Many women dread the thought of menopause mainly because of all the side effects that come with hormonal changes in the body. From hot flashes to mood swings to fatigue and low libido, the big “M” brings a range of unwelcome symptoms that impact women’s quality of life and make this transition more challenging.
While surviving this period may seem difficult, managing the not-so-desirable symptoms in a natural way is very much possible. Here’s what you can do in terms of your lifestyle and diet to make menopausal symptoms more bearable.
Minimize alcohol, caffeine, and sugar consumption
During menopause, limiting the intake of stimulants such as caffeine and sugar is as important as reducing the intake of depressants such as alcohol. Caffeine, even in smaller amounts, impacts the levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, by making them go up, which could interfere with sleep. A study from 2014 suggests lowering caffeine intake if you experience symptoms such as night sweats and hot flashes.
Minimizing sugars as well as sweeteners in the diet is also recommended as their consumption can be even more detrimental to menopausal women. As for the alcohol, try to limit yourself to three drinks a week and try to drink more water to remain hydrated.
Eat more whole foods
The reduction of the estrogen and progesterone levels in menopausal women makes it harder for the body to regulate blood sugar. Because of that, you should aim to ditch all the foods that are quickly converted to sugar. This means eliminating all those processed, pre-prepared foods from your diet.
Heavily processed, refined foods have little to no nutritional value, and they only make you crave more unhealthy foods as soon as you’re done eating them. Instead, change your diet so that the focus is on eating more plant-based, whole foods that provide essential vitamins and minerals - iron, calcium, vitamin D, etc.
Supplement your diet with essential nutrients
Ensuring your body gets all the nutrients it needs is essential, but it becomes even more important once you enter menopause. During this transition, certain hormonal changes take place, resulting in declining estrogen levels. This reduction in estrogen levels is responsible for many of the menopausal symptoms women experience such as flushing, lower sex drive, as well as vaginal dryness.
However, when a healthy diet is accompanied by effective menopause supplements that help balance the hormones, these problematic menopausal symptoms become more manageable. Make sure to do your research before deciding to take any supplements so you can find the right ones that will help you minimize the menopausal symptoms in a safe way while also improving your quality of life.
Make exercise a part of your daily routine
There are a plethora of benefits to exercising on a regular basis. Engaging in physical activities releases endorphins; mood-boosting, feel-good hormones; helps regulate stress levels; and also reduces the risk of diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. It can also help strengthen the bones, which is essential for menopausal women as they run the risk of developing osteoporosis and suffering fractures.
During menopause, women tend to gain weight in their abdominal area, and they often lose muscle mass. Exercising on a regular basis can help keep those extra pounds from accumulating and keep the muscles strong, whether you prefer stretching, aerobic activities, or strength training.
Find healthy ways to manage stress levels
Menopausal symptoms and hormonal changes can make this period of a woman’s life quite stressful. When not dealt with, chronic stress can significantly impact the quality of life and make the body more susceptible to various diseases by lowering the immune system. To ensure a sense of balance and well-being, it is important to find healthy ways to manage our stress levels.
For some, mind-body practices such as yoga or meditation can be of great help as they focus on breathing and light movements that quiet the mind, making it easier to reach inner peace and cope with stress more easily. However, it is important that you find an activity that you enjoy. That way, you’ll be more motivated to incorporate them into your daily routine and stick with them.
While many women see menopause as an unwelcome change, it’s important to remember that menopause is a natural process that also has its positive sides. For example, you get to wave goodbye to PMS, menstrual cycles, and hormonal headaches, and you don’t have to worry about unplanned pregnancy, meaning, you get to enjoy sex more. It’s true that the transition itself can be challenging, but all it takes is a couple of dietary and lifestyle tweaks to lessen the impact of menopause and feel your best as you enter a new and exciting chapter in your life.
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Simon Morris is a freelance content writer and health consultant. Currently, he works as a health and lifestyle freelance writer with many firms.
Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com.