By LoRayne Haye M.S. / C.N
- Helps to Offset Osteoporosis
- Helps Weight Loss & Diabetes Management
The past decade has seen numerous studies touting the benefits of strength training for both genders. However, expert consensus has been especially positive for the benefits that lifting weights has for women. If you’re one of the many who’s married to your cardio equipment at the gym, you might want to consider making time in the weight room, or dipping into a cardio-muscle class, for the following reasons.
Helps to Offset Osteoporosis: As we age, bone loss increases to 1% per year, specifically past age 40.1 The primary reasons for this are; a sedentary lifestyle, with sitting being the predominate activity, as well as inadequate nutrition that’s lacking in critical minerals such as calcium and magnesium, zinc, boron, and MK-7. Currently, it’s estimated that 8 million women in the U.S. have osteoporosis, and that number is expected to rise. How strength training helps keep bones in tact is by the muscle’s tugging action upon the bones. It’s a synergistic relationship between the two as they pull and push one another in activities such as weight training, yoga, rock climbing, and a host of other movement and strength activities.
Helps Weight Loss & Diabetes Management:
When strength training is combined with a solid nutrition plan, it will help you build or preserve the muscle you have. Muscle is very active tissue, which revs up your metabolism and keeps it revved up, so you can burn calories 24/7. This rise in metabolism has a positive effect on the management of diabetes I & II by increasing the cells sensitivity to the uptake of carbs and food in general. Including down regulating the risk factors and co-morbidities of diabetes, such as improving blood cholesterol profiles, improved heart function, decreasing blood pressure, improving insulin sensitivity and blood glucose control. For many, the latter over time can equate to a reduction in the amount of insulin meds being taken.2,3
As many experts point out, you can begin a strength training program at any time, no matter what your age. If you’re already hitting the gym regularly keep it up. However, if you’re not, consider hiring a personal trainer, as they’ll be able to instruct you how to safely navigate through the weight room at a gym.
LoRayne Haye is the CEO/Founder of Eating-4-Energy a professional nutrition & fitness consulting company based in Carlsbad, California. She has been strength training for 36 years, practicing yoga since she was 5, and rock climbing since she was in her teens.
1. “Strength Training Build More Than Muscles: Harvard University Health Beat Newsletter (2016). https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/strength-training-builds-more-than-muscles
2.Flack, K. et al. “Aging, Resistance Training, and Diabetes Prevention “Journal of Aging Research (J Aging Res. 2011; 2011: 127315). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3010636/
3. Janot, J. Kravitz, L. “Training Clients with Diabetes.” **A great read from two of the fitness industry’s leading experts. https://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Article%20folder/diabetes.html