The Galveston diet for menopause: what you need to know

The Galveston diet plan consists of three main actions.

1. Avoid inflammatory foods

Sugars, processed grains, fried foods, processed meats, saturated fat, diet sodas, and other unhealthy foods are restricted on this diet because they are said to contribute to inflammation in the body.

RELATED: 6 foods to avoid around menopause

Instead, the diet emphasizes whole foods with plenty of non-starchy vegetables and fruits. Foods specifically believed to reduce inflammation are encouraged, such as oily fish, berries, garlic, nuts, tomatoes, and olive oil.

2. Practice intermittent fasting

The idea is that a long time interval between meals makes your cells more adaptive to stressors and also initiates important cell repair.

The type of intermittent fasting recommended in the Galveston Diet is known as 16/8, which means fasting for 16 hours and eating for an 8 hour window each day. This usually means delaying the first meal of the day until around noon.

Haver advises adopting this diet slowly, such as delaying breakfast for half an hour every few days, to give your body time to adjust. “I myself ate six weeks before my first meal was at noon, so I was never very hungry,” she says.

3. Increase your fat intake

In the U.S. Federal Government’s My Plate Dietary Guidelines, carbohydrates are an important part of the daily diet. My Plate recommends that mature women eat 5-7 ounces (oz) of cereal per day, while men of the same age should consume 7-10 oz (at least half of these are whole grains).

In contrast, the Galveston diet significantly reduces carbohydrates. The bulk of the calories here come from healthy fats, to encourage fat burning, according to the company.

For example, the daily intake in the first few weeks allocates 70 percent of daily calories to fat, with protein at 21 percent and carbohydrate at 9 percent. After you’ve been on a diet for awhile and get used to eating less carbohydrates and sugars, additional complex carbohydrates are added.

Do postmenopausal women need a special diet?

It’s true that a woman’s body composition changes during perimenopause, with more fat settling around the abdomen, experts say.

“Mid-body weight gain is almost universal in postmenopausal women,” says Nanette Santoro, MD, president of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine at Aurora and a longtime researcher on menopause.

Virtually all women gain at least some fat under the skin with the end of their period, according to Dr. Santoro, which the researchers say could be linked to estrogen loss, although it was not. proven. “There are a lot of compelling theories and good science around her question, but there are currently few answers,” she says.

A certain percentage of women experience faster weight gain and more fat accumulation around the abdomen during the menopausal transition, she says. “Yet, little is known about why these women seem to have to work much harder to maintain their body weight during this time. “

In addition to the possible hormonal link, women entering perimenopause and menopause also face age-related changes, says Stéphanie Faubion, MD, director of Mayo Clinic’s Center for Women’s Health and medical director of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS ). Most women reach menopause, defined as having gone a full year without a period, around the age of 51.

Postmenopausal women typically lose muscle mass at a rate of almost 1% per year, but this is related to aging, not hormones, says Dr Faubion. In fact, due to muscle loss, the metabolic rate drops by about 30 percent between ages 20 and 70 for women and men, which can contribute to weight gain.

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