Natural Ways to Manage Menopause Symptoms

Natural Ways to Manage Menopause Symptoms

Menopause and perimenopause seem to be big taboo topics, even in this day and age. Heck, even my family has never discussed it so I really have no family history and have no idea when to expect “the change”. Fortunately the internet has tons of information at our fingertips and I’ve been doing a little digging. I’ve recently started realizing how our diet effects many aspects of our lives and have been trying to make a few changes.  Fortunately, your diet can even help lessen the uncomfortable symptoms of menopause like hot flashes as well.

Here are a few of the many ways I’ve found to help manage menopausal symptoms.

Foods to avoid:

  1. high amounts of caffeine
  2. carbonated beverages that contain phosphorous (increases bone loss)
  3. limit commercially raised meats such as beef, pork and chicken (they contain high amounts of saturated fats and decrease your body’s ability to metabolize estrogen)
  4. excessive sugar (it limits your liver’s ability to metabolize estrogen)

 

So what should you be eating then?

healthyfoodsFoods like grains, oats, wheat, brown rice, tofu, almonds, cashews, flaxseeds and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Vegetables

It’s fairly typical for women going through menopause to gain weight. This happens partially because of the changes in your hormones, but also because women tend to eat more junk food during this time of their life. Vegetables are beneficial because they are low in calories and fat but high in fiber, which is filling.  By eating fewer calories and dietary fat it will help you to lose weight. By eating vegetables like broccoli, carrots, celery and bell peppers, every day you can achieve that goal.

Tofu

Because tofu which is made from fermented soybeans we highly suggest purchasing the organic variety (to avoid GMOs). Tofu works well when trying to replace meat and is a protein-rich food in any meal. Tofu is basically flavorless and takes on the flavor of the surrounding foods. We like to use it in our house by marinating it in a sauce like soy sauce and stir-fried with vegetables or used in a recipe like vegetarian lasagna. According to Fox News Health, the soy isoflavones found in tofu can act like the hormone estrogen in the body, which relieves hot flashes and can even increase bone mass.

Nuts

During menopause bone protective estradiol, a powerful form of estrogen, plummets. This puts women at risk for osteoporosis, or weakening of the bones. Eating nuts on a daily basis can offer a way to help maintain the integrity of your bones. Nuts are a powerful food when it comes to menopause. Not only can they help support your skeletal system, but can help protect against heart disease, manage symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats, and prevent oxidative damage to blood vessels that leads to chronic inflammation and disease. When choosing to eat nuts remember that salted or sweetened nuts eradicates most of the health benefits from eating the real thing. Choose raw nuts (or dry roasted) and remember to go easy on the amount you consume. Although loaded with good fats, too much of any kind of fat may sabotage your dietary goals. Although they are good for you, remember that a little goes a long way.

Flaxseeds

Fox News Health suggests that consuming about 2 teaspoons of flaxseeds daily can reduce some of the side effects of menopause such as vaginal dryness and wrinkling of the skin. They explain that the lignans found in flaxseeds mimic estrogen. Because they are weaker than natural estrogen they actually create a balancing effect if your estrogen is low. We like to grind our flaxseed fresh daily and add it to foods like oatmeal, yogurt or blended into smoothies. We have even used them as an egg replacement while baking.

 

Lifestyle Changes

Along with dietary changes, remember that preventive healthcare and lifestyle changes can be beneficial as well. Things like exercise, smoking cessation, avoidance of excessive alcohol may help reduce your risk for conditions like osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. Exercise also may help menopausal women with less anxiety, stress and depression. 30 minutes of exercise daily may be a crucial step in managing the effects of menopause.

 

What natural methods have you found to be helpful?

Comments

  1. courtney b says:

    im not there yet, but I HATE tofu! wont be using that one!

  2. Bekah Kuczenski says:

    Thankfully I am not in that stage of life 🙂 However, I am going to share this with my mom who is and can’t take hormonal type therapies, so this would be very useful to her 🙂

  3. Chris says:

    This post is awesome! Thanks to the author.

  4. Michaele Howard says:

    Good information. Really, if we all ate well, it would help many of these life stages!

  5. marissa lee says:

    wow this is a lot of good information that i am going to pass on to my mom…she is going through the change right now…thank you for sharing.

  6. Emily says:

    I didn’t realize that there were natural options out there – it’s great to be able to at least try to care for yourself naturaly whenever possible.

  7. Sherri Lewis says:

    Thank you for these tips. I would rather make dietary changes rather than take hormone replacements.

  8. Julie Wood says:

    I need to add flaxseeds to my diet. I have reduced caffeine and do not drink a lot of pop. I know that a healthy diet is very important when going through menopause. Exercise is very good to help with the waist getting bigger.

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