One of the best things you can do to maintain your strength, energy, and vitality is maintain your muscle mass.
When you begin to change your eating habits and start to slowly reduce the portion sizes and amount of calories from junk food and processed foods (this is what many people call dieting) you will lose muscle mass along with the fat.
When people lose muscle as they are dieting, they look soft and sometimes saggy…so what’s a girl to do?
I bet you’ve guessed already…..
1. Strength train – Yes, you can’t get away from this;). You must do some type of resistance training or you will lose muscle mass. Lifting weights also helps preserve muscle that you lose with the aging process. It’s especially important for women post-menopausal has lifting weights has a specific impact on reducing belly fat.
2. Consume protein. Most likely you will need to eat more protein than you are right now. People, especially women (in my experience) , do not eat enough protein and it is critical if you want to maintain or build muscle. It’s not easy for most people – there is a lot more planning, prepping and chewing, but I have faith that you can do this!
Here are some other reasons to eat protein when you are trying to release some extra body fat and maintain your muscle:
- It’s the most satiating macro nutrient, even better than fat!
- It takes more energy to digest protein than carbs or fat (thermic effect of feeding /TEF)
- You must consume enough protein to build/maintain muscle (about .8-1 gram of protein per pound of body weight)
p.s. Don’t diet, make your new nutritional plan your forever way of eating.