As most of us know, Menopause is defined as the cessation of menstrual periods and can be diagnosed after 12 months of no periods. It generally occurs between the ages of 40 and 55 years, with the average age in Western societies being 50-51 years.
Although menopause is a completely natural state of health, it also increases the risk factor for several health conditions, including:
- Osteoporosis – when menopause occurs, oestrogen levels drop. Healthy levels of oestrogen are required for the health of our bones.
- Cardiovascular disease – there is also an increased risk of cardiovascular disease following menopause. However, it is important to note that most of the risk factors for cardiovascular disease can be modified through dietary and lifestyle interventions.
Signs & Symptoms can include:
- Hot flushes
- Mood changes
- Sleep disturbances
- Memory and cognitive changes
- Body aches
- Hair loss
- Urinary incontinence
- Bladder infections
- Increased facial hair
There are many dietary, lifestyle, and herbal interventions which can help combat these risks and symptoms. As the old saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”
Some changes are safe to make yourself, for others we would recommend that you see a qualified and trusted Healthcare Professional who can assess and prescribe safely and appropriately for you as an individual to support and ease this transitional period.
Natural approaches you could consider yourself:
- Balanced Diet and Nutrition: A well-balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats can help alleviate peri-menopausal symptoms. Incorporating foods like soy, flaxseeds, and fatty fish may help manage hot flashes and hormonal imbalances.
- Regular Exercise: Engaging in regular physical activity, such as aerobic exercises, strength training, or yoga, can aid in managing weight, improving mood, and promoting overall well-being. Exercise has been shown to reduce the severity and frequency of hot flushes and improve sleep quality.
- Stress Management: Chronic stress can exacerbate peri-menopausal symptoms. Practices such as meditation, deep breathing, yoga, or mindfulness can help manage stress levels and improve emotional well-being during this time of transition.
- Adequate Sleep: Quality sleep is vital during peri-menopause to manage fatigue and mood swings. Establish a consistent sleep routine, create a relaxing bedtime environment, and avoid caffeine and electronics close to bedtime.
- Hydration: Staying well hydrated is crucial to manage symptoms like vaginal dryness, headaches, and hot flushes. Aim to drink plenty of water and limit caffeine and alcohol consumption.
- Mind-Body Practices: Techniques like acupuncture and acupressure have shown promise in alleviating peri-menopausal symptoms. They can help balance hormones and promote relaxation.
Where you need a qualified and trusted Healthcare Professional
We see time and time again that balancing baseline hormones and optimising health prior to Menopause, makes the menopausal transition so much smoother.
Certain herbs and botanicals like black cohosh, red clover, and dong quai have been known to help ease peri-menopausal symptoms. Together with supplements like vitamin D, calcium, magnesium, and omega-3 fatty acids to support bone health and overall wellness during peri-menopause. We do not advise that you take any of these off the shelf as the quality varies widely, and more importantly, they may not be appropriate for you personally.
We would strongly recommend that you take advice before starting any regime and follow a bespoke treatment pathway, based on your individual hormone and general health picture, for an optimal menopausal transition.
How Optimal Health Can Help
If you would like support around your peri-menopause or menopause then we recommend starting with an Initial Health Consultation for new patients. We connect via Zoom, listen clearly to your health concerns and priorities, ensure our philosophy meets your needs, and recommend the starting point for an Optimal Health Treatment Pathway ©