According to Dr. Linda Anegawa, F.A.C.P., founder of OSR Weight Management in Hawaii and metabolic medicine and clerkship director in medicine for the University of Hawaii, for women who are determined to lose weight, it’s important to understand why it is more difficult for women to shed pounds than their male counterparts. Scientifically, there are a number of reasons why it’s harder for women to lose weight. This article will not only help you understand and lessen any frustrations of some of the common obstacles that may arise in losing weight.
(1)Women Have Less Lean Body Mass
On average muscle mass in men is greater than in women, and by nature men have a higher basal metabolic rate,” Anegawa explained.”This means that a man’s body can burn even more calories without exercising on a day to day basis, resulting in a greater caloric deficit and weight loss.”
(2)Women Have Less Testosterone
According to Dr. Scott Schreiber, a chiropractor, licensed dietitian nutritionist and certified nutrition specialist who has help individuals lose weight for over 10 years. Men have a greater advantage over women, when it comes to losing weight, due to higher levels of testosterone (an anabolic steroid)that promotes muscle growth. “In fact, testosterone levels in men is seven to eight times more than in women,” Schreiber said. “In short, due to this anabolic steroid, men are able to build muscle much easier than women,” further increasing the effect it has on their metabolic rate relative to burning calories and weight loss.
When it comes to losing weight,the monthly hormonal fluctuations levels of estrogen and progesterone can throw off numbers on the scale. Anegawa explains, “how this can lead to cycles of water retention and loss, from mid-cycle of a woman’s monthly fluctuation to immediately before the monthly period, it is common for the a woman’s body to retain water.” During this period, a woman may not see a drop in weight when she weighs herself, even though she is eating well and exercising often, however, the body is still burning calories, losing fat,and enhancing the body’s composition.
(4)Women Store Fat Differently
Mark Sisson, author of The Primal Blueprint and creator of MarksDailyApple.com, explains how, “Female bodies ‘store’ specific types of fat and are reluctant to relinquish them ‘due to a simple caloric deficit that women have.” Fundamentally, evolution is to blame. Sisson continues to explain that a woman’s “Reproduction system is far more nutritionally expensive than their male counterparts”. In other words, at some point a woman’s body will need to nourish another human being (i.e. pregnancy), through evolution the human female body not only to stores fat in strategic places (like the hips, butt and legs), but also to hold onto it more “stubbornly.” This process provide a woman with enough body fat on hand to produce enough leptin for optimal fertility, or enough DHA (Omega – 3 fatty acid) stored in lower-body (hips, butt, thighs, and legs) fat to build a robust baby brain.
(5)Women Burn Fat Differently
“The way that women burn fat is much different than men,” Sisson wrote. “Upper body fat goes first, while the hips, butt, thighs, and legs tend to retain fat. With the exception of pregnancy and lactation, when the lower body begins to give up lower fat stores far more readily in order to nourish another human being. Surprisingly (and not by accident), women bodies preferentially tend to store the long chain omega-3 fatty acid DHA — the one that’s so important to the baby’s development during and after pregnancy — in their thighs.”
Steps to overcome your weight-loss obstacles.
●Start strength training 2-3 times a week. Muscle burns more calories than fat, even when at rest.
●Better food choices, such as fresh fruit, vegetables, healthy snacks (nuts or popcorn). Drink water instead of sodas.
●Keep a journal of what and how much you eat. As well as your exercise routines.
●Plan ahead. Prepare your meals, this will help you avoid eating unhealthy foods.
●Eat every three to four hours, fresh fruit, vegetables, healthy snacks (nuts or popcorn), you are less likely to give in to bad food choices, as well as overeating, when you are not too hungry.
●Get no less than six to 8 hours of sleep.