This is a topic many women have faced, whether they wanted to or not. Part of being a couple (and married) is that you do everything, or most things, together. So why is he losing weight more than you ?
Dragos and I went through this as well. Although we didn’t have a lot of weight to lose, whenever we did decide that we’re going to drop some weight, he was faster. Or more. Or both.
Well, this is what I’ve set out to find, and I actually found some very good 5 reasons men lose weight faster than women.
So why is your husband losing weight faster than you ?
In short, it’s just the biological difference between men and women. Men on average have a higher metabolic rate, which allows them to lose weight faster.
Plus, when they DO put on weight, it’s usually on their gut, so when they lose the extra weight it’s more noticeable. Even when it’s not that much weight anyway.
This is the very, very, very short version. Let’s get into a bit more detail, and see how those differences between men and women come into play, and how they affect the weight loss process.
1. Men just have more muscle
That is, actual lean muscle tissue. On average, compared to a woman’s frame, a man holds about 40% more muscle on the upper part of their body. And to add to that, about 33% more on their lower body.
So whatever women do, men just have the capacity to build more muscle. Why does that matter, you ask ?
Well the things is that muscle mass is a very important factor in how many calories you burn daily. So the more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn to maintain them.
Which in turn means that the chances of putting on fat are smaller, and the fat is easier to melt.
This is all thanks to the high testosterone levels in men. It’s what triggers muscle growth, and what helps their metabolism tear right through that croissant.
There is no adequate comparison between men and women here, since it’s like comparing apples to oranges. We do different things, and our bodies were built for different roles.
We all know that back when humans first appeared, it was the men that were hunters, guardians, and fighters. Not because of some random sexism back when we didn’t even have much of a written language.
It was just the testosterone that brought men to the front lines, to protect families and food. And that’s exactly what’s helping your husband lose more weight than you.
BUT ! The difference is only in the beginning. If you both start losing weight at the same time, doing roughly the same kind of exercise, and eating the same types of foods (so that you can be compared properly) then after a few months there will be no difference at all.
It takes a while for a woman’s body to get used to losing fat, and we’ll cover that in the next part of the article.
2. Women need a higher body fat percentage
In that, women have an average of about 11% more body fat than men. That’s mostly for rounding breasts, buttocks, and hips. Men don’t store the fat in the same place as women, since they don’t need as much of it.
So what does that mean ?
Basically if you’re a wife comparing yourself to your husband, stop.
There are very, very big differences between men and women, and this is one of them.
This is mostly because of the high estrogen levels in women, which prepares us for childbearing. Some fat is needed for the body to function properly, and to provide some energy for the pregnancy.
Estrogen will want to keep that fat percentage up, because it is needed. However that is not an excuse to slip into obese territory. Below is the average body fat percentage published by The American Council on Exercise, the table is from Wikipedia.
Essential fat is what is needed to function properly. For women, anything past 31% is considered obese.
As you can see, there’s a big difference between men and women in this table, and while not everyone can be grouped into athlete, or fitness enthusiasts, the average percentage is around 25-31%.
Now while body fat percentage is relevant, it’s not the be-all, end-all of healthy. Just keep in mind to eat well, and exercise regularly.
3. It’s hard to say no to your hormones
We just talked about how women need a higher at percentage, now let’s discuss the effects hormones have on women. Specifically, estrogen.
It’s the female hormone, it’s what makes women tend to have a pear-shape, and it is a major player in why women need a higher bod fat percentage. It’s also what helps us prepare for childbearing.
So basically, if your hormones tell your body to hold onto that fat, it will do its best to keep you within the range it deems necessary for survival.
What does this mean for women ? Just that it might be a bit harder at first to cut down on the fat, since your body will want to keep it a bit more.
But it means something else as well. It also means that as a woman’s hormones fluctuate throughout the month, she feels the effects.
One of them is the moodiness that comes with PMS, mainly caused by the sudden decline of estrogen. Some women have it easy, and then some women make up for everyone else. What does that do to the general mood ?
It can be hard to resist emotional eating under these circumstances. This does not mean that all women are emotional eaters. But, by nature, we have the possibility.
So not only will weight loss take a blow, but also potentially binging on chocolate can have terrible consequences.
In short, hormones play a fairly important role in a woman’s weight loss as well. Nothing that can’t be overcome with a steady diet and regular exercise though.
You’ll catch up to your husband in no time !
4. Men lose more belly fat
Another thing to consider when comparing weight loss results, is that men and women store fat in different parts of the body.
While women stock up on the lower part of their body, men store their fat on their midsection and very little in other parts of the body.
So when your husband loses weight, it will be more noticeable. His gut used to hang over their belt, and suddenly now it’s gone ? That’s definitely something everyone will see.
It’s a bit like an optical illusion. Not that he didn’t actually lose weight, but it looks more dramatic, like he lost more weight.
On the other hand, there is a difference between men and women when it comes to the type of fat they store.
Women store mostly overall fat – the type that’s right under your skin, easy to pinch. It’s a way to insulate the muscles and keep the body warm, all the way from your neck to your calves.
Men don’t need as much insulation, however they store more visceral fat. That’s the fat in the belly, right around internal organs. So when a man grows a beer belly, it’s not the doughy, fluffy fat women have.
So keep in mind that 10 lbs of overall fat look different from 10 lbs of visceral fat. While the weight loss is there, it’s just less noticeable since it’s from all over the body.
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5. Men lead more active lives
And there’s no arguing with that. There are plenty of women in high-activity fields, like armed forces, athletics, construction work, and so on.
But the majority of those jobs are taken by men. Not because of sexism, but because of their natural draw towards adrenaline, activity, and general disregard for minor-to-mild injuries. If you’ve ever tried to explain to a man why he should wash and clean that cut he just got, you’ll know what I mean.
You can see from men’s hobbies as well, there’s more men who go to the gym regularly. More men who have a sport as a hobby. More men who think of the most dangerous ways to attach a chandelier, and then actually do it.
All that kind of activity burns a lot of calories. More comfortable jobs, or housework, don’t require as much physical effort. They are just as important and necessary for society, but work differently.
So that’s another thing your husband has going for him, which is nice.
So what should you be focusing on ?
Since balance is important in a couple, focus more on the journey the two on you have started. If he’s losing weight faster than you, be happy for him ! And rest assured that your time will come as well.
It’s more important to look at inches and clothing sizes than the scale. Get a shirt or a pant for reference, and keep checking until they’re looser on you than before. Not all brands use he same measurements, so make sure you have just one article of clothing to compare.
Managing to get back into the jeans you wore 5 years ago tells more about your weight loss than the number on the scale.
A short story, back in January 2018 Dragos and I went on a cleanse, for 10 days. We ate the same types of foods, we slept the same amount of time, we drank the same amount of water, did mostly the same exercise.
Still, he lost twice as much weight as me ! I lost 3 lbs, he lost 7 ! The most annoying part was that he didn’t even try to best me. It just happened.
I had to remember that there is a noticeable height and build difference between us two, so I couldn’t really compare his weight loss with mine.
So please remember this as well: look at clothing size when losing weight, and take into account the height and build difference between you and hubby !
We hope this article was helpful to you !
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