Struggling with weight loss after 40? This post is all about how I organize my kitchen and the weight loss tools I’ve used to take off 47 pounds… and counting!
Losing weight ain’t easy y’all!
I don’t care what anyone says.
And it’s a cold, hard, truth that weight loss after 40 is even harder.
Especially for us ladies.
I did NOT want to believe this. 😭😭😭
But I can personally attest to the fact that the weight does not come off as easy as it did when I was 30.
Yes, I’m a woman who has struggled with her weight for many, many years.
I’ve lost weight before, only to go through the pain of gaining it ALL back and then some.
It’s truly devastating.
But one thing is for sure.
I’ve learned A LOT about what works… and what doesn’t work.
My therapist is an 86 year old international relationship guru, and she always says she’s an expert at getting people married…
because she’s been married four times.
It’s hilarious but kinda true.
We learn what works best, and what doesn’t, through trial and error.
Never take weight loss advice from someone who has never had a weight problem!
I did that for many years!!
I remember asking my always-thin friend what she ate in a day and giving that a try.
A month later I was UP 14 LBS!!
Her “I eat half a bagel in the morning” didn’t quite work for me.
My halves turned into wholes real quick and I was off and running my own bagel factory by the time the month was over.
I AM ADDICTED TO SUGAR AND FLOUR.
My body has either developed an allergy to those foods over time or I was born with a sensitivity to them.
Either way, it doesn’t matter.
It’s MY truth.
AND, YOU HAVE TO FIND YOUR TRUTH!
What foods cause you trouble?
What foods cause you to gain weight?
What changes need to be made in your home so you can win? (This post will help).
I remember searching online for “best diet plan for over 40 female” and knowing in my gut, I was going down the wrong path.
I was the real expert on my body.
The truth is… my body does NOT like sugar and flour anymore, PERIODT!
It won’t give me any leeway when I eat those foods and I have to accept it.
Foods with flour and sugar also make me feel achy, tired, slow like I’m a walking zombie with brain fog, and they’re a big migraine trigger for me.
I needed to get real, get organized, and get started.
Here’s what I’ve done over the past year and a half to take the weight off.
It’s been slow and steady but these tools and tricks are doable and the best news is THEY WORK!
I’m down close to 50 pounds!!!
with about another 20 pounds to go before maintenance (which will be its own challenge).
I’ve broken this post into three parts:
- The Weight Loss Tools I Reach For Every Day
- The Healthy Pantry Staples
- The Weight Loss Hacks
So let’s get you organized, so you can have your own weight loss after 40, before and after pics to share on the internet one day, lol.
THE WEIGHT LOSS TOOLS I REACH FOR EVERY DAY
A FOOD SCALE
This is the #1 tool I use every single day and if I’m on my A-game… every single meal!
Yes, you need a food scale.
This one weight loss tool has made the biggest difference.
You know that saying?
How you do one thing… is how you do everything.
It’s SO TRUE!
Doing this one thing makes me balanced in every area of my life.
Try it and see.
My portions would be a crapshoot otherwise.
I don’t count calories but I do weigh and measure my meals.
A serving of protein is 4 ounces… only FOUR OUNCES – put that on the scale and see the truth. Knowing exactly how much you’re actually eating feels soooo good.
The truth shall set you free and shall take the weight off at the same time.
You will be chopping a lot of veggies each week so get a good knife. I’m not a pro chef or anything and the super-sharp, big steel knives scare the heck outta me so I go with ceramic ones.
It’s not a crazy investment but knowing you have at least one good chopping knife is going to make your food prep so much easier and have you set up for success.
You’ve got your food scale, you’ve got your sharp knives and now you need a few chopping boards.
I have 5 chopping boards of various materials and sizes with another one on the way!
Although I think I’ll use this one as more of a charcuterie board for guests than for food prep.
Why all the boards?
I use some to chop veggies, including onion and garlic, that I don’t want to mix with other boards I use to chop fruit.
Then I have a giant one for when I’m making a recipe and chopping different herbs, carving steak, dicing veggies.
It’s convenient for holding all the ingredient bowls and food in one location.
I keep this board on my stovetop in the middle griddle which I never use.
GLASS STORAGE CONTAINERS
This one is like self-care for me.
I love the visual of glass containers and they’re also better for us than plastic ones.
When I go to Trader Joe’s and buy fruit I always come home and empty them into these glass beauties.
It makes food prep so easy when you have chopped cucumbers, berries, carrots ready to go.
It’s also just prettier to look at than plastic boxes and bags.
I love that they are square with a flat lid. This makes it so much easier to store food in the fridge than round containers which take up so much space.
These are way more functional and can be stacked and stored side by side with no problem.
MEASURING CUPS + SPOONS
Just like the food scale you need a set of measuring cups and spoons.
I have a few different sets.
These things get lost like bobby pins!
So I try to always have at least two in the kitchen for quick and easy access.
LARGE BAKING SHEET
You need one of these so you can cook in bulk!
I use this large baking sheet to make one sheet meals or to toss a bunch of frozen veggies on it to roast for dinner. One pan meals makes weight loss after 40 a lot easier.
The size alone makes it easy to cook enough for a few days. The rack on top makes things crispy!
SILICONE BAKING MATS
How did I not know this was a thing?
I’ve always used parchment paper as my non-stick foundation on baking sheets but these are even better!
Reusable, so better for the environment, and convenient so you don’t have to keep buying parchment paper.
SPICE RACK ORGANIZER
I love it because it keeps everything I use on the daily out on display.
It’s so much more than a spice rack. I also use it to hold my olive oil sprays, seasoning bottles, measuring spoons, cutlery, and potholders!
I have it right next to my stove.
It gives me easy access to all my pantry essentials (which I go over below) so it makes it a no-brainer to cook healthy meals at home.
THE HEALTHY PANTRY STAPLES
These are my ride-or-die items.
I always make sure to have plenty of these healthy pantry staples on hand.
If you live in a kitchen without a pantry, check out my post on how to organize a small kitchen without a pantry here.
You can find the following items in any grocery store.
Except for the sea kelp noodles.
You need to order those at a health food store or you can get them right here on Amazon.
These are ALL the healthy pantry staples I swear by for weight loss after 40.
A. Avocado Oil Spray
B. Olive Oil Spray
C. Sparkling Water
D. Lemon, Lime, Ginger
E. Sugar Substitutes
F. Oat Bran
H. Garlic, Onion, Scallion
I. Coconut Aminos
K. Nutritional Yeast
L. Arrowroot Powder
M. Broth – Chicken, Beef, Vegetable
N. Miso paste
P. Canned Tomatoes
Q. Sea Salt
R. Kerrygold Butter
S. Sugar-free Syrups
T. Sugar-free BBQ Sauce
U. Sun-Dried Tomatoes
V. Sea Kelp Noodles
W. Amy’s Vegetable Soup
X. Raw Nuts
Y. Fresh And Dried Herbs
Z. Whole Grains
THE WEIGHT LOSS AFTER 40 HACKS
COMMIT TO YOUR PLAN
If you’re gonna lose weight, which you are, you need a plan.
Some kind of food plan YOU can stick to.
Remember those questions from the beginning of the post?
Go back and answer those so you can CREATE YOUR OWN PLAN.
I personally don’t eat sugar or flour because once I start I can’t stop.
I also cut out snacking for the sake of simplicity and eat three meals a day.
I eat whole foods including fruit, grains, meat, seafood, full fat dairy, and lots of veggies.
I stay away from anything too restrictive,
ie: Keto or Intermittent Fasting
If I feel like I’m on a diet, I’m definitely going to BINGE!
HAVE HEALTHY FAVE FOODS ON HAND
This is SUPER important when doing your weekly grocery haul.
ESPECIALLY when just getting started.
The goal at this point is to EAT AT HOME.
That means when the desire to order take-out hits, you need to have something so irresistibly delicious in your house, that it negates the desire to go out for food.
For me, it’s random things but I love the ranch dressing from Wingstop so I always have it on hand with carrots and celery.
Weird, I know!! but it has SAVED ME more times than I can count.
Find your healthy little thing you can keep at home and that is within your food plan.
KEEP IT SIMPLE
Buy frozen veggies.
Get pre-chopped salads.
Grab a rotisserie chicken from Costco once a week and shred it for your daily salad.
The other thing I do is…
I eat the same thing again and again.
Once I find a few meals I like I’m totally fine keeping them in rotation.
My breakfast is usually a one egg veggie scramble with a few pieces of bacon on the side, a cup of fruit, and this little oat bran concoction I make with cinnamon and monk fruit.
My lunch is usually a chicken or steak salad and I love having salmon with roasted veggies and sweet potato for dinner. Yum!
THE FIRST 72 HOURS
If you decide you need to make some big changes to your diet like I did and need to detox from sugar, flour or overdoing starchy foods then you need to know this:
The first 72 hours will be painful!
You will want to quit and go back to your old ways but use whatever you need to get through the first three days, OK?
Weight loss after 40 ain’t easy but it is possible!
I used food a lot of times as a pain reliever.
I get migraines and found that burgers and fries had an analgesic effect making me go straight into a food coma so I didn’t have to feel the pain of a pounding headache.
When I got off sugar and flour I took OTC medications including Zquil to knock me out at night.
Was this ideal?
Did it get me through the toughest part of changing my diet so I could move past the cravings?
Yes! Just knowing that the first three (sometimes seven) days of changing your food can be painful is going to make a huge difference.
GET A SUPPORT SYSTEM
There is no way I could lose weight without a support system.
I have friends who get it and that I can call every day of the week.
I don’t focus on food or talk about my weight. That’s the great thing about being on a simple food plan that works. I get to go on with my life.
But thank GOD for the girlfriends I have who keep me sane and that I can reach out to to discuss things that would have caused me to emotionally eat in the past.
If you don’t have that kind of support then get a therapist or a life coach.
You need someone to process your emotions with and to hold you up to your own highest ideal.
I have a list of top-line behaviors and I make sure to do at least one a day.
When on this journey you need to treat yourself like a delicate piece of fine china.
You are so valuable and quite honestly fragile that you need to be easy, gentle and extra caring with yourself.
Extreme self-care and top-line behaviors are usually things that get me out of my head and into my body.
Make a list of your own top-line self-care behaviors.
My list includes things like reading fiction, taking a salt bath, curling up on the couch, watching a movie, dancing to music, putting on comfy loungewear, walking in nature, getting a massage, working out, writing in my journal, prayer and meditation, and getting my hair or nails done professionally.
EAT AT HOME
For the love of all things holy just eat at home.
And if you need to eat out because you’re on the go then have a list of safe places you know you can grab a meal that will still allow you to feel amazing mentally and physically.
My list is super basic and includes chipotle, bibibop, el pollo loco, gelsons, whole foods, Starbucks. There you have it!
KNOW YOUR WHY
I made a long ass list of all the reasons why I wanted to lose weight.
…and specifically why I wanted to give up sugar and flour.
Then I made another list of all the detriments to staying where I was. I knew I wanted peace, order, ease, freedom, and confidence.
Your why will carry you through so make sure it’s a good one. I think the best reason is YOU.
The bottom line is YOU ARE WORTH IT!
YOU are worth feeling your best and looking as good as you feel!
This post is all about how to organize your kitchen for maximum weight loss after 40.
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