THE BEST DIET FOR MIDLIFE

Forget what the experts say - this is my advice for the best Midlife diet


WHICH FAD DIET IS IT TODAY?

Have you noticed how much diet advice there is out there for women in Midlife? As we hit our 50's and menopause and a slowing metabolism settle in, the kilos creep on and we start reading all these articles everywhere on how to beat the midrift spread, or how to look like we're 30, or how to still look great in a bikini, or how to fight the muffin top etc.

The Midlife diet I'd like to recommend is the Live your life and stop worrying about a few extra kilos diet. We're living a in a great stage of life so isn't it about time we stopped focusing on the fact that we've gained a few pounds and turn our perspective outwards instead? Perhaps we could stop counting every calorie that crosses our lips and give ourselves a little bit of grace instead?


My advice, don't waste so much time worrying about your skin or your weight.


COMPARISON IS THE THIEF OF JOY

If we stop comparing ourselves to every Midlife movie star we see and start looking at ourselves as real women, then maybe we wouldn't need to worry about the latest dairy-free, carb-free, sugar-free, gluten-free craze. We wouldn't have to live on lettuce leaves and bottled water (because we all know bottled water is so much better than tap water don't we? I'm sure I was enlightened in that regard by several different magazine articles).

How refreshing it would be for us all if we stopped looking in the mirror at every new wrinkle or bulge and started looking out into the world to see how we can contribute now that we have more time and resources to offer. I'd love to see Midlife women smiling, and eating, and relaxing, and loving themselves for who they've become. That Midlife body has done a great job of getting us to 50+ so why not appreciate it instead of torturing it into being a size smaller?


“Have a busy, full life and stop looking in the mirror all the time!”


SOFT LAPS

Grandmothers used to be soft and have laps for their grandchildren to snuggle into - now we're told to do planks and avoid dessert and be strong and thin. Strong is great, but thin is optional. Nobody wants to be unhealthily overweight, but we don't need to beat ourselves up over a few extra kilos either. I for one, am just tired of the constant battle, I'd like to sit back and say "yes, I'm a dress size bigger than I was at 20 - so what?"

If you love to exercise and eat like a ballerina, that's great (I secretly envy you) but for those of us who are tired of the hoopla of trying to be a 50 year old in a 20 year old's body, let's cut ourselves some slack and be kinder to ourselves. Let's acknowledge the fact that we're really good women who enjoy chocolate or a glass of wine - and that doesn't make us bad people. 

CHANGE YOUR FOCUS

Instead of wasting time looking at our physical appearance and criticizing our reflection, let's turn our eyes outward  and see how we can make life better for ourselves and others. Let's enjoy being the size and shape we are and get on with this life we've been given. Maybe we'll be so busy having fun, the kilos might not seem all that important any more.


Forget what the experts say - this is my advice for the best Midlife diet

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24 comments

  1. I was actually just talking about this (kinda) with a friend yesterday. We were talking about dating and I commented on the fact I've never really felt ready for a relationship / been confident of anyone's interest because of my weight. But I've now lost weight and my friend asked if I now felt better about it. Interestingly I'm actually still heavier than I was in my 20s / 30s when I thought about dating but definitely felt way too big then - but I said to her that it feels a bit different now. I feel 'most' people are a little less pedantic about that external stuff... well I like to think so.

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    1. I'm hoping that Midlife is finally the time when we start to look beyond the superficial Deb - where we see the heart and the intent and not just the outer skin. I hope the blokes are doing the same thing :)

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  2. Great points... actually, I think being healthier is more important than being a certain weight.. Thank you for sharing these thoughts.

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    1. It all comes down to being healthy and feeling happy in ourselves doesn't it Joy - not beating ourselves up over a few kilos.

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  3. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE this post, Leanne. You are so right about our grandmother's and soft laps. When they were still quite young, my boys began calling one of their grandmothers "Grandma Cozy." This was not only because she had a soft, comfy lap, but also because she lived her midlife exactly as you described above. I would be absolutely honoured to receive such a nickname from my own grandchildren. Thanks again for this very inspiring post.

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    1. Thanks so much Donna - you are one of those active healthy Midlifers I admire so much but it's lovely to see that you "get" what I'm trying to say - that there's so much more to life than running on a treadmill and eating lettuce leaves!

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  4. Just what I needed to read Leanne!! I am trying to keep active and healthy but not focusing on my actual weight but it's hard to undo all the years of learned behaviour. Thanks for the reminder.

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    1. We've had it drummed into us from our teenage years onwards Deb (and especially the generation after us with their focus on social media). I'd just like us all to take a step back and breathe and love the body we've been given and take care of it from a healthy point of view.

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  5. Great post Leanne, as a society we are so obsessed with how our bodies weigh in that we seem to forget about our mind and spirit. It's nice to feel healthy but not in order to meet some external measure.

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    1. It's about all three isn't it? Being healthy in body, mind and spirit - and not fixating on physical appearance for the sake of society's idea of beauty.

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  6. This post matches my philosophy exactly. I do have to watch my sugar intake, so I rarely eat cookies, but I ate s'mores cookies last night without one bit of guilt! I'm 60 years old and have learned a few things: what my body tolerates, what I need for strength and energy, and what's more important than obsessing over my weight. I love the freedom I feel because living an active, happy life is more important than counting calories. Thanks for these words of wisdom!

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    1. I know what you mean Melody - my weakness is hot chips. I know I can't eat them all the time because they really aren't good for me, but the times I choose to are when I want to be able to enjoy them without all the guilt that comes with this obsession with weight and staying young.

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  7. I've learned over the years that here if I start to think about my appearance too much or obsess about the extern all it's an indicator I'm really unhappy with the internal landscape.
    My default is not to care. And when that shifts it's a sign for me as well.

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    1. Carla you have an amazing physical presence - but I love how you balance it with your spiritual side too (and that wonderful maternal aspect!) If we don't get the balance right then our lives become very narrow and unhappy.

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  8. Amen! Eating or Exercising that makes you feel unwell is ridiculous. Eating and Exercising that makes you feel strong is great, but it is lots of factors that make us happy.

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    1. Perfectly said Haralee - it's about being disciplined (even more so at this stage of life) but also about not focusing all our time and energy on trying to meet ridiculous expectations.

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  9. I really don't worry too much about my weight as long as my favorite jeans fit...if they start getting tight I know its time to walk a little more...I am not fanatical about it and know I'm not 30 anymore...but I want those jeans to fit...

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    1. I'm the same Renee - my problem is that the jeans were getting tighter and it was becoming a bit of a "thing" for me - then I realized that it was such a first world problem and I'm not stressing about it anymore.

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  10. I think you know my views on this Leanne. I just want to be healthy and active so I can keep up with the grandchildren. I think we do get too caught up with comparing ourselves to others. I love a red wine and chocolate and my latest is Salted Caramel Ice cream - delish! However, I then exercise regularly so I keep a healthy weight range - not skinny but not in the dangerous category for health reasons.

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    1. You seem to have it really well figured out Sue - and the fact that you love to exercise is such a bonus - if you could bottle that and sell it you'd be a millionaire!

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  11. Good post. I think what's most important is that the food we eat should be healthy. Thank you Leanne for attending the #WednesdayAIMLinkParty. I pinned your post on Pinterest and shared it ont Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.

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    1. I agree Dee - it's about health and fitness, not about being thin or competing in Australian Ninja. Lets enjoy our age and stage but do it responsibly.

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  12. I really appreciate this post, Leanne. I have obsessed about my weight forever and all that has ever done for me is make me angry with myself so that I eat more in frustration and self-disgust. I'm active, maybe 40 pounds over the weight I'd like to be, but treating it as if those 40 pounds were 400 pounds. I'm working hard to change my perspective and posts like yours are invaluable to that effort. Thank you so much.

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  13. This is totally an awesome fitness post...Loved reading it

    http://www.simpleindianmom.in/5-modern-illness-prone-affect-child-steps-need-take-immediately/

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