The Galveston diet is very similar to the Mediterranean diet. It can help you as you arrive at the stage of perimenopause. Experts say that diet can help you avoid weight gain before menopause.
Menopause is not a pleasant time in a woman’s life. After decades of dealing with menstruation and the cramps, mood swings and pain that come with it, at menopause you also have to endure hot flashes, irritability, insomnia and even depression in some cases.
This event, which marks the body’s last menstrual period usually occurs between the ages of 45 and 55. Unfortunately, it causes a significant drop in hormones. Because of this, it can easily lead to weight gain.
The time before menopause, known as perimenopause, is also known to contribute to unwanted weight gain.
To help women cope with this experience, Mary Claire Haver created the Galveston Diet for those who want to avoid weight gain before menopause. This diet is a way of eating lots of foods from different categories, and it also focuses on reducing inflammation in the body.
What is the Galveston diet?
The main aim of the Galveston diet is to help perimenopausal women manage their weight and avoid the usual occurrence of weight gain associated with this stage. But more than just focusing on weight management, the Galveston diet is also meant to help regulate hormones. It claims to help improve symptoms associated with menopause.
The diet is structured around three pillars: anti-inflammatory foods, intermittent fasting and what is known as “refocusing”, meaning a limited consumption of refined carbohydrates. The diet is based on nutrient-dense carbohydrates.
“This diet encourages eating foods low in carbohydrates, lean protein, healthy fats, and a select group of low starch produce,” says Trista Best for Balance One Supplements.
Besides intermittent fasting, this type of eating is most similar to the popular Mediterranean diet. The latter is inspired by places like Italy, Greece, Spain and France.
How the Galveston diet can help you avoid weight gain
This is a fairly new diet, so there isn’t much research on it yet. To find out more about the possible benefits, eatthis.com spoke to dietary experts.
In general, dietitians agree that eating anti-inflammatory foods is a good step towards preventing weight gain before menopause.
“Data shows a link between chronic inflammation and weight gain, so eating anti-inflammatory foods is a great practice when trying to avoid weight gain, regardless of which stage of the life cycle you are in,” says Lauren Manaker, author of The First Time Mom’s Pregnancy Cookbook and Fueling Male Fertility.
The “refocusing” part of the diet refers to eating more whole foods and limiting processed foods.
“Limiting foods that are pro-inflammatory, which includes many ultra-processed foods, can help people manage their inflammation and potentially help them lose weight,” Manaker says.
Intermittent fasting is not recommended for everyone
While eating anti-inflammatory foods and limiting consumption of pro-inflammatory foods is helpful for most, some dietitians warn that intermittent fasting is not for everyone.
“To be honest, there is nothing magical about intermittent fasting that will promote health and weight loss in this population so I’d skip that part,” says Lisa Young, author of Finally Full, Finally Slim. “Limiting late-night eating is a great idea, but limiting your eating window can possibly set you up for a cycle of restriction and then overeating.”
If you want to learn more, talk to your doctor or dietitian about how the Galveston diet may affect you.