After menopause, women tend to gain weight around their middle. Pamela Peeke, a doctor specializing in diet and health, has given this phenomenon a clever name—the “menopot.” It comes about because sinking estrogen levels relocate fat from the hips and thighs to the belly. Even women who have had flat stomachs all of their lives begun to notice their waists expand when they reach menopause.
You don’t have to look far to find evidence of the menopot in photos of older women—a constant over the decades. For many, the waist line on their dresses keeps on rising until it is just below the breasts.
The menopot is not inevitable, says Dr. Peeke. It can be kept in check with lots of exercise and a strict diet. Her most disappointing recommendation—radically reduce alcohol consumption.