Wellness Wednesday by Nurse Fiona- Menopause
The menopause is a natural biological process that usually occurs between 45 and 55 years of age, as a woman’s oestrogen levels decline. In the UK, the average age for a woman to reach the menopause is 51. However, around 1 in 100 women experience the menopause before 40 years of age.
Common menopause symptoms
- Irregular periods
- Hot flashes and night sweats
- Mood and cognitive changes
- Body aches
- Sleep disturbances
Natural ways to help manage Menopause
- Adopt a diet rich in whole ‘natural’ and unprocessed foods. Opt for vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds, organic protein and healthy fats. Reduce saturated fats, alcohol, sugar and salt
- 1 tbsp flaxseed daily: This is a potent phytoestrogen that can mimic the effects of natural hormones in your body. It is also a great source of fibre. Add to smoothies, porridge or salads.
- Omega 3 fats: Opt for oily wild caught fish or Linseed oil. Omega 3 can help to reduce inflammation and help balance mood.
- 1 cup of cooked cruciferous vegetables daily: Add cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage and kale into your diet. These vegetables contain Indole-3-Carbinol, which helps to balance oestrogen levels.
- Reduce stress levels: During menopause our adrenal glands take over from our ovaries to produce sufficient levels of oestrogen and progesterone. Due to our stressful modern lives, our adrenal glands are not able to make these sex hormones and symptoms occur
Supplements for menopause
- Black cohosh: This powerful herb has been shown to reduce hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings and body aches in menopause. One study has shown this herb significantly reduced menopause symptoms in 50% of patients.
- Vitex: This berry has been clinically proven to reduce hot flashes. It helps to balance sex hormones by increasing progesterone levels in the body.
- Natural progesterone cream: This has been shown to reduce a loss of bone density, vaginal dryness and fibroids.
- Maca root: This adaptogen can help to support adrenal glands to reduce stress and cortisol levels. During menopause it is essential to support adrenal function, as these glands will be producing sex hormones that were previously made in the ovaries.