Menopause : Simple Solutions

Menopause

The menopause is a natural stage in life, it is not an illness but you would be forgiven for thinking it was.  Over 50 years ago women did not suffer physical and emotional symptoms of menopause and to this day women in many other cultures simply do not suffer the physical and emotional symptoms that women in the West are programmed to accept as inevitable.

 

Most of the symptoms we suffer from in the West are due to our diet and lifestyles so I will share with you a few top tips to help you through menopause, to make the transition easy and comfortable.

 

SYMPTOMS OF THE MENOPAUSE can include :

hot flushes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, mood swings, declining libido, osteoporosis, ageing skin, lack of energy, joint pains, weight gain, headaches and changes in hair quality. Interestingly, men also experience a lot of these symptoms, with irritability, a declining libido, changes in weight, ageing skin and hair, depression and anxiety.

 

These symptoms are apparently part of the Western ageing process for both men and women, so it’s important not to blame every symptom that you experience on the menopause and the good news is that it is possible to reduce and remove most of these symptoms!

 

The liver is one of the most important organs when it comes to menopause, it is responsible for detoxifying, filtering and the production of raw materials for our hormones, so when the liver is functioning optimally the symptoms of menopause are significantly reduced.  To enable the liver to function optimally it needs to be able to detox efficiently and this is a two stage process.  To start with it needs antioxidants,  lots of antioxidants to split the toxins apart and then we require amino acids to neutralise the toxins and fibre to get them out of the system.  Half of the population does not eat a single portion of fruit or vegetables on a daily basis, so we are just not getting the nutrients, we need.  Our main source of antioxidants and fibre is fruit and vegetables and if the liver does not have the nutrients it need to get rid of the toxins, there is a stress on the system and when we are going through the menopause there is a additional stress on the system, because there are changes taking place we actually need more nutrients, to allow the liver to detox.  So you need to focus on consuming dark green leafy vegetables and dark fruits these are the things that provide the body with antioxidants for the first stage of the liver detoxification, and then for the second stage we need amino acids, good quality organic protein.

DIETARY CHANGES

A well-balanced diet is essential during the menopause as it enables the body to adjust automatically to the hormone changes, naturally maintaining oestrogen from the adrenal glands and fat deposits.

These include:

  • Stabilise blood sugar levels by reducing the amount of sugar and refined foods in the diet and eating little and often to reduce the toll on the adrenal glands
  • Reduce or eliminate caffeinated drinks such as tea and coffee which contribute to the blood sugar problem but also act as diuretics depriving the body of vital nutrients and trace elements
  • Ensure a good intake of essential fatty acids from oily fish, nuts and seeds which help lubricate the joints, skin and vagina
  • Avoid soft fizzy drinks which contain high levels of phosphorus and increase the risk of osteoporosis as it draws calcium out of the bones

Hot flushes and night sweats are among the most common and uncomfortable symptoms and their frequency and severity can vary from woman to woman.  Certain foods and situations can trigger some hot flushes and these can include spicy foods, caffeinated drinks, alcohol and stressful situations.

Phytoestrogens can help alleviate menopausal symptoms so make sure you include plenty in your diet. Phytoestrogens are found in almost all fruit, vegetables but they are most beneficial when they are found in legumes, such as lentil, peas and chickpeas.

SUPPLEMENTS

Supplements are beneficial during the menopause in order to ensure that you have adequate nutrients for maintaining the changes in a supported and healthy way.  Any supplement programme should be taken for at least three months in order to achieve the best results.  It is essential to take great quality, natural and organic supplements from a reputable source otherwise they can add to your symptoms rather than reduce them .  At the end of three months you should reassess your condition and adjust your supplement programme accordingly.  Working with a Functional Nutrition Coach / Practitioner is essential.

Vitamin C: beneficial for the immune system, strengthening blood vessels, it is an antioxidant and also has specific benefits at the menopause.

B Vitamins : These are called the ‘stress’ vitamins because they are crucial when you are under pressure and stressed.  They body needs additional B Vitamins when we are stressed. During menopause it is extremely important that you give your adrenal glands support and B vitamins will help to do this. They can also be useful if you are suffering from reduced energy levels.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids: essential fats, these need to be supplemented around the menopause because they can help with many of the symptoms.

Magnesium: This is an important mineral, it is needed in over 200 processes in the body so it is important that you have enough, very beneficial to keep your bones healthy during menopause and it is also known as ‘nature’s tranquilliser’ as it will help with anxiety, irritability and other mood changes.

Vitamin D: Vitamin D is required for calcium absorption, but it also plays an  important role in prevention of cancer, especially breast cancer, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis. Having good levels of vitamin D can help slow down the ageing process which we all need.

Do you know that it is possible to balance your hormones naturally, addressing hormonal imbalances helps you lose stubborn weight,  balances your mood, reduces night sweats and hot flushes.  The good news is that it is possible to reduce and remove most of the symptoms associated with menopause.

Would you like to know how to balance your hormones naturally ?  Connect with me by clicking here, and find out how you can join my Hormone Rebalance Club, and find out more about how we can help you increase your energy, balance your hormones and achieve optimal health, harmony and happiness.

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Know The Differences In Organic, Natural, And Health Foods

Organic and Natural

Organic, Natural and Health have all become “buzz” words and it can be confusing when you are trying to choose the best options for you and your family.  It is important to be aware of what these terms mean and how they can be used in labelling produce.

If anything is labelled organic is should to have a certification logo on it – for the UK the Soil Association Logo, for Europe the logo is green with a leaf made up of stars and in the USA it is USDA organic – The use of the logo and correct labelling is obligatory for all organic pre-packaged food.  If it does not contain an organic certification label then it is not organic.

Organic farming differs from conventional farming in the methods used to grow crops.  Conventional farming uses over 500 different types of chemicals where as Organic farming has about 25 approved chemicals that can be used.  Conventional famers apply chemical fertilizers to the soil to grow their crops, these chemical fertilisers destroy the minerals in the soil, which in turn reduces the mineral content of the crops grown, so not only are the contaminated with chemicals they lack nutrients.  They use insecticides to get rid of insects and disease and synthetic herbicides to control weed growth.  Conventionally grown food is often tainted with chemical residues that can be harmful to humans.  The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers 60 percent of herbicides, 90 percent of fungicides and 30 percent of insecticides to be carcinogenic.  There may be some debate about this but my philosophy is “if in doubt, don’t” and when it comes to my health I want to make the best choices I can and reduce my toxic exposure.

Pesticides have many negative influences on our health, including neurotoxicity, disrupting hormones and suppressing our immune system.  It can also affect reproductive function and has been linked to miscarriages in women.

In contrast, organic farmers feed and build the soil with natural fertilizers, they use natural methods such as insect predators, barriers and companion planting to get rid of insects and prevent disease and they use crop rotation, tillage, hand weeding and mulches to control weeds.

Natural can be a very misleading label as it can depend on the manufacturers use of the term, for instance at the very extremes urine and faces are “natural” but you would not want those appearing in any products you bought or used.  However on the other end of the scale water and minerals are natural, sea salt is natural.  So it is important to know the manufactures understand how and where they source their produce and raw materials from – are they using raw materials that occur naturally in nature or are they using “natural” in the very loosest meaning of the word.   Foods produced using genetic engineering or foods containing high fructose corn syrup can also be labelled natural – this does mean that they are healthy.

Health foods is another tricky label, I see many food in the health foods aisle of the supermarket or in health food stores that I would not consider “healthy”,  General claims about benefits to overall good health, such as “healthy” or “good for you”, are only allowed if accompanied by an approved claim. This means that these claims must be backed up by an explanation of why the food is “healthy”.

If you are ready to take action and want to find out more about choosing and living an organic lifestyle then connect with me by clicking here, and find out how I can help create a bespoke plan for you, and get you started on your wellness journey.

(i) http://www.soilassociation.org/whatisorganic/organicfood/organicnutrition