By Blackmores Naturopathic Advisory Centre
Free advice on: 1800 803 760
Stress can trigger hot flushes experienced during menopause, and make other menopausal symptoms (especially insomnia) worse. Try to keep stress to a minimum where you can, and use relaxation techniques like meditation to help reduce your stress.
Ensure you undertake regular exercise
Undertaking regular physical exercise is important to help reduce the likelihood of developing osteoporosis, as well as to support a healthy body weight, and to reduce stress. Try a mix of exercise each week – such as walking, jogging, swimming, and yoga - and ensure that you include some resistance exercise as well.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet
Eat a healthy, balanced diet rich in nutrient foods. Focus on fresh fruits and vegetables (organic where possible), lean protein, whole grains, plenty of fresh filtered water, good fats (from olive oil and nuts such as walnuts) and foods that are high in omega-3 essential fatty acids (such as flaxseeds, and oily fish like salmon and tuna).
Increase your intake of phytoestrogens
Eating a diet rich in phytoestrogens may help to reduce menopausal symptoms. Phytoestrogens are compounds found in plants that have a similar structure to human oestrogens. Soy products, such as soy beans, tofu, and miso, and flaxseeds are some of the easiest food sources of phytoestrogens to include in your diet.
Avoid stimulants & spicy foods
Hot flushes can be triggered by stimulants such as coffee, wine, other forms of alcohol, and chocolate. They can also be triggered by spicy foods like chilli, and curry. If you are experiencing hot flushes avoid these foods and drinks for a while, to see if there is any change in your symptoms. Another benefit of avoiding stimulants is that your sleep may improve.
Include plenty of calcium in your diet
Calcium intake is important for maintaining bone health. Include enough calcium in your diet by ensuring you eat plenty of calcium-rich foods such as: dairy products, broccoli, cauliflower, tinned salmon and sardines (with the bones), tofu, almonds and green leafy vegetables. And avoid excessive amounts of animal proteins, alcohol, caffeine, soft drink and salt as these can cause calcium to be lost from your system.
Drink sage tea to help with hot flushes
A really useful and easy remedy for hot flushes and night sweats is sage tea. Salvia officinalis or Sage has traditionally been used to help reduce excessive perspiration and may be of help. Try drinking 2-3 cups a day, or more when your symptoms are intense. Brew up a big batch using fresh sage leaves – add a touch of honey and a squeeze of lemon if you like, and drink hot or cold throughout the day.
Studies have shown that yoga may be helpful for reducing the frequency of hot flushes. It is thought that this is due to the combination of breathing, physical poses and meditation that are part of a yoga session. Yoga is also great for helping to improve your flexibility and manage stress levels.
There are a number of herbal medicines that may be of assistance for supporting you through menopause, and helping to reduce the severity of your symptoms – try seeing a naturopath, herbal medicine practitioner or integrative doctor for assistance.
Other therapies that have been seen to be helpful include acupuncture, counselling, osteopathy and cranio-sacral therapy.
Menopause is a time of transition, and change. Throughout menopause hormones levels continue to change, and so do any symptoms that you experience. As these changes continue you may also find that a remedy or therapy that you have been using is no longer effective. Be sure to reassess your symptoms, and treatments as needed.
The hormonal changes experienced during menopause do not only affect the reproductive system, they can affect all the systems of the body. Ensure that you visit your healthcare professional regularly to keep an eye on your cholesterol, blood pressure, and bone health.
Blackmores Menopause Day/Night Relief is specifically tailored for day & night use to assist with the management of menopausal (and peri-menopausal) symptoms.
For more information, please visit http://www.blackmores.com.au/
For Blackmores Free Naturopathic Advisory Service call 1800 803 760