Did you know there are over 30 different symptoms that can be attributed to the menopause?
From common symptoms such as hot flushes, night sweats and mood swings to equally frustrating brittle nails, bladder weakness, brain fog and even changes in body odour; these are just some of the symptoms thrown at women.
If you’re one of 70% of women who, at some stage of the menopause (and it can go on for many years), are experiencing unpleasant symptoms, the good news is there’s plenty of help, by harnessing the power of nature and having a greater understanding of what’s going on in your body.
Menopause – the facts
- The stages of menopause normally start in the late 40’s but symptoms can often last ten years or more
- Fluctuating hormone levels, primarily a drop in oestrogen, cause many of the symptoms, particularly hot flushes
- Stress can make the menopause transition more difficult, due to adrenal hormones creating further imbalances in the female hormones
- The herb, Black Cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa) has been used for centuries, but became popular in Europe for treating menopausal symptoms during the 19th century
Start by making some simple changes
- Cruciferous vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale and broccoli, are rich in vitamins A, B, C, D andE. However, they also contain a compound known as Indole-3-carbinol, which promotes healthy oestrogen metabolism and, therefore, is effective at combatting menopausal symptoms
- Eat soya-based foods such as tofu, miso, soya beans and tempeh. Soya contains isoflavones, which is a type of phytoestrogen. Phytoestrogens work in a similar way to oestrogens and can really help manage hot flushes. They need to be consumed daily for best effect
- Try drinking a cup of sage tea twice a day. Sage is one of the best herbs for treating hot flushes and it works almost immediately. You can also buy sage in tincture form to gain even benefits
- Bone density starts to diminish during and after the menopause. Make sure to include lots of calcium-rich foods in the diet such as almonds, cruciferous vegetables(another great reason to eat them!), canned fish, such as salmon and sardines, and beans, including soya beans. Reducing salt, caffeine and animal proteins may also help to maintain calcium stores.
- The chances are your stress levels are high right now which will exacerbate symptoms. If this is causing more anxiety and you’re feeling overwhelmed, take the herb ashwagandha, which helps balance the adrenal hormones and can reduce levels of cortisol, our key stress hormone.