If you are caring for an elderly loved one, one thing you should focus on is their weight. You want to make sure they aren’t overweight. If they are, they could start experiencing a wide range of health issues including heart problems, anxiety, depression, and more. One of the first things you should do in this regard is to know more about why many senior citizens gain weight. Figuring out these reasons can help you to prevent them from gaining so much weight.
Losing Muscle Mass
One of the main reasons that senior citizens lose weight It’s because they lose muscle mass. While muscle does weigh more than fat does, it also will burn 3 times as many calories as the fat on the body will. This means when someone loses muscle mass their body isn’t able to burn off as many calories. Every decade people lose more and more muscle mass. There isn’t much that can be done about this, except for making sure your elderly loved one is exercising and staying as fit as possible. Continuing regular exercise throughout adulthood can help retain muscle mass and fend off the loss that comes with advanced age.
Changes in Metabolism
Changes in metabolism is another common reason why senior citizens gain weight. Metabolism allows calories to be turned into energy. After someone hits the age of 40, their metabolism starts to really slow down. Part of the reason for this is the muscle mass loss. The muscle connects with metabolism much more than fat does. This means that when someone loses muscle mass, their body is going to take longer to burn off calories.
Menopause is another reason why women, as they age, will experience weight gain. These hormonal changes can really take its toll on one’s weight. Progesterone and estrogen are two main hormones affected through menopause. These both affect insulin and cortisol levels, which play a major role in weight gain or weight loss. If you are caring for an elderly women who is going through menopause, be sure they are getting enough exercise, eating right, and staying active when they should be. You should also make sure they are getting enough sleep, as that can also affect their weight.
These are some of the many reasons why many senior citizens gain weight. As you now know, there are various health problems that are associated with weight gain. You want to make sure your elderly loved one is at the proper level for their weight. You don’t want them to be overweight. If they are already overweight, you want to make sure they exercise, eat right, and commit to other healthy habits, as well. You and their elderly care providers can make sure they are doing these things.
When you are in need of care for a senior loved one, consider caregivers provided by Golden Heart Senior Care. We have offices nationwide. For more information, call us today at (800) 601-2792.