Cambridge diet: discover everything you need to know!

If you want to lose weight, you can choose from a wide variety of diets or waste methods that can help you with this. Certain diets work, with others you can question whether they really benefit. It is therefore important to do good research into a specific diet so that you know what you are starting.

In this article we will look at the Cambridge diet, one of the most famous diets that exists. Also one of the oldest. We show you how the diet works, what the pros and cons of the diet are and what the user experiences are of people who follow it.

Curious about the Cambridge Weight Plan? Then read on below.

The history of the cambridge diet

To get a little idea of ​​where the diet comes from, a short history lesson. The diet was devised once in the 70s by Dr. Alan Howard. The English food scientist has developed the Cambridge Diet at the University of Cambridge, after which it has traveled all over the world. The diet has caused a lot of furore with perfect marketing, especially in Great Britain. And it’s still a fairly popular diet.

The diet is known to many people and keeps popping up everywhere. The question is whether this is due to the name, or because the diet really is exceptionally good. Time for investigation.

The cambridge diet before January 1, 2017

The diet has been given a new face from January 1, 2017, which has considerably changed compared to the old method. You will soon discover whether the new way is better than the old one. In this article, however, we introduce you to both ways (if you want to go straight to the new diet, then scroll further).

For example, the Cambridge Diet has existed for a very long time in 3 variants: Cambridge 500, Cambridge 800 and Cambridge 800+. However, the new method uses a 7-step plan.

Below we show you briefly how these old variants of the diet worked, so that you get a complete picture of what the diet stands for.

Cambridge 500

It is probably the most used variant, but at the same time also the most difficult. With Cambridge 500, calorie restriction is the highest. The 500 in the name already reveals it a bit, because this was the maximum number of calories you could eat per day with this variant of the diet. Every thinking person knows of course that this is bizarre low.

Obviously, enough people have lost weight, since getting fewer calories is part of weight loss. However, it is very important that this is a limited calorie restriction. Taking too few calories in one day is counterproductive and can even be dangerous.

With this variant, everything revolved around the so-called meal replacements, consisting of shakes. Fresh food was not really involved with this method. Where tastes differ, the high price of the products has always been a shared factor.

Cambridge 800

Cambridge 800 actually looks a lot like the Cambridge 500 variant. The only big difference is that you can add food yourself with this method. You can do this up to a total of 800 calories. It is also important that you let this consist of healthy food. If you add these calories to those 500 calories, you’re still pretty low with your calorie intake. The effects are almost the same, with the difference that you are slightly happier because your stomach is a bit more filled with food. Again meal replacements play a major role in the Cambridge Diet 800.

Cambridge 800+

With the Cambridge 800+ plan, you can still add a normal meal to your diet. So in fact you have the most extreme diet, namely the Cambridge 500 and with the 800 and 800+ more food is added. At the end of the ride still far too little, but this is meant to make it more bearable for people who can’t handle the 500 diet. This alone indicates how extreme the diet actually is. And it is also not the right way to lose weight, which also makes you healthier. With this variant you also use meal replacements again.

And now it’s time for the new version of the diet that you can follow today, namely the Cambridge Weight Plan.

How does the Cambridge Weight Plan work?

The new Cambridge diet or Cambridge Weight Plan uses a 7-step plan. In chronological order these are Total reset, Back to basic, Basic +, In between, Hi five, In the mix and My life. With these steps you will switch to a specific target weight and healthy diet.

You will do this under the guidance of a Cambridge diet consultant, from whom you can also order your Cambridge diet products. Incidentally, this can only be done through a consultant, so they cannot be purchased in stores or on the internet.

Furthermore, a personal folder will be created for you, in which you can keep track of everything.

Content of the diet

The Cambridge diet therefore consists largely of meal replacements. These can be shakes, soups, bars (bars), pastries, hot meals, smoothies and extras. These Cambridge diet products are available from € 2.55 euros and can go up to € 15.95 each.

When we look at how many products you have to take during the diet (in the beginning even just) you are soon on monthly costs of between € 250, – and € 350, -. This is based on the minimum prices that certain shakes have, but also various bars, ready-to-drink and meal products that again rise to € 3.65 euros each. But with the rest of the products you purchase, there can be much higher outliers per month. So prepare yourself for the necessary costs when you start.

You will gradually reduce this over time.

The Cambridge Weight Plan, 7-step plan

To give you an idea of ​​how the 7-step plan works, we show you how it works in a table below. You can eat and drink a number of portions per “type” in each step. Exactly how large the portions are, they do not show on their own website, but they will be normal portions for 1 person. Via a detour you go straight from just meal replacements to a healthy diet.

Below you can see the Cambridge Weight Plan, with the 7-step plan in a table:

* CWP stands for the meal replacements / products of the Cambridge Weight Plan.

Where can you follow it?

You can follow the Cambridge Weight Plan by making an appointment with a consultant in your area. There are a number of them distributed throughout the Netherlands. It is not possible to follow this diet without a consultant. Before the intake you will have to take into account the necessary costs, which in all likelihood will be between € 20 and € 30 (+ any additional travel costs).

This intake examines medication, allergies or certain situations. If this is the case, it may be that a doctor must first be consulted or that you may not even start with step 1 (quite strange for a “healthy” diet). This probably also has something to do with the amount of meal replacements you need to take during the diet.

You are now going to make a realistic plan with this consultant to reach your goal weight.

Why does the Cambridge diet receive so much criticism?

The cambridge diet is a classic crash diet . The popularity among one group of users is often varied by surveys, but also by experiences of other groups of people who on the one hand do not lose weight or, on the other hand, experience many problems with it.

You can see from this that it is not a diet for everyone.

But why does the diet cause so much fuss? To give you a clear picture of this, we list the most common points of criticism below. That way you can decide for yourself whether you want to follow the diet or not.

1. Following crash diets is not the solution

The diet is therefore renewed after a long time. This is probably due to the discovery that Cambridge 500, 800 and 800+ were very drastic, long-term results were often absent and that many complaints rolled in. Nevertheless, phases 1, 2, 3 and higher of the new diet are comparable to the old methods (Cambridge 500, 800 and 800+), according to the information on their own website.

So they have learned something, but still use the old and outdated methods that do not seem to work for everyone. The way in which the calorie restriction is applied is quite extreme, which has the opposite effect (not keeping on weight after the diet ), can be dangerous and is also quite expensive.

2. Use of many meal replacements

Another downside is that you take many meal replacements with the Cambridge Diet. You cannot follow the diet without taking all kinds of powders, packets and shakes . While you can lose weight very quickly with everything that nature has to offer and it is also healthier.

Now a supplement to your diet can of course sometimes be good. But you can also break into it. It should never replace the majority or your complete diet.

Eating and drinking fresh things is always the best way to lose weight and improve your overall health. With the Cambridge Weight Plan, however, you start right from phase 1 with just meal replacements and you will continue to use them (according to the “My life” phase) for a long time or perhaps the rest of your life. This is of course never the intention.

3. The Cambridge diet costs rise quickly

You also make quite a few costs with the diet. For example, you will spend an average of € 25 for an intake interview, to which you must add fuel or travel costs (the consultant will not come to your home). Follow-up appointments also cost this amount, provided it is indicated that they are free.

Then you are not there yet, because here the costs for all products that you need are also added. On average you should certainly take into account around € 300 in costs per month. With the more expensive products, however, this average can also rise. Consider carefully whether you are prepared to do so, because when you suddenly encounter unexpected costs during the diet, you are too late.

For these amounts you can buy so much tasty fresh food that you can lose weight quickly, that you have to ask yourself if you feel like it.

4. Complaints during the diet

The necessary experiences are known, whereby people who have followed the diet experience various complaints. This can include headache, nausea, muscle aches, constipation and bad breath. Most of these are based on the old method of dieting. Updates will have to show whether the new diet comes out better.

In addition, a few deaths are known with the most extreme variant. Now that may be related to more things, but the fact that there may be some sort of connection with the Cambridge diet raises the necessary suspicion among many people about the healthy nature of the diet.

Furthermore, it is also very difficult for many people to maintain. When you have ever been really hungry (so no appetite), you know that this is not a pleasant feeling for a longer period of time. Unfortunately, this diet does occur regularly.

5. Lack of various healthy nutrients

It is not exactly clear how many calories the products of the Cambridge diet contain. But given that it has all the traits of a crash diet and they themselves indicate on their own website that the first steps are similar to the Cambridge 500, 800 and 800+ diet, we assume that the number of calories is reasonably similar.

The products are fairly balanced, but you will probably miss out on the necessary nutrients. It is therefore always good to use multivitamins or minerals.

The products also contain practically to no dietary fiber, while the RDA of this is at least 30 grams. Eating enough fiber also plays an important role in a healthy intestinal flora. The fact that they are lacking in the diet is not too good and may be related to a disruption, which is reflected in some user experiences of the cambridge diet.

The benefits of the diet

  1. You can lose weight with it! Honesty area to say that despite the extreme nature, losing a few pounds is quite possible. You can lose the first kilos in a few days, but this will for the most part be about fluid loss and only then about fat loss.
  2. It is easy to prepare! Because you use a lot of meal replacements, you do not have to spend much time preparing your food. Although you can comment on the use of this, it serves a certain convenience. There is also a choice of many different flavors.
  3. Guidance during the entire process! This can have added value. That way you can prepare plans together with your coach and ask questions when necessary. A personal plan is created that ends up in a folder. Here you can keep track of everything during the diet.

The disadvantages of the diet

  1. Too few calories! Crash diets usually do not work, chances of a yo-yo effect and getting heavier are high. In addition, it can also be dangerous. So pay attention.
  2. It is an expensive diet! You pay on average € 25 for intake and follow-up appointments, fuel or travel costs and meal replacements (on average € 250 to € 350 per month).
  3. Hard to maintain diet! It requires a lot of discipline. Hunger will occur regularly. This also increases the chance of binge eating.
  4. Complaints during the diet! Complaints may also occur during the diet. This can vary from headache, nausea, muscle pain, constipation to bad breath. If you really suffer, stop the diet.
  5. Little space for fresh food! Especially in the first phases of the diet you use a lot of meal replacements. These should never replace a large part or your complete diet. This is therefore a disadvantage of the diet.

The experiences with the diet

These show that losing weight is possible, but that the results vary. For example, one person falls off well, while another person makes less rapid profit. It is also often the long-term results that are not forthcoming. For that reason it is therefore not a diet for everyone.

Experience also shows that quite a few complaints can occur during the diet. For example, various assessments mention headache, nausea, muscle pain, constipation and bad breath. Of course, hunger is also a much-discussed flaw, given that you consume far fewer calories than usual.

Those who lose weight are usually happy with the diet, but the division makes it difficult to estimate how it will work for you. Ask yourself well if you want to take this gamble. In addition, it is not the healthiest way to lose weight and there are much better alternatives.

Is the Cambridge diet recommended?

This diet is not recommended. When you lose weight, the speed with which you do this is of course important, but much more the way you do it. And that means losing weight in a responsible way, with a method that you can sustain and that also makes you healthier.

Although the diet also has positive sides, there are too many criticisms. Your goal should always be to work on your weight in the best way. The advice is to do that in a different way than to follow this diet.

Losing weight without exercising

Losing weight without exercising. Is that possible?

It is often thought that exercise is essential for losing weight. Although exercise is very healthy, you can easily lose weight without exercising.

It is important to tackle your diet, pay attention to what and how much you drink and choose a healthy lifestyle.

In this article you can read all about what you have to do to lose weight without exercising.

How important is exercising for weight loss?

Enough exercise ensures a fit body that is more resistant to diseases and stress and with which you can grow old healthily. Your joints remain flexible, you feel better in your skin and age complaints also decrease. Many people know this and do their best to exercise regularly. But intensive exercise is not for everyone. There may be reasons why you cannot or do not want to exercise.

  1. You suffer from a long-term injury that is very limited in your movements.
  2. You don’t have time because of a busy job, a family and other hobbies.
  3. Psychological reasons: (failure) anxiety, social anxiety, shyness or fear of starting something new (such as a sport). At the moment you are unable to exercise.

And maybe there are other reasons why you are not going to exercise. And that’s why it’s good to know that exercising isn’t essential if you want to lose weight. It will certainly help, but when losing weight, nutrition plays the largest role (80%).

For that reason, it is important to adjust your diet and lifestyle (in areas other than sports) to be able to lose weight. With a few minor adjustments you can achieve a lot and lose the first kilos quickly.

Step 1: adjust your drinking behavior

Fizzy drink

Delete drinking soda from your list. Soft drinks contain a shocking amount of sugar or glucose fructose syrup. These sugars are all quickly converted to fat and therefore make you fat. If they do not contain sugar, or sugar substitutes: chemicals that stimulate your brain with the taste of sweet.

Although they are not sugar, they do feel like something sweet to the body, and because of this you keep craving sweetness. So you grab faster for another sweet snack. Soft drinks are not real thirst quenchers. Water is a healthier option that helps restore the moisture balance of your body. And it contains no calories. Or make this tasty fat-burning drink .

Green tea

Drinking green tea can help you lose weight immediately. There are certain substances in it, catechins, which speed up the metabolism. A faster metabolism is more likely to incite the body to burn body fat. You can achieve this effect with three cups of green tea a day. However, do not drink more than 5 cups because of an increased risk of kidney stones.

Drink more water

Drinking enough water is a problem for some people. Drinking water is very important for the body. It supports smooth functioning of the digestive system. Furthermore, it is good to know that drinking a glass of water an hour to half an hour before eating fills the stomach, so you will not eat too much too quickly.

It also often happens that people think they are hungry, but then they are actually thirsty. So try to drink a glass of water if you get hungry. Then you are full again and you will not take unhealthy snacks. Drink at least one and a half to two liters of water a day. Useful tips to help you remember drinking water:

  1. Place a half-liter water bottle next to your monitor. Drink half a liter before lunch, one before dinner and one before you go to bed.
  2. There are diet apps and even special water-drinking apps to help you remember to drink water. Install them and drink enough water every day.

Let alcohol stand

It looks like a small drink, but alcohol consists of fat and acetate (acetic acid). It is high in calories. For example, a glass of beer contains around 110 calories and a glass of wine 145 calories. If your body receives alcohol, the fat is stored directly in your body. It is therefore advisable to be aware of this and to only drink one or two glasses during the weekend.

Step 2: tackle your food

In the area of ​​food you can achieve a lot with small changes. Do you want to lose weight without exercising? Then nutrition is the best way to do this. You don’t even have to follow a diet . Opting for a healthy diet, smaller portions and snacks that are good for you will already have a very positive impact on your weight.

Choose foods that are high in fiber

High fiber diet helps to properly fill the stomach. Fiber absorbs moisture and then expands. As a result, you have a full feeling for a long time, which helps prevent you from becoming hungry and wanting to take a snack.

Fiber also makes the stomach less likely to produce hunger hormone ghrelin. This means you can live longer without food. Fiber-rich food is therefore not only healthy (it helps keep your cholesterol low), but also a great help for anyone who wants to lose weight.

Delete simple carbohydrates from your menu

There are two types of carbohydrates: fast (simple) carbohydrates and slow (complex) carbohydrates.

  1. You can find fast carbohydrates in white bread, white pasta and rice, cake, candy and cakes. They are rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream by the body. There they cause a rise in blood sugar and give you energy quickly. However, the body will try to lower the blood sugar level again. It makes insulin and therefore the blood sugar level drops again. The disadvantage is that you quickly get hungry again.
  2. Slow carbohydrates are found in whole-grain products, but also in vegetables, oatmeal, beans and legumes. They are less likely to be absorbed into the blood, but still give you energy for a long time. They do not affect your blood sugar levels as fiercely as fast carbohydrates.

The disadvantage of carbohydrates is that they work against you in two ways if you want to lose weight. They are easily converted into fat by the body and because you suffer from blood sugar spikes, you can easily grab carbohydrate-rich snacks. So you come in a vicious circle. If you want to lose weight, it is not advisable to eat a lot of (simple) carbohydrates.

However, the average person eats a lot of carbohydrates, between 150 and 200 grams per day. If you want to lose weight without exercising, you can reduce this to 75 to 100 grams. Then you will lose weight more easily and you can replace the carbohydrates with proteins and fats.

Choose a protein-rich diet

If you want to lose weight, protein-rich foods can contribute a lot. By eating fewer carbohydrates and more proteins, you will encourage your body to burn a higher amount of body fat. Proteins stimulate this. They also provide a long-lasting feeling, because they digest more slowly than carbohydrates. They also hinder the production of ghrelin, the hunger hormone. You will find that by eating protein-rich food, you can go much longer without a snack.

Proteins do not affect blood sugar levels, so you will not get a sugar dip. Because of all this you will eat less often in one day and eat fewer calories in total. In this way, foods that are high in protein can cause you to lose weight faster.

Opt for healthy snacks

A snack seems to be just a small bite that does not contribute much to weight gain or loss. But if you take something in between several times a day, those calories still accumulate. Certainly if you opt for sugar or carbohydrate-rich snacks.

Try not to take more than two healthy snacks in one day. Make sure they are healthy and low in carbohydrates. For example, think of:

  1. A handful of nuts (all nuts are suitable, such as cashews, walnuts or almonds). Opt for natural nuts, unsalted and without spices.
  2. A smoothie: rich in vegetables and a little fruit to make it a little sweeter. Add healthy fats such as coconut oil or a few pieces of avocado. You can vary a lot with tasty green smoothies , so that you can make a different taste every time.
  3. A bowl of yogurt with some fruit: yogurt contains a lot of proteins, so that it fills well. 

    Make sure you always have these kinds of healthy snacks with you so that you are not tempted, at work or after exercise, to buy something unhealthy.

Step 3: adjust your behavior

How you deal with yourself, with nutrition and your health also partly determines whether you can lose weight without exercising or not. That is why it is wise to become aware of what you can change in this area.

Make all your meals yourself

By cooking yourself, you can also determine what is in it yourself. Use as many fresh ingredients as possible, so do not opt ​​for pre-packaged meals. Make your own sauces and spice mixes. Ready-made sauces often contain a lot of chemical agents and too much salt and / or sugar. Also prepare your own lunch, so that you avoid eating an unhealthy meal from a snack bar at work.

You can assume that fresh products are the best for your body. They are full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that help you stay healthy. The more a product is processed, the less healthy it is. Everything has been added (to make it more durable, sweeter, tastier or more attractive), which only burden your body. Get used to spending some time cooking. It will certainly help you to lose weight faster.

Cooking yourself is not difficult and does not have to take a lot of time. You quickly learn how you can easily put a tasty and healthy meal on the table. Before you know it you know some recipes that you love and that you will often prepare. What more do you want than tasty and healthy food and also lose weight?

Get enough sleep

Sleeping helps with weight loss. That does not seem logical, but appears from several studies. Sleeping affects your entire body and therefore your weight. It influences the production of hormones: of cortisol, the stress hormone, which causes your body to store more fat. And ghrelin (the hunger hormone), which determines your appetite. Too little sleep makes you more hungry and you will eat more.

If you are often tired, it also influences the functioning of your brain. Someone who has a lack of sleep will be less able to control and make worse decisions. As a result, you will be tempted faster by unhealthy food. Sleeping and being overweight are interconnected and you will quickly get through a vicious circle. From overweight, to poor sleep, to even more overweight.

You achieve a good night’s sleep by ensuring a really dark bedroom. This helps you to develop a good day-night rhythm. Remove all distractions from the room, such as smartphones and tablets. The bright light from these devices ensures that your brain cannot relax. This can also happen with e-readers, so it is better to read without background lighting. Go to bed regularly. Sleeping with the window open is a good idea. Research shows that you lose weight better if you sleep in a cool room.

Eat consciously

Taking a moment to eat helps you lose weight. The pace of daily life is very high. We do almost everything in a hurry and fast and that goes with food just like that. Often we don’t even take the time to eat or do it together with another activity. Some people keep working while they are eating or watching television.

This ensures that you eat too quickly, eat too much and eat unknowingly. All these consequences ensure that you will probably arrive.

  1. Eating too fast: Eating  too fast does not chew properly, which means that your food is not pre-digested, so your stomach is less able to absorb the nutrients. You swallow your food too quickly, so you empty your plate faster and you are less saturated. That will ensure that you are hungry again sooner.
  2. Too much food: Because you are doing something else while eating, you do not feel well whether you are already full or not. You will therefore regularly eat more than you need. This may also be because you eat too fast.
  3. Unconscious food:  If you do not consider your meal, you hardly taste what you eat. Without being aware of taste and texture, you miss a large part of the experience that food can be. If you taste what you eat well, how tasty it is, the smell and how it feels, then this also makes you feel well saturated. The brain needs all these stimuli to feel that they are having a meal.

Take the time for every meal. Enjoy every bite and let the taste penetrate you well.

Reduce stress

Stress is not only bad for your overall health, it is also a thicker. If you suffer from stress, your body produces cortisol and this hormone is responsible for fat storage. The body stores fat precisely, where it doesn’t do you any good, namely as belly fat around the organs. This is the dangerous fat that negatively influences the functioning of your organs.

To be able to lose weight properly, it is important to tackle stress. Now that is easier said than done, but try to reduce the tensions in your life. Not only for your mental peace, but also to be able to lose weight. There are plenty of ways: mindfulness, meditation, yoga and long walks in the forest.

Diets that help you lose weight without exercising

To lose weight, watching healthy food is an advantage. You can achieve a lot already by paying attention to your portion size and choosing pure and nutritious products. If you want to give your weight loss an extra boost, you can also start a diet. We recommend a diet in which you keep eating healthily and do not have to lead to hunger. If you choose such a diet, you will be able to keep up well, giving you a greater chance of success.

The low-carbohydrate diet

You could read about carbohydrate eating earlier in this article. By removing carbohydrates from your diet, you ensure a stable blood sugar level. This way of eating has two major advantages:

  1. You can lose weight while you will not be hungry (by eating fats and proteins and meals of normal proportions).
  2. You eat healthy and can also continue to eat this way after losing weight.

Where many diets strongly limit your calorie intake, you can continue to eat well during the low-carbohydrate diet, so that you continue to receive all healthy nutrients (such as vitamins, minerals and fiber). So this is a really healthy way to lose weight.

The Mediterranean diet

If you eat according to the Mediterranean diet, then you eat like they did in the 1960s, in the Mediterranean region. A diet consisting of tasty and pure foods, such as fresh vegetables and fruit, fish and meat. Little sugar is used, but tasty herbs, olive oil and whole grains. It is a healthy way of eating that has been proven effective in diabetes (it helps to keep your blood sugar levels balanced). As a result, it can also help you lose weight, because you will have less appetite.

Paleo diet

The paleo diet goes back to the way our distant ancestors did: eat as much unprocessed food as possible, fresh vegetables, meat, poultry and fish, no dairy, no grains and no sugar. In fact, this diet is also low in carbohydrates, but even more drastic. You eat more proteins and fats to provide your body with energy. This diet is also very suitable to use for weight loss. It is a healthy way of eating, and according to the underlying theory that fits our body.

Not exercising, but moving

For people who cannot or do not want to exercise, enough exercise can be difficult. It just has many benefits for your body to keep moving. Therefore, here are a few tips to help you move more easily:

  1. Walk a little more and longer: Are you going to work by car? Walk around the parking lot before you enter your office. If you have to go up a flight of stairs, walk up and down once more. Walk when you can: for example, a round around the block where you live, just up and down the street. Every step you take is one more.
  2. Even if you have an injury or painful joints, moving is possible. You can also keep your body in action while sitting in your chair. Look on the internet for exercises for a chair. Move the parts of your body that are not painful. Ask a physiotherapist for advice. 
  3. There are sports that are not stressful: Yoga is a calm way of moving, which makes muscles and tendons flexible and strong. It can also be well adapted to injuries, with aids or an alternative version of certain exercises. There are also fitness machines on which you can move quietly and safely, such as an exercise bike or a cross trainer. On these devices you can very easily do a quiet workout that will relieve your joints. 

Losing weight during the transition: 6 important tips!

The transition is a phase that no woman really looks forward to. Not surprising, because often it is accompanied by mental physical changes that you are not waiting for. Consider, for example, mood swings and hot flashes.

That can be enormously frustrating, because what previously worked well to keep on weight is suddenly no longer sufficient. We give you six tips to keep complaints to a minimum and possibly even to lose weight during the transition .

What is the menopause?

The transition or menopause is the period in which the female body switches to a new hormonal balance. After the transition you will no longer be having your period and you will therefore no longer be fertile.

In order to achieve that new balance, however, major changes take place over a few years. And that can cause health problems! Only when the body is completely accustomed to the new hormone balance do those symptoms disappear. Unfortunately, that can take a few years.

Hormones in the transition

The transition is often referred to as one homogeneous period. However, that is a bit too short because of the turn: within the transition, different phases can be distinguished. In short, these are:

  1. For the premenopause. During this period, the body produces extra estrogen, in preparation for the reduced estrogen production that will follow. As a result of that estrogen dominance you are going to store more fat. You also produce less progesterone here.
  2. The premenopause: the period before your last period. Here your estrogen drops enormously. That causes those typical complaints: hot flashes, perspiration, loss of libido, and so on. Also, you have more sense in eating and less sense in moving . The consequences are predictable …
  3. The postmenopause: the period after your last menstrual period. The production of progesterone stops almost completely, and your estrogen production also decreases. During this period you start losing more muscle , which does not make losing weight during the transition any easier.

Symptoms transition

What are the symptoms that you can expect when you get into the transition? Of course, that is slightly different for everyone, but the following menopausal complaints come back a lot:

  1. Hot flashes . With a hot flash you suddenly feel very hot, sometimes combined with dizziness and nausea . This is a consequence of a widening of the blood vessels, which in turn is caused by an estrogen deficiency.
  2. Skin and hair . Due to the decrease in estrogen, the skin is less well blooded. It therefore quickly becomes weaker and less elastic. Your hair can also become duller and thinner due to the lack of circulation in the scalp.
  3. Emotional turmoil . Estrogen also has a lot of influence on your mental well-being. Fluctuations in your hormone levels can cause sad feelings, irritability and crying.
  4. Vaginal irritations . The sexual organs are also less well-blooded during the transition. This can cause vaginal dryness. In addition, some women suffer from fungal infections due to changes in their hormone levels.
  5. Bone descaling. Finally, a changing hormone level also causes an accelerated bone breakdown. Many women lose up to 10% of their bone tissue in the transition, increasing the risk of bone fractures.
  6. Weight gain. The phases described above all have almost the same effect: if you do nothing about it, you will arrive. Many women are therefore five to ten kilos heavier in this period.

Lose weight during the transition

That last point sounds threatening or perhaps even inescapable. Yet it is indeed possible to largely prevent weight gain during the transition. Sometimes even lose weight during the transition, although that may depend a little on the severity of your symptoms. We give you six tips to make the best of it!

1. Do not diet

This may sound illogical if you are afraid of arriving. However, strict diets are not the way to lose weight during the transition. The reason: those strict diets also often lead to deficiencies in certain nutrients. However, it is precisely in this complex period that your body needs all the nutrients sufficiently!

Instead of a low-fat diet or a low-carbohydrate diet , it is better to focus on healthy eating. Try to put together a balanced diet, mainly made up of proteins , slow carbohydrates and healthy fats . Make sure you also eat a lot of fruit and vegetables .

2. Write down what you eat

Keeping it healthy is an effective way to eat healthier! Research shows that just faithfully recording what you eat already leads to healthier choices. After all, it is harder to eat ‘accidentally’ twice as many snacks as you thought. And you know that you have to see unhealthy choices in your notes for days on end …

Losing weight during the transition starts with self-knowledge. Writing down what you eat also helps to stop eating emotionally. Certainly in a period where your hormones work overtime, it can’t hurt at all!

3. Avoid fast carbohydrates

Your metabolism will slow down during the transition . So you need just a little less calories ; the Voedingscentrum describes this as ‘one sandwich less per day’. And indeed, you can best achieve that reduced number of calories by scraping some carbohydrates .

However, that does not mean that you should not eat carbohydrates at all. You can watch out better with fast carbohydrates , for example in fruit juice and added sugars . They cause a peak in your blood sugar levels . And it is precisely this type of peak that brings your hormone levels out of balance.

4. Avoid alcohol

Another pitfall is the use of alcohol . Many people still think that one glass of wine a day is healthy. And indeed, it’s good for the heart and blood vessels – but definitely not for the rest of your body.

Alcohol slows down your metabolism and promotes fat storage. In addition, it prevents the digestion of healthier foods. If you want to lose weight during the transition, then you should really opt for an alcohol-free option.

5. Keep moving

Well, you are less and less eager to get out of your lazy chair. Yet you can really do better! Physical exercise has endless benefits, especially in the transition. For example, it stabilizes your hormones and prevents mood swings. You also burn more calories with it.

And you don’t have to go into the gym fanatically for that. An hour’s walk a day can also do wonders. So grab the bike more often, take the stairs, walk the dog … As long as you make sure that you don’t suddenly sit on the couch for hours at a time.

6. Start with strength training

In addition to estrogen and progesterone, testosterone is also produced less and less during the transition. As a result, your body breaks down more and more muscle mass . Awkward, because muscle mass keeps your metabolism up to speed! So you burn fewer calories throughout the day if you have fewer muscles.

Strength training is extremely useful to counteract that effect . With two to three training sessions per week you can go a long way. In addition, strength training also ensures a more stable mood and fewer hot flashes – so that’s three birds with one stone!

Think of your adrenal glands

Hormones are essential for the changes that take place during the transition. In addition to your ovaries, hormones are also made in your adrenal glands; small organs that are like caps on top of your kidneys. During the transition, the ovaries become less active and the adrenal glands have to take over more and more work.

However, in combination with a lot of stress , this can lead to adrenal glands being exhausted. The transition symptoms are therefore only exacerbated. Not only nutrition and exercise, but also a reduction in stress can help you lose weight during the transition!

What is a healthy BMI?

We all know that it is unhealthy to be too fat or too thin. However, many people do not know exactly what a healthy weight is for them. Not surprising, because that depends on your height and age, among other things. It is therefore different for everyone.

Yet you can easily estimate your ideal weight by calculating your BMI. But what is a healthy BMI ? And how can you calculate your BMI reliably? You can read it all below!

Healthy weight

First, let’s see what we mean by a “healthy weight.” Simply put, it simply means that you are not too heavy and not too light – the latter is sometimes overlooked by many people.

Of obesity , we know that it increases the risk of certain diseases and disorders. People with obesity are more likely to get type 2 diabetes , cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer . All those excess kilos can also cause back and joint problems.

However, being underweight is no less dangerous. It often means that you are short of all kinds of essential nutrients, and can therefore cause, among other things, an extreme lack of energy and a malfunctioning immune system.

What is the BMI?

BMI is an abbreviation for Body Mass Index (an index that is also called the Quetelet Index). This index looks at the ratio between your weight and your height. Based on this, it is checked whether your weight falls within a healthy limit.

The advantage of the BMI is that you can calculate it very easily. The disadvantage of that simplicity is of course that the BMI is not always 100% accurate. Sometimes it gives a slightly too simplistic picture, about which more later. Calculating your BMI therefore mainly gives an indication of your health, not a definitive analysis!

Finally, keep in mind that it can only be used for people between the ages of 18 and 70. Slightly different limits apply outside that age range.

How do you calculate your BMI?

As stated earlier, the BMI indicates the relationship between your weight and your height. You therefore only need those two data to calculate this index! The formula is valid for men and women.

The formula for your BMI is as follows:

  • Weight (in kg) / Length x Length (in meters) = BMI.

So if you are 1.70 meters and weigh 60 kilos, you have a BMI of 60 / (1.7 x 1.7) = 20.8. If you find it too much hassle to calculate your BMI manually, you can also use an online BMI calculator .

What is a healthy BMI?

It is generally said that a BMI between 20 and 25 is healthy. Only under 18.5, however, there is medical underweight, so there is still some leeway on that side.

With overweight there is less room: above 25 a BMI indicates that you are overweight, and above 30 there is obesity, or dangerous excess weight. In an overview:

  • Lower than 18.5 -> underweight.
  • Between 18.5 and 24.9 -> healthy.
  • Between 25 and 29.9 -> overweight.
  • Between 30 and 39.9 -> seriously overweight.
  • Above 40 -> morbid obesity, severely overweight.

Incidentally, it should be noted here that the boundaries for some population groups are slightly different: Asians, for example, have a different physique, which means that a healthy BMI for them differs from that of Europeans.

Cons of BMI

As you can see it is very easy to check whether you have a healthy BMI. However, we said it before: that simplicity also has a disadvantage! There are a few situations in which the BMI does not give an optimal picture of your health:

Many muscles

If you have very muscular muscles, it often means that you are also quite heavy. Muscle tissue simply weighs relatively much. The result may be that you officially have an unhealthy high BMI. And that while a lot of muscle tissue is certainly not bad for you …

Lots of belly fat

Some people don’t have a lot of fat – but if the fat they have is stored on their stomachs. They then have a healthy BMI, while that is not entirely justified. Fat around your organs does indeed entail health risks. In this case it would therefore be wiser to lose weight.

Measure waist

To compensate for these disadvantages, you can measure the circumference of your waist in addition to your BMI. If you are very muscular, that circumference is still representative. And if you have a relatively large amount of belly fat , your waist will also give a better image.

You measure the circumference of your waist in the middle between your lower rib and the top of your pelvis. Read the circumference when you have exhaled, but do not hold back your belly.

Healthy waist men

For men, the following waist circumference values ​​apply:

Less than 79 cm – underweight
79 to 94 cm – healthy weight
94 to 102 cm – overweight
More than 102 cm – obese

Healthy waist women

For women, those values ​​look like this:

  • Less than 68 cm – underweight
  • 68 to 80 cm – healthy weight
  • 80 to 88 cm – overweight
  • More than 88 cm – obese

Measure fat percentage

Do you really want a detailed picture of your fat percentage and physique? Then just your weight is not enough, because you cannot deduce anything about the ratio between muscle mass and fat. In that case it is therefore better to have your fat percentage measured.

The most accurate way to measure your fat percentage is with a skin fold measurement . You can have that done for free at many gyms. You can also buy a skin fold meter to get started at home! That way you know for sure that you not only have a healthy BMI, but also a healthy fat ratio.