Melbourne-based menopause specialist Dr Khan has kindly let us share her Weight Series with you. This is the second in the series. In the first instalment she talks about the importance of only eating during certain hours.
Weight Gain and Oestrogen
The decline in oestrogen levels around the perimenopause and menopause causes increased abdominal fat or visceral fat.
Visceral fat is metabolically active increasing your risk of diabetes, blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease and metabolic syndrome.
One of the hypotheses for increased abdominal fat distribution is that it’s a compensatory mechanism when oestrogen production from the ovary’s declines. We know fat cells produce oestrogen and provide an extra source during the menopause transition.
Adrenal glands are another source of oestrogen but due to stressful demands of modern life most women’s adrenals are ‘burnt out’ and do not have the capacity to produce adequate oestrogen during menopause.
Treatment with oestrogen therapy along with lifestyle changes will help reduce abdominal weight.
Oestrogen benefits include short term symptom relief and long-term benefits for prevention of heart disease, osteoporosis, dementia, diabetes and depression.
- Watch out for our next instalment in The Weight Series on weight and stress.
Melbourne-based Dr Fatima Khan is highly skilled and experienced menopause specialist who genuinely cares about our hormonal health.