Whenever your estrogen levels are off, it can affect your metabolism When you have excess levels of estrogen, it makes you gain weight. This happens because estrogen is linked to your ability to use fat and it’s also linked to the way that your body holds onto it.
Higher levels of estrogen create a condition where the body actually fights weight loss so that you end up not losing - and in many cases, you can end up adding pounds. This excess estrogen problem can be caused by your body’s own natural estrogen or through the use of synthetic estrogen.
This is why some women on HRT end up gaining weight. When your estrogen hormone levels get out of balance and you end up with more than you need, it can trigger fat added in specific areas of your body.
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It most commonly appears in the abdominal area, but it can also cause you to gain fat in the area of the breasts. What’s happening is that the extra estrogen is triggering your body to begin a cycle of increasing the fat stores that you have.
One sign that your estrogen is off balance is when you notice that you’re gaining weight around your mid-section and you’ve done nothing to bring on those changes - such as decreasing or stopping exercise or eating more.
Many women don’t understand why, when estrogen levels are supposed to diminish during something such as menopause, why they still end up gaining weight. That’s because when your body recognizes that estrogen levels are dropping, it starts the process of trying to stop the loss of estrogen.
This causes estrogen to stay within the cells, resulting in excess estrogen in your fat. The body then, still in the mode of hanging onto estrogen, doesn’t want to let go of any of the calories found in the food that you eat.
Your body will burn what it needs for fuel, but every single calorie after that, it will put in your fat storage, which in turn creates more fat. This is why, as women age, they get what they believe is just a “middle age spread” - when it’s actually estrogen that’s behind that growth.
The changes that occur in a woman’s life as she heads toward menopause create a response within her body that makes it more favorable for estrogen to cause calories to turn into fat.
This is why a woman has to make some lifestyle changes to combat the estrogen-caused weight gain situation. You can take supplements that balance estrogen and you can also eliminate foods that are known to promote fat stores.
By eating a diet that focuses on low fat foods - such as vegetables, which contain nutrients that fight against fat storage, you won’t hold onto those extra fat stores caused by the high estrogen.