Just turned 40 and body is changing

Hi, I just wanted to post this to see if any other women have experienced the same changes in their body that I have. I usually gain weight in my hips and thighs, never in my stomach or chest.
Since I turned 38 that has all changed. My chest went from a AA to a C, my waist went up 3 inches and my hips and thighs went up only an inch. It is like the hourglass has turned and it is the reverse of how I used to gain weight. My eating has not changed much that I can remember but we did slack off a year in 2011 and not exercise, that is when the weight gain started. I was also on estrogen based birth control. My doctor was shocked to see I was still on those pills when I went back recently so she switched me to others.

I went from 140 (2011) to now I am 160. I am 5'7" and we now exercise 30 to 40 min., 4 times a week. I am trying to lose 20lbs but it seems my body is just fighting me. I've gained 2 lbs in the last 2 months.
I need a plan that works but I need the weight gain to plateau so I can make that happen.

I have IBS and have issues eating vegetables so it is hard to eat tons of them. I eat them cooked only.

I hardly ever drink water except when I exercise, I know that is not good but I hate to drink when I am not thirsty. I have bladder issues so if I drink a lot, I go the bathroom every 10 minutes. It is hard to have a regular life or work when that happens.

My blood pressure is always normal, I have back issues but no other major health issues.

Question: Could the estrogen pills make me gain weight like I am pregnant? Has anyone had similar issues with them?
Question: Has nearing 40 affected anyone else like this?


  • Dimpleschick55
    Dimpleschick55 Posts: 13 Member
    I am over 50 and began gaining weight when I reached that decade. Unfortunately, our metabolisms slow down so losing is more challenging. I also get bigger boobs. It was a real surprise for me. I gain weight evenly throughout my middle so I don't look like I've gained, but the waist in my clothes gets tight first. I have gained 12 pounds since May and don't seem to have the incentive to lose them.

    I also have some health issues, thyroid disease, which makes it harder to lose weight and celiac disease which means I have to be gluten free. Those gluten free foods will put the pounds on you. I do drink water but need to drink more. You should increase your water intake and it will help you lose weight. At first you are visiting the bathroom frequently but it will level out. You can put a twist of lemon in your water to flavor it. Estrogen can make you gain. Talk to your doctor about it again. Maybe there is an alternative for you.
  • mumof5
    mumof5 Posts: 328 Member
    yep, changed everything!! i wish i could say the weight went to my chest but it seems that the place i gain now is my butt and hips. used to be just my tummy. lifting heavy, eating well and a lot, doing interval cardio keeps gravity at bay. eat clean, work hard, stay patient :)
  • I couldn't eat the way I used to, I had to train a bit differently. I was gaining in different places.
  • I went through the same thing but I really let my weight get out of control.Darn aging, why cant we age in reverse?! Lol.

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  • jofjltncb6
    jofjltncb6 Posts: 34,415 Member
    I'm a guy, so probably not helpful...

    ...but when I turned 40, I started exercising regularly and consistently tracking my food...

    ...and I'm in the best shape of my life.

    Is my metabolism slower now than it was in my 20s? No idea...I guess probably...but since I'm more active and tracking now, does it really matter?

    So anyhow, that's my recommendation: be more active and consistently track.
  • sunrise611
    sunrise611 Posts: 1,833 Member
    Yes, estrogen can make you gain weight and increase the bust size in men and women, so be aware of that.

    I used to drink soy milk and use it in my cereal but it has estrogen in it so I switched to almond milk and try to avoid food and drinks that contain estrogen in it.
  • dmpizza
    dmpizza Posts: 3,322 Member
    Your body turns hormones on and off very quickly. Sucks.
  • kellygirl5538
    kellygirl5538 Posts: 597 Member
    Just do the best you can and be as fit as you can!
  • MyChocolateDiet
    MyChocolateDiet Posts: 22,281 Member
    I"m confused, is this thread more about being over 40 or about estrogen pills and their effects? Pls advise. :flowerforyou:
  • LiftHeavyWeights
    LiftHeavyWeights Posts: 336 Member
    I had to step up the fitness intensity as I got older. When younger I could keep in good shape with mostly strength training. Now, it's a combination and for longer sessions. It is working!
  • ctalimenti
    ctalimenti Posts: 865 Member
    I'm a guy, so probably not helpful...

    ...but when I turned 40, I started exercising regularly and consistently tracking my food...

    ...and I'm in the best shape of my life.

    Is my metabolism slower now than it was in my 20s? No idea...I guess probably...but since I'm more active and tracking now, does it really matter?

    So anyhow, that's my recommendation: be more active and consistently track.

    I totally agree! I can also attest to all of your findings OP. I could have written that. You are only really burning about 200 less cals that a 20 yr old if you input stats on a typical online calculator. Just log every single bite of food and always round up. I heard that food companies have a 20% leeway in listing calories on their labels.
  • BeachGingerOnTheRocks
    BeachGingerOnTheRocks Posts: 3,927 Member
    Over 40 here, and I haven't had the same. A good diet and plenty of exercise have worked wonders for me to drop all the weight I put on in my 30s.

    I'm pretty sure it is the estrogen.

    Talk to your doctor about this.
  • harlanJEN
    harlanJEN Posts: 1,089 Member

    hormones certainly are heavy hitters and can be quite the bullies.

    With that said : don't let the " over 40 & age is against me" become a Mindset.

    I picked up a barbell for the first time at 47 , started paying closer attention to my food, and am more active overall. I'm in better shape at 50 than I was in my 30s. I strive for SLEEK. Age happens. Can't control it, but can choose how to roll with it. I'm not going down without a fight. Ain't nobody got time for that ! #getwithitforlife
  • NaomiJFoster
    NaomiJFoster Posts: 1,450 Member
    Exactly like you said. At age 38, my body rebelled on me. The activity level and eating style that had kept me at a pretty steady weight most of my adult life, was no longer effective at all. I gained a lot, and very quickly. And all in my belly. It's actually called Menopause Belly, and you almost look pregnant. For a few years, I just let it happen. I accepted it as just a fact of my life. My blood pressure was going up. My skin was getting doughy. My flexibility was dwindling.

    I finally realizd that I didn't actually have to just go along with it! I found this site just over a year ago. I've lost about 25-27 pounds (depending on which day of the month). My period wreaks havoc with my weight, still. And I seem to have stalled for the time being. And the poochy belly is still an issue. But I know I'm healthier.

    It's a bit shocking, how quickly it all changes. But get on top of it now. Don't wait like I did.
  • I agree that it must be age and hormones that cause the change in weight.

    For 4 years I sat at a desk for work and rapidly lost weight. Started around 2010 to 2012. I got down to 120lbs and a size 2.
    I felt and looked great. Turned 40 in Feb 2013, and in July 2013 started a different job. The new job I work in a warehouse and on my feet and moving every day. I have never exercised.
    My eating habits didn't change, yet within 6 months, I gained 25lbs and went up to a size 8.

    I track my food and activity online and my son got me the fitbit, but I still can't figure out why I keep gaining weight unexplained.
  • jaeone
    jaeone Posts: 649 Member
    Actually it happening more to me as I am nearing 50 (6 more months! :drinker: ) What used to work, isn't working any more!! But with strength training and eating a healthy intake, I am getting the body I want!!
  • kgilbert1973

    Funny that you got a job with more activity..so did I. I am outside and move a lot.
    Sat less and moved more and gained weight even with less time to eat or drink sugary drinks all day.
    I thought if I moved more I would lose weight but the stress of working for myself was too intense and I think may have been a contributing factor to gaining.
  • nancybuss
    nancybuss Posts: 1,461 Member
    I wish I'd gain in my bust. LOL

    Belly fat is more common post menapause, at least my doc said so.

    I had two kids in my 40's, and a few years after that starting working out more. I'm pushing for the best shape of my life. So age and hormones may affect things, but so does eating better and working out. :) I recently turned 48.

    Feel free to friend me if you'd like.