A diet delivery program tailored for men can help!

Customized programs focus on metabolism correction to facilitate weight loss. What's more, a careful balance of nutrients helps adjust the body's specific metabolic rate to not just lose weight, but to help achieve successful, lifetime weight maintenance!

Written By Sydney Lappe, MS, RDN. Published on May 31, 2016. Updated on March 11, 2019.

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