If you have been experiencing one or more of the symptoms listed in my blog on How do I know if I am in the Menopause? then I hope the following suggestions will be helpful.
Also known as going through ‘the Change’, the Menopause affects most women at some point in their lives. Most commonly symptoms such as hot flushes, depression and low energy can go on for many months or years. Initially the symptoms can be subtle without any pattern and so it can be difficult sometimes to make the link with the Menopause. Some women may experience little in the way of symptoms whereas others may find that their lives are turned upside down. One thing is certain, it will be different for everyone and although I encourage you to accept it, I also encourage you to be pro-active in managing it. You can make a huge difference by taking better care of yourself and finding out what you can do for the best to lessen the impact symptoms have upon you.
Top 5 Tips for reducing symptoms in the Menopause
I know that this is going to sound boring and it is probable that you know these tips already....BUT ARE YOU ACTUALLY DOING THIS? Hahaha........What we choose to eat is one of the most important wellbeing factors we can control in life and makes a real difference to how we look and feel – especially during the menopause. However, this does NOT mean that you cannot indulge in a glass or two or that you have to deprive yourself ...the thing is that if you go in with the mind set you are depriving yourself or you are going without you are sending the wrong messages to yourself and creating resistance and expecting a struggle. This is not going to help you in trying to change patterns and habits. It takes time to change and I will be doing more on that in future blogs and webinars because here is the thing!
Its the words and pictures you put in your mind that is the difference between succeeding or not in whatever t is you want in your life. Whether it is to lose weight, change jobs, improve relationships, mental health or reduce your symptoms in the menopause - your sub-conscious mind runs you. So make sure you give it clear instructions by being clear about what you want! Being empowered in this way will mean you have every chance of achieving success in anything you set your mind to
1. Eat for your hormones
Phytoestrogens found in certain foods are compounds that bind with oestrogen receptor sites in our body, increasing their oestrogenic effect. By acting in a similar way to human oestrogen, these foods may help keep our hormones a little more balanced. Soya milk and soya flour, linseeds, tofu, tempeh and miso, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, celery, rhubarb and green beans all contain phytoestrogens. Look for recipes rich in these ingredients to munch your way through the menopause.
2. Sugar, sugar
Snacking on sugary foods with their inevitable sharp rise and fall in blood glucose levels only leaves us feeling drained, irritable and even more tired. For a mood-stabilising snack, a better option is to choose nuts, seeds or fresh fruit.
3. Keep Hydrated
It’s also important to drink plenty of water to help reduce the need to snack during the day, as you’ll feel fuller for longer. It helps your body function a lot better in every system and especially helpful in temperature regulation and keeping blood pressure at safe levels.
4. Helping hot flushes
When it comes to hot flushes and night sweats, it’s best to avoid eating the foods that can trigger these, such as spicy food, alcohol and coffee – especially during the afternoon. All sorts of teas are out there today such as Rooibos and Turmeric and fresh mint in hot water has a great taste if you need a hot drink and it’s caffeine free. Herbal tea helps to get more water in you too! But do watch out for Green the as it does actually have quite a high caffeine content. Any caffeine and alcohol will have an impact upon your quality of sleep so try not to have any caffeinated drinks after 2pm and wine is like to wake you in early hours as liver detoxes PLUS it wi dehydrate you and you might find it makes night sweats much worse! What we eat during the day can have an impact on how we sleep at night too: protein-rich foods containing tryptophan such as turkey, cottage cheese, oats and legumes (peas and beans) help the body manufacture serotonin, which in turn regulates our appetite, helps us feel more perky ( I'll have more of that thank you very much!) and encourages more peaceful slumber. Then you will be less cranky in the day!!!! Marvellous!
5. Strong bones
We lose bone density as we age, which can then lead to osteoporosis. It’s important to eat foods rich in vitamin D and calcium, such as oily fish, eggs and dairy produce including milk, cheese and plain live yoghurt. These foods can all play a part in helping prevent calcium loss from our bones. This can also be assisted by eating foods naturally high in magnesium, such as brown rice and green leafy vegetables (or supplements such as
Hot flushes and irritability - a quick emergency fix - it worked for me!
I would love to know if you have experienced this…I would get a sense of not feeling quite right (no other way to explain it really) a bit like my body was already aware that it was preparing for some unknown, unpleasant ‘thing’. I woud feel agitated, or irritated, impatient or panicky sometimes and then within a minute or two I would get the hot flush. So…I became really good at recognizing those uncomfortable feelings and this is what I did. Give it a go and let me know how you got on.
Get yourself a glass of cold water, drink as much of it as you can first, then take 6 deep breaths, each one a little deeper than the one before, deeper breaths than you have probably taken in …well….ages!!!! Breathe out slowly and fully releasing ALL the negative ‘stuff’ … and now calmly drink the ret of the water and tell yourself many times I am enough, I am enough, I can sort this, I can be my own best friend, I want to feel better and I deserve to nurture and take care of myself in any way I can. I am choosing to put my feelings first, I matter and I deserve to be cared for because, I am still totally lovable.
Live happily through your Menopause - seek support
Before, during and after the menopause, women who have a good support network, who are in a balanced happy emotional ‘place’ and are open to talking about it will fair much better but it can however feel difficult to break through social attitudes of ageism and sexism that are unfortunately still present today. Younger women feel the subject is an uncomfortable or taboo one and those who are going through it keep it private as it can create feelings of embarrassment, anxiety, sadness and loss as the realization that that their reproductive years are over and that their youth is gone. The best course of action to finally free women from the stigma around menopause is by talking about it. Just as in other life and health challenges such as mental health, sexual abuse and transgender issues we see more and more through the media how communication by talking is imperative and profoundly positive and beneficial to us all. I cannot stress enough how important and beneficial it is to share your concerns and worries with someone who you are comfortable with. The point being, it is not that you are expecting a friend, your partner or family member to ‘fix’ it for you but by expressing how you feel, allowing yourself to feel these emotions calmly and comfortably it will prevent you from feeling disconnected and alone and you will find that things will become clearer and less overwhelming.
If you do not have someone then (if you haven’t done so already, which I recommend) your Doctor is the first choice, be the driver in your own health. Checking in with your Doctor and yourself means you are being actively involved and this is much the best position to be in as you will gain confidence in understanding all your options knowing that a better quality of life is available to you and in your grasp.