After 12 months without a menstrual cycle, women are officially categorized as experiencing menopause. The remaining years are termed post-menopausal. Unfortunately, a lot of symptoms and discomfort comes along with these terms. Women may experience momentary memory loss, hot flashes, depression, anxiety, pain, and insomnia. These symptoms are common side effects of the reduced production of female reproduction that takes place between the ages of 45 and 55 in most cases, although it can happen earlier or later in life.
Thankfully, women do not simply have to deal with it. There are many ways to mitigate symptoms and boost quality of life. Here are just a few.
Eat Well and Exercise Regularly
Regular exercise can help you maintain a healthy body weight and even shed a few excess pounds. That is important during all walks of life, but especially during menopause when just 10 additional pounds can worsen menopause symptoms, like night sweats and hot flashes. That’s especially frustrating given that estrogen tend to be all over the place during menopause (very high and very low), and that fluctuation can make it even more difficult to lose weight. Bone density and muscle mass also decrease with age.
According to doctors and gynecologists, some ways to counteract these disadvantages and slim down are reducing portion sizes and/or switching to a vegetarian or vegan diet, low carb diet, or Mediterranean diet. All naturally contain lots of nutrients, like fiber, that help keep you full. Get adequate sleep. That can help you lose those last few pounds! Combine strength training and aerobic exercise for the most effective results. Strength training can mean body weight exercises, power yoga, or exercising with weights. Aerobic exercise includes anything from walking, running, dancing, and swimming.
Ask About Hormone Replacement Therapy
Don’t go it alone! If you’re having trouble managing symptoms to the point of being unable to sleep and exercise to promote better overall health, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can help. Hormone-related menopause solutions, like hormone treatment, eases symptoms like night sweats and hot flashes, giving you a better night’s sleep. Moreover, replacing depleted estrogen can help prevent heart disease, bone density loss, and osteoporosis.
There are a wide variety of HRT treatments to choose from–up to 50 different types, in fact! Ask your doctor or gynecologist which one is best for you. Doctors prescribe treatments with the lowest effective dose, making it an effective, safe, and unobtrusive way to treat unpleasant symptoms.
Try Alternative Treatments
Eating well, exercising often, and hormone replacement therapy are all great, but why not have as many tools available to you as possible? Consider these additional methods to get some relief during the worst of your menopause symptoms:
- Purchase some natural supplements. Supplements may help. More evidence is needed to get conclusive results, but it may not hurt to supplement with red clover extract or evening primrose oil. The first contains phytoestrogens that help boost estrogen, while the latter may help regulate hormone levels. Talk to your doctor about using supplements alongside HRT.
- Mindfulness. We’re not suggesting you pray your pain away, not exactly. Mindfulness is a non-secular, deep breathing practice that can help reduce stress levels and promote better sleep. The North American Menopause Society and Health Central recommend that “you practice paced breathing at the first sign of a hot flash — and even 15 minutes a day when your body is at normal temps.”
- Acupuncture. While this may not be the best method for the squeamish in the bunch, it may provide a drug-free alternative to reducing menopause symptoms, and it may help boost the effects of hormone replacement therapy. If you’re willing to give it a try, acupuncturists say it can reduce chronic inflammation, ease pain, and promote healthy circulation.
Don’t suffer needlessly through painful menopause symptoms. Explore all of the options available to you, and remember sometimes it is most effective to a few methods in your toolkit.