Got a belly bulge that won't budge? A pooch that won't vamoose? Are all the drop-5-pounds-fast tricks that used to work for you increasingly useless? Blame the shifting hormones and slowing metabolism that come with extra birthday candles. They have a way of rewriting the rules of weight loss after 40. Here's how to fix that:
- The belly bulger: rising blood sugar. At age 30, 10% to 20% of women are insulin resistant -- which means their bodies ignore signals to absorb blood sugar. By age 60, slightly more than half are insulin resistant, thanks to drops in estrogen levels. Other hormone shifts, including rising levels of the stress hormone cortisol, send fat to your belly for storage. And belly fat doesn't just sit there. It makes trouble, releasing chemicals that interfere even more with insulin. The real kicker is that insulin resistance also seems to interfere with your ability to burn fat, making it even harder to lose the belly.
- The fix: Cut the carbs and