Most of us are aware of the dangers of being overweight. More than a quarter of UK Adults are classified as obese. But how does weight affect us as we age?
30’s – The body begins to store more fat and loses lean muscles, due to a reduction in the activity of growth hormones. This can lead to a slowing of the metabolism, and therefore encourage further weight gain. Men in this age group are prone to putting on abdominal weight. Women can lose up to 170g (6oz) of body muscle mass per year. Which is replaced by fat.
Recommended exercise: Cardiovascular activities taken alongside muscle building exercises can help to maintain a healthy weight.
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40’s – Metabolic rates continue to decrease , meaning the body takes longer to burn calories. A slower metabolism means that people need fewer calories per day. Continuing to consude as many calories as in your 20s and 30s can lead to gaining an extra 30lb per year. Peri-menopause(the time leading up to menopause) may being to affect the hormone balances of women, leading to fat storage moving to abdomen area.
Recommend Exercise: Cardio activities such as aerobics should form the basis of exercise.
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50’s – Menopausal women lose around 66% of oestrogen which declines at a faster than the 50-60% of testosterone they lose, leading to a movement of body fat from the hips to the waist. Men and women who are overweight in their 50s can being to suffer from cardiovascular disorders, caused by rising blood pressure and cholesterol. 1/3 of all UK deaths are caused by heart diseases.
Recommended exercise: Undertaking heavy cardio activities in the 50’s can be dangerous, particularly if the body has not been previously used to them. Instead, gentler exercise such as aqua aerobics can provide an adequate workout.
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60’s: Being overweight when aged 60 and over results in a lack of mobility. This makes it more difficult for people to maintain a healthy weight. And can cause them to gain more weight. 32% of women and 54% of men aged over 65 are classed as overweight.
Recommended exercise: Gentler exercises are best for over 60s. Regular brisk walking, swimming, and Pilates are recommended to stay in shape without placing undue stress on the body.
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