Women have outgrown their obsession for a super-thin body and men have outgrown their obsession for a six-pack and highly-muscular physique. This doesn’t mean that they have lost their desire to stay slim and trim or muscular. The ultimate point here is that people are currently focusing on reducing fat mass and staying healthy. While weight loss was a different ball game for both men and women back then, the approach has become more unified in recent times. You and I talk about how differently men and women communicate, act, behave or emote but are their approach to weight loss too poles apart? I don’t think so but it is always necessary to accept that certain variations do exist.
I remember a small incident from my younger years which I considered it to partial back then but now accept it partially. All of us were ready for dinner and my grandma approached all of my male cousins with an extra serving of roti whereas we girls were denied of it. When I questioned her on this, she simply replied that boys needed to eat more. I was appalled by her comment but after a few years I got to realize that genetically men are designed with more muscle mass and less fat mass compared to women due to greater presence of testosterone hormone and this brings about the need to consume more calories than women to help them maintain their weight. My poor grandma couldn’t scientifically explain the reason behind all her extra pampering and care back then 😊
Any two individuals might weigh the same but the one with the extra muscles needs more calories to maintain weight (as he is going to burn more calories). Its muscles that burn more calories at rest compared to fat and now I hope that every woman understands the need to build muscles. Muscles are not monopolized by men and weight loss is not only fat loss but includes muscle loss as well. So, its crucial that you eat the right foods and exercise right by including strength training in your routine to minimize muscle loss greatly. Muscle loss starts once a man or a woman crosses 30. That’s one of the reasons why dietitians and nutritionists insist individuals to reach normal body weight by the age of 30 after which the only concern would be to maintain it. After 30, weight loss becomes more strenuous due to muscle loss which also has a strong impact on immune system and our mobility.
Your Contribution to Weight Distribution
Looks say it all! Men carry most of their weight around their abdomen while women carry it in their hips and thighs. Postmenopausal women carry it around their abdomen due to hormone imbalance. Its this fat around the stomach and underneath internal organs (visceral fat) that’s dangerous enough to cause serious problems such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and fatty liver disease. But understand, any fat is bad-be it around your arms, hips, thigs or belly. Each of us should take every step to reduce this fat and reach normal body weight.
Who Loses Weight Faster?
Its true that men tend to lose weight quickly but we do have studies showing that both men and women end up losing the same amount of weight finally at the end of the weight loss program. It just takes women a little more time to ‘up’ her pace. While a woman might lose between .25-.75 kilograms a week, a man might lose between 0.5-1.0 kilograms a week. On of the main reasons quoted for higher body fat and slower reduction rates in women is owing to reproductive reasons. The set point (the body defends a particular range of body weight and takes all steps possible to maintain it) for a woman is different, her hormones are different and above all, females are healthy at a higher body fat percentage which makes weight loss a longer process for the female gender.
What’s your Food Choice
Its funny that we see most men feasting on meats as they find it to be masculine. How do they relate meat to masculinity? Get your answers at www.firsteatright.com. But a woman loves to munch on fruits and veggies. A woman is more experienced with dieting, gets herself cleared of her doubts with a counsellor or even educates herself by reading more. This might also be one of the reasons why she chooses veggies and fruits over meat. But recent times has seen both men and women realize the need to include more of lean proteins, vegetables and fruits, less of processed foods and baked goods and eat moderate amounts of dairy. While men used to be fans of the Paleo or the Atkins (meat-rich diet) now both, men and women prefer the Mediterranean diet that’s more inclined towards including natural foods such as whole grains, fruits, veggies, nuts and legumes.
This is one area where men and women can help each other. Men can recommend the best foods rich in proteins that help build muscles and women can suggest those that are high in nutrients and low in fats.
Its general to hear a woman go on a diet but the society puts on a funny face to a man who comments that he is on a diet. Many disagree when men sit with a salad bowl but appreciate the same gesture in a woman! But rise in obesity rates has put an end to all these gender-based ideas and has forced both genders to follow some degree of healthy eating, dieting and exercising. A registered dietitian nutritionist approaches both genders with the only goal in mind when it comes to weight loss-providing personalized diet plans suiting individual needs depending on their lifestyle, eating habits and work schedules.
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.