{ "advice" : [ { "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/couplepause_1_78b81db8-c2c2-42c8-906c-b1cb76bbc42d_1200x.jpg?v=1715154831", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eCouple-pause is a relatively recent (and slightly controversial) concept that refers to when both partners in a relationship (generally in their \u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e40s and 50s)\u003c\/span\u003e are experiencing significant hormonal shifts at the same time. It's pretty obvious that same-sex female couples could face challenges as they both hit perimenopause and menopause together, but did you realize it could also affect male-female relationships too? The challenges of going through menopause and andropause (often referred to as the male menopause) concurrently can create a shift in relationship dynamic.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhile the concept of a ‘male menopause’ remains contentious\u003csup\u003e1,2\u003c\/sup\u003e, and it certainly doesn’t manifest itself in the same way as female menopause, increasing research suggests there are hormonal changes going on for men at around the same age that women are going through the perimenopause and menopause. These can equally cause unsettling physical and psychological changes in men as they do for many menopausal women.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eCoined in 2018 by two Italian professors – one in Endocrinology and Sexual Medicine and another in Obstetrics \u0026amp; Gynaecology\u003csup\u003e3\u003c\/sup\u003e - couple-pause is defined simply as, ‘a new paradigm that considers the needs of the ageing couple as a whole\u003csup\u003e4\u003c\/sup\u003e.’ In a study published in 2024 the professors point out that the hormonal shifts experienced during mid life generally happen in the context of a relationship and so should involve both parties addressing any issues together. Clearly, any stress, discomfort or frustration that may be felt by one partner due to hormonal changes is clearly going to impact on the other and vice versa. As the professors say, the couple-pause ‘effectively addresses the sexual health needs of ageing couples as a unit, considering physical, psychological, cultural, social and dyadic-related [involving interactions between two people] factors\u003csup\u003e5\u003c\/sup\u003e ‘ Significantly, it also diverts attention from seeing one partner in the relationship as ‘the problem’ and frames any challenges as a dilemma to be faced by both people involved. It can also be a time to pause, reflect, take stock and think about what you both might be going through physically and psychologically at this mid-life point. So what should you be looking out for and how can you manage the couple-pause effectively together?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eUnderstanding menopause and andropause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe natural transitions of menopause and andropause are marked by fluctuating and declining estrogen levels in women (along with a a steady loss of testosterone) and a slow, steady and gradual drop in testosterone levels (falling around one percent per year after the age of 30)\u003csup\u003e6\u003c\/sup\u003e for men. These can potentially lead to a range of physical and psychological changes for both that are likely to impact on your relationship. Of course, hormones are not the only factors to cause physical and\/or psychological problems or worries within a relationship during your 40s and 50s but being informed about them can help you to build up a more rounded picture of what might be happening to either, or both, of you. The point is living with a partner going through the menopause or andropause can affect the general health, psychological well-being and sex life for the two of you, so it can be helpful to know how to read the signs.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eMenopause, as most of us are aware, is a completely natural phase in a woman’s life when her periods stop and signals the end of her reproductive years. It typically happens to women in their late 40s and early 50s (the average age a woman goes through it in the UK is 51)\u003csup\u003e7\u003c\/sup\u003e . This transitional time involves an often rapid decline in estrogen production which can lead to symptoms such as insomnia, brain fog, anxiety, irritability, low self-esteem, changes in body shape, vaginal dryness, low libido, hot flashes and night sweats.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAndropause, sometimes referred to as the ‘male menopause’, is becoming an area of mounting research and refers to the steady decline in testosterone levels in men from the age of the 30s onwards. As this decline is slow and gradual and tends to happen over several decades symptoms or changes might go completely unnoticed or be attributed to lifestyle factors (like drinking or eating too much, stress, exercising less or lack of sleep). While the andropause doesn't mark the end of fertility like menopause, or have a noticeable physiological ‘end’ like with women when their periods stop, low testosterone levels can potentially lead to symptoms in some men such as low energy, depression, decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, difficulty sleeping, fatigue, an increase in body fat, loss of muscle mass, mood changes, irritability, lack of focus and dips in confidence and motivation.\u003csup\u003e8\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eThe impact on relationships\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eGiven the symptoms outlined above, unsurprisingly, navigating couple-pause can pose a challenge for relationships. Both partners may be dealing with disconcerting changes to their body, (meno-belly and breast changes for women and a bigger belly and ‘man boobs’ in men, for example), concerning mood swings (irritability and depression are common symptoms for both women and men at this life stage), plus changes in libido – all potentially happening at the same time. You can quite see why this can put a strain on communication, intimacy and make your life together potentially harder. For example, if neither of you are sleeping well, you are both feeling irritable and maybe self-conscious about your ageing body misunderstandings or misinterpretations can quickly build into tension or conflict. On top of this, one or possibly both partners might not even realize these challenges are hormonal.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eManaging couple-pause together\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e1. Talk.\u003c\/strong\u003e As far as possible try to be honest and open with each other about how you are feeling. Consciously or not (and changes in your mood and body shape might also be chalked up to getting older, lack of exercise, drinking more or other factors like financial worries etc) be aware that if you are in your 40s and 50s you are almost certainly experiencing some hormonal changes. Sharing these feelings, concerns, and symptoms should lead to greater understanding and empathy between you and your partner. Relationship experts from Relate have put together useful advice for women on how to manage stress, anxiety and anger and keep your relationship strong during menopause but much of the advice can be equally applicable to men going through the andropause. They also explain about loss of libido during perimenopause and menopause and working through it with your partner. Try reading these articles together.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e2. Empathize and be supportive.\u003c\/strong\u003e It might be easier said than done when neither of you are feeling on top form and may be wandering around feeling tired, grumpy and like you don’t quite know who you are any more but try to be empathetic and supportive of each other's struggles. Validate each other's experiences and aim to offer emotional support during difficult moments.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e3. Be curious.\u003c\/strong\u003e Take time to educate yourselves about menopause and andropause, and the associated symptoms. Understand what physiological and psychological changes can occur and how to reduce common misconceptions (for example, he\/she doesn’t fancy me anymore when it could be that one, or both, of you is too tired or is self-conscious about your changing body shape to initiate, or want, sex) should lead to greater empathy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e4. Get professional help.\u003c\/strong\u003e If symptoms are significantly impacting your quality of life or relationship, look to get help from a healthcare professional. Counselling can be effective for many and this can be done in tandem with using Hormone Replacement Therapy or Testosterone Therapy if this has been prescribed for either of you.\u003csup\u003e9\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e5. Look after yourselves.\u003c\/strong\u003e Often making simple lifestyle changes can offer all the relief you need during these transitional times. So try to encourage each other to do things which should lead to improved physical and emotional well-being as well as helping to balance your hormones. Ideally, do them together. These can include regular exercise (losing weight and exercising can often increase testosterone levels naturally and has also been shown to reduce typical menopause symptoms like hot flashes and mood swings)\u003csup\u003e10,11\u003c\/sup\u003e; eating a healthy diet, (ultra-processed foods has been shown to negatively impact on testosterone levels\u003csup\u003e12\u003c\/sup\u003e and exacerbate hot flashes, insomnia, memory and concentration during menopause)\u003csup\u003e13\u003c\/sup\u003e ; taking supplements to support hormonal regulation practicing relaxation techniques and finding ways to effectively manage stress\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eCouple-pause as a shared journey\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhile the couple-pause phase may present challenges for both of you, being aware of its existence can offer an opportunity for you and your partner to support each other through it. It should also help to foster greater empathy, understanding, and communication between the two of you so you can navigate your way more seamlessly through these times of hormonal transition. Best of all, by embracing the couple-pause as a shared journey and supporting each other through its highs and lows, you should emerge stronger together.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eReferences\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.mayoclinic.org\/healthy-lifestyle\/mens-health\/in-depth\/male-menopause\/art-20048056\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC1070997\/\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/academic.oup.com\/smr\/article-abstract\/6\/3\/384\/6830833\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/38515320\/\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/academic.oup.com\/smr\/advance-article-abstract\/doi\/10.1093\/sxmrev\/qeae016\/7633161\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.nhs.uk\/conditions\/male-menopause\/#:~:text=Although%20testosterone%20levels%20fall%20as,cause%20any%20problems%20in%20itself.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/thebms.org.uk\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/08\/17-BMS-TfC-What-is-the-menopause-AUGUST2023-A.pdf\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.medicalnewstoday.com\/articles\/322647#naturally-boosting-testosterone\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.medicalnewstoday.com\/articles\/testosterone-replacement-therapy-trt\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.urologyhealth.org\/urology-a-z\/l\/low-testosterone\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6722698\/\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7291266\/\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/35033227\/\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "675887710514", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/couplepause_1_78b81db8-c2c2-42c8-906c-b1cb76bbc42d_768x.jpg?v=1715154831", "title" : "What is ‘couplepause’, and how can it affect relationships in your 40s and 50s?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537875762", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/HH-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658442", "name" : "Health and Her", "summary" : "", "title" : "" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/mental_health_a6146e08-1748-4eb9-aad2-08516a1e1d34_1200x.jpg?v=1715153967", "html" : "\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause, the stage before menopause, can be a particularly difficult time for women, both physically and psychologically. Mental health issues – such as anxiety, depression, fluctuations in mood, and fatigue – are often some of the first symptoms to present themselves when a woman goes through perimenopause. This can be frustrating, upsetting, and can leave you feeling more than a bit defeated – especially since it can often feel as if you are undergoing it alone.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause itself is rarely discussed, let alone the mental health symptoms that come with it. But the most important thing to remember is that you aren’t alone. These symptoms are common – Health \u0026amp; Her have conducted research that shows 9 in 10 women will suffer mental health issues as a result of perimenopause, 77% of whom have never struggled with mental health before.[1] The most common symptoms women suffering with perimenopause-related mental health demonstrated were low energy, lack of motivation, anxiety, low mood, depression, anger spikes, and feelings of worthlessness – so if you’re experiencing any of these, do not feel alone or isolated in these emotions. Women all around the world are dealing with the same feelings and sharing the same experiences.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThrough Menopause Awareness Month \u0026amp; World Perimenopause Day, Health \u0026amp; Her are working to bring attention to how mental health can be affected by perimenopause and menopause, and how best to get women back on their feet and feeling good. We are campaigning to raise awareness of perimenopause and mental health on a larger scale. Our research shows 9 in 10 women aren’t able to recognize the symptoms of perimenopause[2] – which is concerning, considering that 86% of women experience mental health changes as a result.[3] What we’re seeing is women not having full information about what is causing their issues, and not feeling able to speak to anyone about it.\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/Mental-Health-Infographic-Update9924-scaled-e1633512178436.jpg\"\u003e \u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt’s time to start talking about perimental health, as the best way to get on the road to feeling better is to understand why perimenopause can make you feel this way, how it can affect you, and most importantly, how to access the treatment and coping methods you need to get you better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat are the symptoms of perimenopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause is a stage that hasn’t received attention in the way menopause has, but it can have an equally important and dramatic – if not more so – effect on your mental health. Mental health changes are the earliest signs of perimenopause.  It is vital to know the warning symptoms of perimenopause to ensure you get the right help if your mental health is affected – especially since our research shows on average the link between symptoms and perimenopause takes 14 months to recognize. As menopause specialist GP Dr. Heidi Kerr explains,\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cblockquote\u003e\u003cp\u003e‘increasing awareness to women about perimenopause is vital as the arrival of many troublesome symptoms unexpectedly in their 40s – not the assumed 50s – can have a dramatic effect on daily life at home, at work and in relationships. By having a greater understanding of the hormonal changes that are taking place and the impact they can have on their bodies, women will be able to make good decisions about their health at an earlier stage to help alleviate symptoms and improve their ongoing health. This will allow them to reap the benefits as they move forward into their next decade and beyond. If you’re having severe symptoms and think you’re experiencing perimenopause, speaking to a GP can help. At the Health \u0026amp; Her Clinic we offer tailored advice and treatment options that can support you with a diagnosis.’\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/blockquote\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow does perimenopause affect mental health?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a few ways that perimenopause can play havoc with your mental health in ways that are particularly difficult to deal with. This often requires a holistic approach to treat.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYour perimenopause could be causing;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAnger and mood swings\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eLittle things that used to go over your head may be starting to bother you incessantly – like your partner’s breathing, your children’s incessant questions, or a particularly difficult task at work. Instead of getting through it, you may feel suddenly and extremely angry – so angry that it can be difficult to contain. These extreme emotions aren’t limited to anger, and can often be characterized by extreme panic or extreme worry. They are unpredictable and can leave you feeling a loss of control.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eFatigued, low-energy, and low-motivation\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is the most common reported symptom of menopause-related mental health, with our research finding 58% of women reporting lack of motivation and energy.[4] If you’re feeling tired, low-energy, unable to get up and go like you used to, your perimenopause or menopause might be to blame.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAnxiety\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eCharacterized by a persistent feeling of worry, nervousness, and dread, anxiety can make it feel impossible to do the smallest and most routine of tasks without fear. You may find yourself overthinking and panicking about events that others don’t seem to think twice about, events that you used to attend with ease. Anxiety can also cause panic attacks and disturb your sleep patterns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDepression\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDepression can often play hand in hand with anxiety and low energy. With a pervasive sense of low mood, fatigue, and unhappiness, depression can leave you feeling irritable, make it difficult for you to concentrate, and unable to take joy or pleasure in the activities you used to enjoy. It can often be accompanied by appetite changes, disturbed sleeping patterns, suicidal thoughts, and even physical pains like cramps and headaches. Studies have indicated that women going through perimenopause are more vulnerable to depression. Our research has indicated 44% of women reported feeling like they did not want to get out of bed in the mornings, while 1 in 10 admitted to having suicidal thoughts.[5] Depression can make you feel defeated, and leave your regular life feeling impossible.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eLow self-esteem\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThat dress you used to love now hangs, hidden, at the back of your wardrobe. You feel unintelligent or silly at work even when you know you’re doing a good job. You don’t want to see or spend time with people as you constantly overthink or feel down about yourself – how you speak, how you look, how you think. 43% of perimenopausal women reported feeling like they didn’t want to see family or friends because they felt too low in themselves. Perimenopause and menopause can alter your self-confidence and leave you feeling worthless.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBrain fog\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may feel like you’re losing your memory – you can’t remember what was next on your to do list, you may have trouble concentrating on tasks, or may make small mistakes in your everyday routines. Brain fog is characterized by a loss of concentration and difficulty in remembering, and it can make work and life very difficult. 1 in 4 women admit to making mistakes at work, with 1 in 6 calling in sick to avoid work entirely.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOften these symptoms can appear together in clusters or one can feed into the other – like low-self esteem and depression. Treatment, then, can be a holistic approach that seeks to target all of them together. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cfigure class=\"wp-caption alignnone\" style=\"width: 1024px;\" aria-describedby=\"caption-attachment-43873\" id=\"attachment_43873\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-scaled.jpg\"\u003e\u003cimg sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1024x296.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-scaled-200x58.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-scaled-600x174.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-300x87.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-768x222.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1536x445.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1600x463.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1200x347.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1080x313.jpg 1080w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-992x287.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-576x167.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-400x116.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-280x81.jpg 280w\" height=\"296\" width=\"1024\" alt=\"Statistics about perimenopausal woman and mental health\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1024x296.jpg\" class=\"wp-image-43873 size-large\" decoding=\"async\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/figure\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cem\u003e1 in 10 have suicidal thoughts, 9 in 10 suffer mental health issues as a direct result of perimenopause, 37% haven’t sought any help, and 80% don’t talk to their partners.\u003c\/em\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat causes mental health issues during perimenopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause and menopause cause fluctuations in various hormone levels, especially estrogen and progesterone, and these hormonal changes can affect the mood, and can also worsen physical symptoms. Studies have demonstrated that mental health changes are especially common during perimenopause, when hormonal changes are at their most prominent. Beyond the hormonal changes happening within your mind, perimenopausal women are also vulnerable to mental health issues due to the difficulties the physical symptoms of perimenopause and menopause can have on the emotions, such as a lack of proper, good-quality sleep caused by insomnia, self-esteem issues caused by potential weight gain, and the strenuous physical effects of joint aches, hot flushes, and cramps. Combined with what is generally quite a stressful stage in life – looking after both parents and children, gaining more responsibility within career fields, and dealing with mortgages, house upkeep, and relationship stress – this stage in life can often leave you more likely to develop emotional strains. If you have had mental health issues in the past, perimenopause can also exacerbate these.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs menopause specialist GP Dr Kate Burns describes,\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cem\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e‘as well as mood swings being triggered by your hormone levels fluctuating up and down more than they usually would be during the menopause, as you progress through perimenopause the overall levels of estrogen and progesterone in your body will also be slowly dropping as your ovaries slow down. Your body has to adjust to lower levels of these hormones which can also cause your mood to decline. There is also some evidence that lowering estrogen levels may be linked to lowering levels of serotonin, a very important chemical in the brain that is closely linked with our mood and emotions.’\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/em\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow to protect your mental health during perimenopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a myriad of ways to help you through perimenopause and to treat any mental health changes you may be experiencing. There are a selection of tools and methods that can help aid you through the transition depending on the severity of your symptoms and your personal feelings.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eVisit your GP or a qualified menopause health professional. \u003c\/strong\u003eGPs can give you advice, an ear to listen to, and provide medical intervention if your symptoms are severe enough. If your symptoms are making it hard to go about your day to day life, you should visit a qualified professional to help discuss options like antidepressants or HT.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSupplements can provide a helpful option for women looking to seek a more holistic and natural approach.\u003c\/strong\u003e Specially formulated by expert nutritionists and using ingredients designed to target the areas that are feeling vulnerable, Health \u0026amp; Her offers a range of supplements that can help with specific symptoms such as brain fog, or wider ranges that focus on buoying up your mental health generally, such as the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/collections\/perimenopause\/products\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\"\u003eperimenopause mind+ supplement\u003c\/a\u003e, specially designed to improve low mood, cognition, and improve the nervous system. An ideal option for women seeking a natural way to manage their perimenopause symptoms, it has been expertly formulated with a natural blend of vitamins, minerals and active botanicals to support hormone balancing, optimum psychological and cognitive function, energy levels and normal functioning of the nervous system.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHT to help with hormone levels\u003c\/strong\u003e. If your symptoms are hormone related, your doctor may recommend starting you on Hormone Therapy to stabilize your hormonal changes and prevent estrogen depletion. This might seem a bit intimidating at first, but HT can do wonders in helping stabilize your hormones, improving your mood and also helping to prevent problems such as osteoporosis and heart disease. For more information, here’s everything you need to know about HT.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSleep aids and advice for insomnia\u003c\/strong\u003e. If lack of sleep is making you irritable, anxious, and low-energy, different tools can help you get your sleep routine back in order. Advice such as finding a regular sleep pattern, cutting down on stimulants, and seeking out solutions such as CBT or lavender sleep aids could help normalize your sleeping routine and leave you feeling better mentally. Here is more information and advice on how sleep affects your mental health and how to improve sleep during menopause.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDietary plans to help keep you healthy\u003c\/strong\u003e. Diet can have a huge impact on your energy and emotional well-being. Cutting down on certain foods that exacerbate your symptoms can lessen fatigue, and keeping an overall healthy diet can work wonders in helping you feel better. For more advice on how to improve mood with food, here are diet and emotional changes to help with menopause moods.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExercise programs to keep active and encourage endorphin release\u003c\/strong\u003e. Exercise can be a stalwart line of defense in helping improve your mood. By releasing endorphins, exercise can provide a burst of happiness and energy that can help power you through the day, while certain exercises such as yoga during menopause have been linked to improvements in mood and relaxation. Here are the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/best-exercises-for-menopause-us?\"\u003ebest exercises for menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow do I identify whether what I’m going through is perimenopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her has created an easy symptom tool to help you understand whether your combination of mood issues is indicative of the early signs of perimenopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg data-mce-fragment=\"1\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1024x375.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-scaled-200x73.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-scaled-600x220.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-300x110.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-768x281.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1536x563.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1600x586.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1200x440.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1080x396.jpg 1080w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-992x363.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-576x211.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-400x147.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-280x103.jpg 280w\" height=\"348\" width=\"950\" alt=\"Health \u0026amp; Her's new symptom tool: Depression, Anxiety, Mood, No Energy\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1024x375.jpg\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-43874\" decoding=\"async\" data-mce-src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135824\/symptom-tool-03-03-1024x375.jpg\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you have one or more of these symptoms, alongside changing periods, consider going to consult with a professional to see what your options are for help. The \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/pages\/menopause-perimenopause-app\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her App\u003c\/a\u003e is available to download on the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/apps.apple.com\/gb\/app\/health-her-menopause-app\/id1519199698\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eiOS App Store\u003c\/a\u003e and the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/play.google.com\/store\/apps\/details?id=com.healthandher\u0026amp;hl=en_GB\u0026amp;pcampaignid=pcampaignidMKT-Other-global-all-co-prtnr-py-PartBadge-Mar2515-1\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eAndroid Play store\u003c\/a\u003e. Studies have shown that logging your symptoms has been linked to proven health benefits such as symptom reduction, heightened quality of life, and better health awareness.[6]\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eWhen Should I See a Doctor?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf your mental health is impeding on your everyday life and making it hard to get out of bed, do regular tasks, and causing you to feel like you have little hope, the best thing to do is always to go see a professional doctor who can listen carefully to what you’re experiencing and then discuss potential suitable treatments to help you feel better. They can offer a range of other solutions that can have you feeling back at your best. Check in with your doctor to talk through how best to treat your mental health and menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMillions of women go through perimenopause and menopause annually, and many of them are struggling with mood issues and mental health changes, with little information or support from those around them. If you are struggling, more than anything, it is important to remember that you are not alone – and there is hope! Perimenopause has been linked to issues with mood and emotion in thousands of women, and up until recently, there hasn’t been a lot of material disseminated on why that is, or how to get better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her want to say enough is enough. You deserve to get the help and treatment you need, and the support you need to get you feeling like your best self – and there’s no shame in that.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eReferences and Sources\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\" href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e As evidenced by a survey of 2,000 UK women aged 46-60 who have experienced perimenopause, carried out by OnePoll on behalf of women’s health website and free app Heath \u0026amp; Her.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\" href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e Ibid\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\" href=\"#_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e Andrews, R., Hale, G., Lancastle, D., John, B. (2020). Evaluating the effects of symptom-monitoring interventions on menopausal health outcomes: a systematic review.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\" href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e Out of 2,000 women aged 46-60\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\" href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e As evidenced by research commissioned by Health \u0026amp; Her and carried out by Censuswide. 1,001 women between the ages of 45-60 were surveyed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\" href=\"#_ftnref3\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e Out of 2,000 women aged 46-60\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "675887677746", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/mental_health_a6146e08-1748-4eb9-aad2-08516a1e1d34_768x.jpg?v=1715153967", "title" : "Is there a link between Perimenopause and poor mental health & depression?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537941298", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Dr.-Sophie-Bostock-aspect-ratio-1x1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658445", "name" : "Sophie Bostock", "summary" : "", "title" : "Sleep Expert and Coach" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Article_Headers_Sleep_1200x.jpg?v=1710855897", "html" : "\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you’re struggling to fall asleep, or stay asleep through the night, you’re not alone. In this article, Dr. Sophie Bostock, sleep expert and evangelist, explains why menopause can make you tired, what kind of sleep problems can occur during menopause and why fatigue and tiredness can feel so overwhelming at menopause, and signposts evidence-based strategies for improving your sleep. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow common are sleep problems during menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSleep problems are very common in the general population, with as many as 1 in 3 adults reporting trouble sleeping. There is no doubt that menopause creates additional challenges for sleep, with most surveys suggesting that at least 1 in 2 women during have difficulty falling asleep, or waking up during the night, during the menopausal transition.\u003csup\u003e1, 2\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRecent data from the Health \u0026amp; Her Menopause Symptom Tool and Tracker reveals that over three quarters of women using the tool have trouble sleeping.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"aligncenter size-medium wp-image-7178\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-300x266.jpg\" alt=\"Health \u0026amp; Her Symptom Tool - Sleeping Problems\" width=\"300\" height=\"266\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-300x266.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-200x178.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-360x320.jpg 360w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool.jpg 500w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe good news? Although widespread, this tells us that sleep problems are not universal, or inevitable.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor many women, sleepless nights are temporary, but research suggests that as many as 1 in 4 women going through menopause may meet criteria for insomnia disorder. \u003csup\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e Doctors define insomnia disorder as difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep through the night, or waking up feeling unrefreshed which persists for at least 3 nights a week, for 3 months or more, and which have a serious negative impact on work, relationships, health or quality of life.\u003csup\u003e3\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eIs menopause to blame for my poor sleep?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you’re regularly woken up by night sweats, you probably feel in little doubt that menopause is to blame for poor sleep. But whether or not you experience hot flashes, sleep is vulnerable to a range of different influences which coincide with the onset of menopause:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes-a-doctors-overview\" target=\"_blank\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHot flashes\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e and night sweats:\u003c\/strong\u003e Night sweats typically start to disrupt sleep in perimenopause and persist for several years postmenopause. Not all hot flashes wake you up, but they are associated with increased arousal in the brain, which is linked to lighter sleep.\u003csup\u003e4\u003c\/sup\u003eTo maintain deep sleep, the body needs to cool down, so when your internal temperature dial is running wild, it interferes with both getting to sleep, and staying asleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMental health challenges:\u003c\/strong\u003e Menopause also often coincides with stressful life events. Lower levels of estrogen can alter the regulation of hormones and transmitters which influence mood, such as serotonin, making you more vulnerable to depression.\u003csup\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e Sleep and mental health are closely connected: poor mental health tends to get in the way of quality sleep, and lack of sleep heightens our sensitivity to stress, making us more vulnerable to anxiety and depression\u003csup\u003e5\u003c\/sup\u003e. If you feel like you’re stuck in a cycle of stress and sleeplessness, focusing on taking control of your sleep can often by the simplest way to start to tackle that cycle.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ePain: \u003c\/strong\u003eEstrogen levels influence both pain perception and inflammation, and recent studies have found an increase in chronic pain during menopause, which can disrupt sleep\u003csup\u003e6\u003c\/sup\u003e. The timing of menopause also coincides with an increase in the diagnoses of chronic health conditions, which may also add to pain and discomfort.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWaking to urinate at night (nocturia):\u003c\/strong\u003e Lower levels of estrogen can lead to drying of the genital tract, discomfort and strong urges to urinate; another cue for disrupted sleep.\u003csup\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eNatural ageing:\u003c\/strong\u003e Older adults typically experience lighter and more disrupted sleep than younger adults, especially in the second part of the night. We sleep in cycles which are typically about 90-110 minutes long. It’s important to know that waking up several times between sleep cycles is natural; most good sleepers roll over and forget about it. Try not to let waking up itself become a source of anxiety. If you don’t worry about waking up, it’ll be much easier to fall back to sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eOther sleep disorders:\u003c\/strong\u003e Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, but there are other common conditions which merit medical attention. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a condition where narrowing of the upper airways leads to pauses in breathing throughout night, and is often associated with loud snoring. OSA disrupts deep sleep and leads to extreme sleepiness during the day. Sleep apnea can occur at any age but becomes more common in postmenopausal women, potentially because of a reduction of the hormone progesterone. Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is the sudden urge to move your legs can interfere with getting to sleep. RLS seems to be more common in perimenopause, especially for women who have night sweats\u003csup\u003e7\u003c\/sup\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat impact can poor sleep have on menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eLack of sleep can have a pretty miserable impact at any time of life, but the effects on menopause are particularly significant because sleeplessness tends to magnify the negative effects of hormonal changes, which can worsen a whole range of symptoms, which further disrupt sleep.. leading to a negative spiral.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor example, lack of sleep alone can cause fatigue, greater sensitivity to pain, memory loss, a reduction in sexual arousal, weight gain and increased inflammation – all of which can also be consequences of menopause.2 The effects of sleep are particularly notable for mental health. For example, one night without sleep can increase anxiety by 30%, fuelling worry and stress levels\u003csup\u003e8\u003c\/sup\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eData from Health \u0026amp; Her’s Symptom Tool reinforces the links between poor sleep and worse physical and mental health. In a sample of over 30,000 women, those with severe sleep problems experience an average of 10 menopause symptoms, vs. 6 for good sleepers. The severity of symptoms for the poorest sleepers was also higher – 3.6 out of 5 on average, vs. 3.1 out of 5 for good sleepers.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt’s important to note that you don’t need to ‘catch up’ on every hour of missed sleep. Rather than lying in bed, worrying about lack of sleep, a better approach is to get out of bed and do a relaxing activity, only returning to bed if you’re sleepy tired. After a sleepless night, the brain will try and compensate with a more restorative sleep the following night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat can you do to improve sleep quality?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you understand how sleep works, you can feel more confident about practicing positive sleep habits, which could prevent occasional sleep problems turning into full blown insomnia. So what controls when we sleep? There are two main forces involved\u003csup\u003e9\u003c\/sup\u003e:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ea) Your circadian rhythm, or body clock \u003c\/strong\u003eOur bodies are designed to operate on a 24 hour or ‘circadian’ sleep-wake cycle, to allow for action during the day, and recovery at night. Every cell has its own internal clock, but a master body clock in the brain keeps them all coordinated. The master clock is very sensitive to light; in daylight, it sends a strong alerting signal, whereas in darkness, it sends a ‘ready-to-sleep’ signal, via production of the hormone, melatonin. We produce less melatonin as we age (regardless of menopause) which is one reason sleep gets lighter as we get older.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eb) Sleep pressure\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSleep pressure builds up gradually the longer we’ve been awake, owing to build up of a waste chemical called adenosine, making us feel drowsy. Sleep pressure works independently to the body clock and is reset by sleep. If sleep pressure is high, and there is no alerting signal from the master clock, we’re likely to sleep. Most sleep hygiene advice, including the advice below, is designed to help these two natural sleep forces work together.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e1. Maintain a regular wake-up time:\u003c\/strong\u003e if you get up at similar times every day, your body responds with the regular release of melatonin before you get into bed, which aids restful sleep. Haphazard sleep-wake patterns, and weekend lie-ins, confuse the body clock and delay the production of melatonin, leading to lighter sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e2. Use bright light to energize:\u003c\/strong\u003e Sit by the window or go outdoors in the morning to feel more alert, and wake up the body clock. In the hour before bed, dim the lights, and avoid light from screens which can interfere with melatonin. During the night, keep your environment as dark as possible, with blackout blinds and\/or an eye mask, and use dim lights if you need to get up at night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e3. Practice the skill of relaxation:\u003c\/strong\u003e too much stress, especially in the evening, interferes with the production of melatonin. This can delay the body clock and lead to lighter, more disrupted sleep. Take time to unwind and detach from the day before bed. Relaxation techniques such as progressive muscle relaxation, yoga and mindfulness can all help switch off the stress response, and lead to more restorative sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e4. Go to bed when you’re sleepy:\u003c\/strong\u003e you won’t be able to sleep if you haven’t built up enough sleep pressure. If you don’t feel tired, do something relaxing until your eyelids feel heavy, and only then get into bed. If you’re feeling fatigued, a short 20 minute nap after lunch can be a useful boost to mood and energy levels, but be wary of long naps late in the day which can reset sleep pressure, and interfere with night time sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e5. Cut down on stimulants: \u003c\/strong\u003e caffeine temporarily masks the effects of sleep pressure, and increases arousal. Even caffeine 6 hours before bed can interfere with sleeping through the night.10 Some people use alcohol to get to sleep but as it is broken down by the body it interferes with natural sleep, leaving you feeling fatigued the next day. Caffeine and alcohol can both worsen night sweats and hot flashes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e6. Get active during the day:\u003c\/strong\u003e physical activity sends a signal to the master body clock to stay alert, and helps strengthen sleep pressure. Regular physical activity improves sleep quality at all ages. Avoid vigorous exercise close to bedtime, since this can increase body temperature, and push back the body clock.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e7. Keep the bedroom cool at night:\u003c\/strong\u003e a daily fall in body temperature is a cue for sleep, so keeping your bedroom a few degrees cooler than typical room temperature, with air circulating, can help. Use layers of light bedding which you can easily remove if you get too hot. Some women who experience severe night sweats recommend sleeping on soft towels, which are easy to change at night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat treatments are available for persistent sleep problems in menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you’re concerned about a chronic sleep problem, it’s a good idea to discuss this with your doctor. A multidisciplinary approach to treatment is recommended, which takes into account not only your hormonal profile, but also any pain or chronic health conditions, and what’s going on in your work and family life, and your treatment preferences.\u003csup\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe recommended first line treatment for Insomnia Disorder is called Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I)\u003csup\u003e2, 11\u003c\/sup\u003e. Like other CBT approaches, CBT-I is a toolkit of different techniques to address unhelpful thoughts and worry, but also helps to reset healthy sleep patterns. Techniques include using a sleep diary, good sleep hygiene, relaxation techniques, and sleep restriction, which involves changing your sleep window to increase sleep pressure, and consolidate broken sleep. CBT-I can be delivered effectively as 1-2-1 or group therapy, as self-help books or online programmes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\" target=\"_blank\" rel=\"noopener noreferrer\"\u003eHormone Therapy (HT)\u003c\/a\u003e is commonly prescribed to manage hot flashes, and most studies report a modest improvement in sleep quality, as well as low mood.\u003csup\u003e1,2\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA recent trial compared 6 different approaches to improving insomnia in over 500 women with hot flashes over 12 weeks.\u003csup\u003e12\u003c\/sup\u003e The strongest improvements in sleep quality were reported for CBT-I. Interestingly, while CBT-I didn’t reduce the number of night sweats, it did reduce how bothersome they were, and improved overall satisfaction with sleep. Smaller sleep improvements were seen for HT (estradiol), antidepressants (escitalopram, venlafaxine), regular aerobic exercise and yoga. Omega-3 supplements had no effect.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSleeping pills are not recommended for more than a few weeks use owing to potentially harmful side effects, so are rarely prescribed at menopause. Taking pills won’t help to address the behaviours that get in the way of sleep, so even if you’re using pills as a temporary measure, it’s also a good idea to focus on positive sleep habits.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat alternative approaches are there?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you find an approach which helps you to cope with hot flashes and night sweats, it’s likely to have benefits for sleep too. Similarly, rituals which help you to relax and detach from the day in the hour or two before bed can help ready the mind and body for sleep. For some people this might mean a warm bath, herbal tea, reading, writing a journal or meditation\u003csup\u003e13\u003c\/sup\u003e; whatever helps you personally to put the day to rest.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDietary factors can also influence sleep. Maintaining a varied and healthy diet will help to prevent deficiencies of nutrients which have been linked with poor sleep, such as magnesium, calcium, vitamin D and 5-HTP (a precursor to melatonin)\u003csup\u003e14\u003c\/sup\u003e. Research into the effects of dietary supplements on sleep at menopause has mostly been limited to small trials, but it’s an active area for research. For example, isoflavones, which can mimic the effects of estrogens, and valerian root, have been shown to have mild sedative effects\u003csup\u003e15\u003c\/sup\u003e. A registered nutritionist can help you to apply the latest evidence for supplements, as well as understanding risks and side effects.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eKey takeaways\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are many simple things you can do to improve your natural sleep quality. The approach with the strongest evidence for reducing insomnia in menopause is CBT-I. Simply knowing that poor sleep can turn up the dial on your emotional sensitivity can be empowering. If you feel tired and overwhelmed, remind yourself that the sleepless brain has a tendency to hijack logical thoughts and feelings. Try and look at the situation from your best friend’s perspective. Protect time to unwind before bed to give your body the best chance for a restful slumber.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eReferences\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eHachul et al. (2017) Chapter 10. Insomnia and Menopause Clinical Handbook of Insomnia (Current Clinical Neurology) (3rd edition) Ed. Attarian\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBaker et al. (2018) Sleep problems during the menopausal transition: prevalence, impact, and management challenges Nature and Science of Sleep 2018:10 73–95\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAmerican Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition. Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Association, 2013\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBonnani et al (2019) Insomnia and hot flashes. Maturitas 126 (2019) 51–54\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFang et al (2019) Depression and sleep disturbance: a review on a bidirectional relationship, mechanisms and treatment J Cell Mol Med. 23(4): 2324–2332.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGibson et al. (2019) Menopause symptoms and chronic pain in a national sample of midlife women veterans Menopause 26(7):708-713\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eJoffe et al. (2010) Evaluation and Management of Sleep Disturbance During the Menopause Transition Seminars in Reproductive Medicine 28(5):404-21\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBen Simon et al (2020), Overanxious and underslept. Nature Human Behaviour, 4, 100–110(2020)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBorbely et al (2016) The two‐process model of sleep regulation: a reappraisal. J Sleep Res 25\u003csup\u003e2\u003c\/sup\u003e 131-143\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDrake et al. (2013) Caffeine effects on sleep taken 0, 3, or 6 hours before going to bed. J Clin Sleep Med 9(11):1195-120\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eNowakowski \u0026amp; Meers (2019) Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia and Women’s Health: Sex as a Biological Variable Sleep Med Clin 14\u003csup\u003e2\u003c\/sup\u003e:185-197\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGuthrie et al (2019) Effects of Pharmacologic and Nonpharmacologic Interventions on Insomnia Symptoms and Self-reported Sleep Quality in Women With Hot Flashes: A Pooled Analysis of Individual Participant Data From Four MsFLASH Trials. Sleep 41(1)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGarcia et al. (2018) The effects of mindfulness and relaxation training for insomnia (MRTI) on postmenopausal women: a pilot study. Menopause25(9):992-1003\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIkonte et al. (2019) Micronutrient Inadequacy in Short Sleep: Analysis of the NHANES 2005-2016. Nutrients 11(10)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDe Franciscis et al. (2019) A Nutraceutical Approach to Menopausal Complaints. Medicina 55(9)E544\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e", "id" : "675712794930", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Article_Headers_Sleep_768x.jpg?v=1710855897", "title" : "Why Does Menopause Make You Tired?", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=221" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=221" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=221" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/221" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 23, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping problems", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing sleeping problems have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 221, "term_id": 221, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606517297458", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Dr-R-Tomlinson-Headshot-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697653989", "name" : "Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/genetics_a8433f32-19ef-41b2-a034-698dcde0f843_1200x.jpg?v=1709220133", "html" : "\u003ch2\u003eAre menopause symptoms hereditary? And are you likely to have a similar menopause to your mum?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDr Rebeccah Tomlinson, menopause specialist doctor, examines the evidence...\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eAs things stand no one can precisely predict when you will go through menopause or how it will affect you. That said, there are studies that have been carried out on mothers and daughters, female twins, sisters and aunts and nieces which show genetics do play a role in predicting the age you are likely to go through this transitional time. Science has yet to get to a point where genetic profiling can forecast menopause age accurately, but mounting research is helping us to slowly understand more about the hereditary aspects and how they can be helpful for understanding your personal menopause journey.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eDoes menopause age run in families?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eBoth \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-perimenopause\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eperimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e (the lead-up to the menopause which generally happens from the mid 40s onwards but can start as early as your late 30s\u003csup\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e ) and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-menopause\" target=\"_blank\"\u003emenopause\u003c\/a\u003e can occur earlier than the average age (51 in the UK\u003csup\u003e2\u003c\/sup\u003e) as a result of lifestyle factors like smoking. They can also be accelerated by medical treatments like chemotherapy or having a hysterectomy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo, while the age you will experience menopause is generally accepted to be significantly influenced by your family history – and the age your mother or close female relatives went through it - it is also shaped by both environmental and lifestyle factors and there are a wide range of variables that can affect its timing. Studies have found racial\/ethnic differences as to when women start their perimenopause and menopause\u003csup\u003e3\u003c\/sup\u003e and there is even research showing those living in urban areas have a slightly later natural menopause than those in rural ones\u003csup\u003e4\u003c\/sup\u003e. There is some research to suggest being overweight can lead to a later menopause, and that being underweight leads to an earlier one\u003csup\u003e5\u003c\/sup\u003e. Women who have never had children also appear to go through menopause earlier and women who have given birth three times have the highest average age at menopause, according to one study\u003csup\u003e6\u003c\/sup\u003e. (The same study found that having more than three children did not however lead to an even later age of entering it).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eThe timing of your menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat makes it trickier to predict the timing of your menopause is that using hormonal contraception can mask symptoms of menopause, going through IVF can trigger side effects which are similar to symptoms of perimenopause and menopause and IVF treatments are also linked to having an earlier menopause\u003csup\u003e7\u003c\/sup\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eResearch also shows having Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) can lead to a later menopause (on average two to four years later)\u003csup\u003e8\u003c\/sup\u003e. Having certain medical conditions such as autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid problems have also been linked to earlier menopause\u003csup\u003e9\u003c\/sup\u003e. If your mother or close female relative had an early or late menopause the likelihood is you will too\u003csup\u003e10\u003c\/sup\u003e. Having a sister who went through an \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/early-menopause\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eearly menopause\u003c\/a\u003e (between the ages of 40-45) appears to be the biggest indicator you might also\u003csup\u003e11\u003c\/sup\u003e. This information is significant because of the greater risks to your health posed by an early menopause including an increased risk of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-and-cardiovascular-disease\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ecardiovascular disease\u003c\/a\u003e, osteoporosis, cognitive issues and overall life expectancy. Research also shows that women who go through menopause later than average (after 55) have a higher risk of breast and endometrial cancers\u003csup\u003e12\u003c\/sup\u003e but a lower risk of cardiovascular disease\u003csup\u003e13\u003c\/sup\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eAre menopause symptoms hereditary?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe ‘when’ of your menopause is, of course, only one part of the story - the ‘how’ remains the other and the severity of your symptoms can also be coloured by your genes. Recent Health and Her research confirms this - with 69% of women who asked their mum finding that their perimenopause symptoms were similar.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cdiv style=\"text-align: left;\"\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0816\/2164\/7666\/files\/H_H_App_-_Store_Cards_-_IOS_1284X2778Artboard_2_copy_2x_baf66772-cb63-4153-a7fd-e9e00f3b58e8_600x600.png?v=1709217620\" alt=\"69% of women who asked their mum finding that their perimenopause symptoms were similar\" style=\"float: none;\"\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\u003cp\u003eStudies also show vasomotor symptoms – hot flushes and night sweats – appear to be influenced by genetic factors and can differ across racial and ethnic groups. The Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation (SWAN)\u003csup\u003e14\u003c\/sup\u003e has shown that Black and Latina women enter menopause earlier and have more severe vasomotor symptoms than white women (in the study, white women were shown to experience them for around 6.5 years, Latina women 8.9 years and 10 years for Black women). A study from UCLA published in the journal Menopause\u003csup\u003e15\u003c\/sup\u003e has also identified gene variants which affect a receptor in the brain (known as the tachykinin receptor 3 or TACR3) which regulates the release of estrogen. These variants are found across ethnicities, and it has been found that women who have them are more likely to suffer with hot flushes and night sweats. More research in this area is needed but scientists are hopeful that by identifying these gene variants’ effects on estrogen it could potentially lead to finding treatments for flushes and night sweats.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWill you have your mother’s menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhilst the science moves slowly forward into the links between genes and menopause getting your mum’s personal take on her experience can also be insightful, informative, and hopefully reassuring.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg alt=\"71% of women saying that asking their mum about it helped them diagnose their own menopause\" src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0816\/2164\/7666\/files\/H_H_App_-_Store_Cards_-_IOS_1284X2778Artboard_2_copy_3_2x_8a1b8af4-fcb7-460e-8b3c-cddb81723b7b_600x600.png?v=1709217727\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRecent Health \u0026amp; Her research suggests this is very much the case with 71% of women saying that asking their mum about it helped them diagnose their own menopause sooner and 80% reporting that having a mother-daughter chat about the issue helped them to not only diagnose their perimenopause earlier but left them feeling better supported, better educated and more confident about how to manage their symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0816\/2164\/7666\/files\/H_H_App_-_Store_Cards_-_IOS_1284X2778Artboard_2_copy_5_2x_f0da90f2-b1ee-4eff-942f-9900f48e3b4d_600x600.png?v=1709217795\" alt=\"80% reporting that having a mother-daughter chat left them feeling better supported\" data-mce-src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0816\/2164\/7666\/files\/H_H_App_-_Store_Cards_-_IOS_1284X2778Artboard_2_copy_5_2x_f0da90f2-b1ee-4eff-942f-9900f48e3b4d_600x600.png?v=1709217795\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHowever, while knowing your mother’s menopause history might provide a more rounded picture for some, accessing this information can be hard for others. Not least because many older women felt (or still feel) embarrassed talking about it. Also, many didn’t recognize that what was happening was the menopause (let alone the perimenopause – a relatively new term) and they didn’t have access to research or knowledge about the subject (including sharing information amongst themselves online) that we have now. Nor does everyone have ready access to that part of their family history – if, say, you were adopted or your mother is no longer around. Ideally if you can glean information from other close female relatives, like an aunt, or older sister, this should help but if you don’t know about your blood relatives this shouldn’t leave you feeling at a disadvantage.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg alt=\"The benefits of talking to a female relative\" src=\"https:\/\/cdn.shopify.com\/s\/files\/1\/0816\/2164\/7666\/files\/H_H_App_-_Store_Cards_-_IOS_1284X2778Artboard_2_copy_7_2x_552b7c44-8a56-4bc5-9c09-23a0ad3196fd_600x600.png?v=1709217908\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe bottom line is that whilst asking about your mother’s menopause can offer a potential snapshot of what your experience might be it is not genetically set in stone and there is so much you can do to shape how your own plays out.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTake control of your own menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eUsing the latest research, information and online tools available all women can help to take control of their own symptoms from perimenopause onwards by:\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ePreparing for it.\u003c\/strong\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/pages\/menopause-perimenopause-app\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eTrack your symptoms using the Health \u0026amp; Her app\u003c\/a\u003e to pinpoint how they manifest themselves and if, and when, they get better or worse. Build up a picture that is specific to you, including \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/hot-topics\/worsen-perimenopause-menopause-triggers\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ewhat triggers your symptoms\u003c\/a\u003e, what exacerbates them and what helps.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eGive up, or don’t start, smoking.\u003c\/strong\u003e Regardless of your family history this is by far the most relevant factor for predicting a menopause earlier than the average – going through it around one or two years earlier than on average\u003csup\u003e16\u003c\/sup\u003e. It is theorized that smoking reduces estrogen and impacts on ovarian ageing.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAdjusting your diet.\u003c\/strong\u003e A \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/mediterranean-diet-menopause?_pos=1\u0026amp;_psq=med\u0026amp;_ss=e\u0026amp;_v=1.0\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eMediterranean diet\u003c\/a\u003e has been shown to minimize many typical menopause symptoms according to a study from 2022\u003csup\u003e17\u003c\/sup\u003e. The high intake of fruit and vegetables and legumes (like kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas) and extra virgin olive oil in the diet led to less severe, or fewer, menopause symptoms including vasomotor ones, like hot flushes and night sweats, plus psychological ones, including depression. Women on a Mediterranean diet also report sleeping better (\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/is-menopause-messing-with-your-sleep-tools-techniques-and-treatment-to-reclaim-your-rest\" target=\"_blank\"\u003esleep problems\u003c\/a\u003e remain one of the most frequent side effects of perimenopause and menopause).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExercising regularly.\u003c\/strong\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/hot-topics\/best-exercise-menopause\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eExercise\u003c\/a\u003e has been shown to ease many menopause symptoms including alleviating stress, anxiety, feelings of depression, sleep problems, lack of energy, loss of muscle mass and bone density. It can also help improve your \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-and-cardiovascular-disease\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eheart health\u003c\/a\u003e which is at increased risk post menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTry supplements.\u003c\/strong\u003e According to the British Menopause Society, 95% of women in perimenopause want to try supplements first to help them with their menopause symptoms\u003csup\u003e18\u003c\/sup\u003e. Ingredients to look out for which \u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan class=\"ui-provider a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z ab ac ae af ag ah ai aj ak\" dir=\"ltr\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003emay help to support wellness during this time\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e include the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/phytoestrogens-menopause?_pos=1\u0026amp;_psq=phyto\u0026amp;_ss=e\u0026amp;_v=1.0\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ephytoestrogens\u003c\/a\u003e Red Clover and Wild Yam plus vitamins and minerals such as B vitamins and magnesium (find them all and more in Perimenopause Multi-nutrient Support).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHormone Therapy.\u003c\/strong\u003e This therapy replaces declining levels of hormones such as estrogen. Talk to your doctor or menopause specialist about a HT regimen that would be suitable for you if you feel you need it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eStress reduction.\u003c\/strong\u003e Stressing about how the menopause is likely to affect you is not going to help when declining levels of estrogen are already making you less likely to cope with \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/stress-and-anxiety\" target=\"_blank\"\u003estress and anxiety\u003c\/a\u003e because falling estrogen levels make it harder for you to regulate levels of the primary stress hormone cortisol.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA positive mind set\u003c\/strong\u003e – even if your mum, your auntie and\/or your gran have all said their menopause was difficult don’t let this become a self-fulfilling prophecy for you. The lifestyle habits above can all positively affect how yours will play out plus menopause can be a hugely positive and liberating experience for many women, for a variety of reasons. These include no longer having to worry about PMS, periods and contraception. It also marks a transitional time for many in terms of re-evaluating life and carving out well-deserved time for themselves.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eReferences\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.nhsinform.scot\/healthy-living\/womens-health\/later-years-around-50-years-and-over\/menopause-and-post-menopause-health\/menopause#:~:text=Perimenopause%20and%20menopause%20are%20a,although%20it%20can%20start%20earlier).\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.nhsinform.scot\/healthy-living\/womens-health\/later-years-around-50-years-and-over\/menopause-and-post-menopause-health\/menopause#:~:text=Perimenopause%20and%20menopause%20are%20a,to%20reach%20menopause%20is%2051.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/11323317\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/5298639\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.healio.com\/news\/endocrinology\/20171026\/bmi-may-affect-timing-of-menopause#:~:text=Ten%20percent%20of%20women%20are,%25%20to%2030%25%20lower%20odds.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/academic.oup.com\/humrep\/article\/37\/2\/333\/6427299\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC8473711\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.medicalnewstoday.com\/articles\/319363#:~:text=In%20a%20person%20with%20PCOS,of%20both%20PCOS%20and%20menopause.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/my.clevelandclinic.org\/health\/diseases\/21138-premature-and-early-menopause#:~:text=Family%20history%20of%20menopause%20at,Crohn's%20disease%20or%20thyroid%20disease.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/9243205\/#:~:text=The%20odds%20of%20a%20woman,mothers%20and%20daughters%20menopausal%20age.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/7672145\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.cancer.net\/navigating-cancer-care\/prevention-and-healthy-living\/menopause-and-cancer-risk\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/8602000\/#:~:text=The%20risk%20of%20cardiovascular%20mortality,mortality%20risk%20decreased%20by%202%25.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.swanstudy.org\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/journals.lww.com\/menopausejournal\/abstract\/2017\/03000\/association_of_genetic_variation_in_the_tachykinin.5.aspx\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.lancastergeneralhealth.org\/health-hub-home\/2021\/october\/one-more-reason-not-to-smoke-early-menopause#:~:text=The%20effect%20of%20smoking%20on,years%20earlier%20for%20heavy%20smokers.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003ehttps:\/\/www.frontiersin.org\/articles\/10.3389\/fendo.2022.886824\/full\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.womens-health-concern.org\/wp-content\/uploads\/2022\/12\/03-WHC-FACTSHEET-Complementary-And-Alternative-Therapies-NOV2022-B.pdf\"\u003e03-WHC-FACTSHEET-Complementary-And-Alternative-Therapies-NOV2022-B.pdf (womens-health-concern.org)\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e", "id" : "675640213810", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/genetics_a8433f32-19ef-41b2-a034-698dcde0f843_768x.jpg?v=1709220133", "title" : "Genes and Menopause: Is the age you start menopause genetic?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538006834", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Rosie-Letts_small.jpg?v=1697658449", "name" : "Rosie Letts", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritional Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/anna-pelzer-472429-unsplash__1_-1_1200x.jpg?v=1697662844", "html" : "\u003ch2\u003eWhat causes menopause mood changes, and can the right nutrition help?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eQualified nutritional therapist Rosie Letts explains what's going on - and how it's possible pack your plate with powerful goodness that's proven to balance the low moods and mood swings many women experience during menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eUnfortunately, feelings of uneasiness, anger and low moods are common during the menopause transition, particularly if you suffer from hot flashes or disturbed sleep (1).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/coping-with-your-emotions-during-menopause\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/coping-with-your-emotions-during-menopause\"\u003emore tips for coping with your emotions during menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat causes low mood and mood changes at menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhilst there might be many contributing factors to your mood changes, your changing hormones are likely to be part of the problem. Research shows a clear link between the fluctuation of hormones and how you feel (3) so the hormone chaos you're experiencing is likely to be impacting your mental wellbeing.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThankfully, the food choices you make during this transition will have a dramatic affect on the way you feel. Below I have outlined my top tips for supporting optimal brain function and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\"\u003efeeling happy and calm during the menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eDon't skip meals\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen your blood sugar is low and you need energy, a surge of adrenaline triggers glucose release. This surge can make you feel edgy and anxious. What's more,, just skipping breakfast is associated with higher risk of depression (4) - it's surprising what a difference you'll feel making sure you eat regularly\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eFollow a low Glycemic Load (GL) diet\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eStable moods are built on stable blood sugar levels. Eliminate fast energy releasing, refined carbohydrates such as sugary drinks or snacks, white rice and foods made with white flour. Instead, aim to get most of your carbohydrates from vegetables, and add nutrient dense, fiber-rich wholegrains when necessary.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHave protein with every meal to keep you fuller for longer - chicken, grilled fish, eggs, tofu, lentils are all good choices. This can help with low mood because protein slows the release of sugar into your bloodstream and provides the building blocks of your happy hormones.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eEnjoy healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, nuts and seeds with every meal. In contrast to carbohydrates, which provide a quick burst of energy that quickly burns out, healthy fats provide stable, long-lasting energy, and that's exactly what we want. Be sure to include Omega-3 which promotes notable mood improvement (5) and regulates hormones (6). You'll find Omega-3 in oily fish such as salmon and mackerel; walnuts, pecans and hazelnuts; and flax, pumpkin or chia seeds.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eSupport your brain\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eSharpen up\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eBrain fog is often mentioned by menopausal women. To sharpen your memory and to stay focused, you'll need acetylcholine, a neurotransmittor that helps your brain send messages (7). It is found in high amounts in breast milk to support the growing brain. Adults can find choline in eggs, oily fish, avocado, almonds and liver.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eKeep calm\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eNaturally lower levels of progesterone during this period are linked to lower GABA, a neurotransmitter that blocks impulses between nerve cells in the brain. Researchers suspect that GABA may boost mood or have a calming, relaxing effect on the nervous system(8). Support GABA\\u2019s production with magnesium-rich green vegetables, wholegrains and nuts, as well as B vitamins found in meat, offal, fish, eggs, oats, brown rice and nutritional yeast.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eFocus on feel-good\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eMost of us know that the higher the levels of 'feel good' serotonin - the happiness hormone - the better our mood (9). What you might not be aware of is that optimal levels have been proven to reduce irritability too (10).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSerotonin is built from a chemical called tryptophan. Milk products have been shown to quickly increase brain tryptophan levels (10), but this essential happiness-fuel is also found in a range of protein-rich foods, including:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eWholegrains and legumes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSeeds and nuts\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTofu, eggs, meat, poultry, fish and seafood.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eSupporting serotonin production needn't mean feasting on only these foods though - just one serving of porridge made with 40g oats and 25g seeds or a 3-egg omelette is adequate (11).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eBalanced brain food\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eEating a wide range of foods will support your brain's ability to manufacture its mood-enhancing chemicals. In addition to the foods mentioned above, aim for at least five 80g portions of fibre rich, vitamin C loaded vegetables and fruits each day (12) plus foods containing iron - red meat, dried apricots, spinach and lentils (13).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/nutrition-for-sleep-8211-natural-ways-to-improve-your-menopause-sleep\"\u003enutritional tips to help you sleep\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eGut feeling\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eEmerging research shows a direct link between your gut and your brain. The key is your gut flora, colonies of bacteria that impact your mental wellbeing. Fiber from vegetables, wholegrains and fruit is used by the bacteria as energy, enabling them to produce compounds which positively impact the brain and your moods (14).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo make sure you eat at least six or seven portions of fruit and veggies a day \\u2013 ideally unpeeled - and choose fiber-packed wholegrain options where you can. Fiber is best from fruit and vegetables in these circumstances.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eSupport your system with supplements\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eB vitamin complex\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eB vitamin complex supplements are highly recommended for balancing moods, feelings of uneasiness, or irritability (15). A methylated B complex could actually improve mental wellbeing (16).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eVitamin D\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eAdequate vitamin D is required to absorb magnesium (17) but our levels of the \"sunshine vitamin\" may be low during winter months in more northern states.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eProbiotics\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eShown to improve mood and reduce anxiety (18) they can also reduce feelings of stress (19). Try a good quality broad spectrum probiotic.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eSt Johns Wort\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eMind, the mental health charity, suggests that this herbal remedy could be useful for low mood because it works in a similar way to standard antidepressants (20). It does, however, interact with numerous medications so talk your Doctor or health care practitioner before taking. F\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003e5-HTP\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003ePart of the pathway that produces serotonin, 5-HTP can be used as a supplement to produce feelings of wellbeing. It may be more effective than some anti-depressants when taken alongside amino acid L-tyrosine but the research is not yet conclusive. If you're interested in this option, it's best to talk to a nutritional therapist about possible short term use.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eConsidered nutrition: the natural way to boost menopause mood\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eManaging mood changes at menopause really is possible with a few careful changes to your diet - the research is there to prove it. You might find it most helpful to talk to a nutritional therapist who can make personalized recommendations, but I hope you'll notice a difference by making five small changes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003e5 nutritional must-knows to manage menopause mood issues\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eSkipping meals or eating sugary snacks will create blood sugar fluctuations affecting your mood and ability to think clearly.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLow GL meals 3 times a day with protein at each one should stabilize your blood sugar levels\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eEat Omega3 rich foods daily to elevate your mood\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBe sure to eat foods rich in B vitamins every day, such as green leafy vegetables, wholegrains, eggs and poultry. Your body isn’t able to store these important brain-loving, stress-busting vitamins, so it’s vital to consume them daily.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLook to eat a wide range of foods each day including plenty of vegetables and fruits\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are more \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/coping-with-your-emotions-during-menopause\"\u003etips for coping with your emotions during menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eAbout Rosie Letts\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eRosie is a qualified and registered nutritional therapist. She has worked with hundreds of women experiencing menopausal symptoms, helping to combine nutrition and lifestyle changes that have helped to prevent or reduce the severity of symptoms including sleeping problems, mood changes, weight gain, and headaches.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHer qualifications, memberships and awards include: BSc in Nutritional Therapy - University of Westminster; ICHAN outstanding practice 2018 award; Member of the Complementary \u0026amp; Natural Healthcare Council (CHNC); Member of the British Association of Nutritional Therapists (BANT).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/menopause-experts\/rosie-letts\"\u003eRead Rosie's full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"\\\u0026quot;strong\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eReferences\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e1 Hickey, M. et al. (2011). Evaluation and management of depressive and anxiety symptoms in midlife. Climacteric, 15(1), pp.3-9.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e2 Gibbs, Z. et al. (2014). The unique symptom profile of perimenopausal depression. Clinical Psychologist, 19(2), pp.76-84.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e3 Ryan, J. et al. (2009). A prospective study of the association between endogenous hormones and depressive symptoms in postmenopausal women. Menopause, 16(3), pp.509-517.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e4 Lee, S. et al. (2017). Breakfast consumption and depressive mood: A focus on socioeconomic status. Appetite, 114, pp.313-319.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e5 Levant, B. (2013). N-3 (Omega-3) Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in the Pathophysiology and Treatment of Depression: Pre-Clinical Evidence. CNS \u0026amp; Neurological Disorders – Drug Targets, 12(4), pp.450-459.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e6 Nadjarzadeh, A. (2019). The effect of omega-3 supplementation on androgen profile and menstrual status in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: A randomized clinical trial. [online] PubMed Central (PMC). Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3941370\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC39413…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e7 Newhouse, P. \u0026amp; Dumas, J. (2015). Estrogen-cholinergic interactions: Implications for cognitive aging. Hormones and Behavior, 74, pp.173-185.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e8 Saˇgsöz, N., et al. (2001). Anxiety and depression before and after the menopause. Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics, 264(4), pp.199-202.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e9 Jenkins, T. et al. (2016). Influence of Tryptophan and Serotonin on Mood and Cognition with a Possible Role of the Gut-Brain Axis. Nutrients, 8(1), p.56.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e10 Young, S. et al. (2007). The effect of tryptophan on quarrelsomeness, agreeableness, and mood in everyday life. International Congress Series, 1304, pp.133-143.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e11 Whitbread, D. (2018). Top 10 Foods Highest in Tryptophan. [online] MyFoodData.com Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.myfooddata.com\/articles\/high-tryptophan-foods.php\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.myfooddata.com\/articles\/high-tryptopha…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e12 Travica, N. et al. (2017). Vitamin C Status and Cognitive Function: A Systematic Review. Nutrients, 9(9), p.960.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e13 Nakamura, K. \u0026amp; Hasegawa, H. (2009). Production and Peripheral Roles of 5-HTP, a Precursor of Serotonin. [online] PubMed Central (PMC). Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3195225\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC31952…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e14 Liu, L. \u0026amp; Zhu, G. (2018). Gut\\u2013Brain Axis and Mood Disorder. [online] PubMed. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5987167\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC59871…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e15 Glenville, M. (2014). \"The Nutritional Health Handbook for Women\". 5th ed. London: Piatkus, pp.415-416.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e16 Lewis, J. et al. (2013). The Effect of Methylated Vitamin B Complex on Depressive and Anxiety Symptoms and Quality of Life in Adults with Depression. ISRN Psychiatry, 2013, pp.1-7.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e17\u0026nbsp;Gröber, U. et al. (2015). Magnesium in Prevention and Therapy. Nutrients, 7(9), pp.8199-8226.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e18 Rao, A. et al. (2009). A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study of a probiotic in emotional symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome. [online] PubMed. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2664325\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC26643…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e19 Messaoudi, M. et al. (2011). Assessment of psychotropic-like properties of a probiotic formulation ( Lactobacillus helveticus R0052 and Bifidobacterium longum R0175) in rats and human subjects. [online] PubMed. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/20974015\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/20974015\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e20 Mind, (2017). St John’s Wort | Mind, the mental health charity – help for mental health problems. [online] Mind.org.uk. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.mind.org.uk\/information-support\/drugs-and-treatments\/st-johns-wort\/#.XE8wZFz7TIV\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.mind.org.uk\/information-support\/drugs-…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 28 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606539514162", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/anna-pelzer-472429-unsplash__1_-1_768x.jpg?v=1697662844", "title" : "Mood changes during menopause – does what you eat make a difference? ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=653" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/653" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 12, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/brain-fog/", "name": "Brain Fog", "description": "Here are the best supplements and vitamins for brain fog a symptom that can be common during menopause. Menopause can also cause; memory loss and other cognitive issues but these vitamin supplements support products could help you begin to feel like yourself again.", "id": 653, "term_id": 653, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "brain-fog" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538006834", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Rosie-Letts_small.jpg?v=1697658449", "name" : "Rosie Letts", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritional Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/relationships-01-1_1200x.jpg?v=1697662833", "html" : "\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eRelate, is a UK provider of relationship support, discuss how relationships may change as you discover you are perimenopausal, and as you experience menopause. They also share lots of practical advice on how you can work together to survive and thrive at this time of change.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIt's not unusual for your relationship to come under strain during the menopause; many women find they are easily irritated by their partner or feel they need to withdraw from the relationship as they try to manage their symptoms. It can be hard to carry on life as normal as you try to cope with the uncomfortable physical symptoms while also feeling tired or in some cases anxious or depressed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-manage-stress-anxiety-and-anger-and-keep-your-relationship-strong\"\u003eHere is how to manage stress and anxiety\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eWhy is the menopause a time of change in relationships?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIn many ways you become a different person when you go into the menopause as both your body and mood change; this in turn leads to changes in how you relate to your partner. In the past you might have found that it helped to talk through your problems with your partner. However, this can be more difficult when you're going through menopause as you are more focused on surviving some very intense physical and emotional changes and might not feel like talking.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eThe shifts in your mood can be quite dramatic, similar to those women experience after having a baby, so it can be hard to find the energy and patience to get your partner to understand what you're going through. It's important to encourage them to do their own research and find out more about menopause so the burden of educating them doesn't fall on you. Once your partner is more aware of what you are going through they'll be in a better position to empathize and offer support. If you've always talked things through together your partner may find it quite hard to adjust to this new role; listening to someone else's problems, without offering solutions, doesn't come easily to everyone. Sex therapy can be helpful in these situations, a therapist will be able to explain how your symptoms will affect the relationship and help your partner understand how they can be more supportive.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eYou may also become less interested in sex; this can be a source of tension in the relationship as your partner may not understand why your libido has suddenly decreased. It can be the start of ongoing problems with sex as often you partner will respond by putting more effort into initiating sex which can make you feel pressured and resentful, leading to sex becoming something that you both feel anxious and unhappy about.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-get-your-libido-back-in-menopause\"\u003eHere is how menopause can affect you libido\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eHow do women experience change in their relationships?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eMenopause can cause you to confront some uncomfortable truths about your life. Starting menopause is unavoidable evidence that you are getting older; this can be quite a shock as you might not feel as though you are aging.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIt also signals that you can no longer have children. Maybe you didn't want to have kids or perhaps circumstances meant that it couldn't happen. Either way, as you no longer have this choice, you might find yourself reflecting on this. You might experience old feelings of sadness and loss, or conversely, you may be glad to be finally free from having to worry about getting pregnant.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIf you did have kids you may feel that being a mother is no longer a large part of your identity. Putting this role behind you is a big change. It can be hard to know what will replace it or you might feel liberated and excited about focusing on yourself more. Both these changes can impact your relationships as everyone has to adjust to you acting differently. This might be surprising to your friends and family who might have got used to you being a very consistent presence.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eWill I ever feel like myself again?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eFor some women the emotional changes they are going through are so great that they wonder if they're going to be the same person after the menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eGoing through the menopause is not something that happens quickly. This can give you a sense that nothing is the same or will feel the same again. Everyone is used to having a virus for a period of time that leaves you feeling exhausted and unable to think straight. Time stops for a brief period but then when you start feeling better and life returns to how it was before you forget about how you were unable to function when you were ill.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eBut going through the menopause is very different. You can start feeling like this is never going to change, you'll always feel exhausted, unable to think as clearly or as though your body never responds in the way you expect. It can feel like you won't be the same again – that you are in a permanent state of unsettled exhaustion. It’s hard to remember what it was like before and this becomes the new normal. It's important to keep reminding yourself that menopause is a period of time that will come to an end.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eAre partners affected by menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eWomen often don't discuss the fact they are experiencing menopause but their partners are usually very aware that something isn't right. They may begin to wonder if their partner is having an affair, thinking of leaving the relationship or has simply lost interest in them. These misunderstandings can lead to ongoing arguments or a growing sense of distance as both of you start to withdraw from the relationship. As we mentioned, you may find that your sex life is almost non-existent - this only adds to a sense that you are becoming less close as a couple.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eGetting through menopause together\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIt's worth remembering that this is a period of time that will come to an end. You can also do a lot to manage the symptoms of the menopause, this can lift your mood and in turn improve your relationship.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eHere are some steps to take together:\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eHealthy eating and exercise can significantly reduce the severity of many menopause symptoms. You could try making an effort as a couple to have a healthier diet and exercise more regularly. For more information, try the menopause nutrition overview here by qualified nutritionist Rosie Letts, or this this guide to menopause exercise by trainer Jane Dowling.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eIf you feel you and your partner are arguing a lot and it's difficult to get them to understand that a lot of the changes in your relationship are down to menopause, you might find counselling helpful. It can provide a safe place where you can talk about what's been happening with someone who can give you a more objective view of your problems.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eThere are also independent actions you can make\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eTalk to your healthcare provider, they can talk to you about whether HT could help you or if you are feeling very low they may prescribe other medicines. There is information on this website about HT if you would like to learn more and research with your partner first. There is also a guide to help you talk to your doctor here.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDo what your body needs, if youre tired take time to relax at home or get more sleep. You're going through some big biological changes and your body needs rest to recover from these properly.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIt's also really important to tell your partner that you are going through menopause so they understand why you're acting so differently. This doesn't have to be a big discussion you could mention it to them and ask them to find out more about it online or give them a leaflet to read. There's also a light-hearted 'Men's Guide To Menopause' here written by former nurse and Menopause Coach Ruth Devlin.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow can your partner support you?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eThe main thing they need to do is to take care of you and listen. They might also be able to help around the house more or pick up some of the 'life admin' you usually look after. It's important to take your own self-care seriously at this time so accept as much help as you can from your partner. If you had flu you would let them help out more; your body needs to recover in the same way.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eYour partner may need to educate themselves about the changes to your body and how it will affect your sex life. This can help them understand that you're not losing interest in them but your body is responding differently to sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eThey can also try initiating sex less to take the pressure off and find out how lubricants can help when you do have sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/painful-sex-and-relationships-how-to-talk-about-it-and-improve-things-together\"\u003eHere is how menopause can cause pain during sex\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eRelationship questions answered\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eEvery year, Relate counselors work with over 65,200 couples and individuals in relationship counselling to build stronger, healthier relationships. Here are some of the questions that often arise when it comes to relationships and menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eI want to go to counselling but my partner won't consider it?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eYou could start coming to counseling on your own \\u2014 this would give you a chance to make sense of what is happening and consider any changes you might want to make. People often get a lot out of coming to counseling on their own. It gives them a clearer perspective on whether there is really a problem in the relationship and it's an opportunity to think about how they can communicate more effectively with their partner.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eWhat can I do if my partner denies they are behaving in a challenging way?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIt can be very hard to cope with a partner who refuses to admit they are being challenging. A good place to start is by working out whether they are genuinely trying to avoid helping you. Sometimes talking to friends and family about this can reinforce what you're already thinking, so we'd recommend going to therapy. Your therapist can help you test out your logic and see which bits of your partner's behaviors are upsetting you, you can also think about new ways of explaining your problems to your partner. They might be finding it difficult to adjust to a seemingly huge change in your personality, understanding how they might be feeling too can be a great first step to getting you both talking again.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eI feel like my relationships with friends and family have changed, what can I do?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eYou might find you appear more distant to friends and family, not because you don't want to see them but because you are having such a difficult time adjusting emotionally. It can really help to be explicit with them about why you are often too tired to see them or help out; that way they won't jump to conclusions about you being angry or upset with them. Let them know you might not be as chatty at family events or have the energy to look after the grandchildren as regularly. Your partner can do the same and explain to their family why you might not be as outgoing, this can help to take the pressure off a bit at family events.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eDo relationships always change at menopause? Could it be possible to go back to how we were?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eHow your relationship changes will be unique to you as a couple, if you only experience minimal symptoms and you have navigated big changes before together you might not go through so many adjustments. One thing to think about here is if your relationship was mainly based on sex, if this was the case, starting menopause can cause a lot of resentment and arguments. We'd suggest speaking to therapist in these instances so you have a calm environment to think through what's happened.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003eIt's usually not possible to get a relationship back to how it was before the menopause but often it can be better. Once it's over you will feel healthier, maybe more confident. With the worry of pregnancy gone you may also find your sex life improves. Any test your relationship goes through can be a positive influence, allowing you to feel stronger and more connected having supported each other through a rough patch.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eAbout Relate\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/menopause-experts\/relate\"\u003eRelate is a UK provider of relationship support\u003c\/a\u003e, and last year they helped over two million people of all ages, backgrounds, sexual orientations and gender identities to strengthen their relationships.\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606539317554", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/relationships-01-1_768x.jpg?v=1697662833", "title" : "Menopause and relationships", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/libido_7_832c0694-3939-46e1-b085-90a79347569f_1200x.jpg?v=1707152889", "html" : "\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWhilst no-one ever initiates or engages in sex with the intention of staving off heart disease there are a number of proven physical and psychological health benefits to regular sex (and let’s not forget it should be a pleasurable activity!). \u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cem data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIf perimenopause or menopause is leaving you feeling a little lacklustre in that department, take a look at our\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca data-mce-fragment=\"1\" href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/11-simple-ways-to-help-boost-your-libido\" target=\"_blank\" rel=\"noopener noreferrer\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/11-simple-ways-to-boost-your-libido\"\u003etips for boosting libido\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/em\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e1. Sex can help you sleep better\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eSex can help relieve insomnia and\/or just help you to sleep more soundly\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e. This is because once you orgasm, your body’s production of the hormone prolactin spikes, and this hormone is known to promote relaxation. Research also shows you produce more prolactin during sex with a partner than during masturbation\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e2\u003c\/sup\u003e. The hormone oxytocin is also released during love-making and is known to have a relaxing effect on the body which can lead to better sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e2. Sex can help improve immunity\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eOne study has shown that just one session of love-making a week can help promote production of immunoglobulin A, an antibody known to strengthen the immune system and help ward off conditions like colds and flu.\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e3\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e3. Sex produces feel-good hormones\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eDuring sex, your body releases the ‘feel-good’ chemicals serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin. These can, in turn, help to reduce feelings of anxiety and potentially depression.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e4. Sex can improve cardiovascular health\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIn one research study, for example, women who reported having a satisfying sex life had a reduced risk of hypertension (high blood pressure). Having satisfying sex was found to be more important than how often they did it.\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e4\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e5. Sex can protect your brain\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eOne study reveals that women who remained sexually active into older age had better cognitive function than those who didn’t.\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e5\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003eAn Italian study has also shown that regular sex (particularly in the early stages of a relationship) encourages new nerve growth in the brain, which can make us more alert and firing on all cylinders.\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e6\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e6. Sex creates feelings of intimacy and connectedness\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eSex is, unsurprisingly, an important part of creating intimacy in relationships. Physical touch and affection, even for couples who have been together a very long time, can help to cement their bond and encourage greater closeness and connectedness.\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e7\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eReferences:\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e1. https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/36646500\/#:~:text=The%20present%20studies%20confirm%20and,a%20directive%20for%20future%20research.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e2. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4901097\/#:~:text=The%20magnitude%20of%20the%20intercourse,than%20masturbation%20does%20%5B6%5D.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e3. https:\/\/www.newscientist.com\/article\/mg16221820-800-can-regular-sex-ward-off-colds-and-flu\/ 4. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5052677\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e5. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4776624\/#:~:text=Sexual%20activity%20is%20associated%20with%20higher%20scores%20on%20tests%20of,associated%20with%20better%20cognitive%20function. https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/16289361\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e6. https:\/\/www.researchgate.net\/publication\/253775635_Consequences_of_relationship_status_and_quality_for_subjective_well-being_Journal_of_Social_and_Personal_Relationships_22_607-627\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "645770346802", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/libido_7_832c0694-3939-46e1-b085-90a79347569f_768x.jpg?v=1707152889", "title" : "6 Healthy Benefits of Having Sex", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=224" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=224" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=224" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/224" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/loss-of-sex-drive/", "name": "Low libido", "description": "Low libido during perimenopause and menopause is common. Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing low libido have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 224, "term_id": 224, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "loss-of-sex-drive" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/libido_6_5f7a6e6c-1d94-484f-9142-b4b0b93fff60_1200x.jpg?v=1707144990", "html" : "\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eFemale sexual desire can be fickle at the best of times. Frustratingly, it can be thrown off course by a range of things including your hormones, stress, tiredness, illness, certain medications (including some SSRI antidepressants, codeine, beta blockers and some blood pressure medications), feeling taken for granted by a partner, depression, feeling fat or even something as simple as eating or drinking too much. It is completely normal for a woman’s libido to wax and wane during the course of her life, and it is unrealistic to expect every sexual encounter to set the world on fire, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want help igniting the spark from time to time. And while there is no prescription for what constitutes a ‘normal’ sex drive (you know what is ‘normal’ for you) if a dwindling libido is troubling you there are proven ways to give it a bit of encouragement.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e1. Nibble on these…\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWhile there is no one food that is miraculously going to awaken a low libido not getting a healthy balance of nutrients can certainly contribute to a lack of interest in sex. Eating a nutrient-dense diet like a\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003eMediterranean inspired one\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003eshould help to keep you generally well whilst helping to maintain a healthy weight (being underweight or overweight can adversely affect sex drive). There are also some foods which are said to have so-called aphrodisiac qualities such as oysters and shellfish which are loaded with zinc, a mineral known to support testosterone levels - a hormone which plays a significant role in female libido, driving desire, arousal and performance (and which is known to decline around the time of the\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-menopause\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" target=\"_blank\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-menopause\"\u003emenopause\u003c\/a\u003e). Of course, if you don’t like oysters or shellfish it’s not going to be an aphrodisiac for you so other zinc-rich foods include beef, pork, poultry, pumpkin seeds, cashew nuts and oats. Health \u0026amp; Her Nutritionist Helen Roach explains more about testosterone production and how levels can fall with age, stress, being overweight and lack of sleep and gives more\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/foods-boost-testosterone-menopause\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" target=\"_blank\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/foods-boost-testosterone-menopause\"\u003ekey foods that help to boost testosterone in menopausal women\u003c\/a\u003e. Other foods which have traditionally been said to help enhance sex drive include dark chocolate (which contains the chemical phenylethylamine dubbed the ‘love drug’) and fruits like pomegranates, figs and strawberries. Research also suggests watermelon can have a positive effect on libido by increasing blood flow to the genitals\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e1\u003c\/sup\u003e. Why and how? Watermelon contains a phytonutrient called citrulline which the body converts to an amino acid called L-arginine which then bhelps nitric oxide levels in the body. Nitric oxide widens the blood vessels, enhancing blood flow to the genitals helping to increase vaginal moisture and arousal\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e2\u003c\/sup\u003e. L-arginine is also found in most protein-rich foods including eggs, fish, meat, poultry, soy, pulses, nuts and seeds and dairy products.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e2. Try an arousing herb\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eMany women are increasingly turning to\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/products\/health-her-intimacy-multi-nutrient-support\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" target=\"_blank\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/products\/health-her-intimacy-multi-nutrient-support\"\u003enatural supplements\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003eto help support their libido and one new poster herb credited with igniting sexual desire is Tribulus terrestris. A recent study suggests\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e3\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003eit improves female sex drive by supporting testosterone levels. Other plant based ingredients to look out for in supplements include Maca root which research suggests can also improve libido with one study concluding it could help reduce antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e4\u003c\/sup\u003e. Another helpful ingredient appears to be Red Clover, a\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/phytoestrogens-menopause\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" target=\"_blank\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/phytoestrogens-menopause\"\u003ephytoestrogen\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e(plant-based compounds which mimic the action of estrogen in the body), which has been linked to improved libido and the relief of vaginal dryness\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e5\u003c\/sup\u003e. If sex has become increasingly uncomfortable for you because of a lack of vaginal lubrication, you might also benefit from a supplement containing Omega 7-rich Sea Buckthorn oil which has been shown to ease vaginal dryness in postmenopausal women\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e6\u003c\/sup\u003e. . Taking this in conjunction with using a physical vaginal moisturiser or lubricant (available without a prescription) can support your vaginal lining and should make sex increasingly more comfortable and pleasurable for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e3. Please yourself\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eDr Hannah Allen, a GP with a specialist interest in women’s health and menopause says, ’I always suggest to my female patients who are concerned about their loss of libido to concentrate more on themselves and what they want and need. I encourage them to nurture their own wellbeing, really engage with what they enjoy and what makes them feel better – and if this involves exercise and them producing more happy hormones and endorphins in the process, even better. This, I find, helps them to think how they feel about themselves emotionally, physically and sexually. And I also try to encourage them to add something new or different to their relationship, for example, like bringing dating back into the equation.’\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e4. Keep a lid on the wine\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eOne glass or two to loosen your inhibitions and can go down a treat but any more alcohol is likely to impair performance by affecting erectile function in a male partner and\/or inhibit the ability to orgasm in both women and men. This is because alcohol can lower testosterone levels and dampen your nervous system which can make it harder to become aroused. Drinking too much can also make you feel sick, dehydrate you and contribute to vaginal dryness.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e5. Relax\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eResearch suggests while men typically use sex as a way to de-stress and unwind, women are more sensitive to its effects (or possibly just have more to stress about) and find it tends to interfere with their ability to switch off and enjoy the moment\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e8\u003c\/sup\u003e. Meditation, breath exercises and yoga can be helpful tools for reducing stress (you can find some of these tools on the\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/online-store-web.shopifyapps.com\/pages\/menopause-perimenopause-app\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" target=\"_blank\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/online-store-web.shopifyapps.com\/pages\/menopause-perimenopause-app\"\u003efree Health \u0026amp; Her app\u003c\/a\u003e) but another stress-reduction technique that has been found to help increase desire, arousal and sexual satisfaction in women is mindfulness – the ability to fully focus on the moment while being ultra- aware of your thoughts and bodily sensations\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e8\u003c\/sup\u003e. It is said to work by helping women feel more in tune with their bodies during sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e6. Less meat – more veg\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIn a fascinating piece of new research from Stanford University revealed in the 2024 Netflix documentary series You Are What You Eat,\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e9\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003ewomen who ate a vegan diet for two months were found to experience an increased libido. The study was carried out on two sets of identical twins who had their arousal levels recorded while watching pornography of their choosing. The experiment was conducted before two of the twins switched to a well-planned vegan diet (no animal-derived products but plenty of healthy plant-based ones like leafy greens, figs, strawberries, pumpkin seeds, nuts and pulses) and then again eight weeks after they had been on the vegan eating plan. How was it for them? The women on the vegan diet were found to have a significant improvement in arousal and libido vs. the twins on the omnivore diet.\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e10\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e7. Practice\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIt might seem counterintuitive if you are not in the mood for sex to suggest doing it more but the more you think about it and do it, the more you might want it and enjoy it. Some women can find if they masturbate or initiate sex with a partner, even if they can take it or leave it at the beginning, they do get into it and are reminded of why it is a pleasure. If life just tends to get in the way of you finding a moment in the day to do it, it might help to schedule time for sex. This might not seem like the most romantic of things to do but it can be helpful to get over the idea that sex has to always be spontaneous. It can also be useful to bear in mind that not every intimate or romantic encounter has to end in sex. Giving each other a massage or just having a long cuddle might provide all the intimacy you need.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e8. Get to the naked truth\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eNot only can your libido affect your relationship but your relationship can obviously affect your libido. Learning to listen and communicate effectively about sex with your partner should make it easier and more enjoyable and there are\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/online-store-web.shopifyapps.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/have-you-lost-your-libido-learn-how-to-work-through-it-as-a-couple\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" target=\"_blank\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/online-store-web.shopifyapps.com\/blogs\/expert-advice\/have-you-lost-your-libido-learn-how-to-work-through-it-as-a-couple\"\u003ehelpful hints from Relate counsellors\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003ehere for ways to approach this. After all, if you are having bad sex, you are going to want it less. Arguably, one of our biggest modern passion killers is the cell phone – if you or your partner are permanently glued to a screen you are not really engaging with each other in any meaningful or mindful way. So put your phones down, leave them at home and schedule regular trysts where you go out, flirt and remind yourself of what attracted you to your partner in the first place. When you are both relaxed and not angry, try to air any grievances and underlying relationship issues like resentment towards your partner (which tends to result in a kind of ‘well you don’t do anything for me, so I am not doing anything for you’ sexual stand-off). Then hopefully you can ease the conversation into what you want more of in bed. If you feel uncomfortable doing this, find a book or film that shows some of the things you might want to explore, and which can ignite a conversation about it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e9. Shop for intimacy\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eInvesting in a small stash of accessories to help you anticipate and potentially improve sex - underwear that makes you look and feel good, a lubricant to help with arousal and lubrication and a vibrator or other sex toys to help you become more easily aroused and able to orgasm – can all help you to ignite more of a sexual spark.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e10. Shape up for it\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIt is difficult to find something that exercise doesn’t improve, and sexual desire and performance is no exception. Not least because physical exercise improves cardiovascular health and blood flow which is essential for sexual pleasure – helping to improve clitoral and vaginal blood flow necessary for arousal and orgasm. More than this exercise should help to keep your weight down and you more toned and in better shape (unsurprisingly, one small study involving heterosexual women has shown a link between poor body image and lack of sexual desire)\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e11\u003c\/sup\u003e. In short, the better you feel about how you look the more you are likely to want sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e11. Stimulate your touch points\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIt’s not something you automatically think of as rekindling a dormant sex drive but interestingly acupuncture has been shown to help some women do just that. In one small study\u003csup data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e12\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003ewomen who described themselves as having a low libido went for acupuncture sessions twice a week for five weeks. At the end of the five-week trial they reported an increase in desire, arousal and orgasm.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cem\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eIf you need some persuasion as to a healthy libido might be a good idea, here's\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/6-healthy-benefits-of-having-sex-1\" target=\"_blank\"\u003e 6 healthy benefits of having sex\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/em\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eReferences\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cspan\u003e1. https:\/\/today.tamu.edu\/2008\/07\/01\/watermelon-may-have-viagra-like-effect\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e2. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2656393\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e3. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4045980\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e4. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4411442\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e5. https:\/\/www.tandfonline.com\/doi\/abs\/10.3109\/01443615.2015.1049249?tab=permissions\u0026amp;scroll=top\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e6. https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/pii\/S0378512214002394\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e7. https:\/\/link.springer.com\/article\/10.1007\/s10508-018-1231-6\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e8. https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/31570137\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e9. https:\/\/www.netflix.com\/gb\/title\/81133260\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e10. https:\/\/nypost.com\/2024\/01\/05\/lifestyle\/horny-vegans-womens-libidos-surge-up-to-380-after-switching-to-plant-based-diet-study-shows\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e11. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5005305\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cspan\u003e12. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5005297\/\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "642716041522", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/libido_6_5f7a6e6c-1d94-484f-9142-b4b0b93fff60_768x.jpg?v=1707144990", "title" : "11 Ways to Support Your Libido", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=224" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=224" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=224" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/224" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/loss-of-sex-drive/", "name": "Low libido", "description": "Low libido during perimenopause and menopause is common. Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing low libido have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 224, "term_id": 224, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "loss-of-sex-drive" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Cold-Water-Swimming-Article-Header-Images_c9fcae79-956f-4ae6-9489-40f23aff88fb_1200x.jpg?v=1704723881", "html" : "\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eCould now be the time to dip your toe into cold water swimming to help ease your menopause symptoms?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eCold water swimming, sometimes known as wild water, winter swimming or ice swimming, is done (as its name suggests) outdoors in cold lakes, ponds, pools, rivers, or the sea and has become hugely popular in the last few years.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn1\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eIt is something that gained even more momentum during the lockdowns when public swimming pools were closed. What has also emerged out of this fitness and well-being trend are the number of women coming out to say how it has soothed and reduced their\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/symptom-tool\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003emenopause symptoms\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e. With this article, we explore how and why…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eThe health benefits of cold-water swimming\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIt is fair to say those who regularly go cold water swimming are quite evangelical about its\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/low-mood\/coping-with-your-emotions-during-menopause\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/low-mood\/coping-with-your-emotions-during-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003estress-relieving\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e, endorphin-creating, immune-boosting benefits, and there is research to show how it can help both mental and physical health.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref2\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn2\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;While there is no strict definition of what constitutes ‘cold water’ it is generally taken to mean low temperatures of between 12-16°C\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn3\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;that result in a range of physiological stress responses when we plunge ourselves into it (and as experts from The Outdoor Swimming Society explain wild swimmers in the UK are almost always out in cold or cool temperatures as the temperature rarely warms to above 20°C).\u003ca name=\"_ftnref4\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn4\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eEvidence into precisely how it can reduce menopause symptoms is patchy, but it is becoming an emerging area of research – not least because there is a wealth of overwhelmingly positive anecdotal evidence from women revealing how it has helped them. Here are just some of the benefits that women report:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eReducing stress and anxiety\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWild\/cold water swimming is not only a valuable form of exercise, but it is also often a very sociable activity (as women increasingly form swimming clubs and communities)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref5\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn5\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eand both of these factors have documented benefits on mental health.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref6\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn6\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref7\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn7\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003cem data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eThe British Medical Journal\u003c\/em\u003e\u0026nbsp;has published a study showing how cold water swimming can reduce depression and done regularly could potentially even help people come off antidepressant medication.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref8\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn8\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eThe health benefits of being in nature and the soothing effects of water are also well documented when it comes to improved mental health and many women describe feeling a sense of release and detachment when they are immersed in the waves. When menopause can throw up all manner of stresses, getting away from them all by taking a short open swim can not only make you more chilled but it can also help you to feel positively euphoric (see below). Anecdotally, many women report these mood boosting effects last for a few days after they have been swimming.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBuoying you up\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBecoming part of a community of wild swimmers can help you to form new friendships and feel supported by a like-minded community of women. Many who are part of a swimming group also say that within it they feel less inhibited and self-conscious about what they look like and the whole experience is pretty much just geared toward having fun. During menopause when many women are feeling particularly vulnerable about their appearance and the fact that their body may be changing and not quite feel like their own this can have a hugely positive effect on their safe esteem.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBoosting immunity\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWild water swimming is also linked to a reduction in inflammation in the body which is known to help\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/immunity\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/immunity\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003emaintain healthy immunity\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e. A study from Finland shows taking a cold shower for 15, 30 or 60 seconds reduced the amount of self-reported illness.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref9\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn9\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;Another study carried out by Czech scientists (on men) shows that regular cold-water swimming (three times a week for an hour over six weeks in the study) appeared to show an improvement in immunity.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref10\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn10\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;It is thought it does this because as you plunge yourself into ice cold water your body goes into a state of shock and in response, your immune system produces more white blood cells and chemicals called cytokines, which help boost the body’s ability to fight off harmful bacteria and viruses. White blood cells are also part of the immune system which help your body fight off infection.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eRelieving joint pain and bone ache\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eThese are some of the most commonly cited symptoms from perimenopausal and menopausal women and there is plenty of evidence to show how exercise (including yoga) can improve them. When it comes to cold-water swimming physiologically speaking what happens when you plunge your body into ice cold water is that it produces a ‘cold shock’ or a ‘fight or flight’ response releasing stress hormones including norepinephrine and endorphins which have an analgesic effect, relieving inflammation and muscle and joint pain. Swimming is also a safe weight-bearing exercise so you are not putting any undue impact or stress on your joints and doing it regularly can also stimulate your circulation, reduce muscle stiffness and increase flexibility.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eClarity of thought.\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eMany women say that after the initial stages of ‘cold shock’ they experience increased clarity of mind and a reduction in\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/cognitive-function\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/cognitive-function\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003ebrain fog\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e. Others report feeling ‘more alive’ or more like their old selves after a bracing swim.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBurns calories.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eRecent research (carried out on men) suggests swimming outdoors (and in the winter) burns more calories than just regular swimming in your local heated pool. Calories seem to be burned at a faster rate when we are immersed in chilly water as our body then must work much harder to stay warm forcing us to burn more calories as we attempt to warm up. In conjunction with a healthy balanced diet open swimming could help you to lose weight and dealing with weight gain is consistently mentioned as a negative symptom of menopause for many women. For more information on how to avoid menopausal weight gain read\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/hot-topics\/best-exercise-menopause\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/hot-topics\/best-exercise-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eExercises for menopause weight gain\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eReduces hot flashes and night sweats\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eUnsurprisingly, going into cold water can have a significant effect on your core body temperature. Even when you are out of the water your body’s temperature can continue to drop for anything up to 20-40 minutes- something known as the ‘afterdrop’. There is not enough evidence as yet to show that cooling your body temperature from the outside during wild swimming can reduce menopausal vasomotor symptoms like\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/hot-flushes-a-gps-overview\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/hot-flushes-a-gps-overview\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003ehot flashes\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;and night sweats but anecdotally many women who are regular open water swimmers report a reduction in\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eflashes\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;and\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003esweats\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eImproves circulation and skin\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eExtreme cold can boost circulation and blood flow – forcing blood to the surface of the skin and in the process making your complexion look clearer and healthier.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref11\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn11\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eBeing immersed in cold water may also help reduce some inflammatory skin conditions like rosacea and the relaxing benefits of swimming can minimise stress-induced flare-ups in conditions like acne, eczema and psoriasis and skin itching – something many menopausal women complain about.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eProduces post-swim euphoria\u003c\/strong\u003e.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eThe heady mix of exercise and exposure to cold water triggers the release of dopamine, one of the body’s feel-good chemicals and this coupled with the buzz and freedom felt when wild water swimming all contribute to the fabled ‘high’ following a bracing swim. It is this that keeps almost all wild swimmers pushing through the initial cold shock and going back for more and more. When so many women going through menopause report feeling down, lost and struggle with aches and pains you can quite see why open swimming might provide a huge therapeutic boost – both physically and psychologically.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cul data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHow to plan your cold-water swim\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBefore diving in to try wild swimming, read our tips on what to consider when planning your cold water session:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eUnderstand the risks.\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003eWhile immersing yourself in cold water can offer all sorts of therapeutic benefits it also comes with some risks particularly if you are an inexperienced swimmer. Take a look at safety advice and tips from USA Swimming which encourages you to check your local government’s safety guidelines.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref12\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn12\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eBeware of red flags\u003c\/strong\u003e. Check the weather conditions before heading out into the coast and don’t go in the water if the red flags are up. This means it is not safe to swim. You can find more information from the United States Lifesaving Association.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref13\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn13\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eJoin a cold-water swimming club\u003c\/strong\u003e. If you prefer to swim with a group check out your nearest Polar Bear Club.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref14\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn14\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eThere are many Facebook groups that have been set up to encourage more of us to get into wild swimming including Open Water Swimming Communities: OWS Facebook Groups.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref15\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn15\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eAlternatively, just look up ‘cold water swimming clubs near me’ online for your nearest one.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eTips to help you during and after your swim:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHow long should you stay safely in the water?\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003eIt is generally accepted that a good safe rule of thumb when wild swimming is to stay in the water for one minute for one degree of water temperature – so, for example, if the water is 7°C you should stay in safely for seven minutes. This figure has now come under scrutiny, however, from experts at The Outdoor Swimming Society\u003ca name=\"_ftnref16\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn16\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;in the UK who suggest how long you immerse yourself in the water for is more dependent on your size and weight. They also point out your tolerance can be affected by your health generally – so if you are stressed, tired, hungover this is likely to affect your resilience and how long you feel able to stay in the water. They also suggest some people are just better equipped at dealing with cold temperatures – particularly if they work outdoors, live in cold houses, and regularly exercise outside. They warn that you shouldn’t try to get competitive and\/or bogged down with all the one minute per degree stuff and suggest you just do whatever feels right for you or as they put it ‘go gently, have fun, drop the macho-minute-per-degree nonsense and do it for you’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eAcclimatise yourself.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u0026nbsp;It is important to acclimatise yourself to the bracing – some might say ‘shocking’ – temperatures of the water. Start slowly with maybe a minute or two twice a week and build up to more. Taking short sharp cold showers at home can also help you to build up to cold water dips. Some people suggest splashing cold water from the sea\/river\/pond (wherever you are swimming) onto your face for around 15 seconds before you step in fully. This can help your body get used to the temperature, so it is not such a severe shock. When you do submerge yourself underwater take a minute to settle your breathing first rather than starting to swim immediately – just float or sit or kneel for 60 seconds. It is also recommended you wear a floatation device – or tow float – to keep you seen and safe.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref17\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn17\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn17\"\u003e[17]\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/a\u003eThe organization US Masters Swimming also warns that\u0026nbsp; if you are older and\/or have an underlying health condition such as high blood pressure or heart you are also more at risk.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref18\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn18\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftn18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHave a swim buddy\u003c\/strong\u003e. Don’t head out into the open water on your own. If you are not part of a swimming group or don’t have anyone to go in the water with you, at least take someone to stay on dry land to remind you to come out and\/or let you know how long you have been in.\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eDress for it\u003c\/strong\u003e. You can invest in a neoprene (a type of synthetic rubber that is waterproof and has good insulating properties) swimming costume and\/or wetsuit plus a swimming cap and possibly neoprene gloves and socks. Some wild swimming regulars, however, point out that a wetsuit can be difficult to get in and out of and in the winter, it can be a pain to get off in a hurry, whereas with a costume you can whip it off quickly and begin the process of warming up. Others also say wearing a costume as opposed to a wetsuit also helps them to feel more of the sensation of the water against their skin – making it more of an immersive and relaxing experience. To prepare for coming out of the water, take flip flops\/thongs and leave them at the water’s edge and have an item of warm clothing like a thick towelling robe or large hoodie ready to throw on asap.\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWarm up quickly\u003c\/strong\u003e. When you get out of the water the key is to dress and get warm as soon as you can. Take off your costume or wetsuit, towel yourself dry and wrap yourself in lots of layers. Many women keep their swimming cap on but add either a woolly hat on top or pull the hood of their hoodie up to retain more heat. Drinking warm tea or coffee will also help – so take a flask with you if there is nowhere nearby to buy a hot drink.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eKit list for cold-water swimming:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003col data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eSwimsuit\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eNeoprene gloves\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWet shoes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWetsuit (optional)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eTowel or changing robe\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWarm clothing layers\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWoolly hat and gloves\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHot drink and snack\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eTrug or bag to keep everything dry while you swim\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch2 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eWhat are the alternatives to cold water swimming?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eIf you don’t live near any open water or can’t swim you can still enjoy some cold water health benefits. Splashing your face with ice cold water as a final rinse after cleansing or taking an endorphin-boosting cold shower can help. Extreme athlete and motivational speaker Wim Hof who is famous for his ability to withstand very low temperatures regularly extols the benefits of cold showers for their exhilarating and therapeutic effects. He suggests trying a 20 second cold shower at the end of your usual one and then gradually building to a minute or two as your tolerance increases. Even if you are cold swimming on a regular basis, taking a cold shower at home can help keep you in the zone and reaping the health benefits.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eSources \u0026amp; references:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref1\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7730683\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref2\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/33276648\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref3\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.outdoorswimmingsociety.com\/cold-water-feels-temperature-guide\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn4\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref4\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.outdoorswimmingsociety.com\/will-i-get-cold\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn5\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref5\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.bbc.co.uk\/news\/uk-wales-47159652\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn6\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref6\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.waldenu.edu\/online-bachelors-programs\/bs-in-psychology\/resource\/five-mental-benefits-of-exercise\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn7\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref7\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.mercycare.org\/bhs\/employee-assistance-program\/eapforemployers\/resources\/health-benefits-of-social-interaction\/#:~:text=Benefits%20of%20Socialization%3A,let%20them%20confide%20in%20you\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn8\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref8\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/casereports.bmj.com\/content\/2018\/bcr-2018-225007.abstract\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn9\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref9\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5025014\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn10\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref10\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/8925815\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn11\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref11\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.scotsman.com\/arts-and-culture\/what-are-health-benefits-open-water-swimming-1455636\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn12\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref12\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/blog.swim.com\/usa-swimming-unveils-open-water-safety-tips-and-tricks\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn13\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref13\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.usla.org\/page\/beach-warning-flags\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn14\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref14\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.openwaterpedia.com\/wiki\/Polar_Bear_Club\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn15\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref15\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.odysseyopenwater.com\/blog\/2020\/9\/7\/open-water-swimming-communities-ows-facebook-groups\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn16\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref16\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.outdoorswimmingsociety.com\/the-1-minute-per-degree-myth\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn17\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref17\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/rnli.org\/safety\/know-the-risks\/cold-water-shock\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn18\" href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref18\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/online_store_article?id=606925455666\u0026amp;shopLocale=en\u0026amp;market=us#_ftnref18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003ehttps:\/\/www.usms.org\/fitness-and-training\/articles-and-videos\/articles\/is-it-safe-to-swim-in-cold-water\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925455666", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Cold-Water-Swimming-Article-Header-Images_c9fcae79-956f-4ae6-9489-40f23aff88fb_768x.jpg?v=1704723881", "title" : "Can cold-water swimming help menopause?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606562648370", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/bio-image-aspect-ratio-1-1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1698247224", "name" : "Caitlin Whiteley", "summary" : "", "title" : "Author" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/menopause-running-2_1200x.jpg?v=1704723891", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eMenopause can put your body through the ringer, both physically and mentally. With joint aches, hot flashes, migraines and fatigue, alongside a host of mood related symptoms such as anxiety or feeling down, exercise in menopause can be the least appealing notion in the world. Who wants to go out running when your knees are hurting? Who wants to head to Zumba when you feel like crying?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis can be especially frustrating when we consider that exercise has a series of benefits generally, but in particular can really help aid and alleviate menopause symptoms. If you’re not a fitness fanatic, getting into a new sport can be daunting – especially when you already may feel a bit rubbish.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere’s also the additional dilemma of the sheer amount of choice out there – it can feel like there are classes for every single exercise in the world, from Pilates to crossfit to spin to hip hop dancing. There can be too much choice! By the time you get up the effort to lace up your trainers, you can be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of options out there.\u003cbr\u003eHere is a helpful guide to some exercise choices that have been linked to an improvement in menopause symptoms and could help you combat menopause weight gain and improve your fitness in menopause by easing you into exercise. These exercises can bring immediate benefits and help you feel better and brighter through menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eBoxing\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eBoxing has been gaining in popularity recently as a high-impact cardio-focused exercise that helps with muscle toning, fat burning and general strength – especially among women.\u003cbr\u003eTraditionally considered a ‘man’s sport’, boxing has received a host of new female fans, leading to many gyms offering women-focused boxing programs – and we can see why. Boxing is a great cardio activity and can help keep up heart health, strengthening your heart muscles and lowering the risk of heart disease.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause can often increase your risk of heart disease, so this intensive cardio can do great things for your body. The high impact nature can also help reduce menopause weight gain, raising your metabolic rate and helping to replace fat with muscle.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eStudies have indicated that boxing has been linked to increased bone density in menopausal women (fighting off osteoporosis, also common in menopausal women) alongside improving physical function. More than this, boxing can help you feel confident and strong – and allow you to vent out some of your anger and frustration!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTai-Chi\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eTai-Chi combines the strength benefits of boxing with a smoother, less energy-intensive rhythm, so if high-intensity training is not for you or a bit too intimidating to start off with, turning to tai-chi is another great option for menopausal exercise.\u003cbr\u003eIn fact, tai-chi seems to have no end of benefits – studies have indicated that tai-chi improves both bone density and neurological function, helping to cut through brain fog and target joint aches, can shore up immune systems in menopausal women, and lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOne study suggests that tai-chi could be one of the most helpful exercises to target and alleviate menopausal symptoms, ‘reducing insulin resistance and related physiological risk factors for cardiovascular disease; improving mood, well-being, and sleep; decrease sympathetic activation; and enhance cardiovagal function.’ The physical benefits are accompanied by a whole host of meditative mood boosters – helping you in more ways than one either during or post-menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eDancing\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eSpeaking about mood boosters, dancing is one of the best exercises for menopause mental health out there. Maybe when you were younger you went to a ballet or tap class – why not take it up again? This time without the pressure of perfecting your plies and rather just in pursuit of joy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWith the advent of Zumba and other popular, dance-based classes, there’s a range of dance options for whatever music and style fits your preferences. Square dancing, for instance, has been linked to improved mood and a reduced likelihood of depression in perimenopausal women, while other studies suggest that flamenco improves physical health and neurological function.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eEven if you aren’t into cowboy boots and flamenco gowns, dance as a general practice has been linked to improved self-esteem, increased metabolic rate, bone density and immunity. So, whether you’re in menopause or post-menopausal, pick whatever shoes fit you best, and get dancing!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eSwimming\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eSwimming is quickly gaining ground as a helpful, stimulating activity great for menopausal women – not only for the mental benefits of having space and time in cool clear water, but also for its physical rewards.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWith cold water swimming and wild swimmer groups  popping up around the country, maybe it’s time to check it out. Cold water swimming benefits menopause, with studies linking it to improved energy levels and a reduction in hot flashes, but even if you don’t have access to a cold sea, your local rec center can provide just as many benefits to improve your symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSwimming has been linked to reductions in arterial stiffness and improvements in cardiac health and muscle strength in menopausal women, alongside a significant decrease of body fat in areas associated with menopausal weight gain. More than that, swimming has also been linked to a reduction in depression and anxiety symptoms in menopausal women. With that host of benefits it is not difficult to see why swimming can be so good for you in menopause, who could resist pulling out the swimming costume?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eYoga\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThough you may have already been approached by the disciples of yoga – whether it’s your friends, or your children, or even your mom – you might already be rolling your eyes when you see that yoga has been included on the list. How can it have that many benefits? It must be exaggerated! But don’t be too quick to write off yoga.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAn exercise that seems relatively low-impact, and easy to start doing for people with all levels of exercise experience, yoga has a disproportionately brilliant effect on your body, mind, and menopause symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYoga has been tied to a whole host of benefits – from helping to prevent memory loss and aid brain function, boost your metabolic rate, protect against osteoporosis and bone density loss alongside mediating anxiety and depression. Maybe the disciples had the right idea all along.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYoga in menopause can help cut through brain fog, protect valuable processes inside your body, and lift your mood – it also comes with the benefit that you can incorporate it into your daily life relatively easily. Is it time to start shopping for a yoga mat?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eThe Best Exercises for Menopause Weight Gain\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe title=\"YouTube video player\" src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/h2iKrsURaIg\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003cbr\u003eIf you’re in a hurry or lead a busy lifestyle, it can feel as if you might not have time to fit in a serious regime change or new exercise routine. However, even five minutes of stretching and moving your body can help you feel better. Jane Dowling, an exercise expert, demonstrates a set of movements that can help to improve your menopause symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy Exercise Can Help with Menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen you are struggling with menopause symptoms, exercise may feel like the last thing that you want to do, even when you know which exercises can help you best. However, the benefits are really too good to miss out on.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eExercising during menopause can:\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eBoost your mood and lower anxiety rates by raising endorphins. Those who are physically active can have lower rates of depression, and often suffer less with cognitive decline. This can be a real boon when you’re combating brain fog!\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eReduce weight gain. Regular exercise can help increase muscle mass and lower fat, which can sometimes increase around the menopause\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eProtect your bones! As your estrogen levels drop, your bone density can suffer. Regular exercise can maintain and strengthen your bones, which can help prevent osteoporosis, and also help alleviate some of those joint aches\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eReduce the risk of co-morbid symptoms like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen you’re aching, in pain, or struggling with low mood, the last thing in the world that you may want to do is lace up your running shoes. But in the world we live in now, with an array of choices to suit anyone and everyone’s exercise tastes, moving your body can be a joyful, energizing experience, and can make a difference to your menopause experience. Exercising during menopause has been associated with a reduced rate of cancer, dementia, cognitive decline, low mood, and hot flashes. 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", "id": 678, "term_id": 678, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "pelvic-floor-function" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=679" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/679" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight Gain", "description": "Our carefully curated selection of products can provide support with menopause weight loss as part of a healthy lifestyle. Our range includes diet plans, vitamins, creams, and more. ", "id": 679, "term_id": 679, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606562681138", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Janey-Lee-Grace-new-Pic-2-2-aspect-ratio-1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1698247226", "name" : "Janey Lee Grace", "summary" : "", "title" : "Presenter & Author" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/janey-lee-grace-photo-option-1_b1a04e94-fb9a-4c64-8c25-244fbf591c94_1200x.jpg?v=1704723873", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eBBC presenter, author, and advocate of natural living Janey Lee Grace shares her journey through menopause and sober living.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause and alcohol is not a good combination! Alcohol affects the central nervous system, the circulatory system, and virtually every part of your body. While some women recognise the impact of drinking on their menopausal symptoms, I couldn’t see how bad it was all getting, the alcohol was masking a whole heap of problems.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA few years back I accidentally caught sight of myself in the full-length mirror in my bedroom. I had to look again… who was that bloated, ageing woman with several chins and greying hair? I grabbed a towel and took a layer of dust off the mirror, convinced that once sparkling, the glass would show the real me. But no, that image remained – I looked tired, drained, old. I felt winded at the sight of myself, early fifties, yet in my head twenty-five if I was a day. It didn’t make any sense. How had I put that much weight on? How had I got that awful glassy look around the eyes? I was sleeping really badly; I had a dull ache on one side of my body (I now know it was the liver!) and I felt irritated all the time, and anxious. Oh so anxious.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003eTry our menopause symptom checker to see if your symptoms could be related to menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI could see my running shoes, silver, with a Nike tick, bought in a sale in a fit of enthusiasm, still in their box in the bottom of the wardrobe. Who was I kidding? I couldn’t think about running, I felt a sense of desperation just at the thought of washing my hair. I racked my brain for what I could do, Strict diet maybe? I’d tried that many times, the weight went back on. Have Botox? Mmm, didn’t fit with my ‘natural’ approach, and I wanted to be able to smile. Find a bootcamp and start a fitness regime? Joking right? It suddenly hit me, I was terrified of getting old, it was all going south, I didn’t like it and I couldn’t think of a thing to look forward to.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/expertise\/exercise-practitioner\/\"\u003eCheck out fitness and exercise tips for menopause from fitness coaches\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSomething was off. Since writing my first book fifteen years ago I had been on a mission to inspire everyone to live more holistically and eat well, to eschew chemicals and practice mindfulness, to enjoy therapeutic techniques and focus on self-love. Was I walking my talk? Well, you wouldn’t find me putting anything on my skin that I couldn’t eat and, I bought the right organic food – I juiced regularly, I did my yoga and I had all manner of treatments, from EFT, TFT, NLP (perhaps I needed ABC!). In other words, I thought I was practicing what I preached, that I was doing everything right – but all the while, I was shimmying around the great big grape-smelling elephant in the room – alcohol.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/expertise\/nutritional-therapist\/\"\u003eFind out expert nutritionist advice for coping with menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou see, I loved my nightly glass (or two, or three) of wine, and why shouldn’t I? I was fully functioning, never had a DUI, never missed a day off work, I just drank most days…doesn’t everyone? The problem was, I couldn’t just have one – I wasn’t born with an off switch! But to be clear, there was no rock bottom moment – I was what’s known as ‘high functioning, ‘high bottomed’ (sadly not true in the literal sense for a woman my age!).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOf course, I’d heard that alcohol wasn’t ideal when combined with \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003emenopausal symptoms\u003c\/a\u003e, and I knew that even one glass could mean increased risk of breast cancer… but I had also read that red wine in moderation is good for you, hadn’t I? The truth is that alcohol acts as a trigger for so many menopausal symptoms – it \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/\"\u003eaffects sleep\u003c\/a\u003e, it can make \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/\"\u003ehot flushes\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/\"\u003enight sweats\u003c\/a\u003e worse, and of course it often leads to \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/weight-gain\/\"\u003eweight gain\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/bloating\/\"\u003ebloating\u003c\/a\u003e and is most definitely linked to depression, mood swings et al. On top of that laundry list, there is also the worrying fact that alcohol can affect bone health – already a problem exacerbated by menopause – meaning that heavy drinkers can be more prone to osteoporosis.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eNow at 3 years and 8 months sober, I am absolutely staggered that I didn’t make the connection between just how awful I was feeling and the amount I was drinking. I thought I was just ‘normal’, everyone drank – right? I assumed everyone my age had similar issues. I would wake at 3am almost without fail, heart racing, berating myself for yet again drinking too much, I would be sweating profusely (I now know that drinking can increase your heart rate and widen blood vessels in the skin so increases perspiration). I would hear a voice telling me this has to stop. It’s not authentic to who you are. You are meant to care about your health and practice self-care, so stop poisoning your body with alcohol!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBy 6pm the next evening a much chirpier voice arrived. The voice of the ‘wine witch’:\u003cbr\u003e “You’ve had an exhausting day, time for a cheeky chilled Sauvignon…you might give up? Don’t be ridiculous! Sober – anagram of Bores! Everyone is drinking! You can just have one!”\u003cbr\u003e Alcohol is so ingrained in our culture. From baby showers, christening, playdates, parties, weddings, fresher’s week, funerals – from celebrations to commiserations, alcohol is the ‘social glue’ that sticks everything together. We have been brainwashed into thinking we are either ‘good drinkers’ or alcoholic losers. Clearly there are rock bottom drunks who have a serious issue, and the rest of us are happy social drinkers – occasional lightweights who just can’t hold their beer.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI learnt over time that it’s a spectrum. There are many ‘grey area drinkers’ – so many, in fact, that I’d suggest there are at least 50 shades of grey – but sadly not so sexy! Women have been cajoled into keeping up with the lads, and it’s us baby boomers who are the worst. While many millennials are choosing not to drink at all, the biggest rise in drinking is in older women, and yet we are the ones the toxic liquid hits hardest. Alcohol is responsible for 200 different illnesses, including cancer, and it’s notably terrible for exacerbating menopausal symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI’ve lost count of clients who have told me they rocked up to a GP or a practitioner complaining of mood swings, anxiety, insomnia, wondering if they were menopausal, only to be sent away minutes later with a prescription for anti-depressants, sometimes \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-replacement-therapy-hrt-guide\/\"\u003eHRT\u003c\/a\u003e too, but they were never asked about their drinking. It’s a disaster waiting to happen, that so many women are being offered medication, without being asked whether they are in fact already self-medicating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTo be honest, I wasn’t sure how to stop drinking. It was such an ingrained habit, and I was worried about what others might say, whether I’d be ridiculed and ‘sober shamed’, rather than congratulated for the sober badass I really was! When you stop smoking everyone says ‘well done!’ But if you stop drinking people tend to look concerned and ask if you ‘have a problem’.\u003cbr\u003e You see ‘alcohol is the only drug you have to justify not taking’, and when I finally decided to quit, just for Dry January 2018, I didn’t tell anyone close to me. I felt a sense of shame and guilt that I couldn’t explain. In reality I found that if I stood my ground and said ‘Thanks I’d love a drink, I’ll have sparkling water’, people accepted that, if I hesitated and looked unsure, then they steamed in with ‘Can’t you just have one?’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI’d given up for short periods before, during pregnancies, etc, but I had always counted the days till I could drink again. This time it was different. It was as if a light had come on, and I didn’t ever go back.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI found that rather than giving something up, I was gaining my life back. I discovered – to quote the most perfect book title by Catherine Gray, ‘the unexpected joy of being sober’!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf only someone had told me before how freaking fantastic life without alcohol is! I’d read about all the benefits that can come when you reduce or give up drinking. Better sleep, regulated weight, better digestion, better sex, better cognitive function, and many people report their anxiety reduces or dissipates. I didn’t lose any weight for a few months and I felt ‘chaotic’, but eventually all the benefits kicked in – and more. All the overheating stopped, no more hot flushes! My eyesight improved (really!) and I got shiny locks, sober hair (who knew!) And I feel younger. Want the best anti-ageing secret ever? Ditch the booze! (You’re welcome!) As for the mirror in the bedroom, I smile at it now, if I remember. There are still some bulges and I’m far from perfect, but it’s not self-loathing anymore. I’m not quite there yet, but I am ‘self-love curious’. I am… dare I say it, happy, healthy and sober.\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925422898", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/janey-lee-grace-photo-option-1_b1a04e94-fb9a-4c64-8c25-244fbf591c94_768x.jpg?v=1704723873", "title" : "Does drinking alcohol affect menopause?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538203442", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Relate_Circle_small.png?v=1706174818", "name" : "Relate", "summary" : "", "title" : "Relationship Counsellors" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/priscilla-du-preez-303762-unsplash__1_-1_5358ffd1-118d-4756-9c01-3c8396cd8792_1200x.jpg?v=1704721673", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAre menopause symptoms making sex painful? Relate, a UK-based largest provider of relationship support, has worked with Health \u0026amp; Her to develop advice to help you and your partner work together to understand why painful sex can become a problem at menopause, and how you can put things right together.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy can sex become painful at menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ePainful sex can start during the menopause because of a drop in estrogen levels, this causes vaginal tissues to be thinner, less elastic and drier. This makes sex less comfortable and sometimes painful.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere is how \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/menopause-vaginal-changes-explained\/\"\u003eVaginal changes can impact your sex life\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAs well as being uncomfortable sex can be further complicated by vaginismus – this an automatic reaction to the anticipation that sex will be painful, causing you to clench up. It can make penetration harder for your partner too and so he may find sex uncomfortable.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAt around the same time women go through the menopause men can also start to experience problems getting aroused and keeping an erection. If penetration is uncomfortable for them they can find it difficult to keep an erection – these problems can feed on each other and create a vicious circle. Gradually couples can find they start having less and less sex until their sex life has all but disappeared.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eA time to try new things…?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDespite all the problems it can cause, discomfort during sex is a very treatable condition. It’s essential to use a lubricant once you’ve been through menopause and take into account that your bodies have changed – what used to work well for you probably needs to be rethought.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow does painful sex affect relationships?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA dwindling sex life is likely to start to change how you feel more generally about your relationship. Both of you will probably be unsure about why your sex life isn’t what it used to be but be unsure what to do.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eYour partner might misinterpret a lack of sex as a sign that you are no longer attracted to them and may start to withdraw from the relationship.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eUnpicking these misunderstanding in sex therapy – or through a series of honest chats – is key to getting an enjoyable sex life started again.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat can help with painful sex during menopause and post-menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere’s lots that can be done to help with both of the physical and emotional issues. For advice on why you might be finding sex painful and how you can take action to resolve physical issues, try \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/painful-sex-menopause\/\"\u003epainful sex and menopause for more tips\u003c\/a\u003e. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eReframe: great sex isn’t all about penetration\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTry lots of different ways to feel sexy and build up your desire –flirting, kissing, and massage can all enhance desire and mean your sex life is about a lot more than intercourse. When you are in bed spend much more time on foreplay, you could try role play or sharing fantasies, it’s about trying new things so you don’t feel under pressure to have sex in the ways you used to.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eUnderstand that you may be under or over sensitive to touch\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt’s not unusual for you to respond differently to touch after you go through menopause, being under sensitive to touch is the most common response. This happens because the vagina changes and the vaginal walls, which are often only a few cell layers thick, become thinner. The vagina also becomes shorter and narrower as a result of hormonal changes which occur at menopause. All these changes mean you need to relearn touch and what is enjoyable for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eAvoid mindreading and explain how you feel\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFind a way of talking about how menopause has affected your relationship. Your partner might be assuming that you’re not attracted to them because you don’t want to have sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTelling them that you’re going through menopause and this has affected how you feel about sex can go a long to avoiding arguments and feeling you are drifting apart. It doesn’t have to be a big discussion you could point your partner in the direction of some websites that give them more information about your symptoms. Try not to pretend that everything is the same and hope things will improve, vaginal dryness is a symptom that won’t go away over time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eConsider sex therapy\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf a lack of sex is putting your relationship under strain, a sex therapist can help you overcome any specific issues you have with painful sex and rediscover your sex life. They understand that these problems can be complicated and will listen sensitively to your problems. Many people find once they start therapy they find it surprisingly easy to be open about their problems.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eDon’t put up with painful sex\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhatever you do though, don’t let embarrassment stop you getting help with painful sex. It’s a common symptom of the menopause and often something as straightforward as using a good lubricant can make a huge different to your enjoyment of sex. If you feel that problems with your sex life are leaving you feeling stuck and dissatisfied with your relationship many couples find seeing a sex therapist gives them the support they need to address the issues underlying painful sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere is \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-and-relationships\/\"\u003eeverything you need to know about menopause and relationships\u003c\/a\u003e. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Relate\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/relate-relationship-councillors\/\"\u003eRelate is the UK’s largest provider of relationship support\u003c\/a\u003e, and last year they helped over two million people of all ages, backgrounds, sexual orientations and gender identities to strengthen their relationships.\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925390130", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/priscilla-du-preez-303762-unsplash__1_-1_5358ffd1-118d-4756-9c01-3c8396cd8792_768x.jpg?v=1704721673", "title" : "Painful sex and relationships – how to talk about it and improve things together", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=670" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/670" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/painful-sex/", "name": "Painful Sex", "description": "Painful sex during menopause could be relieved with our selection of menopause lubricants and dyspareunia management products that can help to make sex comfortable again. Choose from a selection of products and assistive measures to help enjoy sex without unwanted pain.", "id": 670, "term_id": 670, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "painful-sex" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=677" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/677" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/vaginal-dryness/", "name": "Vaginal Dryness", "description": "Vaginal dryness products, like lubricants and Smile Maker vibrators, can help to relieve vaginal dryness that occurs during menopause and perimenopause. Choose products that are kind to the skin and could help reduce dryness and vulva irritation or naturally formulated lubes, vibrators that are recommended by gynaecologists.\r\n", "id": 677, "term_id": 677, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "vaginal-dryness" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538236210", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/AnneH-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658459", "name" : "Anne Henderson", "summary" : "", "title" : "Consultant Gynaecologist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Libido_5_1200x.jpg?v=1706700556", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eIf you’ve noticed a change in your sex drive – and you’re not comfortable with the situation – you might be worried about what’s happening. Do hormones play a part? Is it more about what’s happening in life?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIn this short video, Consultant Gynecologist Anne Henderson explains why your libido can change at menopause, and what you can do if you’re concerned about changes to your sex drive.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRest assured, you’re not alone if your libido reduces during perimenopause and menopause, it’s very normal, and there are many reasons you might not be feeling as interested in sex as you have done in the past few years. What’s more, there are plenty of ways to feel more keen if that’s what you’d like to do.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe data-mce-fragment=\"1\" height=\"281\" width=\"500\" src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/FRbnwq5fqkA\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" frameborder=\"0\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003ePrefer to read? Here’s the text version of Anne’s video\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch4\u003eChanging sex drive at menopause – what is it?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eFirst things first, it’s really important for women to realize that there is not a textbook definition of what a ‘normal’ libido or sex drive is – and that it is a very individual thing.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat’s key is whether a woman has noticed a change in her own sex drive relative to the preceding year or perhaps the preceding five years. So it’s the change rather than the actual quality or quantity of the sex drive that’s important.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhy does it happen?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eA woman’s sex drive is a multifaceted function. It’s not necessarily directly linked to hormone levels as it is in men, and it is affected by numerous other factors.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe do have the declining hormone levels throughout the perimenopause – and I’m not denying that that plays a role – but at that stage in their lives women also have other changes:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou might be changing jobs\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou might be going through a marital separation\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou might be looking after elderly parents\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou might also affected by ‘empty nest syndrome’ when your kids leave home.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo there are huge life events in most women in the late 40s to early 50s and I don’t think we should ignore the impact that those can also have on general function and sex drive.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere’s \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/painful-sex-menopause\/\"\u003emore on what causes painful sex at menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow can changes to sex drive be treated or managed?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eI think the first step is general awareness, and not to put too much emphasis on it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs with many things, if women focus on the libido and worry about it it becomes a separate stress in itself that will certainly lead to further impacts on sex drive.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo I think it’s important to acknowledge that any change is there and also seek help wherever possible because there is a lot that can be done to help women who are suffering from this problem.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat questions do other women ask about this?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is certainly one of the most commonly discussed topics during consultations! Women often ask “is this normal?” “Is It just me?” “Why is this happening?” And simple reassurance that it’s a very common feature of the perimenopause and menopause is often all they need at the outset.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere’s \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/painful-sex-and-relationships\/\"\u003ehow to discuss painful sex with your partner and work through it together\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow can I get help if I’m not happy about changes to my sex drive?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe first step to take is to seek appropriate specialist advice from a menopausal viewpoint. My belief is that if we can get the hormone balance correct, that’s the starting point – if we don’t address that then other treatments and other options may not be effective.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHowever, I work very closely with a wide range of specialists and I regularly refer women on to psychosexual therapists if I believe that that will help them and there is a need for that expertise.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere is \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\/\"\u003ehow to talk to your doctor about menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Anne Henderson\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eOur fantastic Consultant Gynecologist Anne Henderson has worked within the health sector for 15 years. From running large-scale menopause clinics where she helped hundreds of women access then-pioneering body identical hormones through to working with complementary practitioners to provide truly holistic care, Anne leads the way when it comes to caring, innovative, whole-woman focused practice.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/anne-henderson\/\"\u003eRead Anne’s full biography here.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eProducts you might be interested in\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/anne-henderson\/\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her Intimacy Libido Supplement\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925357362", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Libido_5_768x.jpg?v=1706700556", "title" : "Loss of libido in perimenopause and menopause – is it biological or psychological?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538170674", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Julie-Dennis2_small.jpg?v=1697658456", "name" : "Julie Dennis", "summary" : "", "title" : "Career Coach" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/abbie-bernet-329631-unsplash-1-1_7da81871-4e1d-403d-ba0a-82a33abf8d82_1200x.jpg?v=1704721670", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eAre you tired all the time? Do you wake exhausted, stumble through the day and fall home too tired to properly engage with your partner or kids? Or perhaps you start the day strong but by mid afternoon you’re slumped over your desk craving coffee and muffins.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen your hormones are out of whack your energy levels can take a nosedive. The key is to eat smart and exercise in the right way – get the formula right and you’ll have more energy to fly through the work day and make the most of all the good stuff outside of it!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eLow energy levels have a significant impact in the workplace. It’s harder to focus, decision making is tough, recall of company guidelines is slower, routine tasks take longer and motivation nosedives. Work can very quickly become very hard work!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhere to start – tracking what’s happening\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eTrack your low energy periods and look at what you were doing in the lead-up to that period. Had you eaten something sugary that spiked your energy levels and then left you feeling lethargic and a little bit grumpy? Maybe your tracking will reveal that you’re not actually eating as regularly as you thought.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen you’re pressed for time on your commute or regularly work through your lunch break grab and go meal choices can quickly become an energy draining habit. A latte and a muffin for breakfast might put a spring in your step first thing but it will be followed by a mid morning energy bomb alongside a craving for more caffeine and sugar to get you through ‘til lunch.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are my top six tips on boosting your energy levels. As well as practical ideas to keep your energy balance and deal with dips during the working day, it’s important to consider diet and exercise too. By supporting and nourishing your body with food and exercise, you’ll have more energy to work at your full potential.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e1. Support your liver\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eStart each day with hot water and half a freshly squeezed lemon to support your liver and boost your body’s detox process. Drink water throughout the day. Keep a glass topped up on your desk or if you’re travelling between work sites keep a bottle in your car, and aim for at least 2 litres of water a day. The thirst and hunger sensations are triggered together and if you’re slightly dehydrated you can mistake thirst for hunger and grab an unnecessary unhealthy snack when actually what your body really needs is some water to wake you up.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e2. Eat well!\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eDon’t be tempted to skip breakfast! Eating breakfast helps stabilize your blood sugar levels, which helps regulate your energy levels and stops you getting hungry mid-morning. A protein-rich breakfast with good fat like scrambled egg and avocado will keep you feeling fuller and more energized for longer. Top up on your essential fats too. There’s a reason they’re called essential – you absolutely need them and they’re crucial for hormone balance.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe’ve been taught for years by the diet industry that ‘fat is bad’. But the reality is that the right type of fat won’t make you fat any more than eating blueberries will make you blue! – find more on \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\/\"\u003emenopause and nutrition by Nutritional Therapist Rosie Letts\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eJust as important as the right type of food is the planning. With planning, it’s easy for you to eat the right food. You wouldn’t dream of setting up a business meeting without being clear on the timing, agenda and required output, so don’t go food shopping without a list or any clear idea of what you’re going to eat this week!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e3. Learn to stop\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen your energy levels are at rock bottom listen to your body and stop. Stop staring at your screen and look out the window. Step out of your noisy work environment and spend ten minutes in your workplace Quiet or Wellbeing Room. If you don’t have one seek out an empty meeting room. If working from home is an option take a power nap when you get really tired. Twenty minutes is enough to improve your alertness and reduce the risk of mistakes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e4. Work to your strengths\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you are most alert early in the morning prioritize your trickiest tasks for as soon as you arrive at work. If 3pm tends to be when your energy levels crash allocate that time to do the more routine stuff. Have an email purge, clean up your desktop screen or organize your filing. If you often have a surge of energy towards the end of your working day use it to plan for tomorrow. That way you don’t have to waste valuable time or mental energy first thing planning your day.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e5. Work smart\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat’s your organisation’s approach to smart working? Check out your company flexible, mobile and agile working policies and consider how you can make best use of them to manage your energy levels and continue to excel in your career. Agile working practices mean fewer distractions, improved concentration, reduced stress, more autonomy and a better work life balance.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e6. Exercise for energy – yes, really!\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eExercise has an enormous impact on your energy levels, mental well-being and productivity. It’s also a proven stress reliever. So, incorporating an exercise schedule into your working week is crucial to controlling your menopause symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThough it may feel counter-intuitive to use lots of energy exercising to feel more energetic, getting active does actually help. Jane Dowling has you covered in the article Exercise for Menopause – but in a nutshell, start gently and find ways to fit movement into your working day – no excuses!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are some ideas to help:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eHIIT sessions at the weekend when you can get active at your most naturally energetic time.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e30 minutes of walking every day – walking to and from the station and getting out in the fresh air at lunchtime can be a real mood and energy booster.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eRestorative yoga classes – or videos – in the evening to unwind and cope with stress on tough days.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eWeight training with a qualified instructor to strengthen your joints and tone your body.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eExercise is personal, so get educated, get moving and find a workout routine that works for you.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are some of the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003ebest exercises to try to boost energy levels in menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e7. Work on your menopause mindset\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eControlling your flashes, moods and energy levels isn’t just about what you eat and drink, or the way in which you exercise. You’ve got to address your menopause mindset too. It doesn’t matter how sensible the advice I give you is – if you’re heads not in the right space you’re not going to follow it anyway.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo don’t read this article with a vague notion that you’ll implement some changes next week or next month. ACT now: Accept, Commit and Take Action today.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eACCEPT what’s going on. Don’t fight it or constantly complain about how unfair it is and how awful it is to be a woman.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eCOMMIT to investing time, effort and energy in yourself. You deserve it. Commit to focusing on you for a minimum of three weeks, be open to change and be ready to think differently, eat differently and exercise differently.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnd then TAKE ACTION. Be excited and act on the choices that will allow you to take back control of your body, your mind and your career.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAbout Julie Denis\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eJulie Dennis is a Menopause Coach and Trainer who has been there too. She draws on her background in nutritional and personal training to explain how to boost your energy levels with simple lifestyle changes – and how to cope when a menopause energy crash hits.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eJulie Dennis is a Menopause Coach and Trainer who works with organisations across the UK to introduce menopause as an inclusive topic, and improve the experience of women working through menopause. Personally speaking, she has experienced menopause managed with and without HRT, so can really empathise with women’s experiences, and provide practical advice that’s tried and tested.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/julie-dennis\/\"\u003eRead Julie’s full biography here.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/energy\/\"\u003eDiscover products for low energy.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925324594", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/abbie-bernet-329631-unsplash-1-1_7da81871-4e1d-403d-ba0a-82a33abf8d82_768x.jpg?v=1704721670", "title" : "How to combat low energy levels during menopause", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=664" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=664" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=664" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/664" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 13, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low Energy", "description": "Reduce menopause fatigue and low energy with our range of vitamins, supplements and other useful products to help restore your energy levels.", "id": 664, "term_id": 664, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=666" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=666" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=666" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/666" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 6, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/memory-loss/", "name": "Memory Loss", "description": "Oestrogen has a surprising effect on our cognitive function and memory which can be difficult to manage with everyday life. We've pulled together a range of products to help you to maintain brain and cognitive function*.\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 666, "term_id": 666, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "memory-loss" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=672" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=672" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=672" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/672" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/poor-concentration/", "name": "Poor Concentration", "description": "Products to help support normal brain function*.\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 672, "term_id": 672, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "poor-concentration" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538105138", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Caroline-Barnes2-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658453", "name" : "Caroline Barnes", "summary" : "", "title" : "Make-up Artist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/anna-sullivan-687934-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1066_6a15a82f-7aa7-43c2-9a1c-2a59024a7bc1_1200x.jpg?v=1704721669", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSo you’ve finally got your skincare regime just perfect: you’ve found the products you love, and you’re feeling at home in your skin. Then menopause hits, and everything changes. So what’s going on? Why does skin change at menopause, and how should you be nourishing and caring for your skin? Top makeup artist Caroline Barnes has been investigating products that work beautifully for menopausal skin…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/HCveCe5vWPI\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eCan’t watch the video right now?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe’ve pulled out Caroline’s recommendations for menopause skincare.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy does skin change?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eCaroline explains that when estrogen levels drop, collagen levels deplete, skin feels less bouncy, thinner and has more movement as it has less elasticity. However, not everyone’s skin is the same!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat should you do to update your regime?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you would like something richer, look at Vichy – they have a new product that’s a lovely rich cream called ‘NEOVADIOL’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHowever, not everyone needs lots of extra moisture and hydration. Caroline suggests that if your skin has started to get oilier, try salicylic acid – to remove oil from pores – with hyaluronic to hydrate, but not excessively.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe other company that Caroline suggests you look at is VENeffect. She says:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“VENeffect is run by two sisters – one who has been in the beauty industry for twenty years and one who’s a gynecologist. Their whole focus of their brand is what happens when the estrogen levels drop in your skin and it becomes a little bit dull and lacklustre. This range contains phytoestrogens that make your skin look as lovely as it like it does on your best days.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eAdd an AHA to your routine\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eOf course, everyone’s different – but one thing to be mindful of is that if you’re hydrating your skin – make sure you exfoliate.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis doesn’t have to be a scratchy physical exfoliant – you can use a simple, gentle AHA all over your face on a cotton pad to allow products to sit well on the skin.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eSkincare 101: don’t forget the SPF\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eBefore getting started with makeup, don’t forget to always use an SPF. Caroline recommends La Roche-Posay, but explains that there are hundreds of great options… just find one that’s good for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDon’t forget to cleanse well – especially if you are using waterproof products\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eCaroline says: “Start double cleansing if you don’t yet! The cleaner your skin, the better your products absorb and work. Use an oil to take off makeup, then use a cream.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Caroline Barnes\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/caroline-barnes\/\"\u003eCaroline Barnes is one of the UK’s most established and celebrated make-up artists\u003c\/a\u003e. Her reputation for approachable beauty has helped her establish an enviable roster of clients from Diane Kruger, Rebecca Ferguson, Emma Watson and Olga Kurylenko to Kylie Minogue and Kelly Rowland. Caroline has a YouTube channel – Speed Beauty – where she offers expert beauty advice. Caroline knows exactly what women want and how to deliver it at speed. She also gives her time to the beauty industry charity, Look Good Feel Better, using her ‘midas touch’ to help restore confidence and wellbeing in women cancer sufferers.\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925291826", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/anna-sullivan-687934-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1066_6a15a82f-7aa7-43c2-9a1c-2a59024a7bc1_768x.jpg?v=1704721669", "title" : "Menopause skincare tips by Caroline Barnes", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=674" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/674" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/skin-changes/", "name": "Skin Changes", "description": "Changing hormones at menopause can have a big impact on your skin, including increased dryness, itching, acne, a rash and even facial hair. Our range includes the most advanced nutritional supplements to support skin from within, as well as products to help plump, restore, hydrate and nourish even the most sensitive menopausal skin.", "id": 674, "term_id": 674, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "skin-changes" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538236210", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/AnneH-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658459", "name" : "Anne Henderson", "summary" : "", "title" : "Consultant Gynaecologist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/leighann-renee-1058264-unsplash__1_-1_588f5446-11d4-48fb-b8be-372dfc3e3149_1200x.jpg?v=1704721666", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eSuddenly having little leaks? Increased urinary frequency or urgency, and incontinence at menopause happens – even if you’ve never had problems in this area before – but you needn’t, and shouldn’t, just put up with it! Our Consultant Gynecologist Anne Henderson explains why some women start having continence problems around menopause, and how you can act to improve the situation today and tomorrow.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDon’t pay attention to the ‘sensitive bladder’ marketing talk – get educated, get help, and get your pee-problems under control. Little leaks may have historically been a normal part of growing older for many women, but they needn’t be these days. The first step toward taking control is knowing what’s happening… and that starts with pressing play!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/gVWu5BTmLck\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003ePrefer to read? Here’s the text version of Anne’s video\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch4\u003eChanges to your urinary function – what’s going on?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eBladder function is one of the most common areas of the body to be affected during this period of a woman’s life. There’s a wide range of symptoms which can occur, and some women unfortunately experience them all.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eThe common symptoms are urgency and frequency which can happen both day and night. When that’s happening overnight, it can be very disruptive as far as sleep is concerned.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSome women also notice the sensation of incomplete bladder emptying and they may have a poorer urinary flow rate.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eThey also experienced increased risk of urinary infections.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSome women also start to experience leakage. So that could be stress leakage, for example when exercising, running or climbing stairs – but it can also happen involuntarily at rest.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhy do bladder and urinary changes happen?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe main driving force behind the urinary symptoms is declining estrogen levels. This impacts directly on the bladder itself; the bladder lining and muscles; and also the muscles in the urethra which have a high level of estrogen receptors. These areas don’t work so well as estrogen levels decline.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eEqually importantly, estrogen is vital for collagen production in the pelvic floor. This is one of the reasons that women at this period of their lives notice an increased risk of vaginal prolapse and sometimes the womb and bladder can drop as well.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo you’ve got a combination of changes at receptor level which affects the bladder directly, as well as a general laxity in the pelvic floor. Those two factors combined can mean that women can experience quite a considerable range of symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eIf you’re thinking “I’ve not experienced this before”\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eWomen who’ve had a vaginal birth may escape symptoms for years after they’ve given birth – particularly if they do the pelvic floor exercises – but suddenly they then get hit with the decline in estrogen levels from 40s onwards. That has really detrimental impact on the pelvic floor in many women so it can accelerate the aging process in that area and that’s when they first become symptomatic.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow can it be treated or managed?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eFirstly, I would encourage anybody with these type of symptoms to consider HT either locally or systemically.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eLocal estrogen (HT that is applied to just the vaginal region) can be a fantastic way of controlling estrogen deprivation in the bladder and the surrounding tissues because the treatment goes directly into that area and passes into the bladder and surrounding tissues so it can have almost an immediate effect. So you don’t have to have systemic HT to get bladder benefits which many women find reassuring.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eThere’s also a wide range of other treatment options including pelvic floor physiotherapy which is absolutely vital.\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eI would encourage all my premenopausal and menopausal women who have any pelvic floor issues or bladder issues to seek help from a specialist physiotherapist.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eEven women who find it difficult to do pelvic floor exercises can actually do very well with specialist input.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAnd finally there are other options. ‘Bladder drills’ can help women keep control of their drinking habits – this means reduction in caffeinated drinks, timing their drinks and so on, and a physiotherapist should be able to give guidance as far as that’s concerned.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo it’s not really just looking at one particular thing to provide a cure it’s more looking at the overall impact that these symptoms have on a woman’s health.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow can I get help?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eI would actively encourage women to seek help with this as soon as possible with this group of symptoms. The sad reality is that if they’re developing symptoms in their 40s and early 50s, they will not improve as time goes by.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf women experience problems at this age, by the time they get to the 60s and 70s and beyond, they will be really struggling. The key thing is to seek help, take action, have intervention before it becomes irreversible.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat questions do other women ask about this?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eWomen do find it very difficult to discuss this issue – particularly if there’s incontinence involved – with friends with family. Sometimes when they see a specialist like myself, it’s the first time they’ve ever brought it out into the open and that can be a huge feeling of relief.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you’re affected, be reassured that about 30 percent of menopausal women will experience urinary problems – it’s extremely common, and if they take action they should be fine.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe second question that women bring up “is this it – or will it get worse?” Many women have this understandable fear that they may become incontinent within a few years of menopause because of the sudden deterioration. Once again I would reassure them that pre-emptive intervention is key and they can actually stop the problem, if not reverse it, if they seek help.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Anne Henderson\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eOur fantastic Consultant Gynecologist Anne Henderson has worked within the UK National Health Service and private sectors for 15 years. From running large-scale menopause clinics where she helped hundreds of women access then-pioneering body identical hormones through to working with complementary practitioners to provide truly holistic care, Anne leads the way when it comes to caring, innovative, whole-woman focused practice.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/anne-henderson\/\"\u003eRead Anne’s full biography here.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sensitive-bladder\/how-to-prevent-period-leakage\/\"\u003eDon’t let periods or leaks dampen your style with Stylist Gilly Woo\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925259058", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/leighann-renee-1058264-unsplash__1_-1_588f5446-11d4-48fb-b8be-372dfc3e3149_768x.jpg?v=1704721666", "title" : "Incontinence at menopause – urinary changes and why they happen", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=673" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/673" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sensitive-bladder/", "name": "Sensitive Bladder", "description": "Urinary changes like frequent urination and leaky bladder are really common at menopause due to changes in oestrogen levels. Take action with pelvic floor trainers and avoid embarrassment with practical products to help with incontinence.\r\n", "id": 673, "term_id": 673, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sensitive-bladder" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538203442", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Relate_Circle_small.png?v=1706174818", "name" : "Relate", "summary" : "", "title" : "Relationship Counsellors" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/bruno-aguirre-317551-unsplash__1_-1_041bb596-e1e5-4a24-80c0-18437fab28cf_1200x.jpg?v=1704721665", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eRelate, a UK-based network of relationship counsellors, has worked with Health \u0026amp; Her to develop advice to help you and your partner work together through menopausal symptoms. The stress, anxiety and anger that arise seemingly out of nowhere around menopause can be really tough to deal with, but it’s possible to work together to overcome it and feel more connected.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eMenopause isn’t just a physical change to your body it can have a big impact on how you feel too. During menopause your brain and body go into a kind of survival mode, this can leave you feeling exhausted and experience problems with chaotic thinking or becoming quick to anger.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eYou may also experience episodes of anxiety. You might worry about:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eHow your body is changing\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIf you will ever feel like yourself again\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eWhether your partner’s feelings for you will change\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHow to cope with new symptoms as they arise\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhy do you feel different at menopause?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere are a number of factors at play. Starting menopause isn’t something you choose to do and it can be quite unexpected when it does start. This can leave you feeling out of control or unprepared which adds to your anxiety.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOther members of your family may have had a very difficult time going through menopause and so you might worry that you are going to have a similar experience. Some women find they are overwhelmed by negative feelings or tiredness and start to become depressed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhat can you do together to manage the situation?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAlthough it’s difficult to live with some symptoms there’s a lot you can do to alleviate them. Looking after yourself and getting advice from your doctor can make a big difference to the severity of your symptoms. It’s also be helpful to remember this is a natural process and you will eventually come through it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTherapy can be very effective if you find you are really struggling to cope with feelings of depression, anxiety, loss or anger. It doesn’t mean you’ll have to commit to seeing someone for a long time, you might just find it useful to see someone for a single session who understands what you’re going through and can help you find ways to cope.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat can help me feel better?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere are lot of different approaches you can try; depending on your symptoms, you might find the following helpful:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eTalking to other women. Other women can suggest practical ways to cope with the symptoms you’re experiencing or offer a listening ear when you’re having a tough day. Hearing different experiences is very helpful for normalizing what you’re going through and stopping you feeling isolated.It’s also a good way of putting into perspective your partner’s response to menopause. You might find out that other people’s partners have been less or more supportive than your own. Learning about how other women got their partner to be more supportive can give you some ideas about how you could encourage your partner to be more involved. Conversely, it can be useful to see how women whose partners haven’t been very supportive have built different support networks.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eResearch the symptoms of menopause and possible treatments. Go to your healthcare provider with your research and talk to them about treatments you could try. This might be HT, other prescription medicines or counseling. It’s worth finding out as much as possible about the different treatments so you can have an informed discussion with your doctor and make the most of your time with them.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLook after yourself and have fun. Boosting your mood can help you cope better with feeling of stress and anxiety. Plan in activities that help you unwind and feel more positive, you could try a relaxing bath with your favorite oils and beauty products, taking a day off to do just what you want to do, spending the whole day with a close friend, or going for a massage or facial. If you’re pressed for time you could try taking half an hour to have a cup of tea and read a book or listen to your favorite podcast or music.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBe more selfish. You need time to take care of yourself and recover, this means putting yourself and your needs first. This might not come naturally so if you’re used to taking caring of others before yourself make a conscious effort to reverse this pattern. Try to think about the advice you would give to a friend or perhaps how you would look after a child and apply to yourself instead.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTherapy can help. You could go either on your own or with a partner. It’s a chance to get a different perspective on what’s happening to you. If you go to counseling as couple it might include an element of education; the therapist will want both of you to understand the biological changes that are happening so you don’t misinterpreted these as a loss of interest in the relationship itself.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTry mindfulness. Some women have found mindfulness helps them cope better with feeling angry, anxious or having difficulty thinking clearly.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTell your partner. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.relate.org.uk\/relationship-help\/help-relationships\/communication\/5-communication-tips-try-your-partner\"\u003eMake sure they know how you’re feeling\u003c\/a\u003e and what they can do to help. Men have never experienced having periods so they may be completely unaware of ways in which hormones can affect your mood and general mental health. If you’re not sure how to start this conversation then you might find reading about how to improve communication in your relationship helpful: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.relate.org.uk\/relationship-help\/self-help-tools\/book-shop\/how-do-relationships-step-step-guide-nurturing-your-relationship-and-making-love-last\"\u003eHow to do relationships: A step-by-step guide to nurturing your relationship and making love last\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhich treatments work best for you will depend on your own personal circumstances as well as the severity of your symptoms but many women find that adopting a healthier lifestyle and paying more attention to their own needs really reduces the intensity of their negative feelings.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eRegular exercise, changes to diet, and paying more attention to their own needs really reduces the intensity of their negative feelings. Practices like yoga and mindfulness can be really helpful too. Exercise is helpful because it helps to boost endorphins which is a natural way of boosting mood and reducing anxiety.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt’s also worth researching all the symptoms of menopause, even ones you might not be experiencing at the moment, as this can help you feel more prepared and less overwhelmed when a new symptom starts.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFinally, it’s important to remember this will end. Many women say they feel more relaxed and confident once they have finished menopause. This is a phase you are passing through and your emotions will settle with time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eSeeing a therapist\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe kind of therapy that works best for you will depend on what you need help with:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAnxiety and mood swings. A CBT therapist will help you come up with strategies to change how to think about situations that make you feel anxiety or angry. They will also look at how you can change your behavior so you feel less anxious.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA relationship therapist can help you resolve tensions or conflict in your relationship or if you feel you have drifted apart find ways to start talking and feel connected again. You can go to see a relationship therapist on your own or as a couple.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Relate\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eRelate is a UK-based provider of relationship support, and last year they helped over two million people of all ages, backgrounds, sexual orientations and gender identities to strengthen their relationships.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/relate-relationship-councillors\/\"\u003eRead about them here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/menopause-yoga-nidra-disturbed-sleep\/\"\u003eMenopause yoga nidra for disturbed sleep and low mood\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/anxiety-and-menopause\/\"\u003eStress and anxiety – a Doctor’s overview\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925226290", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/bruno-aguirre-317551-unsplash__1_-1_041bb596-e1e5-4a24-80c0-18437fab28cf_768x.jpg?v=1704721665", "title" : "How to manage stress, anxiety and anger and keep your relationship strong", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538006834", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Rosie-Letts_small.jpg?v=1697658449", "name" : "Rosie Letts", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritional Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/rawpixel-1118337-unsplash__1_-1_05f32c17-c32a-4376-8a92-ae3d315ddfe3_1200x.jpg?v=1704721663", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhat causes headaches at menopause, and how can you reduce them?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eQualified nutritional therapist Rosie Letts explains what’s going on – and how it’s possible to eat your way to fewer headaches as you move through menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch1\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003eHormonal headaches and menopause\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/h1\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAround a third of most women’s life is spent either transitioning into their menopause or within the menopause. This is a daunting prospect for those who suffer from headaches and migraines associated with hormone disturbances.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHormonal headaches are a common issue for many women, combining sometimes debilitating pain with an array of other symptoms such as fatigue, nausea, sensitivity to light and aura. Any headache sufferer knows that they can put your life on hold for several hours or days at a time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch1\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003eWhy do we get more headaches around menopause?\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/h1\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHormonal headaches are generally triggered by a sudden drop in estrogen, which alters how are brain chemicals and neurotransmitters operate. When estrogen levels drop suddenly, the nerves in your brain can become more excitable, triggering hormonal headaches and migraines.(1)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis is why – in younger years – many women suffer from a migraine in the days leading up to their period, when estrogen levels are at their lowest. During perimenopause, women experience wide fluctuations of estrogen which may increase the number of headaches and migraines. Worse still, these fluctuations aren’t cyclical like your periods were, so suddenly headaches strike with limited predictability in timing(2), making it difficult to make plans, work effectively or manage family commitments.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhilst some women’s symptoms do improve, a recent study suggested unpredictability as to whether women experience “a worsening, an improvement, or no change in headache during the menopausal transition”(3) with other triggers such as skipping meals, stress, sleep disturbance and dehydration coming into play.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDr Anne MacGregor, menopause and migraine specialist formerly of the UK’s National Migraine Centre, recommends using the free\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/n1-headache.com\/\"\u003e N1-headache app\u003c\/a\u003e which allows you to identify and then address your triggers.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch1\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003eHow to manage menopause headaches with diet and lifestyle\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/h1\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThankfully, there are number of ways you can improve your hormonal headaches and nutrition can play a key part:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eCheck your water intake\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSometimes it’s easy to forget the basics. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink as even mild dehydration can cause headaches. Keep water on hand, and drink it often! Look to drink two litres of water over the course of the day – flavor it with sliced citrus fruits, cucumber, mint or rosemary for added nutrients. If in doubt, check the color of your urine – apart from the first one of the day, which may be a little darker, a pale straw color indicates adequate hydration in most people.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eManage your blood sugars\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eEat regular, low glycemic load meals to keep your blood sugar levels stable. Skipping meals puts the body in a state of stress which may be a trigger for you. Find out more about the Glycemic Load (GL) approach using the resources box at the end of this article.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eKeep calm\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe know that worry and stress, including a succession of low level stressors – like missing the bus, too many work deadlines, the kids playing up, or too much on your to-do list – can make your headaches worse(4).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhen it’s not possible to modify your lifestyle, you can support your body with magnesium, nature’s tranquilizer. This amazing mineral is involved in over 300 key processes within your body, two of which are stress reduction and a decrease in headaches(5) . Most women’s magnesium levels are insufficient(6) but a warm bath with a cup of magnesium-rich Epsom Salts twice a week is a good way to top up magnesium levels(7).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eSleep like a baby\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis is easier said than done if night sweats and nocturnal waking disrupt your shut eye. It’s important to avoid stimulants such as caffeine, and alcohol, replacing them with soothing teas containing lemon balm(8) or chamomile(9), because losing out on sleep can actually increase your perception of the pain(10). You might also be interested in trying yoga to improve sleep, or learning how to make your bedroom a cool, calm sanctuary.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eBe aware of – and reduce – inflammation\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eRecent research has revealed that along with hormonal triggers, inflammation is a primary cause of migraines, and therefore reducing inflammation in your body can reduce migraines(11).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf you are experiencing inflammation in other parts of your body, it’s crucial to gain an understanding of where it is stemming from and work to soothe the problem area. I recommend working with a qualified nutritional therapist to achieve this. Localized inflammation can be targeted with nutrition, my top tips are:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eQuercetin is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent found in apples, berries, onions, olive oil and green leafy vegetables(12) Aim to eat quercetin rich foods daily.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLower both inflammation(13) and the frequency and severity of headaches(14) with foods containing Omega-3 from salmon, mackerel, sardines; hemp, pumpkin, chia and flaxseeds plus walnuts. Aim for 2 portions of the oily fish per week, or add an Omega-3 supplement to your diet to be sure.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eThere’s good evidence that daily doses of turmeric(15), ginger and rosemary(16) may reduce inflammation and provide free radical zapping antioxidants, as do all vegetables and fruit(17) so aim for at least five 80g portions a day.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch1\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003eBusy? Struggling to balance your diet? Add some supplements…\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/h1\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt can be difficult to get good doses of some key nutrients from the food we eat on a daily basis, so you may wish supplement. Below I have outlined the most well evidenced supplements to help relieve menopausal headaches and migraines.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eOmega-3\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOmega 3 fatty acids are typically derived from fish or krill oil but vegan alternatives are available. Omega-3 fats play a role in relaxing blood vessels and relieving inflammation in veins, which can significantly reduce the severity of migraine headaches(14),(13). Omega-3 supplementation is particularly important if you do not eat oily fish regularly.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eMagnesium\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eModern farming methods have left our soils magnesium depleted, so even if you eat a well-balanced diet, you may still benefit from supplementation. Ideally supplemented as the well-absorbed citrate form, magnesium promotes sleep, reduces stress and anxiety(18) and can reduce the severity of headaches(19).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #3ea1a3;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eVitamin B complex\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWomen transitioning through the menopause may find that they have multiple stressors whether family commitments, work, friendships or finances. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThough many of these factors may be outside of your control, a good vitamin B complex can improve the way that you cope with stress, reducing anxiety and giving you the energy to deal with life(20). Improving your resilience to stress is also likely to have a positive impact on the frequency and duration of your headaches. And remember that B vitamins help raise your energy levels, so you should take them in the morning.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Rosie Letts\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/rosie-letts\/\"\u003eRosie is a qualified and registered nutritional therapist\u003c\/a\u003e. She has worked with hundreds of women experiencing menopausal symptoms, helping to combine nutrition and lifestyle changes that have helped to prevent or reduce the severity of symptoms including sleeping problems, mood changes, weight gain, and headaches.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHer qualifications, memberships and awards include: BSc in Nutritional Therapy – University of Westminster; ICHAN outstanding practice 2018 award; Member of the Complementary \u0026amp; Natural Healthcare Council (CHNC); Member of the British Association of Nutritional Therapists (BANT).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/headaches\/headaches-a-doctors-overview\/\"\u003eHeadaches – a Doctor’s overview\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eUseful resources:\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/n1-headache.com\/\"\u003eN1-headache app\u003c\/a\u003e – recommended by the UK’s National Migraine Centre.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFind out more about the Glycaemic Load (GL) approach\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.patrickholford.com\/topic\/low-gl\"\u003e here\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eReferences\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e1 Vetvik, K., et al. ‘Symptoms of premenstrual syndrome in female migraineurs with and without menstrual migraine.’ Journal of Headache Pain 2018;19, p.31\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e2 Mattson, P. (2003). ‘Hormonal factors in migraine: a population-based study of women aged 40 to 74 years.’ Headache, 43. pp.27-35\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e3 Lauritsen, C., et al. (2018). ‘Current Treatment Options: Headache Related to Menopause—Diagnosis and Management.’ Current Treatment Options in Neurology, 20(4).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e4 Martin, P. Lae, L. \u0026amp; Reece, J. (2007). ‘Stress as a trigger for headaches: Relationship between exposure and sensitivity.’ Anxiety, Stress, \u0026amp; Coping, 20(4), pp.393-407. [online] PubMed. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/17999239\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/17999239\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e5 11th European Headache Federation Congress jointly with 31st Congress of the Italian Society for the Study of Headaches. (2017). The Journal of Headache and Pain, 18(S1). [online] PubMed. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5709272\/\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC57092…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e6 Boyle, N., et al. (2017). ‘The Effects of Magnesium Supplementation on Subjective Anxiety and Stress—A Systematic Review.’ Nutrients, 9(5), p.429.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e7 Waring, R. (2004). ‘Absorption of magnesium sulfate.’ [online] Mgwater.com. Available at: \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.mgwater.com\/transdermal.shtml\"\u003ehttp:\/\/www.mgwater.com\/transdermal.shtml\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e8 Scholey, A., et al. (2014). ‘Anti-Stress Effects of Lemon Balm-Containing Foods.’ Nutrients, 6(11), pp.4805-4821.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e9 Savage, K. et al. (2017). ‘GABA-modulating phytomedicines for anxiety: A systematic review of preclinical and clinical evidence.’ Phytotherapy Research, 2018 Jan;32(1), pp.3-18.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e10 Snel, J.\u0026amp; Lorist, M. (2011). ‘Effects of caffeine on sleep and cognition.’ [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/21531247\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/21531247\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e11 Waeber, C. \u0026amp; Moskowitz, M. (2005). ‘Migraine as an inflammatory disorder.’ Neurology, 64 (Issue 10, Supplement 2), pp.S9-S15.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e12 Lättig, J. et al. (2007). ‘Mechanism of inhibition of human secretory phospholipase A2 by flavonoids: rationale for lead design.’ Journal of Computer-Aided Molecular Design, [online] 21(8), pp.473-483. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/17701137\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/17701137\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e13 Calder, P. (2013). ‘Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and inflammatory processes: nutrition or pharmacology?’ British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 75(3), pp.645-662.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e14 Ramsden, C. et al. (2013). ‘Targeted alteration of dietary n-3 and n-6 fatty acids for the treatment of chronic headaches: A randomized trial.’ Pain, 154(11), pp.2441-2451. [online] PubMed. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3850757\/\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC38507…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e15 Ganjali, S. et al. (2014). ‘Investigation of the Effects of Curcumin on Serum Cytokines in Obese Individuals: A Randomized Controlled Trial.’ The Scientific World Journal, 2014, pp.1-6.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e16 Justo, O. et al. (2015). ‘Evaluation of in vitro anti-inflammatory effects of crude ginger and rosemary extracts obtained through supercritical CO2 extraction on macrophage and tumor cell line: the influence of vehicle type.’ BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 15(1).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e17 Arulselvan, P. et al. (2016). ‘Role of Antioxidants and Natural Products in Inflammation.’ Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, 2016, pp.1-15. [online] Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5075620\/\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC50756…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e18 Sartori, S. et al. (2012). ‘Magnesium deficiency induces anxiety and HPA axis dysregulation: Modulation by therapeutic drug treatment.’ Neuropharmacology, [online] 62(1), pp.304-312. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3198864\/\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC31988…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e19 Rybicka, R. et al. (2012). ‘The role of magnesium in migraine pathogenesis. Potential use of magnesium compounds in prevention and treatment of migraine headaches.’ Journal of Elementology 02\/2012. [Online] Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.researchgate.net\/publication\/278730484_The_role_of_magnesium_in_migraine_pathogenesis_Potential_use_of_magnesium_compounds_in_prevention_and_treatment_of_migraine_headaches\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.researchgate.net\/publication\/278730484…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 1 February 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e20 Long, S. \u0026amp; Benton, D. (2013). ‘Effects of vitamin and mineral supplementation on stress, mild psychiatric symptoms, and mood in nonclinical samples: a meta-analysis.’ Psychosomatic Medicine. 2013 Feb;75(2), pp.144-53\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925193522", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/rawpixel-1118337-unsplash__1_-1_05f32c17-c32a-4376-8a92-ae3d315ddfe3_768x.jpg?v=1704721663", "title" : "Headaches during menopause – does diet make a difference?", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=232" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=232" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=232" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/232" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/headaches/", "name": "Headaches", "description": "Headaches and migraines may be a common issue during menopause and perimenopause, and they can spike with annoying regularity because of changing hormones. Here are some of the best natural products to soothe and manage menopause headaches.", "id": 232, "term_id": 232, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "headaches" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=659" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=659" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=659" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/659" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/headaches/", "name": "Headaches", "description": "Headaches and migraines may be a common issue during menopause and perimenopause, and they can spike with annoying regularity because of changing hormones. Here are some of the best natural products to soothe and manage menopause headaches.", "id": 659, "term_id": 659, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "headaches" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538268978", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Gill_3-576x575_small.jpg?v=1697658461", "name" : "Gilly Woo", "summary" : "", "title" : "Stylist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/jennifer-burk-118076-unsplash-1-1600x1068_f12499b9-b5bc-4fb8-9b3d-66448f4e3775_1200x.jpg?v=1704721661", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eSo you’ve breezed through the hot flashes, taken control of the emotional rollercoaster… but you’re feeling down because your dress size has gone up? Stop right there. With some clever styling and properly fitted foundations, you’ll look – and feel – fantastic, even if your shape has changed a little. Stylist and dressmaker Gilly Woo reveals all…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs we age our metabolism slows and we need less calories to function. Often people gain a little weight during menopause and the middle age spread sets in. Almost all my long term clients, who I have been dressing for a decade of more, have put on a little weight over the years. It’s normal, it’s natural and if your jeans are starting to feel a little snug lately believe me you’re not alone!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI’ve helped lots of women get their confidence back after gaining weight during menopause and with a few simple styling tips there is no reason that you can’t look and feel fabulous regardless of your waist size.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eLet’s start with the foundations\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch4\u003eGet a good bra\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eDid you know that up to 80% of women wear the wrong size bra? I once style a women in her 60’s who had been wearing too small a cup size and too big a band size for years. It took us a few attempts to get her perfect size as it’s not an exact science, but when we did it absolutely transformed her silhouette.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eI recommend having a professional bra fitting once a year because your size is unlikely to stay the same throughout your life.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDon’t keep old bras too long either, the fabric will lose its elasticity over time and will no longer perform as it should.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDid you know that six to nine months is the average lifespan of a regularly worn bra – so don’t keep an overflowing drawer of oldies!\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eShapewear vs. comfy well-fitted pants\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eShapewear is in every store now and there are solutions for almost every type of outfit promising to smooth out every type of lump or bulge. Shapewear can be useful for feeling svelte on special occasions but let’s be honest, no one wants to wear Spanx every day! So I say leave the tummy control briefs in the drawer until you’re going somewhere fancy and invest in a really good bra and some comfortable briefs that genuinely fit you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you normally wear a thong or a tanga and you’re noticing a vpl lately, opt for a bikini of full brief instead. If you need to go up a size then definitely do! Don’t be disheartened by labels, they are irrelevant and meaningless. Buy briefs that fit and you will be happier and healthier as well as looking slimmer.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eLayer up\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eEveryday essentials\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA deep drapey cowl neck or wrap tops over a fitted tank top are oh-so-flattering and easy to wear. Any draped fabric in the tummy area is usually a good look if you’ve gained a little weight. Also try styles of tops that hug your high hip and are looser around the waist and tummy. I love the serenity top from Bam clothing as a perfect example of this.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eChic kimonos cardigans\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eKimono cardigans are fabulous wardrobe staples, you can wear a more fitted top underneath and let the kimono drape around your curves in a comforting way. Such a great option for adding color and print to your outfit too! They come in a variety of lengths so the options are endless and they look fantastic as day wear or for a night on the town.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you like dresses, cross over and wrap styles are the ones to choose, and again, layer with a lightweight tank or camisole if they are low cut.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eLove Spandex\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eA bit of give is good\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAlways choose jeans that are 2% spandex. This is enough to be comfortable whilst still offering enough support to make your legs and bum look smooth and contoured. A 2% stretch is a great ratio in anything tailored and as I said before ignore the size label and buy what fits you. If you wear a size smaller and you’ll look a size bigger.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eMake friends with your local dressmaker\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eGot an all time fave outfit which is in good nick but feeling a little snug lately? Take it to your local dressmaker to see if it can be let out on the seams or have a panel added.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is often possible to do and means you can still wear your best dress without having to forgo the cake for a few weeks. If your favorite outfit can’t be made bigger there could be an option to take a pattern from it and make a slightly roomier copy, you could even commission another one in different color.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWork it\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eTailored vs. baggy\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePutting on weight can affect your confidence and make you want to hide your figure with baggy shapeless clothing but a little gentle tailoring to flatter your curves is a great option for looking smart and professional at work. If you feel restricted in a suit then try a blazer made from fabric with a little Spandex in it. I have a brilliant one made from a thick jersey fabric which I wear all the time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eFlatter your best features\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA straight cut dark blazer without buttons is a great choice with a camisole or loose top in a lighter shade underneath because the eye is drawn to the narrow strip of light color giving the illusion of a slimmer silhouette. If you have good legs, show them off with slim fit pants or a pencil skirt paired with a swingy tunic top or kimono cardigan.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eParty on\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDon’t let a few extra pounds spoil your fun. Chiffon shirts in sexy prints or block colors paired with statement jewelry are a great Friday night staple. Semi opaque drapey fabric like chiffon, is great for striking that balance of sexy but comfortable. Pair with skinny jeans and your favorite dancing shoes and you’ll be stepping out in style.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eCorsets are your secret weapon!\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you have a gala dinner or ball to go to and you fancy splashing out get a corseted ball gown made. A bespoke corset will take up top 4” off your waistline and smooth out your contours making you feel sculpted and sexy and definitely red carpet ready regardless of what the scales say!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Gilly Woo\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eGilly Woo – known to her family as Gill Cockwell – began her sewing career at the tender age of six and was sketching designs and fashioning garments by the time she was ten. Since 2000, she has built a brand synonymous with quality, individuality and style – though most of all, she helps women find and express their most confident, fabulous selves. From dresses cut to dazzle for brides who use wheelchairs to red carpet looks featured in magazines and worn to The National TV Awards Gill’s portfolio is as diverse as the people she’s worked with. She’s an experienced stylist on magazine photo shoots and catwalk shows, has taught hundreds of people to sew, and has even stepped back in time on  BBC TV…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/gilly-woo-designer\/\"\u003eRead Gill’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/joint-aches\/exercises-for-menopause-weight-gain\/\"\u003eExercise for menopause weight gain with Jane Dowling\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/skin-changes\/menopause-skincare\/\"\u003eMenopause skincare tips by Caroline Barnes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003c!--\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/low-mood\/can-a-great-outfit-lift-your-low-mood\/\"\u003eCan a great outfit lift your low mood?\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e--\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925160754", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/jennifer-burk-118076-unsplash-1-1600x1068_f12499b9-b5bc-4fb8-9b3d-66448f4e3775_768x.jpg?v=1704721661", "title" : "How to look and feel fabulous, whatever your waist size", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=239" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/239" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 14, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 239, "term_id": 239, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=650" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/650" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 6, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 650, "term_id": 650, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=679" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/679" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight Gain", "description": "Our carefully curated selection of products can provide support with menopause weight loss as part of a healthy lifestyle. Our range includes diet plans, vitamins, creams, and more. ", "id": 679, "term_id": 679, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538006834", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Rosie-Letts_small.jpg?v=1697658449", "name" : "Rosie Letts", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritional Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/vladislav-muslakov-261627-unsplash2-scaled-1-1600x900_92bf227c-60fd-497b-91a0-18793ff6029a_1200x.jpg?v=1704721657", "html" : "\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" data-verified=\"redactor\"\u003eWant to understand your menopause sleep problems from a nutritional perspective? Rosie Letts, qualified and registered nutritional therapist, explains what’s happening, and how can you can make positive changes to improve your nights\/take control of menopause sleep nightmares!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWe spend about one third of our lives asleep, and it’s as important to our bodies as eating, drinking and breathing. Sleep plays an active role in the regulation of emotions and energy levels, as well as longevity and our detoxification processes(1).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eFinding it impossible to nod off? Waking up at 3am?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUnfortunately, it is common for menopausal women to complain of difficulty falling and then staying asleep, often with night time or early morning waking(2,3). Having your sleep disturbed can make you feel lethargic, emotional and can create a heightened perception of your menopausal symptoms(4) – put simply, poor sleep makes everything feel so much worse.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAll menopausal women – in fact, all people! – benefit from improving the quality of their sleep, and the good news is that for many, this can be as simple as making a few nutrition and lifestyle adjustments. But first, let’s start with what’s happening in your body to cause the issue.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat causes menopause sleep problems?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eChanging hormones affecting your body’s calming chemicals\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou’ll be aware of the fluctuating hormones associated with your menopause. Specifically, progesterone levels generally start to decline altering your levels of GABA, a calming brain chemical. GABA, which is partly built using magnesium and vitamin B6 from foods, plays an important role in promoting calmness and good sleep(5,6). The good news is that you can support your body in producing this calming, sleep-supporting chemical by eating the right foods or using supplements – more on that to come!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eModern life and the stress hormone cortisol\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eStress can also affect sleep patterns. Your ‘stress hormone’ cortisol provides a boost of blood sugar energy enabling you to run for that bus, meet that deadline and other ‘micro-stressors’ consistent with everyday life. Yet in reality life is a succession of micro-stressors, with each one instigating the release of cortisol. This affects our natural sleep rhythm and can manifest itself as the inability to switch off at night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTips to reduce cortisol:\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you rely on coffee or a glass of wine to counterbalance your sleep deprivation they might be part of the problem. As stimulants they increase cortisol production which, in turn, means you’re less likely to have a good night’s sleep(7). Additionally, they deplete our bodies of magnesium, often referred to as ‘Nature’s Tranquilizer’, which supports muscle and mind relaxation(8), and is essential for GABA formation – that’s the calming, sleep-supporting chemical I mentioned earlier.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSkipping meals or eating quickly digested carbohydrates (biscuits, cakes, white bread, pasta and rice) triggers the release of cortisol which makes falling to sleep and sleeping through the night more difficult. Switch to slow energy releasing foods such as beans, lentils, chickpeas, brown pasta and rice to minimize sleep disrupting cortisol.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eGut health and good sleep\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou may be surprised to learn that your gut health plays an important role in sleep regulation. Your ‘sleep hormone’ melatonin is made from the ‘feel good’ brain chemical serotonin. 90% of the serotonin in your body is produced in your gut by the bacteria that live there(9).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWith this in mind, it makes sense to ensure that your gut, and its beneficial bacteria colonies, are in good shape by eating a range of vegetables including leafy green vegetables, onions, leeks and Jerusalem artichokes, fruits such as berries, apples and pears, plus oat, buckwheat and quinoa wholegrains. I also recommend getting a daily dose of fermented foods such as kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, miso or kimchi.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHow much sleep do I really need?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eMost of us need at least six hours of quality sleep each night. Fewer than six hours has been associated with weight gain (due to low energy levels you’re less likely to exercise and more likely to reach for high calorie pick-me-ups) and low mood, two common menopausal symptoms(3,10).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLifestyle Tips\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTry to manage your stress levels – mindfulness and exercise like yoga can help. Here are \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/menopause-yoga-nidra-disturbed-sleep\/\"\u003eyoga recommendations for disturbed sleep\u003c\/a\u003e. \u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eA warm bath with a cup of magnesium-rich Epsom Salts twice a week is a good way to top up magnesium levels(11). I like to add a calming lavender bath oil to relax me instantly.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEnsure your bedroom is cool and consider your bedding and pjs – your body needs to drop 1-2°C before sleeping(12).\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eNutrition Tips\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAvoid caffeine and alcohol, replacing with soothing teas that contain lemon balm or chamomile.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eReplace refined carbohydrates such as sugar and white bread, pasta or rice with energy sustaining foods including naturally sweet fruit like bananas, wholegrain bread, wholemeal rice and noodles or brown rice.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEat plenty of vitamin C rich foods such as vegetables and fruit to support your cortisol producing adrenal glands.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePromote relaxation and support GABA levels with magnesium rich foods like leafy green vegetables, nuts and wholegrains.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEnsure a daily intake of foods containing B vitamins such as meat, fish, eggs and wholegrains like oats and brown rice, or try a vitamin B supplement.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEat regularly so that your body doesn’t look for energy during the night by releasing cortisol which will wake you up. If you find that you wake up hungry in the night or very early in the morning, try having a small carbohydrate rich snack before bed. Something like hummus on oatcakes or a bircher muesli is perfect.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSupplements\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eMagnesium\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLow magnesium levels are common in menopausal women. I recommend sipping water during the day containing magnesium citrate plus a 375-400mg magnesium citrate tablet in the evening until your sleep patterns are established.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eL-theanine\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eFound in tea leaves, L-theanine may reduce ‘mental chatter’ at bedtime, support the relaxation response and improve sleep quality.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLemon Balm\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLemon balm prevents the body from converting GABA into a more excitory brain chemical so you’ll feel calmer for longer. In 3 small studies, between 300-1000mg of lemon balm extract reduced anxiety, insomnia and stress(13,14). A good way to try and include it in your bedtime routine is with a herbal tea.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eValerian\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eValerian regulates GABA’s calming activity(15). Studies show that taking 300-1000mg of valerian at night reliably improved sleep quality in people with insomnia and restlessness(16). It may also reduce pain associated with periods(17).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eKey points\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDisturbed sleep is a common complaint during the menopause\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eReduce your stress levels\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEat foods which support your body’s relaxation mechanisms\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEliminate stimulants\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAbout Rosie Letts\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eRosie is a qualified and registered nutritional therapist. She has worked with hundreds of women experiencing menopausal symptoms, helping to combine nutrition and lifestyle changes that have helped to prevent or reduce the severity of symptoms including sleeping problems, mood changes, weight gain, and headaches.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHer qualifications, memberships and awards include: BSc in Nutritional Therapy – University of Westminster; ICHAN outstanding practice 2018 award; Member of the Complementary \u0026amp; Natural Healthcare Council (CHNC); Member of the British Association of Nutritional Therapists (BANT).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/rosie-letts\/\"\u003eRead Rosie’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eReferences\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e1 Vyazovskiy, V. (2017). Sleep, recovery, and metaregulation: explaining the benefits of sleep. Nature and Science of Sleep 2015; 7, pp.171–184.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e2 Ameratunga, D. et al. Sleep disturbance in menopause. Internal Medicine Journal 2012;42(7), pp.742-7.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e3 Santoro, N. (2016). Perimenopause: From Research to Practice. Journal of Women’s Health, 25(4), pp.332-339.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e4 Larson, R. \u0026amp; Carter, J. (2016). Total sleep deprivation and pain perception during cold noxious stimuli in humans. Scandinavian Journal of Pain, 13(1), pp.12-16.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e5 Follesa, P. et al. (2000). Allopregnanolone synthesis in cerebellar granule cells: roles in regulation of GABAA receptor expression and function during progesterone treatment and withdrawal. Molecular Pharmacology, 57(6), pp.1262-1270.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e6 Ehlen, J. et al. (2010). GABA involvement in the circadian regulation of sleep. GABA and Sleep, pp. 303-321. Springer:Basel.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e7 Winkelmayer, W. (2005). Habitual Caffeine Intake and the Risk of Hypertension in Women. Journal of the American Medial Association, 294(18), p.2330.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e8 Johnson, S. (2018). The multifaceted and widespread pathology of magnesium deficiency Journal of Women’s Health 2016 Apr 1; 25(4), pp.332–339.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e9 Jenkins, T. et al. (2016). Influence of Tryptophan and Serotonin on Mood and Cognition with a Possible Role of the Gut-Brain Axis. Nutrients, 8(1), p.56.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e10 Baker, F. et al. (2018). Sleep problems during the menopausal transition: prevalence, impact, and management challenges. Nature and Science of Sleep, Vol 10, pp.73-95.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e11 Gröber, U. et al. (2017). Myth or Reality—Transdermal Magnesium?. Nutrients, 9(12), p.813\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e12 F Murphy, P. \u0026amp; Campbell, S. (1997). Night-time Drop in Body Temperature: A Physiological Trigger for Sleep Onset?. Sleep, 20(7), pp.505-511.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e13 Kennedy, D. et al. (2004). Attenuation of laboratory-induced stress in humans after acute administration of Melissa officinalis (Lemon Balm).. [online] Pdfs.semanticscholar.org. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pdfs.semanticscholar.org\/de8d\/56fcb9b841ecc5ca68883c1f945f8f595979.pdf\" rel=\"nofollow\"\u003ehttps:\/\/pdfs.semanticscholar.org\/de8d\/56fcb9b841ec…\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 25 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e14 Kennedy, D et al, D. (2002). Modulation of mood and cognitive performance following acute administration of Melissa officinalis (lemon balm). – PubMed – NCBI. [online] Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/12062586\" rel=\"nofollow\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/12062586\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 25 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e15 Benke, D. et al. (2009). GABAA receptors as in vivo substrate for the anxiolytic action of valerenic acid, a major constituent of valerian root extracts. Neuropharmacology, 56(1), pp.174-181.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e15 Bent, S. et al. (2006). Valerian for Sleep: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. The American Journal of Medicine, 119(12), pp.1005-1012.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e16 Cuellar, N. \u0026amp; Ratcliffe, S. (2009). Does valerian improve sleepiness and symptom severity in people with restless legs syndrome? [online] Available at: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/19284179\" rel=\"nofollow\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/19284179\u003c\/a\u003e [Accessed 25 Jan. 2019].\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e17 Mirabi, P. et al. (2011). Effects of valerian on the severity and systemic manifestations of dysmenorrhea. International Journal of Gynecology \u0026amp; Obstetrics, 115(3), pp.285-288.\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925127986", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/vladislav-muslakov-261627-unsplash2-scaled-1-1600x900_92bf227c-60fd-497b-91a0-18793ff6029a_768x.jpg?v=1704721657", "title" : "Natural ways to improve your sleep in menopause", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=675" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/675" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 11, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping Problems", "description": "Experiencing perimenopause or menopause related sleep problems? Explore our natural sleep remedies and clever ideas to help with restless nights - our selection of menopause sleep aids are tried and tested by the women who have been there too.", "id": 675, "term_id": 675, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538105138", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Caroline-Barnes2-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658453", "name" : "Caroline Barnes", "summary" : "", "title" : "Make-up Artist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Caroline_Barnes-1_2a82cf71-97a2-4669-beb5-58655702dafe_1200x.jpg?v=1704721656", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eMakeup for menopause… is it different?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eShould you change formulas to beat those hot flushes? What about skincare? Is it time to try something new? Celeb make up artist Caroline Barnes has created a speed beauty menopause makeup tutorial for you, creating a fresh, beautiful look and recommending products to try that will help you look – and feel – gorgeous.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ciframe loading=\"lazy\" title=\"Makeup for Menopause Tutorial by Caroline Barnes Speed Beauty\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/HCveCe5vWPI?feature=oembed\u0026amp;enablejsapi=1\u0026amp;origin=https:\/\/healthandher.com\" frameborder=\"0\" allow=\"accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share\" allowfullscreen=\"\" data-rocket-lazyload=\"fitvidscompatible\" data-lazy-src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/HCveCe5vWPI?feature=oembed\u0026amp;enablejsapi=1\u0026amp;origin=https:\/\/healthandher.com\" data-ll-status=\"loaded\" class=\"entered lazyloaded\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/skin-changes\/makeup-for-menopause-tutorial-by-caroline-barnes\/\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eShop our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/products\/type\/hair-skincare\/\"\u003eskincare range\u003c\/a\u003e - a variety of gentle, natural, handpicked products to soothe and enhance your skin during menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e6 skincare secrets\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhen oestrogen levels drop, collagen levels deplete, skin feels less bouncy, thinner and has more movement as it has less elasticity – everyone’s different but you will notice changes and might need to update your products.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf your skin has started to get oiler, try salicylic acid – to remove excess oil from pores – with hyaluronic acid to hydrate.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you suit something richer, VENeffect is a brand to look at – these products have been developed by a gynaecologist alongside skincare experts, and contains phytoestrogens that make your skin look like it does “on your best day”.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you’re hydrating your skin, make sure you exfoliate. Use a simple AHA on a cotton pad before moisturiser.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eStart double cleansing if you don’t yet! The cleaner your skin, the better your products absorb and work. Use an oil to take off makeup, then a cream cleanser.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDon’t forget to use an SPF every day.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e5 makeup for menopause must-knows\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIt is possible to wear foundation and concealer even if you get hot flushes – just make sure it’s a waterproof formula. Caroline likes Superfit by Clinique and Waterweight concealer by MAC.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eColoured powder is a no-no – the pigment gathers and collects on the skin and can look grubby if you perspire. Instead choose translucent powder or blotting paper.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eChoose a liquid blush that acts like a stain, and choose the colour depending on how your skin feels: warm pinky tones are great if you feel a little sallow or grey – they really give you a lift; but choose a nudey or peachy blush if your skin is inflamed or have rosacea.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAs we get older, we need more structure and definition around eyes, lips and lashes. But keep it simple and soft – no hard lines.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eA dab of highlighter in the inside corner of your eyes can give you a boost if you’re feeling tired.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.295; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eExperiencing hot flushes? Read: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/makeup-for-hot-flushes-by-caroline-barnes\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eMake up for Hot Flushes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/h4\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eMakeup for menopause final tips\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.295; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere are many ways you can do your makeup as you go through the menopause but in a nutshell, keep the structure in your makeup, add a little bit of colour to lift, really focus on your skincare, exfoliate and hydrate.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.295; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eBut most of all, give yourself a little bit of kindness. Make yourself feel as good as you can. It will make all the difference, and remember, all those symptoms won’t last forever!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAbout Caroline Barnes\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/caroline-barnes\/\"\u003eCaroline Barnes is one of the UK’s most established and celebrated make-up artists\u003c\/a\u003e. Her reputation for approachable beauty has helped her establish an enviable roster of clients from Diane Kruger, Rebecca Ferguson, Emma Watson and Olga Kurylenko to Kylie Minogue and Kelly Rowland. Caroline has a YouTube channel – Speed Beauty – where she offers expert beauty advice. Caroline knows exactly what women want and how to deliver it at speed. She also gives her time to the beauty industry charity, Look Good Feel Better, using her ‘midas touch’ to help restore confidence and wellbeing in women cancer sufferers.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/h4\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou might also be interested in...\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/managing-menopause-at-work\/\"\u003eHow to manage menopause in the workplace\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925095218", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Caroline_Barnes-1_2a82cf71-97a2-4669-beb5-58655702dafe_768x.jpg?v=1704721656", "title" : "Makeup for menopause tutorial by Caroline Barnes", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=674" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/674" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/skin-changes/", "name": "Skin Changes", "description": "Changing hormones at menopause can have a big impact on your skin, including increased dryness, itching, acne, a rash and even facial hair. Our range includes the most advanced nutritional supplements to support skin from within, as well as products to help plump, restore, hydrate and nourish even the most sensitive menopausal skin.", "id": 674, "term_id": 674, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "skin-changes" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538334514", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Dowling-3-scaled-aspect-ratio-1x1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658464", "name" : "Jane Dowling", "summary" : "", "title" : "Clinical Exercise Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/cyril-saulnier-250098-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1071_1d1749fd-10fe-46f2-8756-453fb16448da_1200x.jpg?v=1704721651", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWe all know that getting moving and being mindful about diet are the best way to fight menopause weight gain. But what if you’ve let your exercise regime slide, or really can’t face the idea of going to the gym? Jane Dowling, Clinical Exercise Practitioner – and menopause advocate at Meno \u0026amp; Me – has put together a simple, short chair-based routine to get your fitness regime started again.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“Moving more will help you feel better mentally and physically – and will help burn that menopausal belly fat!”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTop tips for fighting menopause weight gain \u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan data-verified=\"redactor\" data-redactor-tag=\"span\"\u003eTry to do this video three times per week, but not on consecutive days.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan data-verified=\"redactor\" data-redactor-tag=\"span\"\u003eIn between sessions, look at ways to become breathless in your everyday life: give yourself 10 minutes to park a bit further away or get off the bus a stop earlier and clock up more steps.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan data-verified=\"redactor\" data-redactor-tag=\"span\"\u003eDitch the lift and take the stairs at every opportunity.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan data-verified=\"redactor\" data-redactor-tag=\"span\"\u003eUse housework as an opportunity to exercise – put on some music and do it with more vigor!\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cspan data-verified=\"redactor\" data-redactor-tag=\"span\"\u003eTo monitor your steps how about downloading a step counter on your phone? There are lots of other gadgets on the markets that you can wear on your wrist to have a look at the amount of steps you take and how many calories you are burning.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003ethe best exercises for you to try in menopause\u003c\/a\u003e that are fun, intense and can help you control your weight and stay healthy through menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/h2iKrsURaIg\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e { \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\", \"@type\": \"VideoObject\", \"name\": \"Exercises for menopause weight gain with Jane Dowling of Meno \u0026 Me\", \"description\": \"We all know that getting moving and being mindful about diet are the best way to fight menopause weight gain. But what if you’ve let your exercise regime slide, or really can’t face the idea of going to the gym? Jane Dowling, Clinical Exercise Practitioner – and menopause advocate at Meno \u0026 Me (www.menoandme.com) – has put together a simple, short chair-based routine to get your fitness regime started again… \", \"thumbnailUrl\": [ \"https:\/\/img.youtube.com\/vi\/h2iKrsURaIg\/sddefault.jpg\" ], \"uploadDate\": \"2019-03-04T08:00:00+08:00\", \"duration\": \"PT28M53S\", \"contentUrl\": \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/watch?v=h2iKrsURaIg\", \"embedUrl\": \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/h2iKrsURaIg\", \"interactionStatistic\": { \"@type\": \"InteractionCounter\", \"interactionType\": { \"@type\": \"WatchAction\" }, \"userInteractionCount\": 6437 }, \"regionsAllowed\": \"GB,US\" } \u003c\/script\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eMore great ways to fight menopausal weight gain…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs well as putting together this fantastic video for you, Jane has some great suggestions to help you build on fitter foundations and get into great shape.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eJoin a local rec center\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eLocal rec centers often run classes and can allow you to access gym quality exercise at a fraction of the cost. If you have a specific problem such as weight management, high blood pressure, cholesterol, anxiety or depression your doctor can write a covering letter to the specialist instructor who will be running these classes you attend to make sure they’re safe for you.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTry some over 50’s sessions – make friends while keeping fit\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e“50’s sessions run at local rec centers and you will be surrounded by like minded women. These can be a studio class or session in the gym lead by an instructor who understand your needs. It’s a great way to become used to a gym or class environment to build up your confidence to take part in other activities.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAqua sessions are ideal if you have joint problems\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I love teaching these sessions! These are great if you have any joint problems. The classes are such fun and you will be surrounded by other menopausal women! You will burn more calories in this water-based class vs a land-based class as the water increases your workload without impact or stress on your joints. You can work harder without sweating!”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Jane Dowling\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eJane Dowling is a clinical exercise practitioner, health professional and menopause advocate. She combines her experience of menopause and experience as a coach to help women navigate through menopause and to come out the other side using her award-winning blog, Meno \u0026amp; Me , her qualifications include: PT award YMCA; BACR Phase iv Cardiac; Postural Stability – falls prevention for the elderly; Dr Dawn Skelton Later Life Training; Doctor referral scheme for Later Life Training.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/jane-dowling\/\"\u003eRead Jane’s full biography\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/bloating\/how-to-look-feel-fabulous-whatever-waist-size\/\"\u003eHow to look and feel fabulous, whatever your waist size\u003c\/a\u003e by Gilly Woo, Stylist\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\/\"\u003eMenopause nutrition\u003c\/a\u003e by Rosie Letts\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606925062450", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/cyril-saulnier-250098-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1071_1d1749fd-10fe-46f2-8756-453fb16448da_768x.jpg?v=1704721651", "title" : "Best exercises for menopausal weight gain", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=663" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=663" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=663" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/663" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 9, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/joint-aches/", "name": "Joint aches", "description": "Supplements for menopause joint pain can help relieve common joint aches and aching symptoms felt through perimenopause and menopause. Here are some of the best naturally based supplements and vitamins and support products can help relieve aches and pains that commonly occur in the legs, back, knees and pelvis during menopause. \r\n", "id": 663, "term_id": 663, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "joint-aches" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=679" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/679" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight Gain", "description": "Our carefully curated selection of products can provide support with menopause weight loss as part of a healthy lifestyle. Our range includes diet plans, vitamins, creams, and more. ", "id": 679, "term_id": 679, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538137906", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Ruth-aspect-ratio-1x1-1_small.jpg?v=1697658454", "name" : "Ruth Devlin", "summary" : "", "title" : "Menopause coach" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Signs_of_menopause_1_c55eed51-3a3a-4f98-8d48-614a11e45bc6_1200x.jpg?v=1707833752", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eRuth Devlin of the fantastic coaching consultancy Let’s Talk Menopause has been helping us to demystify this time of life for the lucky ones who don’t have to go through the experience first hand! As well as her brilliant Menopause for Men Guide, she’s created a straight-talking, down-to-earth menopause symptom overview to help men (and women!) understand exactly what’s going on…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePhysical symptoms of menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.38;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThese symptoms are classed as short term symptoms, but for many women certain ones can feel as though they are lasting a lifetime. As with any symptom. Each woman will experience these symptoms in completely different ways, with differing intensities and will respond to different treatments.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHot flashes – they affect 75% of women, each woman experiencing them in very different ways with differing intensities. That means she’s either going to look like she’s having “a slight glow” or like she’s just come off a squash court – get the picture?\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eNight sweats – those two words speak for themselves, make sure rooms are well ventilated, you might have to get used to arctic temperatures for a while! Encourage the wearing of natural fibres like cotton or bamboo and hydrate well throughout the day.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePalpitations – can often accompany hot flashes and can be alarming, always get these checked out by a doctor if worried; rarely at this time of life is it the effect of you walking into the room believe me…well past that now!\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eProblems with bleeding – irregular, heavy periods: all woman should get any change to their regular cycles checked out. Estrogen deficiency can cause all sorts of problems. Make sure if experiencing heavy bleeding that ‘she’ is not anemic as well. There are various medications that can be prescribed which can help or having an IUD inserted can really help.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eJoint aches: Not often associated with the menopause but estrogen plays an important role in the maintenance of joint and bone health.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eFine motor skills can be affected: has she been dropping things lately?\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eInsomnia and disturbed sleep: if she has been experiencing even half of the above symptoms more than likely sleep patterns will be disturbed.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWeight gain: women’s metabolic rate slow downs at this time of life accompanied by hormone fluctuations it can take a bit of tweaking and nudging to diet and exercise levels to get back on track.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eBloating: some women start reacting differently to certain foods – keep a food diary to find out which foods may be triggering this.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePsychological symptoms\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eCommon phrases associated with the psychological symptoms are ‘Brain fog” and “Red Mist”, which both aptly describe how sometimes your brain can feel during the perimenopause; like it’s wading through treacle!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhen I get onto these symptoms during a menopause workshop, I see the sheer relief pass over women’s faces when they realize that they are not the only ones suffering from these symptoms and that – hurrah – they are not going completely bonkers after all!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDon’t forget there will be other contributing factors causing these symptoms not just hormonal imbalance. We are often referred to as “the sandwich generation” within a family, squeezed in between those equally hormonal teenage children (who come with their own set of challenges, the little darlings!) and our aging parents, who can become increasingly challenging too, but in different ways.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSo it’s no wonder that, with all this to cope with, and the added stress of those flipping, fluctuating hormones getting thrown into the mix that women often feels a tad under pressure. They may, as a result, get angry and irritable, display irrational, out-of-character behavior and have heightened emotional sensitivity.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThis is ALL completely normal and understandable. DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR?!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePsychological symptoms can include…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAnxiety\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePoor concentration\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAnger\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePoor memory\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLow mood swings – very different from clinical depression\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIrritability\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePanic attacks\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eGenitourinary –\u003cspan\u003e r\u003c\/span\u003eeproductive and urinary symptoms\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eI would like to tell every woman I meet to LOVE YOUR VAGINA! Women should pay as much attention to their vaginas as they do their faces – seriously – think how much money is spent on facial products!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eVaginal symptoms can be some of the easiest to treat yet usually go unreported with so many women putting up and shutting up… fear not, help is at hand!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere is a huge range of vaginal moisturizers and lubricants on the market which can help to hydrate and moisturize (internally and externally), if those don’t hit the mark then vaginal estrogen can be prescribed by your doctor – this is a tiny dose compared to systemic estrogen and can have really good results.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eOne other very important area to address is the pelvic floor… this goes for you too (oh yes you have a pelvic floor too, what do you think is holding up your bits and bobs?!) Every woman should do regular pelvic floor exercises this not only helps with vaginal issues it can help with all the urinary ones too and by doing them you and she could experience better orgasms – no brainer really!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eReproductive and urinary symptoms can include…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eVaginal irritation, dryness, soreness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eVaginal atrophy (thinning of tissues)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eVaginal infections – estrogen deficiency alters the acidity of the vagina making some women more susceptible to infections.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUrinary problems – frequency, urgency, leakage, recurrent UTI\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eOveractive bladder\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eReduced sex drive\/loss of libido\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIntercourse can be uncomfortable\/painful\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere you have it – menopause symptoms in a nutshell. If a woman you’re close to is experiencing any of these and needs help, our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003eMenopause and perimenopause Symptom checker\u003c\/a\u003e is a good place to start. It’s a handy shortcut to expert advice from experts including top gynecologists, friendly doctors, been-there personal trainers, Relate therapists, even celeb make-up artists! It even recommends helpful products too, all in one handy place…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Ruth Devlin\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAfter experiencing an array of perimenopausal symptoms herself and realising the lack of consistent information available at the time, Registered Nurse Ruth Devlin decided things had to change. Teaming up with like-minded women from healthcare backgrounds, she co-founded Let’s Talk Menopause to raise awareness about the menopause, demystifying it and most importantly, providing easy access to information and support. She is a member of the British Menopause Society and has liaised with menopause specialists to establish what women really want, and need, to know about the menopause. It’s no surprise, then, that she has appeared on everything from BBC Radio 4s Woman’s Hour to the BBC Insider’s Guide to the Menopause documentary with Kirsty Wark.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/ruth-devlin\/\"\u003eRead Ruth’s full biography here.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-and-relationships\/\"\u003eMenopause and relationships\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/how-to-manage-stress-anxiety\/\"\u003eHow to manage stress, anxiety and anger and keep your relationship strong\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive\/have-you-lost-your-libido-learn-how-to-work-through-it-as-a-couple\/\"\u003eHave you lost your libido? Learn how to work through it as a couple\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.2;\" dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/painful-sex-and-relationships\/\"\u003ePainful sex and relationships – how to talk about it and improve things together\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003e \u003c\/h4\u003e", "id" : "606925029682", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Signs_of_menopause_1_c55eed51-3a3a-4f98-8d48-614a11e45bc6_768x.jpg?v=1707833752", "title" : "A quick tour of menopause symptoms", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/anton-darius-thesollers-1212783-unsplash__1_-1_4c9f2e0c-d40e-40d5-bd65-7f1f413b656c_1200x.jpg?v=1704721647", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan discusses headaches at menopause. Why do they happen, and how can you reduce the impact they’re having on your life. From lifestyle changes to Hormone Therapy (HT), there’s a lot you can do to reduce menopause-related headaches.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eWhy do some women get headaches that occur around menopause?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a few of reasons women experience headaches around menopause. Here are some common reasons that may be contributing to your symptoms:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHormones\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eEstrogen causes the blood vessels to expand and progesterone causes them to tighten. Around menopause there is fluctuation and imbalance of these hormones causing the blood vessels to keep expanding and contracting. This can lead to a build-up of pressure in the head resulting in pain – what’s commonly called a ‘pressure headache’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome women experience migraines for a few days around their periods. This is due to the natural drop in estrogen levels. As you approach the menopause, some women can experience more regular periods and therefore experience these headaches more often.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTiredness and stress\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are many causes of sleep problems and stress around the menopause. This can lead to tension headaches, with a feeling of tightness around the forehead and back of the head and neck.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eHow can you manage and reduce headaches?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eHeadaches are a common menopause symptom, but thankfully, there’s a lot you can do to reduce and manage them. The first set of actions you can take are lifestyle-focused:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eConsider your diet\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome people find that certain foods and drink trigger headaches, in particular migraines. It may be worth keeping a diary to see if there are any triggers, and try removing these from your diet. Common triggers include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eCaffeine\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAlcohol\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMonosodium glutamate (MSG)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eCheese\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eCitrus fruits\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eChocolate\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSpicy foods\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eBe drink-aware\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is important to drink plenty of water and keep well hydrated – you should aim to drink around 1\/2-1 gallon of water a day to keep well hydrated.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is also important to limit caffeine and alcohol intake as these can cause or worsen headaches. You might find some improvement in your symptoms by swapping to de-caffeinated teas and coffees. In addition, there is an ever growing choice of non-alcoholic beverages available in shops and restaurants. These can be a great alternative, just be mindful of the high sugar content that some of these contain.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eReduce stress and improve sleep\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eLack of sleep and stress may be contributing to your headaches and this can become a vicious cycle. By addressing this aspect of your life, you may notice an improvement in your symptoms. Find more in my doctor’s guide to Stress, anxiety, and brain fog.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eWhat treatments are available?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHormone Therapy (HT)\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you’re experiencing migraines associated with your periods then you may benefit from estrogen replacement around this time. It is important you discuss this with your doctor as some hormone therapies can trigger migraines or may even be unsafe. You can read more about estrogen therapy in this Doctor’s guide to HT\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eContinuous contraceptive pills\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor some women who are taking the contraceptive pill with estrogen, you may find headaches on the days you are not taking the pills. This is due to the drop in estrogen levels around this time. You may benefit from taking several of these pill packets without a break ‘back to back’ to avoid this sudden fall in estrogen levels. It is important to discuss with your doctor what options are available and safe for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAnti-migraine tablets and pain relief\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eMedications are available ‘over the counter’ in most local pharmacies and range from simple pain relief to anti-migraine tablets. They are used only as short term option for headaches. If your symptoms persist, you should see your healthcare provider to check there is nothing else going on.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Dr Shilpa McQuillan MRCGP MRCOG DFSRH\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan is a with a difference; she brings a wealth of specialist knowledge when it comes to women’s health. Previously a Hospital Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Shilpa now works in general practice, providing patients with resident expertise and knowledge on women’s health concerns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/shilpa-mcquillan\/\"\u003eRead Shilpa’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/headaches\/menopause-headaches\/\"\u003eHeadaches during menopause – does diet make a difference?\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606924996914", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/anton-darius-thesollers-1212783-unsplash__1_-1_4c9f2e0c-d40e-40d5-bd65-7f1f413b656c_768x.jpg?v=1704721647", "title" : "Menopause and Headaches – A Doctor’s overview", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=232" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=232" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=232" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/232" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/headaches/", "name": "Headaches", "description": "Headaches and migraines may be a common issue during menopause and perimenopause, and they can spike with annoying regularity because of changing hormones. Here are some of the best natural products to soothe and manage menopause headaches.", "id": 232, "term_id": 232, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "headaches" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=659" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=659" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=659" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/659" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/headaches/", "name": "Headaches", "description": "Headaches and migraines may be a common issue during menopause and perimenopause, and they can spike with annoying regularity because of changing hormones. Here are some of the best natural products to soothe and manage menopause headaches.", "id": 659, "term_id": 659, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "headaches" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538268978", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Gill_3-576x575_small.jpg?v=1697658461", "name" : "Gilly Woo", "summary" : "", "title" : "Stylist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/danny-g-1053970-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1067_e0019070-6aa1-4785-854d-b0f2d761d70f_1200x.jpg?v=1704721646", "html" : "\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDo you regularly wake up drenched in sweat, night clothes soaked through, stuck to your sheets? Menopause related night sweats are a really unfortunate side effect, affecting 70% of women – but the good news is that there’s much you can do to alleviate night sweats by choosing the right bedding and nightwear. Stylist and dressmaker Gilly Woo explains….\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDidn’t imagine a stylist writing about night sweats? Well, we know a thing two about fabric and homewares too, and in this article I’m going to explain how the bedlinen and pajamas you choose can help keep you cool and dry throughout the night so you can wake feeling refreshed and ready to face the day.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eBrilliant bamboo\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eFor night clothes choose lightweight, comfortable, sweat-wicking fabrics that dry quickly such as bamboo jersey. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAfter the menopause night sweats come the chills…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eNatural fibers can feel nice against the skin but fabrics made of silk and cotton can hold moisture and make you feel wetter longer so they may be best avoided. The same applies with sheets and pillow cases, a poly cotton blend will dry quicker but some people find they prefer the feel of 100% cotton so it’s worth experimenting to see what you feel most comfortable in. Bamboo is the exception to the rule – it’s natural, breathable and dries quickly.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhatever fabric you choose for your bed sheets make sure it’s lightweight and doesn’t have too tight a weave. If possible hold it up to the light, the more light that passes through the fabric the more breathable it is.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eComfy support for women with curves\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you are blessed with an ample bosom you will probably find that under boob and cleavage sweat is a problem at night and might feel more comfortable with a little support.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eWear a top with secret support\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eA lot of shops make nightwear with a hidden elastic bandeau panel to offer light support while you sleep and help wick sweat away from your skin.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eTry a Tata towel\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAlternatively try a sleep bra or a Tata Towel. A Tata Towel is a towelling garment you wear around your neck which cups both boobs in soft, moisture absorbing fabric without the restriction of a proper camisole top or bra.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eSleep wear is such a personal thing…\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou may be happiest sleeping naked as the day you were born (which is great for letting your skin breathe!) or in full on pajamas.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you do wear clothes to bed then try putting them in a zip-lock bag and laying them in the freezer for an hour or so before bed, you could also do this with a top sheet, pillow case, or even just some light cotton socks to lower your body temperature a little when you first get into bed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLifestyle tips for chilled out nights\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003ePut it on ice\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhile you’re there at the freezer make some ice. Take a glass of water to bed with you with lots of ice in it. When you wake in the night the water will still be cool and refreshing if you’re experiencing a hot flash – if you have an insulated ‘keep cool’ water bottle or cup, better yet\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eBe your own #1 fan\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eKeep a cooling sleep fan or an air conditioning unit by your bed, a paper or fabric fan may be best if you share your bed with a partner as it’s silent, but little electric ones are greats too. It’s actually more effective to try to avoid wiping away the sweat and to gently waft cool air over your body instead, sweat is your bodies natural cooling system and wiping it away will only lead to more being produced.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eLose the duvet!\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTry sleeping under a top sheet, with a light blanket on top if you are initially cold. If you wake if the night, wafting the layers will trap cool air and help dry the sweat. If you share your bed with a partner who prefers a duvet you could keep a sarong by your bed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you wake in the night sweating under your half of the duvet kick it off and grab your sarong, by wafting it around a little you can also use it in place of a fan to help air get to your body and cool you down. Sarongs are usually made from quick drying lightweight, breathable materials too so it’s a perfect thing to drape over you whilst still letting cool air get to your skin. Another option is to opt for two separate duvets of different tog weights, so your partner can snuggle under a winter weight if you need to keep the windows open!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eChilly pillows\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eKeep a cool pack under your pillow so you can turn it in the night and get that dreamy ‘cool side’ feeling on steroids! I’ve also heard great things about these Huggee cooling pillows from friends who find night sweats a problem, though haven’t tried one personally. These are much nicer than the gel packs that you can put on your pillow, which quickly feel clammy and unpleasant, and are very bad for your skin. Imagine damp, clammy plastic on your face all night… not recommended!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eTry a cooling mattress topper\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere are lots on the market, so do some research and read some reviews to see which one is best for you. When choosing a mattress or pillows avoid memory foam which can trap body heat, and opt for latex instead which is natural and breathable and will do a better job of distributing heat and helping you stay cool. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Gilly Woo\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eGilly Woo – known to her family as Gill Cockwell – began her sewing career at the tender age of six and was sketching designs and fashioning garments by the time she was ten. Since 2000, she has built a brand synonymous with quality, individuality and style – though most of all, she helps women find and express their most confident, fabulous selves. From dresses cut to dazzle for brides who use wheelchairs to red carpet looks featured in magazines and worn to The National TV Awards Gill’s portfolio is as diverse as the people she’s worked with. She’s an experienced stylist on magazine photo shoots and catwalk shows, has taught hundreds of people to sew, and has even stepped back in time on UK TV…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/gilly-woo-designer\/\"\u003eRead Gill’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/herbal-remedies-to-try-for-night-sweats\/\"\u003eNight Sweats – the herbal approach to a more chilled night’s sleep by Anita Ralph\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes\/yoga-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eYoga for hot flashes by Uma Dinsmore-Tuli\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606924964146", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/danny-g-1053970-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1067_e0019070-6aa1-4785-854d-b0f2d761d70f_768x.jpg?v=1704721646", "title" : "What is the best nightwear for menopause night sweats?", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=668" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/668" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/night-sweats/", "name": "Night Sweats", "description": "Night sweats in menopause occur frequently and can be a challenge to manage for many. Here are some of the best supplements, remedies and products to help deal with the symptoms and keep you cool so you can enjoy a better night of sleep.", "id": 668, "term_id": 668, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "night-sweats" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=675" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/675" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 11, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping Problems", "description": "Experiencing perimenopause or menopause related sleep problems? Explore our natural sleep remedies and clever ideas to help with restless nights - our selection of menopause sleep aids are tried and tested by the women who have been there too.", "id": 675, "term_id": 675, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537974066", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Uma-Dinsmore-Tuli-aspect-ratio-1x1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658447", "name" : "Uma Dinsmore-Tuli", "summary" : "", "title" : "Yoga Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/tracey-hocking-728714-unsplash-1600x1069_fbbf5fee-7400-4a4e-bff0-841044880c14_1200x.jpg?v=1704721644", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eYoga Nidra is a special kind of yoga that helps you rest and restore through what’s called ‘yogic sleep’. It’s a kind of guided meditation that helps your brain shift from its busy waking conscious state into a calmer more relaxed state. It helps you ‘power down’, releasing serotonin (the happiness hormone), and guiding you into a restorative meditative state, or a deep, peaceful asleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cdiv\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat to expect\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThe practice is really easy – you simply lie still and follow the guided meditation, letting the tension of the day go, and welcoming peace and sleep. After the practice you can either stay asleep or reawaken feeling happier, calmer and more rested.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere are two versions of this practice – one will wake you at the end, the other lets you drift into sleep. The second version is really helpful if you wake in the middle of the night: pop your headphones on and play it on your phone in bed. You needn’t watch the video once you have learned how to set up your space; just listen to the meditation and drift back to sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat will you need?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou can do Yoga Nidra wearing anything you like, as long as it’s comfortable. You will need to make a peaceful space to do the practice: in bed with your legs propped up as Uma explains; on the floor on top of a duvet with your legs on the couch; or on a yoga mat, well supported by bolsters. Plenty of blankets to keep you warm are a good idea, and if it’s day time, something to cover your eyes can help you rest and relax into the practice.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYoga Nidra: a supercharged catnap\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAmazingly, even if you don’t sleep, Yoga Nidra will leave you feeling like you have really rested. Many women who practice the technique regularly say that they come back from their practice feeling fully restored – and according to Yoga Journal, 45 minutes of yogic sleep feels like 3 hours of regular sleep. So if you have had a bad night’s sleep, this 30 minute practice will help to recharge your batteries.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDaytime – with wakening cue\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/jCGcoDg6dus\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e { \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\", \"@type\": \"VideoObject\", \"name\": \"Menopause Yoga Nidra for disturbed sleep and low mood – daytime supercharged catnap version\", \"description\": \"Yoga Nidra is a special kind of yoga that helps you rest and restore through what’s called ‘yogic sleep’. It’s a kind of guided meditation that helps your brain shift from its busy waking conscious state into a calmer more relaxed state. It helps you ‘power down’, releasing serotonin (the happiness hormone), and guiding you into a restorative meditative state, or a deep, peaceful asleep.\", \"thumbnailUrl\": [ \"https:\/\/img.youtube.com\/vi\/jCGcoDg6dus\/sddefault.jpg\" ], \"uploadDate\": \"2019-03-04T08:00:00+08:00\", \"duration\": \"PT38M17S\", \"contentUrl\": \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/watch?v=jCGcoDg6dus\", \"embedUrl\": \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/jCGcoDg6dus\", \"interactionStatistic\": { \"@type\": \"InteractionCounter\", \"interactionType\": { \"@type\": \"WatchAction\" }, \"userInteractionCount\": 2464 }, \"regionsAllowed\": \"GB,US\" } \u003c\/script\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eNight time – (without wakening cue) helps you drift into sleep and stay there\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/ryf2pmUhKSE\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cscript type=\"application\/ld+json\"\u003e { \"@context\": \"https:\/\/schema.org\", \"@type\": \"VideoObject\", \"name\": \"Menopause Yoga Nidra for disturbed sleep and low mood – STAY ASLEEP (no wake-up call at the end)\", \"description\": \"Yoga Nidra is a special kind of yoga that helps you rest and restore through what’s called ‘yogic sleep’. It’s a kind of guided meditation that helps your brain shift from its busy waking conscious state into a calmer more relaxed state. It helps you ‘power down’, releasing serotonin (the happiness hormone), and guiding you into a restorative meditative state, or a deep, peaceful asleep. This 'stay asleep' version is really helpful if you wake in the middle of the night: pop your headphones on and play it on your phone in bed. You needn’t watch the video once you have learned how to set up your space; just listen to the meditation and drift back to sleep.\", \"thumbnailUrl\": [ \"https:\/\/img.youtube.com\/vi\/ryf2pmUhKSE\/sddefault.jpg\" ], \"uploadDate\": \"2019-03-04T08:00:00+08:00\", \"duration\": \"PT33M28S\", \"contentUrl\": \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/watch?v=ryf2pmUhKSE\", \"embedUrl\": \"https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/ryf2pmUhKSE\", \"interactionStatistic\": { \"@type\": \"InteractionCounter\", \"interactionType\": { \"@type\": \"WatchAction\" }, \"userInteractionCount\": 6134 }, \"regionsAllowed\": \"GB,US\" } \u003c\/script\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAbout Uma Dinsmore-Tuli\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUma has 20 years experience of sharing yoga therapy for women’s health, though she started her yoga career aged four, joining her mom watching yoga on TV. Her career since has been just as intellectually curious and enquiring, spanning different schools of yoga and yoga therapy including Structural Yoga Therapy, Satyananda Yoga and Iyengar Yoga.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUma gained her Yoga Biomedical Trust Diploma in Yoga Therapy in 1999, and subsequently trained in Structural Yoga Therapy and Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy, and worked as a yoga therapist with special expertise in women’s health. She is a recognised teacher of the British Wheel of Yoga, and is an International Association of Yoga Therapists’ Certified Yoga Therapist (C-IAYT).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/uma-dinsmore-tuli\/\"\u003eRead Uma’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/nutrition-for-sleep\/\"\u003eNutrition for sleep – natural ways to improve your menopause sleep\u003c\/a\u003e by nutritionist Rosie Letts\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e", "id" : "606924931378", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/tracey-hocking-728714-unsplash-1600x1069_fbbf5fee-7400-4a4e-bff0-841044880c14_768x.jpg?v=1704721644", "title" : "Menopause yoga nidra for disturbed sleep and low mood", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=675" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/675" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 11, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping Problems", "description": "Experiencing perimenopause or menopause related sleep problems? Explore our natural sleep remedies and clever ideas to help with restless nights - our selection of menopause sleep aids are tried and tested by the women who have been there too.", "id": 675, "term_id": 675, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538334514", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Dowling-3-scaled-aspect-ratio-1x1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658464", "name" : "Jane Dowling", "summary" : "", "title" : "Clinical Exercise Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/natalie-grainger-177063-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1068_1200x.jpg?v=1704721641", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHere is a simple routine you can do every day to ease aching joints – a menopause symptom that is common but still surprises many of us!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThese easy exercises really help with everyday stiffness and pain, and aid ease of movement.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cblockquote\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“Motion is lotion, ladies!”. – Jane Dowling. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003ethe best exercises for you to try during menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/blockquote\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/N-FA1_hS3Eo\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eFive must-knows about joint aches from Jane\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eIf you do have a recurring joint problem or ache that will not go away, please see your healthcare provider or a specialist such as a physiotherapist or osteopath. Some doctors can refer you onto a specialist.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eRemember that while some doctors might suggest that you treat the symptoms with pain killers, a specialist will look and treat the actual cause of the problem.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eI advise clients who have joint or muscle problems that don’t go away, to ask to see a specialist sooner rather than later – this can really help long term, and stops one problem leading to others.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePlease don’t be frightened “try before you buy!” if you seek treatment from a specialist. Ask them how long they have been treating patients and if they understand the menopausal body.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/joint-aches\/yoga-for-menopause-joint-pain\/\"\u003eYoga for menopause joint aches by Uma Dinsmore-Tuli\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606924898610", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/natalie-grainger-177063-unsplash__1_-1-1600x1068_768x.jpg?v=1704721641", "title" : "Easy stretches for aching joints", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=663" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=663" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=663" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/663" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 9, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/joint-aches/", "name": "Joint aches", "description": "Supplements for menopause joint pain can help relieve common joint aches and aching symptoms felt through perimenopause and menopause. Here are some of the best naturally based supplements and vitamins and support products can help relieve aches and pains that commonly occur in the legs, back, knees and pelvis during menopause. \r\n", "id": 663, "term_id": 663, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "joint-aches" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538236210", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/AnneH-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658459", "name" : "Anne Henderson", "summary" : "", "title" : "Consultant Gynaecologist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/kendal-james-1201065-unsplash__1_-1_12b54e97-81c5-43f4-be85-db0229bed305_1200x.jpg?v=1704721640", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eMany women are surprised by the changes to cognitive function that can occur around the menopause; brain fog might sound funny, but it certainly doesn’t feel that way. Psychological problems and low mood can be very common too – anxiety, phobias and panic attacks can occur for the first time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAnne Henderson, our consultant gynecologist, explains what’s happening and how you can manage these issues by working out the root cause, which can actually be dropping estrogen levels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eShe explains how hormone replacement therapy (HT) can be helpful if this is the cause, and why’s important to consider a holistic approach too.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/vZsRcMwSQyw\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003ePrefer to read? Here’s the text version of Anne’s video\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch4\u003eMood changes, anxiety, brain – what are these symptoms?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is one of the most common groups of symptoms that women seek help about. It’s also a group that many women do not recognize as being associated with the menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMany say they are surprised that consulting a gynecologist is helpful when they’ve effectively got psychological problems. But the key to the issue is declining estrogen levels associated with the menopause, which can have a huge impact on brain function at all levels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/mood-changes-during-menopause-does-what-you-eat-make-a-difference\/\"\u003eMood changes during menopause does what you eat make a difference? \u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWomen commonly experience symptoms which fall into two groups:\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eCognitive function\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWomen may present worries about their memory and recall. Day to day function, their ability to multitask, their ability to concentrate – it can be hard to remember simple things like names for example.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003ePsychological\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThese include a sense of anxiety, which can come on in the menopause for the very first time. Women may even present with panic attacks and phobias when they’ve previously had very stable backgrounds. Low mood is another issue; many women experience depression for the very first time with no previous history.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat’s the connection between mood changes, anxiety, brain fog and menopause?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere is a direct link between the estrogen changes at the time of perimenopause and menopause, and the psychological and central nervous system symptoms which women suffer.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is due to the fact that certain areas of the brain – particularly those associated with mood control, with anxiety and with cognitive function, such as the limbic system and the hippocampus – have a very high number of receptors that are responsive to estrogen. When the levels of the hormones start to decline, the receptors are no longer ‘fed’, they don’t function properly and symptoms and side effects can arise.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow can it be treated or managed?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eTreatment options depend very much on whether a woman is experiencing additional menopausal symptoms. If hot flashes and sweats, poor sleep, tiredness and other physical symptoms are troubling you, there is no doubt that HT can be a huge benefit across the board.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBut even in women who have isolated psychological symptoms, there is a lot of scientific evidence that estrogen replacement should be the first line treatment for mood problems. It certainly performs better than SSRI (Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) and other forms of antidepressants, and has fewer side effects.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere is \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/coping-with-emotions-menopause\/\"\u003ecoping with your emotions during menopause for tips and advice\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow can I get help and help myself?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eI recommend patients seek help in any way that they think may be beneficial, looking holistically at the situation. I don’t think that HT should be used in isolation. Women should try to keep fit so exercise particularly weight bearing exercise can be very helpful.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome women also look at other forms of complementary therapy; herbal therapies, meditation and so on. I’m highly supportive of all those forms of treatment because there is evidence that it can be beneficial.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat questions do other women ask about this?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome of the commonest questions I get asked are “am I going mad?” And “is it just me?” This is probably because very few women associate the profound psychological changes that happen at the menopause with the menopause itself.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWomen often associate flashes and sweats and tiredness and joint aches and vaginal dryness with a lack of hormones, but they rarely link the psychological and cognitive changes which are very real and actually in many cases can impact on the quality of life even more than the physical symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Anne Henderson\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eOur fantastic Consultant Gynecologist Anne Henderson has worked within the health sectors for 15 years. From running large-scale menopause clinics where she helped hundreds of women access then-pioneering body identical hormones through to working with complementary practitioners to provide truly holistic care, Anne leads the way when it comes to caring, innovative, whole-woman focused practice.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606924865842", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/kendal-james-1201065-unsplash__1_-1_12b54e97-81c5-43f4-be85-db0229bed305_768x.jpg?v=1704721640", "title" : "Menopause mood changes and brain fog – the surprising cognitive and psychological symptoms", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=653" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/653" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 12, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/brain-fog/", "name": "Brain Fog", "description": "Here are the best supplements and vitamins for brain fog a symptom that can be common during menopause. Menopause can also cause; memory loss and other cognitive issues but these vitamin supplements support products could help you begin to feel like yourself again.", "id": 653, "term_id": 653, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "brain-fog" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538301746", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/AnitaNEW_jpeg_small.jpg?v=1697658463", "name" : "Anita Ralph", "summary" : "“Herbal medicine has so much to offer women in managing their health, and is particularly good at helping with functional conditions such as menopause and perimenopause.”", "title" : "Qualified Medical Herbalist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/analise-benevides-1394701-unsplash__1__ilbw-3k-1_eddb3ae6-b012-4430-bd73-7014a81e8a53_1200x.jpg?v=1704721633", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eQualified Medical Herbalist Anita Ralph discusses natural and herbal remedies for night sweats alongside other herbal based methods to try to control night sweats. Well-tolerated, safe and highly effective, can medicinal herbs and food plants provide a natural route to a calmer, cooler night’s sleep?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/\"\u003eNight sweats are a common symptom for women\u003c\/a\u003e and can start several years before menopause itself. They may come and go, sometimes around a period, or in phases and can disappear just as quickly for months at a time. Although they are primarily associated with a reduction in estrogen levels, they can also be related to excessive stress coping hormones. Once you have eliminated other causes such as infections or inflammation, then the focus should be on addressing the stress factors in your life.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003ePerhaps you have never slept well?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eEven if you were a good sleep person before the night sweats started, taking herbs that relax and are traditionally used to help sleep can often help reduce night sweats. There are so many herbs to choose from, and none of them are addictive or habit forming, so it is likely to be a case of finding out which herbs your body responds to the best.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHerbs that help\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eLemon balm, Lavender, and Lime blossom. These herbs have all become more well known in recent years as relaxing, soothing and pleasant herbs to take either as a tea or in a capsule before bed. All three herbs can be taken alongside conventional medication, and pose no risk if used over long periods of time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eLemon balm\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eAlso known as melissa or bee balm, lemon balm is a common garden herb in the same family as mint. It has a gorgeous lemony scent, and tastes ‘green’ and not unlike a lemon tea. It has demonstrated benefits for people with IBS symptoms, as well as aiding relaxation.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eLavender\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnother mint family herb, lavender and has a long history as a relaxing sleep aid. It too has digestive benefits and can relieve indigestion for some people.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eLime blossom\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis medicine comes from the sweet scented flowers of the European lime or linden tree – not the citrus fruit as you might expect. It’s a popular herbal tea or infusion to help with night sweats and used in many European countries where is it still an official remedy for sleeplessness in children or adults. It’s really useful, as it is also a remedy for sweating due to its soothing effect on the blood vessels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eCan stress have an impact?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is worth thinking about how stressed you feel during the daytime, if you are experiencing night sweats. High stress hormone levels in the day can lead to it just being too difficult to relax sufficiently at night to switch of the stress hormones at night, which can mean stress increases the frequency of night sweats.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eCheck you are not eating too late, that you are drinking enough water, and that you take regular breaks from sitting down, or work, or running around generally.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBreathe! It can also be helpful to focus on creating a calming bedtime routine, and perhaps exploring a relaxation practice such as \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/menopause-yoga-nidra-disturbed-sleep\/\"\u003eyoga nidra.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eCan a change in diet help?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eTry switching over to herbal teas during the daytime.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eGreat cooling herbs include mint tea, fennel, chamomile tea and nettle teas – many are readily available in teabags in most supermarkets today.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou can drink herb teas hot, or even cold with ice and a slice! If herb tea is really not for you – then help yourself drink enough cool water during the day – add a slice of cucumber, a sliced strawberry or citrus fruit to give your tap water a fresh cool taste.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are many products sold aimed at treating hot flashes and night sweats, but the causes for each of us are often unique to us.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo, if over-the-counter remedies have not worked for you, a consultation with a qualified medical herbalist may help show you why, and how to stop them.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat to expect if you consult a medical herbalist\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThey will make a personal assessment of your unique situation, and prescribe stronger herbal medicines in carefully prepared mixtures that are more likely to suit your personal circumstances. A medical herbalist can keep track of your blood pressure or other health factors that may be impacting on the severity of your symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eNext steps and handy resources\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eHerbs and natural medicines – though generally very safe and well tolerated – can be incredibly powerful, so it’s really important to research and choose your practitioner carefully. Look for:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.americanherbalistsguild.com\/member-profiles\"\u003eAmerican Herbalists Guild\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eA Masters degree in herbal medicine\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eDid you know? A fully qualified medical herbalist trains for 4 years – and studies the same medical sciences as a medical doctor.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eAbout Anita Ralph\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnita harnesses the powerful medicine of plants and foods to provide a natural alternative – or complement – to pharmaceutical medicines. She runs her own busy herbal consultancy, inspires the next generation as a teacher of herbal medicine, and works alongside our lead gynecologist to offer a holistic approach to women’s healthcare through the Gynae Expert practice. A practicing medical herbalist since 1990, Anita is a member of the \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.nimh.org.uk\/\"\u003eNational Institute of Medical Herbalist\u003c\/a\u003es and the \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.thecpp.org\/\"\u003eCollege of Practitioners of Phytotherapy\u003c\/a\u003e and has a masters degree in herbal medicine. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/anita-ralph\/\"\u003eRead Anita’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/best-nightwear-for-menopause\/\"\u003eWant the best nightwear for menopause night sweats? by stylist Gilly Woo\u003c\/a\u003e or take a look at \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes\/hot-flashes-a-herbal-perspective\/\"\u003eHot flashes a herbal perspective\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606924833074", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/analise-benevides-1394701-unsplash__1__ilbw-3k-1_eddb3ae6-b012-4430-bd73-7014a81e8a53_768x.jpg?v=1704721633", "title" : "Herbal remedies for night sweats", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=668" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/668" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/night-sweats/", "name": "Night Sweats", "description": "Night sweats in menopause occur frequently and can be a challenge to manage for many. Here are some of the best supplements, remedies and products to help deal with the symptoms and keep you cool so you can enjoy a better night of sleep.", "id": 668, "term_id": 668, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "night-sweats" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=675" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/675" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 11, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping Problems", "description": "Experiencing perimenopause or menopause related sleep problems? Explore our natural sleep remedies and clever ideas to help with restless nights - our selection of menopause sleep aids are tried and tested by the women who have been there too.", "id": 675, "term_id": 675, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606517297458", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Dr-R-Tomlinson-Headshot-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697653989", "name" : "Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Menopause_testosterone_denys-nevozhai-z0nVqfrOqWA-unsplash-1600x1067_08084899-9f8d-4e68-9336-9c8e05317085_1200x.jpg?v=1704721625", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eTestosterone tends to be primarily spoken of as a ‘male’ hormone but, along with estrogen and progesterone, it is also an important one for women. Getting enough of it is important for energy levels, a healthy sex drive, maintaining muscle mass and bone health during menopause\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e and some studies suggest it can help with psychological and other physical symptoms.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e Levels of it, however, decline gradually with age and tend to plateau around the time many women enter \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/what-is-perimenopause\/\"\u003eperimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e and this can lead to a \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive\/loss-sex-drive-menopause-biological-psychological\/\"\u003eloss of sex drive\u003c\/a\u003e, energy, low mood and harm concentration and confidence levels.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e It also has a part to play in bone, muscle and skin health.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRecent data analyzed by \u003cem\u003eThe Pharmaceutical Journal\u003c\/em\u003e reveals NHS prescriptions for it have risen 10 fold in the last seven years but given that many women may be getting it privately means those figures may be higher [figure t\/c from NHS FOI request as to what percentage of women have been prescribed it on the NHS].\u003ca name=\"_ftnref4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e The fact that it is also referred to as the ‘mojo hormone’ and some menopause experts are currently describing it as ‘the missing piece of the menopause jigsaw’ when taken alongside standard HRT – it is perhaps unsurprising that it is fast becoming a focus of menopause treatment and many women are evangelical about its benefits. Many have been posting on social media that after using it they have more energy, stamina, sleep better, think more clearly and their mood improves. Various newspaper coverage reflects many women’s positive experiences of how their brain fog has lifted, they have renewed enthusiasm for life and their ‘sexual spark has been reignited’.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBut whilst it could be a game changer for many menopausal symptoms its role remains slightly controversial, and it is not suitable for everyone.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBenefits of testosterone for women\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eEstrogens are the dominant sex hormones for women but androgens like testosterone (partially produced by the ovaries and also the adrenal glands in women) also play an important role. Although women produce around one tenth of the amount that men do, it is equally important for both and contributes to sexual desire, arousal and orgasm. It is also linked to improved bone health and the maintenance of muscle mass plus increased energy, stamina and concentration.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref6\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e Testosterone is also linked to the neurotransmitter dopamine (this relationship is a bi-directional one so testosterone affects dopamine and dopamine affects testosterone). Dopamine is said to play a role in pleasure, concentration and decision-making.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref7\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat happens to levels during menopause?\u003c\/strong\u003e \u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhilst levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone decrease significantly around the time of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/what-is-menopause\/\"\u003emenopause\u003c\/a\u003e, testosterone levels do not. These show a very gradual decline with age, where they tend to plateau at around 40 for women. For many, these declining levels are barely perceptible, but others will be more sensitive to their effects and find their libido is almost non-existent and their energy and ability to concentrate are equally flagging.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhilst dwindling testosterone is a natural part of ageing (for both women and men) one major cause of testosterone deficiency in women is surgical menopause (when a woman has her ovaries removed as part of a hysterectomy or other procedure) – when levels of it can drop quite dramatically, very quickly.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA Global Consensus Position Statement on the Use of Testosterone Therapy for Women in 2019\u003ca name=\"_ftnref8\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e recommended testosterone only for postmenopausal women who have hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) – that is persistent lack of desire after other factors have been taken into consideration and ruled out (like depression, relationship problems, ill health, medication.) The National Institute for Health \u0026amp; Care Excellence (NICE) and The British Menopause Society (BMS) recommends testosterone as a medication for low libido for some women.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref9\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e The BMS say that if a woman has low testosterone levels but is not complaining about low libido or other life-affecting symptoms, there is no need for her to be routinely prescribed testosterone.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref10\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSigns and symptoms of low testosterone in women\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eDecrease in sex drive (including sexual thoughts or fantasies)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDifficulty becoming aroused or reaching orgasm.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eExtreme tiredness and fatigue\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLack of concentration\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMuscle weakness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eThinning hair\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eWeight gain\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMood swings\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHeadaches\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow do you know if you need testosterone during menopause?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eA diagnosis of low testosterone is usually made based on your symptoms and medical history alone – there is generally no need for a blood test, but it can occasionally be useful in some cases to confirm if your levels are low.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTestosterone is usually only prescribed by a physician or menopause specialist if a woman’s sex drive does not improve after using standard \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-replacement-therapy-hrt-guide\/\"\u003eHRT\u003c\/a\u003e. Testosterone must always be used in addition to standard HRT as it works more effectively when used alongside estrogen. Dosage is important – too much can cause nasty side effects (see below) and too little will be ineffective. It is also important not to think of it as a quick fix – it can take between three and six months to notice an improvement and if there isn’t one after this time, I would recommend you stop using it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTaking testosterone during menopause\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eTestosterone is usually prescribed as a gel or cream and is rubbed into the skin. Find out which products that are commonly prescribed in our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003eHormone therapy guide\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eResearchers are currently in the process of developing the world’s first testosterone patch for post-menopausal women. Clinical trials begin in the UK in the Autumn of 2023.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn12\" name=\"_ftnref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSide effects of testosterone during menopause\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere aren’t usually any side effects from testosterone – the amount you are prescribed is intended to help levels return to pre menopause levels not push them abnormally high. However, if you have used too much over time you could see some of the side effects listed below. It is also not uncommon to find you notice more hair growth in the areas where you apply the gel but this is generally avoided by applying it to areas with few hair follicles like the inner thigh or buttocks.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere is some evidence to suggest high testosterone levels are related to increased cancer risk\u003ca name=\"_ftnref13\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e and women who have hormone-sensitive breast cancer or liver disease should not be prescribed it.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref14\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSigns and symptoms of high testosterone in women\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eIncreased body hair, including facial hair\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGreasy skin and acne\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBalding\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDecrease in breast size\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIncreased muscle mass\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDeepening of the voice\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eEnlarged clitoris\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow to increase testosterone naturally in women\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eSome studies (on men) have shown that having a \u003cstrong\u003ediet high in ultra-processed foods\u003c\/strong\u003e appears to reduce levels of testosterone but eating healthy natural foods, particularly those which are good sources of the mineral zinc and also vitamin D,\u003ca name=\"_ftnref15\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e appear to help maintain normal testosterone levels. Key testosterone-maintaining foods include oysters and shellfish, avocadoes, salmon and mushrooms. Vegan options include tofu, pulses, oats, walnuts, cashew nuts, chia seeds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds and spinach. Chickpeas, lentils and beans are also a good source and research suggests sprouting, \u003ca name=\"_ftnref16\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003esoaking or fermenting them can improve zinc levels further. Nutritional Therapist Helen Roach discusses this more in \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/weight-gain\/foods-boost-testosterone-menopause\/\"\u003eFoods that boost testosterone in menopause\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSleep\u003c\/strong\u003e. This is when your body produces hormones including testosterone and if you are not getting enough (and this is generally taken to mean between seven and nine hours nightly) it could be affecting your production of testosterone.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref17\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e Given that in recent Health \u0026amp; Her research women report sleep disruptions and tiredness as one of their most common perimenopause and menopause symptoms, this could potentially be influencing your testosterone levels. If you are struggling to get enough, Nutritional Therapist Rosie Letts suggests a range of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/nutrition-for-sleep\/\"\u003enatural ways to improve your menopause sleep.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eReducing caffeine.\u003c\/strong\u003e Caffeine has been shown to increase testosterone in men but lower it in women. It is also a recognized trigger known to make perimenopause and menopause symptoms worse for many women. In Health \u0026amp; Her research, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/worsen-perimenopause-menopause-triggers\/\"\u003ecaffeine is the fourth most common trigger\u003c\/a\u003e for exacerbating perimenopausal symptoms so it should help to cut down or switch to decaf varieties of tea, coffee, cola or chocolate. This should also help improve the quality of your sleep.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExercise\u003c\/strong\u003e. Physical activity increases testosterone because it increases muscle mass. Weight training and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) have been shown to increase testosterone levels in men. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/joint-aches\/exercises-for-menopause-weight-gain\/\"\u003eRegular exercise\u003c\/a\u003e will also help to keep your weight down and being overweight or obese is linked to lower testosterone.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eFrequently asked questions\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cdiv class=\"hh-callout grey hh-mb-0\"\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eQ. Is testosterone included in HRT?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA. It is not included in hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and is usually only offered alongside it and only then prescribed if a woman reports a continued and persistent reduction in sex drive despite being on HRT.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\u003cdiv class=\"hh-callout blue hh-mb-0\"\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eQ. Where is testosterone produced in women?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA. It is produced partially by the ovaries but also by the adrenal glands in women. In men, it is mainly produced in the testes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\u003cdiv class=\"hh-callout grey hh-mb-0\"\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eQ. \u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-size: 1rem; color: var(--color-body);\"\u003eWill taking testosterone make me bald?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA. There is no evidence that testosterone or testosterone therapy is a cause of hair loss in women. Plus it is highly unlikely if you are taking it as instructed by your GP or menopause specialist.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\u003cdiv class=\"hh-callout blue hh-mb-0\"\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eQ. \u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-size: 1rem; color: var(--color-body);\"\u003eWill taking testosterone make me put on weight?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA. Testosterone medications do list weight gain as a potential side effect but research appears to suggest that taking them could have a role in helping you to lose weight by decreasing body fat and increasing lean muscle mass. It is also suggested that it can indirectly help control your weight by improving mood and increasing energy levels making you more likely to be motivated to exercise.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\u003cdiv class=\"hh-callout grey hh-mb-0\"\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eQ. Will testosterone make me more male?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA. No, replacing testosterone back to normal levels should not have any negative side effects. Occasionally some women may experience greasier skin and acne and increased hair growth but any unwanted side effects are usually reversible by lowering your testosterone dose. Nor will it make you bulk up or become more aggressive. It is only when testosterone is given in very high doses that there are more serious effects like voice deepening and male pattern hair loss.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003c\/div\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eReferences and sources\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[1]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7098532\/#:~:text=Testosterone can be important in,, sexual function, and energy.\u0026amp;text=Adequate levels of testosterone are,possibly vascular and brain function.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[2]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7999217\/\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[3]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.panmerseyapc.nhs.uk\/media\/2599\/testosterone_women.pdf\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref4\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[4]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/pharmaceutical-journal.com\/article\/feature\/testosterone-for-menopause-why-women-face-difficulties-accessing-treatment#:~:text=On 17 February 2023, data,about the menopause in 2021\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref5\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[5]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.dailymail.co.uk\/health\/article-9409805\/How-testosterone-provided-cure-businesswomans-low-libido-menopausal-brain-fog.html\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn6\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref6\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[6]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7098532\/#:~:text=Testosterone can be important in,, sexual function, and energy.\u0026amp;text=Adequate levels of testosterone are,possibly vascular and brain function. https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7098532\/#:~:text=Testosterone can be important in,, sexual function, and energy.\u0026amp;text=Adequate levels of testosterone are,possibly vascular and brain function.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn7\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref7\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[7]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.webmd.com\/mental-health\/what-is-dopamine\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn8\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref8\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[8]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/academic.oup.com\/jcem\/article\/104\/10\/4660\/5556103\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn9\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref9\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[9]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/thebms.org.uk\/2023\/03\/bms-statement-on-testosterone\/#:~:text=healthcare professionals alike.-,British Menopause Society guidance follows NICE NG23 which recommends that,plateaued out and are stable.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn10\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref10\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[10]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/thebms.org.uk\/wp-content\/uploads\/2022\/12\/08-BMS-TfC-Testosterone-replacement-in-menopause-DEC2022-A.pdf\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn11\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref11\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[11]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.monash.edu\/medicine\/news\/latest\/2019-articles\/large-study-shows-beneficial-role-of-testosterone-for-postmenopausal-women\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn12\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref12\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[12]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/warwick.ac.uk\/newsandevents\/pressreleases\/?newsItem=8a17841a8727a18c018746616f9e0131\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn13\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref13\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[13]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/15531122\/#:~:text=However, in postmenopausal women, who,with greater breast cancer risk.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn14\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref14\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[14]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.bupa.co.uk\/newsroom\/ourviews\/menopause-testosterone#:~:text=Some people can’t take,-label’ medicine for menopause.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn15\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref15\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[15]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/blog.insidetracker.com\/can-vitamin-d-restore-low-testosterone-levels#:~:text=Vitamin D and testosterone: Not,concentrations and total testosterone levels.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn16\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref16\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[16]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e Health \u0026amp; Her research conducted Oct 2020 – Sept 2022\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn17\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref17\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[17]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003csup\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4445839\/#:~:text=The majority of the daily testosterone release in men occurs during sleep.\u0026amp;text=Sleep fragmentation and obstructive sleep apnea are associated with reduced testosterone levels.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606924767538", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Menopause_testosterone_denys-nevozhai-z0nVqfrOqWA-unsplash-1600x1067_08084899-9f8d-4e68-9336-9c8e05317085_768x.jpg?v=1704721625", "title" : "What happens to testosterone levels during menopause? And how can it affect us?", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=664" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=664" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=664" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/664" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 13, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low Energy", "description": "Reduce menopause fatigue and low energy with our range of vitamins, supplements and other useful products to help restore your energy levels.", "id": 664, "term_id": 664, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=672" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=672" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=672" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/672" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/poor-concentration/", "name": "Poor Concentration", "description": "Products to help support normal brain function*.\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 672, "term_id": 672, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "poor-concentration" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537810226", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Profile-5-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697658439", "name" : "Helen Roach", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritionist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Ramadan_ada36ff9-50c6-4f6a-989c-a67f8ba2912a_1200x.jpg?v=1709892675", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eThe holy month of Ramadan is almost upon us for 2024, expecting to begin on Monday 11th March 2024, and end on Tuesday 9th April 2024, depending on the sighting of the moon. This is spiritual time of year for all Muslims that involves fasting during the hours of daylight. However, for women going through the perimenopause and menopause, and the common side effects associated with these times of hormonal upheaval, fasting for four weeks can raise some potential challenges which might impact on the Ramadan celebrations. \u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cbr data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003eHere GP Dr Hannah Allen and Nutritionist Helen Roach give their tips on how to navigate your way through the month so that you can fully enjoy it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eMaking adjustments\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eNot eating any food or drinking any liquid in daylight hours as you observe Ramadan is a tradition that is there to celebrate patience and self-control. This can be a challenge for everyone but for women going the perimenopause or menopause who may be experiencing common signs like night sweats, trouble sleeping, headaches, exhaustion and mood swings it can make it a whole lot harder to feel patient and spiritual. Add to this not eating or drinking during the day and a disruption to your usual sleeping routine and this can make you feel potentially worse, so you need to make sure the foods you do eat are as nutritionally dense as possible. Plus, you need to take good care of yourself to stop you feeling like you are dragging yourself through the celebrations because you are tired and hungry. There are also other practical considerations including, for example, if you have been prescribed HRT when, and if, you should you use it and whether dietary supplements constitute nutrition and therefore would break your fast.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eCommon FAQs around Ramadan and Menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cem\u003eWe’ve compiled a list of the common FAQs women may have when undertaking Ramadan during perimenopause or menopause:\u003c\/em\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eQ. Will taking HT break my fast?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA.\u003c\/strong\u003e If your hormone levels are being topped up using HT skin patches, gels, the Mirena coil or a vaginal pessary or creams they will not break your fast, they are considered to be ingested through the skin so you don’t need to make any changes to your routine. However, if you take oral HT you’ll need to take it before, or after, daylight hours. So, if you normally take it in the morning, move it back earlier to Suhur. If you usually take it in the evening wait until after sundown and Iftar.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eQ. Can I take dietary supplements during Ramadan?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA.\u003c\/strong\u003e Whilst the best source of vitamins and minerals is from food, given that your diet is restricted during the holy month dietary supplements can be a helpful addition to ensure you are getting the nutrients you need. As supplements are ingested via the mouth, during Ramadan, you’ll need to take them before Suhur in the morning and after Iftar at night. Choosing a multi-vitamin and mineral supplement or one that is specially formulated with nutrients to support perimenopause and menopause symptoms can be especially useful at this time\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eQ. What are the best foods to eat at Suhur and Iftar?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA.\u003c\/strong\u003e When you have been without food for some time it can be tempting to grab the first tasty looking thing in your field of vision at Iftar - but try to avoid fried, processed, ultra-sugary and\/or salty and starchy foods which can make managing your blood sugar levels harder and may also affect your weight. Instead include plenty of lean protein like fish, meat or pulses with a range of vegetables and fruits (including dried ones like apricots and dates). Try grilled meat or fish with a chickpea salad - loading at least half of your plate with vegetables or salad. You can also find more diet and recipes to help balance hormones in menopause here. And be mindful of how spicy foods can affect you as these are known to trigger perimenopause and menopause symptoms in some women. For Suhur, eggs are a good choice but if you can’t face much at that time of the morning whizz up a smoothie with Greek yogurt, banana, berries and phytoestrogen flax seeds or chia seeds. You can also make this the night before and put it in the fridge so it’s all ready for you at dawn.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eQ. How can I stop myself feeling so tired?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA.\u003c\/strong\u003e It might seem counterintuitive to have to get up to eat when you are tired but try to avoid sleeping through Suhur and prepare yourself a protein-rich, vitamin and mineral packed meal (see above) to provide you with the energy you need for the day. And keep yourself well-hydrated. Have water handy everywhere during the evening hours of Ramadan and sip it throughout the allotted time. Also try herbal teas like sage (linked to a reduction in hot flashes and night sweats), digestive-soothing peppermint and\/or relaxing camomile. Plus eating water-rich foods such as tomatoes, celery, cucumber, melon and\/or unsweetened natural yogurt can all contribute to your hydration levels. If you are completely wiped out take a short nap if you can – but no longer than 30 minutes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e7 simple tips for managing menopause during Ramadan\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch3\u003eDevelop a Ramadan routine.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt can be helpful to try and eat your meals at around the same time during Ramadan and then, if you are taking HRT or nutritional supplements, this can help act as a handy reminder that you need to take them too. If necessary, use sticky notes to jog your memory or set alerts on your phone to remind you as a change of routine can cause you to forget.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eDon’t skip Suhur.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eMany women find that their sleep is already disrupted during the menopause, and they are tired due to night sweats and\/or anxiety. The temptation during Ramadan can be to stay in bed and miss Suhur before dawn, especially as you might not have much of an appetite at that time. But do try to prepare yourself a healthy meal (see suggestions above). Eating before dawn can also help manage your blood sugar and levels of cortisol (the main stress hormone). The quality of your food is vital during Ramadan and you only have a limited ‘window’ each day in which to eat to eat and drink so try to make it count.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eTalk to others.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eBeing grateful for your community is what Ramadan is about and reaching out and talking to other women going through the menopause (or who have been through it) is a huge source of support and reassurance at any time - but may be of particular benefit if you are struggling during Ramadan.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eBe kind to yourself.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you are really struggling and break your fast don’t beat yourself up and feel you have failed – make it up at another time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eKeep your cool.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eTo help reduce the likelihood of overheating and triggering a hot flash wear loose clothing in breathable fabrics, especially during prayer time. Some women also recommend you avoid positioning yourself in the middle of the prayer line and join it at the end where you are less likely to become overwhelmed and overheated by people around you. Carrying a portable fan can also help.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eTry to stay active.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you feel tired from fasting it can be hard to motivate yourself to exercise. Whilst nobody is suggesting you do a high intensity work-out, walking before and after Iftar can be a simple way to keep active, reduce stress and help you sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003eRest and relax.\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause is well-documented for its ability to disrupt your sleep and during Ramadan the lack of food and disruption to your usual sleep and eating habits can make you feel particularly tired and possibly stressed. If you feel you need it, take a short nap during the day but no longer than 30 minutes as much more can leave you feeling drowsy and groggy. There are useful tips here on how to reduce stress and anxiety during menopause and there are more helpful tools and tips on the free \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/pages\/menopause-perimenopause-app\" target=\"_blank\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her app\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "675666100530", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Ramadan_ada36ff9-50c6-4f6a-989c-a67f8ba2912a_768x.jpg?v=1709892675", "title" : "Tips for Surviving Ramadan during perimenopause and menopause", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=228" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/228" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 25, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low energy", "description": "Energy levels can fluctuate in perimenopause and menopause. Browse our range of supplements and products that women have chosen to support their energy levels.", "id": 228, "term_id": 228, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538236210", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/AnneH-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658459", "name" : "Anne Henderson", "summary" : "", "title" : "Consultant Gynaecologist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/joe-pilie-719465-unsplash__1_-1_d3cef22a-01fb-45ea-acc1-4f0af9260406_1200x.jpg?v=1701311114", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWhy do some women start to find sex painful around menopause? Vaginal and anatomical changes can lead to poor lubrication, as well as changes to the shape of your vagina – it can actually become shorter, less wider, and less stretchy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis makes fun between the sheets decidedly less fun. Anne Henderson, our Consultant Gynecologist, explains what’s happening and how you can get help both physically and psychologically. From the right lubrication to other treatments, with a little thought and help, sex absolutely can be a pleasure again. Here is \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/painful-sex-and-relationships\/\"\u003ehow to talk about painful sex in your relationships\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe style=\"width: 500px; height: 281px;\" src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/kIDvy5JklVo\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003cspan data-mce-type=\"bookmark\" style=\"display: inline-block; width: 0px; overflow: hidden; line-height: 0;\" class=\"mce_SELRES_start\"\u003e\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Anne Henderson\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eOur fantastic Consultant Gynecologist Anne Henderson has worked within the health sectors for 15 years. From running large-scale menopause clinics where she helped hundreds of women access then-pioneering body identical hormones through to working with complementary practitioners to provide truly holistic care, Anne leads the way when it comes to caring, innovative, whole-woman focused practice.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/anne-henderson\/\"\u003eRead Anne’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719541554", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/joe-pilie-719465-unsplash__1_-1_d3cef22a-01fb-45ea-acc1-4f0af9260406_768x.jpg?v=1701311114", "title" : "Painful sex, menopause and you – what’s happening and how to feel more comfortable", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=670" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/670" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/painful-sex/", "name": "Painful Sex", "description": "Painful sex during menopause could be relieved with our selection of menopause lubricants and dyspareunia management products that can help to make sex comfortable again. Choose from a selection of products and assistive measures to help enjoy sex without unwanted pain.", "id": 670, "term_id": 670, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "painful-sex" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=677" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/677" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/vaginal-dryness/", "name": "Vaginal Dryness", "description": "Vaginal dryness products, like lubricants and Smile Maker vibrators, can help to relieve vaginal dryness that occurs during menopause and perimenopause. Choose products that are kind to the skin and could help reduce dryness and vulva irritation or naturally formulated lubes, vibrators that are recommended by gynaecologists.\r\n", "id": 677, "term_id": 677, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "vaginal-dryness" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606517297458", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Dr-R-Tomlinson-Headshot-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697653989", "name" : "Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/BreastCheck_1200x.jpg?v=1713445255", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eIt’s completely normal and natural for your breasts to shift in size and shape and\/or become more sensitive as your estrogen levels drop. Such changes in breasts during menopause can, however, be disconcerting so it can be helpful to know what you can typically expect, what is potentially cause for concern and why it is so crucial to check yours to pick up on any unusual changes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe know regular breast examination is important at any age, but it does become more significant around the time of menopause – not least because we know that the average age of women going through it is 51 in the US\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e and two out of three breast cancers are diagnosed in women over 55\u003ca name=\"_ftnref2\" href=\"#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy does perimenopause and menopause affect your breast tissue?\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eBreast tissue is particularly sensitive to estrogen, due to there being estrogen receptors within the breast. When estrogen levels drop, breast tissue then becomes less dense and more fatty, which can lead to your breasts looking and\/or feeling different.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCommon changes:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Tenderness, discomfort and pain\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eHormone fluctuations are known to affect breast tissue and, unfortunately, one of the side effects of this is that your boobs can start to feel uncomfortable and possibly hurt. This is often a symptom of high levels of estrogen which is common around the time of perimenopause and can lead to an increase in the size and number of ducts and milk glands (known as lobules) which can cause your breasts to retain water – making them feel increasingly tender and uncomfortable. This can be a more noticeable problem during perimenopause when hormones surge and drop erratically making it happen unpredictably. Many women also report that this discomfort can be different to the kind of breast tenderness they might be used to – like the premenstrual variety generally experienced as a dull ache felt in both breasts. The type of breast pain many women go through during perimenopause or menopause is often described as more of a burning sensation or as a throbbing, stabbing or sharp pain. What also tends to be different is whilst the pain might be felt in both breasts it can equally affect just one of them, or part of one. It might also be felt through the armpit. This can, understandably, make everyday activities painful or uncomfortable, and can get in the way of you sleeping, exercising and\/or enjoying sex.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col start=\"2\"\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Sagging\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eEstrogen is known to help keep the connective tissue of the breasts hydrated and elastic and is also instrumental in the production of collagen which helps to keep your skin firm. We start losing around 1 per cent of our collagen stores annually from our mid 20s\u003ca name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\" href=\"#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;but going through the perimenopause speeds up that process. As levels of it diminish during perimenopause and menopause this can result in your breasts beginning to sag, change shape, or even get smaller. They may also sit lower than they once did. For many women, this can leave them feeling self-conscious and have a real impact on their self-esteem and self-image. For more insight on how your changing shape can cause self-esteem issues read\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/hot-topics\/whoever-stole-my-body-please-return-it-immediately\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhoever stole my body, please return it immediately.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col start=\"3\"\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Bigger breasts and swelling\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhile some women find their breasts shrink, others can find they get bigger. Around one in five women report an increase in their cup size after menopause\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref4\" href=\"#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;and it is not uncommon to go up two sizes or more. This is often – but not always – a result of overall weight gain (it has been shown that women put on five pounds on average around the time of menopause)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref5\" href=\"#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;but it is also linked to the changing distribution of fat cells which can lead to you storing more fat around your bust. Several factors are thought to be responsible for this including a process called involution where the milk producing glands shut down and breast tissue is replaced by fat. Lowering levels of the hormone testosterone at this stage of life are also believed to be implicated in changing fat distribution around the body, and it becomes increasingly stored around your waist and bust. This sudden ballooning can cause you to feel like your body is not quite your own anymore and your boobs can potentially feel uncomfortably heavy. If they are not supported well with the right bra this can also put a strain on your neck, back and shoulder muscles.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col start=\"4\"\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Itchy breasts\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen collagen production dips, the skin around the breasts become thinner, drier, more sensitive and generally prone to itchiness. You might find you become more sensitive to some fabrics or materials, the detergents you normally use, or it could be that as you sweat more during menopause this can lead to irritation between your breasts and your bra. If your bra is not big enough to accommodate your new size this could irritate and chafe the skin, causing itching and\/or an eczema-like rash. Some women also describe feeling a sensation of having insects crawling over their skin (technically known as formication) which can cause them to scratch repeatedly at their skin.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref6\" href=\"#_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e This condition has also been linked to falling estrogen during perimenopause and menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col start=\"5\"\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Lumpy breast tissue\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eHormone changes can also potentially cause lumps and swelling of the breast structure. The majority of these are unlikely to be a cause for concern and are due to benign conditions – cysts, fibroadenomas (small lumps that feel like marbles under the skin), and pseudo lumps (dense breast tissue) are all relatively common during menopause and perimenopause. However, it’s important to get to know your breasts and contact your doctor straight away if something seems different.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDid you know?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u0026nbsp;If you are taking HT, this contains hormones which can have the side effects of stimulating breast tissue, causing tenderness and an increase in breast size. For more information on HT, Dr Shilpa McQuillan M.D. explains\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-replacement-therapy-hrt-guide\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat it is and who it is intended for\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eQuick tip\u003c\/strong\u003e: If your breasts are feeling swollen and painful wrap a towel or tea towel around a bag of frozen peas and hold it over them for around 10 minutes to help reduce the swelling and ease discomfort.\u003cstrong\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat you can do\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCheck your breasts\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e“The key importance of self-examination is that it helps you to know how your breasts look and feel. If you’re regularly checking, you’ll know what’s normal for you, and you’ll notice anything strange or unusual,” says Dr Kate Burns M.D. a doctor with a special interest in menopause. “All woman’s breasts are different, and it’s incredibly important to know what is normal for you. Self-checking helps you to pick up on any worries early, so you can get them dealt with as quickly as possible.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThough rare, changes to your breasts can potentially be among the first signs of breast cancer\u003ca name=\"_ftnref7\" href=\"#_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;so the earlier you can pick up on anything out of the ordinary the better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow to do a breast self-check\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIdeally give them a thorough once-over every month so you can get to know what is normal for you and pick up quickly on anything potentially abnormal. To reassure you that you are doing it right download the free Health \u0026amp; Her perimenopause and menopause app (available on\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/apps.apple.com\/gb\/app\/health-her-menopause-app\/id1519199698\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eiOS\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;and\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/play.google.com\/store\/apps\/details?id=com.healthandher\u0026amp;hl=en_GB\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAndroid\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e). Try our breast self-check, a simple step-by-step guide with instructions and clear illustrations to help you. Self-examining your breasts on a regular basis can help towards early detection, so a nice feature of the app is the ability to add this activity to your plan and set notification reminders each month.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBelow are some simple and initial steps:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Look\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003e– Look at your breasts, then look at your armpits, across and beneath your breasts, and up to your collarbone. Do you see any changes in skin texture e.g., puckering\/dimpling, swelling in the armpit or around the collarbone or any sudden change in size or shape? Do they look a slightly different color – are they red and inflamed or almost bruised looking?\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Feel\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003e– Feel each of your breasts from your armpit, across and beneath your breasts, and up to your collarbone. Be alert to any lumps and thickening or constant, unusual pain in your breast or armpit.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Notice your nipples\u003c\/strong\u003e– Look at each of your nipples in turn and check for any changes and differences between the two. Have they changed position and\/or are starting to turn inwards, are there any signs of a rash or crusting around the nipple or surrounding area? A normal nipple discharge is usually thin, cloudy, white-ish and almost clear. An abnormal discharge can present itself as grey, brown or yellow. Bloody discharge is not normal.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Make a date\u003c\/strong\u003e– plan time with yourself to do a monthly check or schedule the Breast Self-Check in the plan section of the Health \u0026amp; Her app.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e7 ways to keep your breasts healthier\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Go for your recommended screenings\u003c\/strong\u003e. As well as examining yourself, all women aged 45 to 54 should get a mammogram annually. After 55 you can choose to have every other year or continue with them yearly.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref8\" href=\"#_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e [\u003cu\u003eNew US stat here\u003c\/u\u003e] Be reassured, however, that in about 96 out of every 100 women screened the mammogram will show no signs of cancer and no further tests are needed.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref9\" href=\"#_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Get fitted for a bra\u003c\/strong\u003e. There is research to suggest a staggering 80 per cent of us are wearing the wrong size.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref10\" href=\"#_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003eIf yours is too tight, has an underwire digging into your skin or generally lacks support this can lead to discomfort and\/or also cause skin to become irritated. Many women say wearing a supportive sports bra works best for them and also add that wearing it in bed helps with any pain or discomfort that might be getting in the way of them sleeping. Research published in\u0026nbsp;\u003cem\u003eBreast Journal\u003c\/em\u003ealso reveals 72 per cent of women who regularly exercise reported exercise-induced breast pain so a well-fitting sports bra should always be worn if you work out or go running.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref11\" href=\"#_ftn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eKeep a lid on caffeine\u003c\/strong\u003e. This is a diuretic, which means it can cause your body to get rid of water and in large quantities will make you pee more. Experts suggest you drink no more than three or four regular sized coffees or teas a day but if you have noticed caffeine (which is also found in energy drinks, cola, and hot chocolate) is exacerbating your breast soreness it might be helpful to try and avoid it and go for decaffeinated alternatives. Research confirms that cutting down on caffeine helps to manage breast pain.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref12\" href=\"#_ftn12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eEat a menopause-friendly diet\u003c\/strong\u003e. There is some evidence to suggest a high fat diet is linked to worsening breast swelling and tenderness.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref13\" href=\"#_ftn13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003eA lower fat, largely plant-based one, on the other hand, appears to help reduce symptoms. Aim to limit the amount of salt in your diet (not just by adding it to food but by checking the amounts in shop-bought meals and products) as too much salt can cause fluid retention which has been linked to breast pain. It can be helpful to log down in a\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003esymptom tracker\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/strong\u003ewhat you eat or drink so you can pinpoint either the onset of pain, or worsening of it, so you can avoid the triggers. Here is more information on menopause nutrition and what to eat for a healthy happy menopause –\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMenopause nutrition: how to eat for a happier, healthier menopause.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eKeep well hydrated\u003c\/strong\u003e. Having hot flashes and night sweats can cause dehydration and potentially leave you with dry, irritated and itchy skin, including around your breasts. Even mild dehydration can also cause fluid retention, which can worsen breast tenderness and pain. Try to drink plenty of water throughout the day and include water-rich foods like fruits and vegetables in your diet. And limit, or stop drinking alcohol – it will dehydrate you and is also linked to an increased risk of breast cancer. For more benefits of not drinking read\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/hot-topics\/how-does-alcohol-affect-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow does alcohol affect menopause?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eStop smoking\u003c\/strong\u003e. Studies\u003ca name=\"_ftnref14\" href=\"#_ftn14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003ehave shown a link between smoking and breast pain – which is yet another reason to cut down, or ideally stop.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMaintain a healthy weight\u003c\/strong\u003e. Being overweight or obese raises your risk of breast cancer. Being overweight also raises the risk of the disease coming back in women who have had it.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref15\" href=\"#_ftn15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources \u0026amp; references:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\" href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.mayoclinic.org\/diseases-conditions\/menopause\/symptoms-causes\/syc-20353397#:~:text=Menopause%20can%20happen%20in%20your,is%20a%20natural%20biological%20process\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.mayoclinic.org\/diseases-conditions\/menopause\/symptoms-causes\/syc-20353397#:~:text=Menopause%20can%20happen%20in%20your,is%20a%20natural%20biological%20process\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\" href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e breastcancer.org, 2022\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\" href=\"#_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/parjournal.net\/article\/view\/3863\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ehttps:\/\/parjournal.net\/article\/view\/3863\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn4\" href=\"#_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/15223108\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn5\" href=\"#_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/joinzoe.com\/learn\/menopause-weight-gain\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn6\" href=\"#_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.medicalnewstoday.com\/articles\/321896#causes-of-formication\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn7\" href=\"#_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.cancerresearchuk.org\/about-cancer\/breast-cancer\/symptoms\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn8\" href=\"#_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.cancer.org\/cancer\/breast-cancer\/screening-tests-and-early-detection\/american-cancer-society-recommendations-for-the-early-detection-of-breast-cancer.html#:~:text=Women%2045%20to%2054%20should,at%20least%2010%20more%20years.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn9\" href=\"#_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.gov.uk\/government\/publications\/breast-screening-helping-women-decide\/nhs-breast-screening-helping-you-decide\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn10\" href=\"#_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2275741\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn11\" href=\"#_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/26661830\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn12\" href=\"#_ftnref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/2927749\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn13\" href=\"#_ftnref13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/2899188\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn14\" href=\"#_ftnref14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4960349\/#B2\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn15\" href=\"#_ftnref15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.breastcancer.org\/risk\/risk-factors\/being-overweight\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538629426", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/BreastCheck_768x.jpg?v=1713445255", "title" : "Breast changes during perimenopause and menopause (and the reason you need to keep checking yours) ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=241" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=241" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=241" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/241" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 1, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/breast-pain/", "name": "Breast pain", "description": "Health and Her have researched and selected products that may help to relieve menopause related symptoms. ", "id": 241, "term_id": 241, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "breast-pain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537810226", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Profile-5-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697658439", "name" : "Helen Roach", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritionist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Intermittent-Fasting-Article-Image_211754fb-79a1-408f-b4d0-35c51bff52d5_1200x.jpg?v=1697662788", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eThe current buzz around intermittent fasting for women has linked it to everything from improved gut and heart health to a better menopause and even a longer life. So, is it simply a new fad or could intermittent fasting during menopause be a very real and effective solution to menopausal weight gain and other symptoms like brain fog? Find out how it works and what it could do for you…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat is intermittent fasting?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIntermittent fasting (or IF) is quite simply fasting – or not eating – for a specific amount of time. You are basically switching between periods of fasting and eating as usual. Read on the learn about the best types of intermittent fasting for menopause which vary in length of fasting and calorie intake giving you some options to choose from.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eIntermittent fasting for women\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe health benefits for women of intermittent fasting still need to be studied more extensively but research has shown it not only has a beneficial effect on managing your weight, but it could also lower the risk of many chronic diseases like heart disease.\u003ca name=\"_ednref1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e How does it do this? The theory is that fasting mildly traumatizes cells in your body making them stronger and better able to protect you from ill health. This protective mechanism is known as autophagy.\u003ca name=\"_ednref2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThese physiological changes caused by intermittent fasting could help reduce and\/or improve many of the common symptoms and medical concerns experienced by women around the time of the perimenopause and menopause (typically around the ages of 45-55). A study published in the \u003cem\u003eJournal of Mid-Life Health\u003c\/em\u003e exploring \u003cem\u003ethe Role of Therapeutic Fasting in Women’s Health\u003c\/em\u003e suggests it can help women to both lose and manage their weight; lead to better bone health and increased muscle mass; improve mental health and it has a positive effect on metabolic health (leading to more balanced levels of blood sugar, triglycerides, HDL ‘good’ cholesterol, blood pressure and abdominal fat) and it may even play a role in preventing some cancers.\u003ca name=\"_ednref3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e These are all common considerations and health issues for women at this transitional time of life and intermittent fasting is generally acknowledged to be a safe and effective.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat does fasting do for menopausal women?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe range of physiological reactions triggered by fasting also appear to impact positively on gut bacteria and the hormones that are responsible for insulin and glucose management in the body. Optimizing insulin function should help keep your blood sugar levels in a healthy and normal range \u0026#8211; protecting you from unhealthy high sugar spikes and lows (which can leave you tired and exacerbate \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/menopause-mood-changes-brain-fog\/\"\u003ebrain fog\u003c\/a\u003e) and potentially from developing type 2 diabetes. \u003ca name=\"_ednref4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e Why this is important during \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/what-is-perimenopause\/\"\u003eperimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/what-is-menopause\/\"\u003emenopause\u003c\/a\u003e is that the hormonal fluctuations at this time can cause changes to your metabolism including potentially insulin resistance meaning you may have trouble processing sugar and refined carbohydrates. This can contribute to unwanted weight gain and the so-called menopause belly.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThe best types of fasting for women in menopause:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are currently several popular variations of intermittent fasting (IF) including:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eOvernight fasting\u003c\/strong\u003e – this is probably the simplest method and involves a 12-hour period of fasting every day. For example, if you eat your final meal by 7pm and then resume eating again at 7am you have ‘fasted’ for 12 hours (although it probably doesn’t feel like it because you have probably been asleep for much of that time).\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTime-restricted eating \u0026#8211; the 16:8 or 18.6 method\u003c\/strong\u003e – this is a form of daily fasting where you can only eat at certain times of the day. On the 16:8 you don’t eat for 16 hours but then eat your normal meals and snacks within an eight-hour period. Using the 18.6 plan you fast for 18 hours and then limit all the food you eat in the remaining six hours of the day.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThe 5:2 method\u003c\/strong\u003e – this involves having two days of the week where you consume only 500 calories (there are a range of 200 calorie and 300 calorie meal recipes online to give you inspiration, but these are meals that need to be nutritionally dense and packed with protein and fiber to help keep you not just healthy but fuller and more satisfied for longer). For the other five days you eat a normal healthy balanced diet for example, like a Mediterranean-inspired one.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAlternate day fasting\u003c\/strong\u003e – is as its name suggests this involves fasting every other day. The most common version of this diet involves a “altered” fasting, where you can eat around 500 calories on fasting days.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow does intermittent fasting work in practice? \u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eBasically, by allowing you to pick a time window and setting the rules for when you eat. So, for example, many people find it easiest to confine their meals to eight hours of the day – say, from 9-5 – and then fast for the remainder.  This works well for people who prefer an early dinner and then most of the time you spend ‘fasting’ you are probably in bed, so it is unlikely to feel too much like you are being deprived of food. Outside of your designated eating window you drink just water or other non-calorific drinks like tea, coffee or herbal or fruit infusions\/teas. Intermittent fasting is not about starving or deprivation – it’s about improving blood sugar balance and overall metabolic health. It should also give your GI tract a welcome rest from digestion and allow time for the beneficial bugs in your gut to flourish.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFans of intermittent fasting are often evangelical about its benefits on their health and weight and say that they quickly get used to their new patterns of eating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow can intermittent fasting help with menopause?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat we know, so far, about how IF can help menopausal women includes:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHormone changes. \u003c\/strong\u003eConcerns have been raised in the past as to whether intermittent fasting could negatively impact on female sex hormones (including potentially affecting a woman’s fertility).\u003ca name=\"_ednref5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e A recent study, however, published at the end of 2022 followed a group of pre and post-menopausal obese women over eight weeks on an intermittent fasting plan that involved eating during a four or six hour window. The women in the study lost between 3-4% cent of their baseline weight and experienced a drop in insulin resistance (when your body cannot use your insulin levels effectively and blood sugar levels can increase) but the researchers found that intermittent fasting did not change levels of female reproductive hormones.\u003ca name=\"_ednref6\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e The study did reveal, however, that all the intermittent fasters showed a drop in the hormone dehydroepiandrosterone \u0026#8211; or DHEA \u0026#8211; and it has been suggested that since high DHEA has been linked to an increased breast cancer risk this could potentially reduce the risk for both pre-menopausal and post-menopausal women. (Figures from the NHS show that eight out of 10 cases of breast cancer happen in women over 50 and the average age of menopause in the UK is 51). The researchers are keen to point out these are preliminary findings, and more research is needed, however.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eLosing weight and reducing belly fat\u003c\/strong\u003e – it probably won’t come as a huge surprise to learn that most people are trying intermittent fasting (IF) in order to lose weight \u0026#8211; or that if you go without food for significant amounts of time you are likely to do exactly that. What is different with IF is that it improves hormone functions that appear to not only facilitate weight loss but also, significantly, keep it off – a seeming side effect of insulin levels dropping and human growth hormone (HGH) increasing. Reduced levels of insulin have been shown to help to improve fat burning: One study involving people doing alternate day fasting for eight weeks were found to have lost both weight and visceral belly fat and interestingly reported that they didn’t feel any hungrier than usual.\u003ca name=\"_ednref7\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e Higher levels of HGH help to facilitate fat burning and build muscle. Short term fasting has also been shown to increase metabolic rate helping you to burn calories faster.\u003ca name=\"_ednref8\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e According to a review of the scientific literature If can lead to weight loss of between 3-8% over 3-24 weeks.\u003ca name=\"_ednref9\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e This is a significant amount to lose in a short space of time and has led experts to suggest IF could be a useful preventative tool in reducing the risk of not just becoming overweight or obese but also developing type 2 diabetes (something many women entering menopause are more at risk of due to their age, them putting on weight and potentially having higher blood pressure).\u003ca name=\"_ednref10\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e The weight loss potential of IF is particularly pertinent for women going through the menopause as we know women put on an average of 5lbs at this time in their life and this can have a huge effect on their self-confidence as well as putting them at greater risk of certain health conditions.\u003ca name=\"_ednref11\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eImproved gut health\u003c\/strong\u003e – we know that declining levels of estrogen during perimenopause and menopause can impact on gut health. Recent data shows that women have a different microbiome to men\u003ca name=\"_ednref12\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e and during \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/what-is-perimenopause\/\"\u003eperimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/what-is-menopause\/\"\u003emenopause\u003c\/a\u003e this delicate ecosystem of micro-organisms becomes less diverse\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e which can impact negatively on your body and psychological health \u0026#8211; including interfering with the production of some neurotransmitters like serotonin (the so-called feel-good hormone).\u003ca name=\"_ednref13\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e The brain has a direct effect on the gut (often dubbed the second brain) and this is a bi-directional relationship (known as the gut-brain axis) – meaning an unhealthy or upset gut can lead to an upset and anxious mind. Increasing research suggests that literally giving your gut a bit of a break by fasting (i.e., not eating to allow it a bit of space to recover from incessantly having to digest food can help to create a better balance of beneficial bugs) can improve the health of your gut microbiome. This, in turn, is linked to improvements in your mood and psychological health. \u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHelps reduce inflammation in your body\u003c\/strong\u003e – studies show IF can reduce inflammation in the body, a key driver of many chronic diseases including heart disease. This is significant when we know that estrogen acts as an anti-inflammatory, and diminishing levels of it during perimenopause and menopause are thought to trigger inflammation, potentially leading to symptoms like joint pain and possibly even neurodegenerative conditions in later life.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMay improve your heart health\u003c\/strong\u003e – Estrogen has known heart-protective effects and perimenopausal and menopausal women experiencing declining levels of this hormone are at an increased risk of heart disease. It has been shown that regular fasting results in acute changes in biomarkers (molecules found in blood or other tissues that can detect or confirm a disease or condition) of metabolic and cardiovascular health. The long term implications of this are largely unknown and more research is needed to evaluate its role in potentially reducing the risk of metabolic disease (the medical term for high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes which put you at higher risk of heart disease and stroke) \u003ca name=\"_ednref14\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e but studies on animals show IF appears to improve numerous risk factors for heart disease including high blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides (a type of fat found in the blood) and markers of inflammation.\u003ca name=\"_ednref15\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e Intermittent fasting is also likely to help you lose and\/or manage your weight and this should also lower your risk of heart disease. \u003ca name=\"_ednref16\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMay improve your cognitive and mental health\u003c\/strong\u003e – the research into IF and brain health is largely in its infancy, but we do know fasting increases levels of a hormone called brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF). A deficiency of this has been linked to depression and a number of brain problems including issues with memory.\u003ca name=\"_ednref17\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e There is also some evidence that intermittent fasting could improve cognitive health as we get older as well as reduce problems like stress and worry (these are symptoms which are reported by many women going through menopause).\u003ca name=\"_ednref18\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e There is also some research to suggest that restricting calories can increase your ability to produce new brain cells, or neurons, and these could help improve some aspects of memory.\u003ca name=\"_ednref19\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn19\"\u003e[19]\u003c\/a\u003e This could be potentially beneficial for estrogen-deficient women going through menopause who are having memory lapses or other cognitive problems.\u003cstrong\u003e \u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAre there any downsides?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eOverall, the evidence suggests intermittent fasting is not harmful to your physical or mental health. There are, however, some potential drawbacks including the fact that much of the evidence is based on animal studies and not human ones, so we need to have more robust clinical studies – especially involving perimenopausal and menopausal women.\u003ca name=\"_ednref20\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn20\"\u003e[20]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome critics also point out it could lead to:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDisordered patterns of eating\u003c\/strong\u003e – by setting up a cycle of binge and restrictive eating. This is particularly pertinent if you have, or have had, an eating disorder, including anorexia or bulimia.\u003ca name=\"_ednref21\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn21\"\u003e[21]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eNutritional deficiencies\u003c\/strong\u003e \u003cstrong\u003eand dehydration\u003c\/strong\u003e – if you are eating healthily during your ‘eating window’ it is unlikely you will be lacking any nutrients but if you don’t plan your meals well or your bouts of fasting become too extreme this could potentially lead to you not getting the range of nutrients you need. The key when you do eat during your designated window is not to count calories but to make what you do eat count nutritionally. Avoid processed and sugary foods and refined carbohydrates (like white bread, white rice and pasta) and go for nutrient dense foods like fruit, vegetables, whole grains, pulses and healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil and those found naturally in oily fish, avocados, nuts and seeds. (You can find more advice and healthy recipe and snack ideas in \u003cu\u003eMenopause and the Mediterranean diet\u003c\/u\u003e). Also, try to keep yourself well hydrated with plenty of water or herbal teas. During the initial days of fasting your body releases large amounts of water and salt and if these are not replaced you can be at risk of dehydration so drink enough fluids.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eLeaving you hungry and ‘hangry’\u003c\/strong\u003e – going without food for significant amounts of time can unsurprisingly leave you hungry and cranky. When we are hungry and our blood sugar drops we can become irritable, tired, potentially light-headed and find it difficult to concentrate (in short, symptoms of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/menopause-mood-changes-brain-fog\/\"\u003ebrain fog\u003c\/a\u003e). When you feel like this you are also more likely to crave ‘quick fix’ sugary or processed foods which are likely to send your blood sugar levels rocketing. Also, if your stomach is growling the temptation is to ‘fill up’ on coffee and diet cola to take away those hunger pangs but unless you go for decaffeinated varieties this could exacerbate perimenopause and menopause symptoms. As our Health \u0026amp; Her research reveals \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/worsen-perimenopause-menopause-triggers\/\"\u003e44% of women report becoming more sensitive to the effects of caffeine\u003c\/a\u003e as they headed towards menopause.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eIt is not suitable for everyone\u003c\/strong\u003e. For example, if you have medication you are advised to take with food and\/or if you work different shifts or irregular hours it can be difficult to make intermittent fasting work around this. Also, it is not recommended if you are pregnant, or you have known blood sugar problems.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow to intermittent fast during menopause\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo how do you make it work in practice? Nutritionist Helen Roach says,’ My advice is to follow the 16.8 version of fasting as 1. it’s fairly easy to stick to and won’t interrupt your schedule and daily eating patterns too much 2. It’s less likely to make you feel extreme hunger and lead to cravings and 3. it’s more realistic as a long-term lifestyle habit (than, say, attempting to stick to a 5:2 one. I would also suggest that 12-hour overnight fasting might not be effective enough for women who are over 40.’\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere Helen Roach has prepared a sample day’s IF meal plan:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e7 am \u0026#8211; Peppermint tea\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e8 am \u0026#8211; Black coffee\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e9 am \u0026#8211; 2 egg spinach omelet\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e11:30 am \u0026#8211; Natural unsweetened yoghurt, blueberries, chia seeds \u0026amp; walnuts\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e2pm \u0026#8211; Salmon \u0026amp; roast chunky veg\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e4:30pm \u0026#8211; Baked avocado with hummus and red onion\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFast \u0026#8211; 5 pm-9 am\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eNB: It is better to eat as early in the day as possible as insulin is more efficient before 3 pm. Eating closer to bedtime is not advised regardless of which intermittent fasting plan you choose to follow.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThe IF takeaway\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIntermittent fasting appears to offer a hopeful solution to menopausal weight gain and may reduce a range of other symptoms or conditions linked to the hormonal changes that can occur at this stage of life.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you have any existing health conditions or are taking medication do check with your doctor before starting an intermittent fasting plan.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources and references\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC9379122\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.annualreviews.org\/doi\/full\/10.1146\/annurev-nutr-071816-064634\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/pii\/S1568163718301478\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4960941\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/abs\/pii\/S193152441400200X\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3558496\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn6\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/10.1002\/oby.23562\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn7\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/27062219\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn8\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.annualreviews.org\/doi\/full\/10.1146\/annurev-nutr-071816-064634\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn9\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/abs\/pii\/S193152441400200X\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn10\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.diabetes.org.uk\/guide-to-diabetes\/life-with-diabetes\/menopause#:~:text=The%20perimenopause%20and%20the%20menopause%20don\u0026#8217;t%20cause%20diabetes.,also%20include%20age%20and%20ethnicity.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn11\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.racgp.org.au\/afp\/2017\/june\/obesity-and-weight-management-at-menopause\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn12\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/thegutstuff.com\/the-microgenderdome-why-the-gut-differs-between-males-and-females\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn13\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/joinzoe.com\/learn\/gut-brain-connection\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn14\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/23220077\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn15\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7415631\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn16\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.bhf.org.uk\/informationsupport\/heart-matters-magazine\/medical\/women\/menopause-and-your-heart\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn17\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC4697050\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn18\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.mdpi.com\/2072-6643\/13\/11\/3947\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn19\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref19\"\u003e[19]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC7146388\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn20\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref20\"\u003e[20]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.sciencedaily.com\/releases\/2022\/10\/221025150257.htm\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_edn21\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ednref21\"\u003e[21]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.medicalnewstoday.com\/articles\/intermittent-fasting-may-lead-to-disordered-eating-study-finds\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538498354", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Intermittent-Fasting-Article-Image_211754fb-79a1-408f-b4d0-35c51bff52d5_768x.jpg?v=1697662788", "title" : "Intermittent fasting for women in menopause ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=239" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/239" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 14, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 239, "term_id": 239, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=650" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/650" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 6, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 650, "term_id": 650, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=244" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=244" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=244" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/244" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 12, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/digestive-issues/", "name": "Digestive issues", "description": "Menopause digestive symptoms are varied and complex and can be linked to changes that are triggered by the menopause like low mood or food intolerances. We've found the latest and most innovative products to help with this regularly reported symptom*.\r\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 244, "term_id": 244, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "digestive-issues" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=228" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/228" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 25, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low energy", "description": "Energy levels can fluctuate in perimenopause and menopause. Browse our range of supplements and products that women have chosen to support their energy levels.", "id": 228, "term_id": 228, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=234" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=234" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=234" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/234" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 33, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Browse our range of supplements and product that women have chosen to support normal psychological or cognitive function", "id": 234, "term_id": 234, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=229" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/229" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight gain", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing menopause weight gain have chosen as part of a healthy lifestyle. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 229, "term_id": 229, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537810226", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Profile-5-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697658439", "name" : "Helen Roach", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritionist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/yoav-aziz-40zgaNEWEG8-unsplash-1-1600x1200_1200x.jpg?v=1697662801", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eWhen you’re going through perimenopause and menopause, you’re probably used to hearing the words estrogen and progesterone bandied about. Not least because replenishing and stabilising these hormones can help to manage your symptoms, and many menopause treatments, like \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-hormone-replacement-therapy-hrt-who-is-it-intended-for\"\u003ehormone therapy (HRT)\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003e,\u003c\/a\u003e focus on doing exactly that.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere is a third hormone, however, that is not talked about quite as much, but which also falls during menopause and that is testosterone – a sex hormone that is produced in small amounts produced by the ovaries, adrenal glands and peripheral tissues in women.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOften referred to as ‘the male hormone’, testosterone can be just as important for women in keeping you feeling good and helping to manage your symptoms as estrogen and progesterone. Whilst women might not need as high levels as men getting the right amount is important for a healthy sex drive and leaner body composition. Unfortunately, testosterone has not yet been approved for women who might need it by the Food \u0026amp; Drug Administration (FDA) and is currently only FDA-approved for men with low testosterone.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\" name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMany women look for foods that boost testosterone during menopause because they know about the impact on hormone levels that perimenopause and menopause can have. While specific foods can’t boost testosterone levels by themselves, there are certain ones that can help to support your body in testosterone production and keep your testosterone levels normal through menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy is testosterone important during menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eLevels of testosterone fall naturally with age and as you transition into perimenopause and menopause but other factors including lack of sleep, sustained stress and high body fat levels can also cause a decline in its production.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen levels are low it can lead to unexplained tiredness, reduced sex drive, and it can become harder for you to build muscle and lose weight. Research into how low levels of testosterone specifically affect perimenopausal and menopausal women is in its infancy (as things stand there are more studies showing how it affects men rather than women) but there is some evidence to show when women are given more testosterone their energy levels, stamina, mood and libido all improve.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\" name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOf course, getting more testosterone doesn’t automatically translate into women wanting sex and enjoying it more – alas, \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive-at-menopause-is-it-biological-or-psychological\"\u003efemale desire and enjoyment can be frustratingly more complicated\u003c\/a\u003e. We do know, however, that this hormone contributes to your libido, sexual arousal and orgasm by increasing dopamine levels in the central nervous system and when your body produces enough healthy levels of it, theoretically, you are more likely to want, and enjoy sex. It is also known to improve blood flow to your vaginal area and reduce some of menopause’s urogenital symptoms (such as lack of vaginal sensitivity and difficulty becoming aroused).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo how do you help maintain optimal testosterone levels? Some studies have shown that having a diet high in ultra-processed foods appears to reduce it\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\" name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e but, conversely, eating healthy nutrient-dense ones (like the ones listed below) can help increase it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e5 foods that help boost testosterone production\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eNutritionist Helen Roach suggests five key foods that can help increase testosterone in women including:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148737\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Oysters testosterone menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155355\/Oysters.jpg 884w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eOysters \u0026amp; shellfish\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“These contain zinc, which contributes to the maintenance of normal testosterone levels in the blood,” Helen explains. “Oysters are also a very good source of D-aspartic acid, an amino acid which can trigger testosterone production.” There has been encouraging evidence to show that supplementing with zinc can help testosterone levels and sexual function in postmenopausal women\u003ca href=\"#_ftn4\" name=\"_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e but although there have been studies to show how D-aspartic acid can increase testosterone in men, as yet there is no similar research to show it has the same effect in women.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148728\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Avocado testosterone menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-1024x256.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-1536x384.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-1600x400.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-1200x300.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-992x248.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155342\/Avocado-600x150.jpg 600w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAvocados\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cbr\u003e Helen explains that avocados are rich in pregnenolone, a steroid hormone which acts as a precursor to testosterone production. Taking pregnenolone in supplement form has been shown to improve mood, brain function and memory, all factors that can be negatively affected during perimenopause and menopause.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn5\" name=\"_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148725\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Salmon testosterone menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155336\/Salmon.jpg 884w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSalmon\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cbr\u003e “Salmon is high in a number of vitamins, as well as zinc, which helps to maintain the normal production of testosterone in the blood,” says Helen, suggesting it makes a menopause-friendly evening meal when accompanied by green leafy vegetables like spinach or kale. Alternatively, try smoked salmon with scrambled eggs or diner eggs for breakfast or with salad for lunch. Salmon is also packed with protein and omega 3 fatty acids, which can help both your energy and brain function.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148734\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Mushrooms testosterone menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155352\/mushrooms.jpg 884w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMushrooms\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cbr\u003e Helen recommends leaving your mushrooms out for a little sunbathe before you cook them, to make the most of their testosterone-boosting properties. Shitake mushrooms are best for this. Why? “Mushrooms become high in vitamin D and vitamin B5 when left in sunlight for an hour or so. These vitamins contribute to the normal synthesis and metabolism of steroid hormones, and can help the production of regular testosterone,” she explains.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148731\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Broccoli testosterone menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-1024x256.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-1536x384.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-1600x400.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-1200x300.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-992x248.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/06\/19155349\/Broccoli-600x150.jpg 600w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBroccoli, Cauliflower and Squash\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cbr\u003e Helen explains that these are all rich sources of Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid). This vitamin is responsible for the production of steroid hormones such as testosterone \u0026amp; estrogen.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eFoods that support testosterone production in menopause for vegetarians and vegans\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe all need a steady intake of foods containing testosterone-boosting zinc because this mineral is not stored in the body so needs to be topped up regularly. Given that many of the best sources tend to be animal-based proteins like red meat (particularly beef and lamb), fish and seafood it has been suggested in the past that vegetarians or vegans might be at a slight disadvantage when it comes to getting enough.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRecent research, however, has shown there is little difference in the testosterone levels of meat eaters and vegans\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\" name=\"_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e and there are plenty of healthy alternative plant-based sources including pulses, oats, walnuts, cashew nuts, chia seeds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds and spinach so try to include as many of these in your daily diet as you can.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor vegan foods that boost testosterone, Helen suggests, “chickpeas, lentils and beans are a good source and research suggests sprouting, soaking or fermenting them can help increase zinc levels even further.”\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\" name=\"_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat else you can do to provide a testosterone boost?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eManaging stress\u003c\/strong\u003e. In the short-term stress shouldn’t affect your testosterone levels too much but if it is sustained and left unchecked this means your levels of the stress hormone cortisol are almost always elevated and this can play a big part in fluctuating testosterone levels. “The higher your level of cortisol the lower your testosterone level, and vice versa,” Helen explains. “In other words, anything that lowers cortisol increases the balance of testosterone in your body.” Exercise and some relaxing activities such as yoga or meditation can help to balance your hormones and keep you more calm, cool and centered. Find more advice from Dr Shilpa McQuillan M.D. here on \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/stress-anxiety\"\u003ecoping with stress and anxiety during menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSleep.\u003c\/strong\u003e This is the time when your body produces hormones like testosterone. If you are not getting enough sleep (and enough equates to around seven-nine hours nightly) it is likely you are not making enough testosterone. Researchers recording the sleeping patterns of healthy men have found that their testosterone levels increased the longer they slept. As women going through perimenopause and menopause are more likely to have their sleep disrupted by night sweats and sleep disturbances this can potentially disrupt production of hormones like testosterone.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eLaying off the caffeine.\u003c\/strong\u003e As Helen explains, although caffeine has been seen to increase testosterone levels in men, it has been shown to lower them in women\u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\" name=\"_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e – so perhaps cut down on your daily latte or switch to decaf.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExercise \u003c\/strong\u003eincreases testosterone because it increases muscle mass. Doing weight training and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) have been shown to increase testosterone levels (in men)\u003ca href=\"#_ftn9\" name=\"_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/hot-topics\/menopause-exercise-the-top-5-best-exercises\"\u003eRegular physical activity\u003c\/a\u003e will also help to keep your weight down and being overweight or obese is linked to lower testosterone.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn10\" name=\"_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eManaging blood sugar levels\u003c\/strong\u003e (and insulin production) can support DHEA (a steroid hormone: dehydroepiandrosterone) in the adrenals – this is a precursor to testosterone. High sugar or refined carbohydrate consumption in the form of sweets, baked goods, breads, pastries, pasta and juices can increase insulin levels. This can cause vitamin and mineral imbalances as well as reduce DHEA production. Helen’s key advice here is, “to limit these and add protein and\/or fiber to each meal for balanced blood sugar.” She also noted that “\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/hot-topics\/menopause-and-alcohol-how-does-drinking-affect-menopause\"\u003eAlcohol consumption is interconnected with varying levels of blood sugar\u003c\/a\u003e. Initially blood sugar can increase but may lead to big dips in blood sugar (hypoglycaemia) if more than one drink is consumed.”\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAshwagandha\u003c\/strong\u003e has been shown to support women’s physical and psychological condition. As we know, testosterone levels in women decreases with age. Studies have shown that Ashwagandha can increase testosterone in women to help support their diminished sexual desire.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn11\" name=\"_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp style=\"padding-left: 80px;\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources \u0026amp; references\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\" name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC9331845\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\" name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/31353194\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\" name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6266690\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref4\" name=\"_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/34311679\/#:~:text=The%20results%20of%20this%20study,having%20zinc%20insufficiency%20is%20recommended.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref5\" name=\"_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.verywellmind.com\/the-lowdown-on-pregnenolone-89502\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref6\" name=\"_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.veganfoodandliving.com\/news\/study-finds-vegan-men-dont-have-lower-testosterone-levels-than-meat-eaters\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref7\" name=\"_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1111\/nbu.12549\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref8\" name=\"_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3502342\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref9\" name=\"_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.piedmont.org\/living-better\/the-best-exercises-to-increase-testosterone\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref10\" name=\"_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3955331\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref11\" name=\"_ftn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.hindawi.com\/journals\/bmri\/2015\/284154\/\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538727730", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/yoav-aziz-40zgaNEWEG8-unsplash-1-1600x1200_768x.jpg?v=1697662801", "title" : "Foods that increase testosterone in females during menopause ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=228" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/228" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 25, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low energy", "description": "Energy levels can fluctuate in perimenopause and menopause. Browse our range of supplements and products that women have chosen to support their energy levels.", "id": 228, "term_id": 228, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=224" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=224" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=224" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/224" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/loss-of-sex-drive/", "name": "Low libido", "description": "Low libido during perimenopause and menopause is common. Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing low libido have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 224, "term_id": 224, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "loss-of-sex-drive" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=234" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=234" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=234" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/234" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 33, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Browse our range of supplements and product that women have chosen to support normal psychological or cognitive function", "id": 234, "term_id": 234, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=229" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/229" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight gain", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing menopause weight gain have chosen as part of a healthy lifestyle. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 229, "term_id": 229, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/What-is-Menopause_-1600x1067_732d3623-5ce4-4b63-b359-d9d1090fa227_1200x.jpg?v=1700495118", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eThe term menopause – derived from the Greek ‘men’ which means month or monthly and ‘pausis’ which means end or stop – translates literally as the ending of your monthly menstrual cycle. It is a completely natural and normal stage of life that all women will go through and leading up to this point, you will probably have (knowingly or not) gone through perimenopause, the time before your periods stop (and when your ovaries are beginning to slow down, and your sex hormone levels begin to fall) before transitioning fully into menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf this all sounds straightforward enough, unfortunately, menopause isn’t something that can be neatly boxed up and put away the day after your periods stop. This marks just one day in your menopause journey – a transitional time that usually builds over months and years which is generally accompanied by a range of physical and psychological symptoms that can last for years after you stop menstruating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause is not an illness or disease but that doesn’t mean it is necessarily easy to live with. An estimated 6,000 women in the US reach menopause every day\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e and more than one million will go through it each year.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref2\" href=\"#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e Menopause can have a huge impact on your life so it is important to take action and try to manage it, 10% of women leave their job because of their symptoms and one in four consider quitting according to our research.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\" href=\"#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e Ultimately, your experience will not be the same as other women who are the same age as you or who are experiencing menopause at the same time, and for this reason there is no one size fits all solution as to how to manage it. That said, arming yourself with all the latest research and information can help you to understand what is happening, what you can do about it and what practical help is available.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat age does menopause begin?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor most women, menopause starts between the ages of 45 and 55, with the average age (in the US) being 51. Five per cent of women experience it after the age of 55 – sometimes referred to as late onset menopause – and around 1 in 100 women experience it under 40 which is defined as premature menopause.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref4\" href=\"#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eEarly menopause is when your periods stop before the age of 45. This can be caused by cancer treatments, if you’ve had a hysterectomy, the result of some autoimmune diseases and infections, or sometimes it just occurs naturally.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eNo one can precisely predict when you will go through menopause but research shows there are a range of factors which can affect its onset. These include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eThe age your mother went through it (both early and late menopause appear to run in families)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref5\" href=\"#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eThe age you started your periods (starting them young has been linked to early menopause)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref6\" href=\"#_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHow many children you have had (giving birth to three children is associated with a later onset menopause; having no children or never getting pregnant is linked to going through it earlier)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref7\" href=\"#_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYour weight (research suggests overweight and obese women have a 50 per cent higher risk of having a late menopause and underweight women are more likely to have an early one)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref8\" href=\"#_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eWhether you smoke (many studies have shown that women who smoke enter menopause earlier than those who don’t).\u003ca name=\"_ftnref9\" href=\"#_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAccording to research African, Asian and Latino decent women are also, on average, more likely to begin menopause earlier than white women and may have a longer transition time into menopause and experience worse symptoms.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref10\" href=\"#_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow do you know menopause is happening?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe simple answer is you are experiencing the effects of menopause and it has been 12 months since your last period.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat happens to your hormones in menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs you approach menopause, your ovaries begin to slow down and with it your production of the sex hormones estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Estrogen levels affect your reproductive (period) cycle, but also your sleep, weight, energy levels, temperature regulation, skin, soft tissues, and mood. Changing levels of testosterone can affect your \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive-at-menopause-is-it-biological-or-psychological\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive-at-menopause-is-it-biological-or-psychological\"\u003esex drive\u003c\/a\u003e. In short, it’s a time of extreme hormonal fluctuations – leading some experts to suggest menopause should be renamed ‘Female Hormone Deficiency’.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref11\" href=\"#_ftn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you want to get a more informed picture of what is going on with your erratic hormones at this time there is a test that measures your Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH), one of the most important hormones involved in regulating your reproductive system and menstrual cycle. A single FSH test might not conclusively confirm if you are in menopause – as levels of it can rise and fall – but it can help to give you a bit more information about your hormone status, if you feel it would be helpful. If you haven’t had a period for 12 months and your FSH levels are consistently elevated to 30 lU\/L you are almost certainly in menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eMenopause symptoms\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eLower levels of estrogen are thought to drive almost all menopause-related symptoms (there are estrogen receptors all over the body, including within the brain). This is the case for psychological symptoms as well as the physical ones. However, often symptoms are inter-linked. For example, regularly not sleeping (and this is the number one complaint from women going through menopause according to recent Health \u0026amp; Her research) is likely to lead to feelings of low energy\/lethargy, which can lead to reduced motivation to do things and enjoying them less, as well as perhaps a lowering of mood generally. Similarly, worrying about experiencing brain fog or hot flashes whilst at work can contribute to increased anxiety, stress and\/or loss of confidence.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere is evidence to show that around 75 per cent of all women will experience menopausal symptoms, and for around a quarter of these they will be severe.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref12\" href=\"#_ftn12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e Given that for many women these will last for around seven years, and up to 15 years in 20 per cent of cases, you can see why it becomes so important to 1. be able to recognise them 2. understand why and how they might impact on your body and brain and 3. learn what can alleviate them. Again, every woman’s experience will be slightly different – including length, severity, and symptoms experienced.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eThe top 9 symptoms of menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eNew research from Health \u0026amp; Her\u003ca name=\"_ftnref13\" href=\"#_ftn13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e reveals women are having to contend with an average of 9 symptoms during their menopause with the most common ones cited (in order of prevalence) as:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Sleeping-problems\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Sleeping-problems\"\u003eSleeping problems\u003c\/a\u003e – stress, low mood, anxiety and depression can all potentially lead to problems with getting to sleep as your brain finds it difficult to switch off. This is very likely to be accompanied by night sweats which not only wake you up but also make it difficult for you to get back to sleep.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/weight-gain\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/weight-gain\"\u003eWeight gain\u003c\/a\u003e – we tend to gain weight as we age as our metabolism slows down and we might find it harder to find time to exercise. On average menopausal women gain around 5lb.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref14\" href=\"#_ftn14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e The hormonal changes during menopause can also affect the way you store fat so that it becomes distributed differently around your body. You are more likely to gain weight around your middle – often dubbed the meno-belly, the meno-pot or meno-middle.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-energy\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-energy\"\u003eLow energy\u003c\/a\u003e – decreasing hormone levels can cause tiredness and fatigue during menopause and this can be exacerbated by sleep issues, stress, mood swings and low mood – all of which can lead to you feeling generally ‘flat’ and unmotivated.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Joint-pain\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Joint-pain\"\u003eJoint aches and pains\u003c\/a\u003e – estrogen plays a key role in helping to decrease inflammation in the body and keep joints naturally lubricated. Losing estrogen as you head into menopause will not only reduce natural bone density but can also affect your joints and cartilage (the connective tissue which cushions your joints) – often resulting in stiffness, pain and muscle aches.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/night-sweats\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/night-sweats\"\u003eNight sweats\u003c\/a\u003e – These often accompany hot flashes and are similarly caused by an inability to control your temperature at night. Night sweats should always be discussed with your physician as there are other, non-menopausal causes of these, and in rare cases these can be serious.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/brain-fog\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/brain-fog\"\u003eBrain fog\u003c\/a\u003e – this is the term used to describe the forgetfulness, confusion and inability to remember words and retain information during perimenopause and menopause. Many women describe it as their brain feeling like bubble wrap and whilst it might be the butt of many a joke it can be seriously disconcerting for many women. Dr Anne Henderson discusses the subject more in \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-mood-changes-brain-fog\"\u003eMenopause mood changes and brain fog\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/stress-worry\" data-mce-href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/stress-worry\"\u003eStress and worry\u003c\/a\u003e – Mood swings, anxiety and depressive symptoms are common during menopause. You might also feel angry, less confident, more forgetful and have difficulty concentrating or finding words that you know (typical symptoms of brain fog). These feelings can be quite pronounced and may appear to come out of the blue making them particularly hard to deal with. Menopause experts point out that it is these psychological symptoms which tend to floor women more than the physical ones like hot flashes – with many women worrying that they might be experiencing early signs of dementia.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-mood\"\u003eLow mood\u003c\/a\u003e – estrogen is hugely significant for brain function and mood and diminishing levels of it can potentially result in you feeling a pretty constant flat, low feeling and a general loss of interest in things that normally bring you pleasure. This low mood is often accompanied by debilitating tiredness.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTrouble concentrating – when hormone levels are lowered brain function can be affected in subtle ways including your ability to concentrate. Whether at work or at home this can be hugely frustrating, and is likely to be compounded by the fact you are not sleeping well so making it even harder to focus.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe top 9 symptoms vary for women in perimenopause and menopause – the perimenopause stage is explained more in \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-perimenopause\"\u003eWhat is Perimenopause?\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSymptoms associated with the vaginal area are typically reported as having a big impact on quality of life. These symptoms include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eVaginal dryness and discomfort during sex – Lower levels of estrogen can affect your urogenital tissues – the areas around the vagina, the vulva, the bladder and urethra (the tube that takes pee from the bladder to the outside of the body). The estrogen deficiency that occurs during the perimenopause and menopause can cause urogenital atrophy, where the tissues become thinner and drier. This can lead to vulva (the vulva is the area outside the vagina) or \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/vaginal-dryness\"\u003evaginal dryness\u003c\/a\u003e, soreness, and\/or irritation\/itch. These symptoms can, understandably, make sex painful. Bladder-wise this can cause abnormally high urinary frequency, waking frequently overnight to have a pee, an unusual urgency to pee, and a propensity to urinary tract infections like cystitis. It should be pointed out that while other menopause symptoms tend to subside, these ones might not. As Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson M.D., a physician with a special interest in menopause explains, ‘Whilst we learn to manage and adapt the other menopause symptoms that all tend to lessen over time, the vaginal atrophy is persistent and will not resolve or improve without ongoing treatment.’\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLow libido – Lower levels of estrogen can dampen your \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive-at-menopause-is-it-biological-or-psychological\"\u003edesire for intimacy and sex\u003c\/a\u003e plus the fact it may be uncomfortable (see above) can make it a double turn off.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eTo discover more symptom specific advice and expert content, visit our easy-to-use \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/pages\/symptom-checker\"\u003esymptom checker\u003c\/a\u003e which is based on the British Menopause Society’s most common symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow can you manage your menopause symptoms\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a whole range of treatments, remedies and lifestyle habits that can help relieve your symptoms – although it should be said what works for one woman might not for another so it can be a matter of trial and error working out the right plan of action for you. Practical strategies that can help include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTracking symptoms\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/apps.apple.com\/us\/app\/health-her-menopause-app\/id1519199698\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her Menopause App\u003c\/a\u003e, for example, can help you make note of your triggers, log down the severity and regularity of symptoms, and help provide some exercises to manage them. Documenting and monitoring symptoms can improve knowledge and it can be helpful if they are getting in the way of your quality of life. 78% of women who used the Health \u0026amp; Her app every week for 2 months reported improvements in symptoms.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref15\" href=\"#_ftn15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e Having this information can also be useful to take to an appointment with your physician so you get the most out of the time you have with them.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eRecognize your particular triggers: The top 10 menopause triggers\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat appears to make symptoms worse? The Health \u0026amp; Her findings show the \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/hot-topics\/worsen-perimenopause-menopause-triggers\"\u003etop 10 triggers likely to inflame and exacerbate menopause symptoms\u003c\/a\u003e for thousands of women are:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eWorry at work\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eA stressful event\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAlcohol\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSugar\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eCaffeine\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFatty food\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHot weather\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSpicy food\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eCold weather\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eChanges to your diet\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a variety of treatment routes to consider depending on how the menopause affects you. Knowing what is available can help you make more informed choices and give you the practical tools to make your menopause easier.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eMedical treatments for menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe most common medical treatment for menopause is \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\"\u003ehormone therapy\u003c\/a\u003e (HRT) which according to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is statistically the most successful one for relieving symptoms in otherwise healthy women. Hormone therapy works by replacing the estrogen and progesterone hormones that deplete during menopause. It is usually prescribed by your physician (although you can now buy vaginal estrogen from your pharmacist to help relieve vaginal dryness) and it comes in several forms, including tablets, skin patches, gels, implants, creams or pessaries. To determine if it is the right option for you, speak to your doctor to discuss the risks and benefits.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExercise\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/exercises-for-menopause-weight-gain\"\u003eRegular exercise can be key to helping you through menopause symptoms\u003c\/a\u003e. It can boost your ‘feel-good’ endorphin levels and help manage anxiety and depression whilst keeping you physically fitter and more likely to maintain a healthy weight. It can help you build muscle mass and protect your bones,\u003ca name=\"_ftnref16\" href=\"#_ftn16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e generally help you to stay more flexible and reduce your risk of heart disease (keeping your weight down and improving cholesterol levels).\u003ca name=\"_ftnref17\" href=\"#_ftn17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e It can also lead to better sleep.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref18\" href=\"#_ftn18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e On top of all this, there is also evidence to show that women who exercise regularly have less severe hot flashes than women who don’t.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref19\" href=\"#_ftn19\"\u003e[19]\u003c\/a\u003e Exercising also increases blood flow to the brain and can help reduce brain fog. Significantly, it has also been shown to improve self-worth and quality of life in post-menopausal women.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref20\" href=\"#_ftn20\"\u003e[20]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDiet and lifestyle\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eEnsuring you have a diet that helps you have a \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\"\u003ehealthier, happier menopause\u003c\/a\u003e. This should be a diet rich in nutrients, vitamins and minerals can have a huge impact in helping to provide you with the energy you need and improving your mental health. Cutting down on certain foods that may make you feel lethargic or tired, and incorporating more protein and foods rich in fiber into your diet can make a real difference.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSupplements for menopause\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eSupplements during menopause can help support your body as it goes through this life stage. Those containing natural phytoestrogens – including plants like Red Clover that help mimic the action of estrogen in the body – can help balance your hormones. \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/products\/health-her-menopause-multi-nutrient-support-supplement\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her’s menopause supplement\u003c\/a\u003e range is a natural and medical support for your unique menopause journey.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBuilding positive lifestyle habits\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are lots of small daily changes you can do that can lead to long-lasting results:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eCognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) exercises for hot flashes, night sweats and low mood\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGuided imagery meditation can help towards a better night’s sleep\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePelvic training is good for sensitive bladders\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDeep breathing exercises to help with your stress \u0026amp; anxiety\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/apps.apple.com\/us\/app\/health-her-menopause-app\/id1519199698\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her Menopause App\u003c\/a\u003e’s symptom toolkit includes all of the above, it is the first personal trainer for your menopause with a selection of evidence-based exercises, tools and reminders to support your symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTalk about it\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eThankfully, the days when the subject of the menopause was brushed under the carpet and\/or talked about in hushed tones as ‘women’s troubles’ are over, but that said many of us can still feel uncomfortable talking about it even with people we love and trust. No-one should feel pressured into talking about it, but it can help the people around you to empathize and understand why you might be behaving slightly out of character. Broaching it with your close family or colleagues can be a bit of a minefield but there are ways and means as Menopause Coach Ruth Devlin explains in \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/hot-topics\/how-to-talk-to-your-teenagers-about-perimenopause-and-menopause\"\u003eHow to Talk to Your Teenagers\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-symptoms-explained-for-men\"\u003eHow to explain menopause to a man\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/how-to-explain-menopause-to-man\/\"\u003e.\u003c\/a\u003e Similarly, if you’re struggling to find the right words to speak to your physician about your symptoms, there is helpful information in \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\"\u003eHere is how best to broach intimate topics with your health professional\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThink about the positives\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs always there is no one size fits all or ‘right’ response to discovering you are going through the menopause. You will probably feel a mixture of emotions but it’s worth thinking about what the potential benefits can be including:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eNo more periods. No more worries about your period suddenly starting when you are on vacation or flooding during a meeting or an important event. Added to this, no more shelling out for sanitary napkins or tampons and no more PMS, period pain or menstrual headaches. Plus, you can confidently wear white trousers again.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eNo more birth control. Once you are postmenopausal (generally meaning two full years after your last period) and\/or over 55 you should be able to safely stop whatever form of birth control you have been using and not have to worry about getting pregnant. Dr Kate Burns M.D., a doctor with a special interest in menopause, discusses this more in Menopause contraception.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eA time to re-appraise your life. The time around menopause can be a time for taking stock of your life generally, focusing more on what you want and need and how to make the most of your fifties and beyond. One of the more surprising things about menopause is that it’s linked to a reduction in the hormone oxytocin.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref21\" href=\"#_ftn21\"\u003e[21]\u003c\/a\u003e Commonly dubbed the ‘love\/cuddle hormone’, oxytocin is associated with caring\/mothering and is thought to be one reason why women tend to look after everyone else’s needs before their own. It has been suggested that a decrease in this hormone can allow you to take more time for yourself and may make you slightly more detached.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFocus on healthcare and habits. The typical age of menopause is also a time when many women start to reassess their habits and healthcare generally – many are likely to take up some form of exercise (it has been noted that there has been a big rise in fifty-something runners attempting marathons)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref22\" href=\"#_ftn22\"\u003e[22]\u003c\/a\u003e and often re-appraise their diet or lifestyle habits – aiming to cut down on sugar or unhealthy fats or stop drinking, for example. Given that menopause can put you at increased risk of conditions like osteoporosis\u003ca name=\"_ftnref23\" href=\"#_ftn23\"\u003e[23]\u003c\/a\u003e and heart disease,\u003ca name=\"_ftnref24\" href=\"#_ftn24\"\u003e[24]\u003c\/a\u003e regular exercise and improving your diet can help reduce your risk.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIncreased self-assurance and optimism. After 40 or 50 years of life experience, you are generally more likely to have greater self-assurance and the confidence to go after what you want and ask for your needs to be met. As you get your menopause symptoms under control you should also feel calmer and more even tempered. Research also suggests your levels of optimism peak in your mid-fifties.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref25\" href=\"#_ftn25\"\u003e[25]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"padding-left: 80px;\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources and references:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\" href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.nia.nih.gov\/news\/research-explores-impact-menopause-womens-health-and-aging#:~:text=More%20than%201%20million%20women,of%20this%20natural%20biological%20occurrence.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\" href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.mayoclinic.org\/diseases-conditions\/menopause\/symptoms-causes\/syc-20353397#:~:text=Overview,51%20in%20the%20United%20States.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\" href=\"#_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.hrreview.co.uk\/hr-news\/10-of-women-leave-the-workforce-due-to-menopause\/142016\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn4\" href=\"#_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.nhs.uk\/conditions\/menopause\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn5\" href=\"#_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.reuters.com\/article\/idINIndia-57288820110526\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn6\" href=\"#_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.npr.org\/sections\/health-shots\/2017\/01\/25\/511588083\/an-early-first-menstrual-period-may-lead-to-premature-menopause#:~:text=An%20Early%20First%20Menstrual%20Period%20May%20Lead%20To%20Premature%20Menopause\u0026amp;text=Getty%20Images-,Data%20from%20four%20countries%20suggests%20a%20link%20between%20starting,age%2011%20and%20earlier%20menopause.\u0026amp;text=Women%20who%20get%20their%20first,of%2040%2C%20a%20study%20finds.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn7\" href=\"#_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/academic.oup.com\/humrep\/article\/37\/2\/333\/6427299\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn8\" href=\"#_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/public-health.uq.edu.au\/article\/2018\/03\/weight-plays-role-menopause-age#:~:text=%E2%80%9COverweight%20and%20obese%20women%20had,to%20the%20onset%20of%20menopause.%E2%80%9D\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn9\" href=\"#_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/23788671\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn10\" href=\"#_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.swanstudy.org\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn11\" href=\"#_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.themenopausecharity.org\/2021\/05\/05\/rebranding-the-menopause-as-a-female-hormone-deficiency\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn12\" href=\"#_ftnref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/thebms.org.uk\/2021\/08\/the-british-menopause-society-response-to-the-department-of-health-and-social-cares-call-for-evidence-to-help-inform-the-development-of-the-governments-womens-health-strateg\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn13\" href=\"#_ftnref13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e Health \u0026amp; Her research conducted Oct 2020 – Sept 2020\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn14\" href=\"#_ftnref14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6483504\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn15\" href=\"#_ftnref15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e Data based on 289 women using Health and Her app users for2 months any time between October 2020 and September 2022\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn16\" href=\"#_ftnref16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6429007\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn17\" href=\"#_ftnref17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.frontiersin.org\/articles\/10.3389\/fragi.2021.667519\/full\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn18\" href=\"#_ftnref18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/sleepeducation.org\/increasing-physical-activity-improve-sleep-menopausal-women\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn19\" href=\"#_ftnref19\"\u003e[19]\u003c\/a\u003e http:\/\/edition.cnn.com\/2016\/01\/27\/health\/menopause-hot-flashes-exercise\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn20\" href=\"#_ftnref20\"\u003e[20]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2728615\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn21\" href=\"#_ftnref21\"\u003e[21]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6257199\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn22\" href=\"#_ftnref22\"\u003e[22]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.theguardian.com\/sport\/2022\/sep\/30\/a-sea-of-positivity-older-women-boost-london-marathon-numbers\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn23\" href=\"#_ftnref23\"\u003e[23]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.healthline.com\/health\/menopause\/osteoporosis\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn24\" href=\"#_ftnref24\"\u003e[24]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.bhf.org.uk\/informationsupport\/support\/women-with-a-heart-condition\/menopause-and-heart-disease#:~:text=Before%20the%20menopause%2C%20women%20in,the%20menopause%2C%20your%20risk%20increases.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn25\" href=\"#_ftnref25\"\u003e[25]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/spsp.org\/news-center\/character-context-blog\/look-sunny-side-optimism-increases-people-get-older\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606671208754", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/What-is-Menopause_-1600x1067_732d3623-5ce4-4b63-b359-d9d1090fa227_768x.jpg?v=1700495118", "title" : "What is Menopause?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Article-Header-Images-menobelly2_dffe00f8-3f2b-40eb-9fd4-0504babd6fd0_1200x.jpg?v=1698247229", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eIt should come as no momentous surprise to learn most of us pile on a few pounds as we get older. According to research by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality this weight tends to increase progressively – a pound or two every year – as we enter middle age. On top of this, it has been shown that women put on an average of five pounds as they go through the menopause (which usually occurs between the ages of 45 and 53). What also happens around this time is that fat starts to be stored differently around the body. Typically, before menopause women tend to carry more fat around their hips and thighs but as levels of estrogen begin to decline, one of the side effects of this is that fat then tends to settle disconcertingly around your belly – leading to the infamous ‘menopause belly’, ‘meno-middle’, the ‘meno-pot’ or ‘meno-belly’. The question is, is menopause entirely to blame for this? Increasing research suggests it might not be exclusively but it is linked to changes in your body composition, the health of your gut microbiome and how you metabolize sugar and fat – but your lifestyle and age are also a big part of the equation.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat causes menopause belly?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a range of factors that affect the size, flatness and firmness of your stomach, including genetics and your diet and lifestyle, but around the time of the menopause these can also include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDealing with perimenopause\/ menopause symptoms\u003c\/strong\u003e. Many women head into \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-perimenopause\"\u003eperimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e (the lead up to menopause which on average happens for most women around the age of 46) and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/what-is-menopause\"\u003emenopause\u003c\/a\u003e experiencing symptoms like low mood and tiredness which can make it harder to stick to a healthy diet and exercise regime. Around this time in your life you might also start a family and this can radically alter your priorities and the time you have to yourself. You might also be caring for an elderly parent or other relative whilst also being busy with your career and very likely doing this sitting down in front of a computer all day. Increasingly, many of us then spend our leisure time scrolling through social media or looking at stuff online. The \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/anxiety-and-menopause\"\u003estress of work and life\u003c\/a\u003e can also lead you to produce more of the stress hormone cortisol (see more below) which in turn increases levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin – so you may be prone to eat more.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\" name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e We also tend to drink more alcohol as we get older (statistics from the charity Drinkaware show those aged 55-64 are more likely to drink more than those aged 16-24)\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\" name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e and alcohol contains a lot of sugar and mainly empty calories – so that regular evening tipple can soon translate into a couple more inches around your waist. . Research has found that women going through the perimenopause and those who have gone through menopause also have higher amounts of potentially dangerous visceral fat.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\" name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA drop in \u003c\/strong\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/foods-boost-testosterone-menopause\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003etestosterone\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e during menopause can also affect how much fat you carry around your middle. This is the hormone responsible for, among other things, muscle mass\/strength and fat distribution – basically lower testosterone means you are more likely to gain fat around your belly and your body becomes less efficient at burning calories.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn4\" name=\"_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e There are a \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/foods-boost-testosterone-menopause\"\u003erange of foods which can help support your body in increasing testosterone\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMuscle loss.\u003c\/strong\u003e The amount of lean tissue we have starts to decline by up to 8% annually after the age of around 30.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn5\" name=\"_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e You’re also likely to lose muscle if you are less active than you once were and\/or maybe find it harder to exercise because of a health condition (joint pain is one of the most common symptoms of menopause and this can impact on your motivation and ability to exercise) or injury. Why this is significant is because lean muscle burns more calories than fat, even when you are inactive. This means unless you are doing heavy manual work on a daily basis and\/or regularly working out with weights to maintain and build that muscle, you’ll probably need to eat and drink less than you once did in order to avoid piling on the pounds.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMetabolism\u003c\/strong\u003e. Any decrease in muscle mass is likely to slow your metabolism and reduce the number of calories you burn so if you can’t understand why you are putting on weight when you are not eating any more than you used to and are regularly exercising – this is probably why.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eChanges to your gut microbiome\u003c\/strong\u003e. Research exploring how menopause affects the gut microbiome is largely in its infancy, but studies on animals suggest declining levels of estrogen appear to alter the delicate balance of beneficial gut bugs in your GI tract and are associated with increased fat, a decreased metabolic rate and insulin resistance (which can result in excessive sugar in your blood, leading to blood sugar peaks and crashes followed by tiredness and hunger) – all of which may contribute to you putting on weight.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\" name=\"_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAn increase in cortisol.\u003c\/strong\u003e When you are stressed – physically or mentally – your adrenal glands pump out the stress hormone cortisol to help you handle that stress.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\" name=\"_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e In the short term this is a helpful physiological response. Long term, however, it can lead to a cortisol imbalance which can lead to food cravings, weight gain, sleep problems and digestive issues as cortisol’s function in the body is to help manage blood sugar, reduce inflammation in the body, regulate blood pressure, your sleep-wake cycle and memory.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\" name=\"_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e We also know that as estrogen declines during menopause levels of cortisol rise. Add to this the fact that stress results from the very symptoms of menopause itself (like random hot flushes, the inability to sleep well, changes to your body and brain fog that make it hard to focus) and you can see how managing cortisol can become an increasing concern. There is also research linking chronic or sustained stress to high levels of cortisol which appears to play a role in us craving high calorie ‘comfort’ foods – leading to an increase in belly fat.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn9\" name=\"_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e Read more here for ways to \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/anxiety-and-menopause\"\u003ecope with stress and anxiety during menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch2\u003eIs the meno-belly a health risk?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhile putting on a few pounds might not necessarily have a hugely detrimental effect on your health, if it is allowed to creep up and is left unchecked you are not only likely to feel more self-conscious and less confident about your body but you also increase your risk of some serious health conditions including type 2 diabetes and osteoarthritis. Fat that accumulates around your belly is known as visceral fat and this is potentially problematic because it gets stored within your abdominal cavity and surrounds your organs. A study from 2021 published in the journal \u003cem\u003eMenopause \u003c\/em\u003econfirms that menopausal weight gain puts you at a greater risk of cardiovascular disease.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn10\" name=\"_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow to get rid of menopause belly\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is not a foregone conclusion that you will develop a meno-belly and there is plenty you can do to reduce the risk of it happening and\/or to help you lose some weight if you need to including;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eEat smaller but better\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs our metabolism slows down so we burn fewer calories.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn11\" name=\"_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e It makes sense then to \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/perimenopause-diet\"\u003ekeep an eye on your portion sizes and cut down on foods\u003c\/a\u003e more likely to make you put on weight. Reducing your intake of refined carbohydrates, like white bread, pasta, cakes, biscuits and pastry, for example, has been linked to a reduced risk of postmenopausal weight gain.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn12\" name=\"_ftnref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e The key is to eat smaller portions of foods that are more nutritionally dense like protein in the form of oily fish, eggs, lean chicken or beef, nuts, pulses or tofu. Eating a small amount of protein with each meal or snack is known to keep you feeling fuller for longer and you are less likely to snack on unhealthier quick energy fix sugary or fatty foods. Eating whole grains like brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, quinoa and oats also appears to be beneficial: in one study carried out on people between the ages of 40-65, including postmenopausal women, the ones who ate whole grains as opposed to refined ones (like white processed bread, white rice, white pasta) burned more calories and excreted more fat.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn13\" name=\"_ftnref13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e  But rather than thinking in punitive terms about what you \u003cem\u003ecan’t\u003c\/em\u003e eat maybe start thinking of what you \u003cem\u003ecan eat more of\u003c\/em\u003e – like vitamin-packed fruit and veg. Fruit and veg is not only low in calories it is also high in fibre which can help create a thriving gut microbiome which is linked to maintaining a healthier weight. For more information about what foods can help read Nutritionist Helen Roach’s \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/perimenopause-diet\"\u003eDiet and recipes to help balance hormones during menopause.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCreate a thriving gut microbiome\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eGetting a rich and diverse balance of microbes in your gut can help you to become not just healthier but potentially slimmer too. Interestingly, overweight and obese people tend to have less diverse gut bacteria than those who are a healthy weight and they also put on weight more easily. Creating and maintaining a healthy and diverse balance of beneficial gut bacteria should not only help improve your digestion, immunity and mental health but should also improve your energy, metabolism and ability to maintain a healthy weight. Nutritional experts and GI specialists suggest the key to creating a flourishing and diverse balance of gut microorganisms is to eat as diverse a range of foods as you can. Plus eat minimum amounts of processed foods, cut back on sugar, eat more vegetables and fruit and fibre, consume plenty of plant based foods and drinks (not just vegetables and fruits but also seeds, nuts, herbs, spices, even coffee and tea – in short, anything that is derived from a plant source) and include healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil and sources of protein like fish, chicken, pulses and\/or tofu. Use the Mediterranean diet as a template for a menopause-friendly\/meno-belly busting way of eating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eInclude prebiotics and probiotics\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIncluding prebiotic and probiotic foods in your diet have also been shown to be particularly beneficial in encouraging a healthy gut microbiome and may even reduce the calories you absorb from food resulting in lower body weight and fat percentage.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn14\" name=\"_ftnref14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e Prebiotics are found in foods like onions, garlic, leeks,  Jerusalem artichokes, oats and berries and are said to act like a kind of ‘fertilizer’ that feed the friendly bacteria in your gut. Probiotics are live bacteria that are found in certain foods (including live unsweetened yogurt, kefir – a fermented yogurt drink, sourdough bread and fermented foods and drinks like sauerkraut and kombucha) and nutritional \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/collections\/probiotic-supplements\"\u003esupplements\u003c\/a\u003e. Significantly, several studies suggest probiotics can help you to lose both weight \u003cem\u003eand\u003c\/em\u003e belly fat. In one study obese postmenopausal women were given either a daily low dose probiotic supplement, a high dose probiotic supplement or a placebo for three months. At the end of the 12 weeks those in both the low dose probiotic group and the high one found that their waist size had been reduced and they had less fat, including subcutaneous or visceral fat. Greater benefits were seen in those taking the higher probiotic doses.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn15\" name=\"_ftnref15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e There is increasing focus on the bacteria strain \u003cem\u003eLactobacillus plantarum\u003c\/em\u003e found in some probiotic supplements – preliminary research on animals suggests is could possibly enhance memory and reduce anxiety.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn16\" name=\"_ftnref16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e Others suggest having low levels of this strain of microorganism can make it harder to lose weight. \u003cem\u003eLactobacillus plantarum\u003c\/em\u003e can be found, alongside many other live cultures and nutrients, in \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/collections\/probiotic-supplements\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her Weight Management - live Cultures Supplement\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eConsider how you eat\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIn our 24\/7 culture it can be tempting to eat on the run and wolf down something quickly to save time but there are studies to show that eating fast causes you to feel hungrier and eat more in the long run.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn17\" name=\"_ftnref17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e Similarly, having your meals in front of the telly has been linked to putting on more weight than those who don’t watch tv according to research published in the journal \u003cem\u003eObesity\u003c\/em\u003e.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn18\" name=\"_ftnref18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e Also the temptation when you have put on weight is to eat very little in the hope the weight will fall off. This can be counter-productive however because if your body doesn’t get the calories it needs it goes into survival mode and actually starts to burn less energy by lowering your metabolic rate. In other words, it becomes even \u003cem\u003eharder\u003c\/em\u003e to lose weight and this is liable to make you feel miserable and more inclined to comfort eat and drink.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDrink less\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eA glass of wine typically contains between 135 and 200 calories. You can see how that can rack up the calories over time so ideally have at least a few nights off the booze and\/or look for lower calorie tipples like gin or vodka with low calorie tonic (around 115 calories a glass) or no alcohol alternatives. And it is not just the calorie counts of these tipples that is the only concern – and when we have been drinking we tend to make less healthy food choice and possibly eat more. You can find more about \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-does-alcohol-affect-menopause\"\u003ehow drinking affects menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eKeep moving\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat is important at this stage of life is to try and preserve your muscle mass and your calorie burning potential \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/best-exercises-for-menopause-us\"\u003eby doing exercises using free weights, weight machines, resistance bands or your own body weight\u003c\/a\u003e (like squats, lunges, sit-ups or The Plank). This type of exercise should also help to improve your flexibility, mobility, strength and endurance. Do this in conjunction with regular aerobic exercise like walking, jogging, swimming or cycling and you should keep your weight down and your muscles firmer. Just keep moving as much as possible – doing things as simple as standing and pacing when you are on your phone or taking regular walking breaks if you are sat at a computer all day will help. Research shows prolonged sitting is linked to higher levels of abdominal fat.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn19\" name=\"_ftnref19\"\u003e[19]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eFind effective stress relievers\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eStress affects us all differently and whilst some people lose their appetite and shed weight, others find they comfort eat and put it on. Researchers have confirmed that increases in the stress hormone cortisol are linked to weight gain as your adrenal glands release adrenaline and cortisol which triggers glucose to be released into your bloodstream (this is a result of the ‘fight or flight response’ – giving you the energy you need to escape a stressful situation). This physiological response can cause sugar cravings.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn20\" name=\"_ftnref20\"\u003e[20]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eGet enough sleep\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eNot getting enough sleep can seriously sabotage your best efforts to get fit and\/or lose weight and has been linked to making poorer food choices, consuming more calories than you need and reduced fitness levels.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn21\" name=\"_ftnref21\"\u003e[21]\u003c\/a\u003e If you wake up feeling tired you are less likely to feel like exercising and the more exhausted you feel the more likely you are pick sugary and\/or fatty foods to give you a quick blood sugar high (followed by a crashing slump that can leave you feeling drowsy during the day). There is also evidence to show if you eat a diet high in sugar you tend to sleep less deeply and are more restless and wake more at night due to the stimulating effects of the sugar.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn22\" name=\"_ftnref22\"\u003e[22]\u003c\/a\u003e Recent research has also found that not getting enough sleep can lead to blood sugar spikes after breakfast the next morning. As a blood sugar spike is invariably followed by a blood sugar slump this could increase how much you eat during the day.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn23\" name=\"_ftnref23\"\u003e[23]\u003c\/a\u003e There is also evidence to suggest a lack of sleep can reduce the beneficial bugs in your gut.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn24\" name=\"_ftnref24\"\u003e[24]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/is-menopause-messing-with-your-sleep-tools-techniques-and-treatment-to-reclaim-your-rest\/\"\u003eHere is why menopause makes you tired.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCamouflage it\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you do feel self-conscious about your belly, stylist and dressmaker Gilly Woo has a range of tips and tricks to help in \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-look-feel-fabulous-whatever-waist-size\"\u003eHow to look and feel fabulous whatever your waist size\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBe realistic\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eUltimately, putting on weight and\/or developing a menopause tummy is not an inevitable side effect of menopause but conversely it is not healthy to fixate on trying to stick to the weight or shape you were at 18 either. You can be in great shape, fit, healthy and not overweight going through the menopause but your dwindling hormones do make it more likely that you might have a very small layer of extra fat sitting around your middle and you will probably find it harder to achieve an ultra-defined six pack. That is not, however, to say it is impossible.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources and Resources\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\" name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/30714236\/#:~:text=Abstract,aimed%20at%20attaining%20homeostatic%20balance\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/30714236\/#:~:text=Abstract,aimed%20at%20attaining%20homeostatic%20balance\u003c\/a\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\" name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.drinkaware.co.uk\/research\/alcohol-facts-and-data\/alcohol-consumption-uk#:~:text=In%202019%2C%2057%25%20of%20adults,compared%20to%2015%25%20of%20females\" target=\"_blank\"\u003e https:\/\/www.drinkaware.co.uk\/research\/alcohol-facts-and-data\/alcohol-consumption-uk#:~:text=In%202019%2C%2057%25%20of%20adults,compared%20to%2015%25%20of%20females\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\" name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.drinkaware.co.uk\/research\/alcohol-facts-and-data\/alcohol-consumption-uk#:~:text=In%202019%2C%2057%25%20of%20adults,compared%20to%2015%25%20of%20females.\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/joinzoe.com\/learn\/menopause-weight-gain\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref4\" name=\"_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.healthline.com\/nutrition\/testosterone-and-fat-loss#:~:text=Summary%3A%20Low%20testosterone%20levels%20reduce,promote%20weight%20gain%20over%20time.\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.healthline.com\/nutrition\/testosterone-and-fat-loss#:~:text=Summary%3A%20Low%20testosterone%20levels%20reduce,promote%20weight%20gain%20over%20time.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref5\" name=\"_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2804956\/#:~:text=Muscle%20mass%20decreases%20approximately%203,to%20disability%20in%20older%20people\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC2804956\/#:~:text=Muscle%20mass%20decreases%20approximately%203,to%20disability%20in%20older%20people\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref6\" name=\"_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/33235036\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/33235036\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref7\" name=\"_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.pardigm.com\/articles\/what-is-cortisol\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.pardigm.com\/articles\/what-is-cortisol\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref8\" name=\"_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.pardigm.com\/articles\/what-is-cortisol\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.everydayhealth.com\/cortisol\/guide\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref9\" name=\"_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1002\/oby.21733\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1002\/oby.21733\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref10\" name=\"_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/journals.lww.com\/menopausejournal\/Abstract\/2021\/06000\/Abdominal_visceral_adipose_tissue_over_the.6.aspx\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/journals.lww.com\/menopausejournal\/Abstract\/2021\/06000\/Abdominal_visceral_adipose_tissue_over_the.6.aspx\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref11\" name=\"_ftn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.cambridge.org\/core\/journals\/journal-of-nutritional-science\/article\/lower-resting-and-total-energy-expenditure-in-postmenopausal-compared-with-premenopausal-women-matched-for-abdominal-obesity\/AE8AD0A864F72A9B5D34D482A714E6CA\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.cambridge.org\/core\/journals\/journal-of-nutritional-science\/article\/lower-resting-and-total-energy-expenditure-in-postmenopausal-compared-with-premenopausal-women-matched-for-abdominal-obesity\/AE8AD0A864F72A9B5D34D482A714E6CA\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref12\" name=\"_ftn12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5728369\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC5728369\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref13\" name=\"_ftn13\"\u003e[13]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/academic.oup.com\/ajcn\/article\/105\/3\/589\/4637849\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/academic.oup.com\/ajcn\/article\/105\/3\/589\/4637849\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref14\" name=\"_ftn14\"\u003e[14]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1111\/obr.12626\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1111\/obr.12626\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref15\" name=\"_ftn15\"\u003e[15]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/29914095\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/29914095\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref16\" name=\"_ftn16\"\u003e[16]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6412773\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC6412773\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref17\" name=\"_ftn17\"\u003e[17]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3253303\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3253303\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref18\" name=\"_ftn18\"\u003e[18]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/27030406\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/27030406\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref19\" name=\"_ftn19\"\u003e[19]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1002\/oby.22034\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/onlinelibrary.wiley.com\/doi\/full\/10.1002\/oby.22034\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref20\" name=\"_ftn20\"\u003e[20]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.orlandohealth.com\/content-hub\/how-too-much-stress-can-cause-weight-gain-and-what-to-do-about-it\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.orlandohealth.com\/content-hub\/how-too-much-stress-can-cause-weight-gain-and-what-to-do-about-it\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref21\" name=\"_ftn21\"\u003e[21]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.sleepstation.org.uk\/articles\/insomnia\/sleep-and-weight-gain\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.sleepstation.org.uk\/articles\/insomnia\/sleep-and-weight-gain\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref22\" name=\"_ftn22\"\u003e[22]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/26156950\/\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/26156950\/\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref23\" name=\"_ftn23\"\u003e[23]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/joinzoe.com\/learn\/menopause-weight-gain\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/joinzoe.com\/learn\/menopause-weight-gain\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref24\" name=\"_ftn24\"\u003e[24]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.sciencedaily.com\/releases\/2019\/10\/191028164311.htm\" target=\"_blank\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.sciencedaily.com\/releases\/2019\/10\/191028164311.htm\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606562746674", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Article-Header-Images-menobelly2_dffe00f8-3f2b-40eb-9fd4-0504babd6fd0_768x.jpg?v=1698247229", "title" : "What is Menopause Belly and how to get rid of it", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=239" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/239" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 14, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 239, "term_id": 239, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=650" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/650" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 6, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 650, "term_id": 650, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=244" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=244" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=244" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/244" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 12, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/digestive-issues/", "name": "Digestive issues", "description": "Menopause digestive symptoms are varied and complex and can be linked to changes that are triggered by the menopause like low mood or food intolerances. We've found the latest and most innovative products to help with this regularly reported symptom*.\r\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 244, "term_id": 244, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "digestive-issues" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=229" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/229" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight gain", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing menopause weight gain have chosen as part of a healthy lifestyle. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 229, "term_id": 229, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606517297458", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Dr-R-Tomlinson-Headshot-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697653989", "name" : "Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Does-HRT-make-meno-worse-smaller-1600x1042_8a2397c6-fb01-4fb2-9800-c30b7e8fcef3_1200x.jpg?v=1701311080", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eFor many women hormone therapy (hormone therapy) is the answer they have been searching for when it comes to minimizing, or stopping, their often soul-sapping perimenopausal or menopausal symptoms. Hormone therapy is generally agreed to be the gold-standard treatment because it addresses the very root cause of these symptoms – namely replacing declining hormone levels – the end result of which should help women to get back to feeling ‘like themselves’ again.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eUnsurprisingly, many women are pretty evangelical about its benefits. Unfortunately, however, this is not true for everyone and there are some unlucky ones who find hormone therapy makes them feel worse than the very symptoms that caused them to seek it out in the first place.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat is Hormone Therapy?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eLike any medicine, the hormones used in \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-replacement-therapy-hrt-guide\/\"\u003ehormone therapy\u003c\/a\u003e (estrogen, progesterone and in some cases testosterone\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e can potentially cause side effects.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is also helpful to remember hormone therapy isn’t one standardized homogenous medication but comes in a range of strengths and modes of delivery (gels, pills, transdermal patches, pessaries, sprays and implants) and it can be a process of trial and error to get it right for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe type of hormone therapy you need will also depend on a range of factors including whether you have had a hysterectomy (in which case you will be prescribed estrogen-only hormone therapy) and the specific menopausal symptoms you are experiencing which will determine the most appropriate hormones and dosage. (Dr Shilpa McQuillan explains more in \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat is hormone therapy and who is it intended for?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you have recently been prescribed hormone therapy it can help to keep an open mind initially and not immediately write it off if it doesn’t seem to be agreeing with you from the outset. Most health professionals and manufacturers of hormone therapy suggest you allow around three months for your body to adjust to it. Often, any issues are temporary and\/or fixable with a few minor adjustments but it helps to have accurate information about risks and potential side effects.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow to tell if hormone therapy is not working for you\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat are the signs hormone therapy is not helping, why are some women more likely to encounter problems than others and what is the best course of action if it is making you feel worse than before?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe whole point of hormone therapy is to replace the hormones that your body no longer produces around the time of the menopause and, in turn, minimize, or put a stop to any debilitating symptoms triggered by them decreasing. If it doesn’t – or appears to be exacerbating them – this is indicating your Rx may need rethinking and\/or tweaking. Symptoms to look out for can be both physical and\/or psychological and may include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eProblems sleeping\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou are still having hot flashes and night sweats\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eUnexplained weight gain\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFeeling sick\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLack of libido\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDepression or low mood\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBloating and fluid retention\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFatigue\/tiredness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIrritability\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMuscle and joint pain\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eChanges in your bowel habits\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMigraines and headaches\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePoor concentration and forgetfulness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFeeling unusually angry\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eStress and worry\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePanic attacks\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBreast tenderness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAcne and oily skin\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHirsutism (excess hair growth)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDizziness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHigh blood pressure\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eRaised cholesterol levels\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eInsulin resistance\/pre-diabetes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSome women are more prone to problems with hormone therapy than others\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHormone intolerance to progesterone –\u003c\/strong\u003e Typically, too, symptoms of an hormonal intolerance to hormone therapy (generally to progesterone) can be very similar to those of PMS or PMDD (Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, a particularly severe form of PMS) and if you have a history of suffering with PMS or PMDD symptoms in the past you may be at an increased risk of hyper-sensitivity to the progesterone in hormone therapy so it can help to be alert to any warning signs (including cramps, joint and muscle pain, insomnia, binge eating and food cravings, stress and worry).\u003ca name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eEndometriosis – \u003c\/strong\u003eResearch shows those who have had a history of endometriosis \u003ca name=\"_ednref1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_edn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e(a painful condition in which tissue similar to the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus)\u003ca name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e can find taking hormone therapy reactivates tissue growth and cause a recurrence of endometriosis.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHypothyroidism –\u003c\/strong\u003e Also, women living with hypothyroidism (when the thyroid gland does not produce enough of the hormone thyroid) can experience issues with estrogen in hormone therapy which can interfere with thyroid medication and reduce the amount of available thyroid hormone in the blood. If you are being treated with thyroid hormone and start taking hormone therapy then you will probably need to increase your normal thyroid dosage to compensate for the effects of the estrogen and need to work out a carefully individualized plan with your physician.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eGenital herpes –\u003c\/strong\u003e For women who have the genital herpes simplex virus there is also some evidence to suggest that progesterone in hormone therapy could increase susceptibility to infection.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref6\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCan you be intolerant to hormone therapy?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you are struggling with more symptoms than before you started it, this can be a sign of a hypersensitivity. Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson M.D., a physician with a special interest in menopause explains what commonly causes it: ‘Most often, it is the progesterone component of hormonal treatments that women are sensitive to and this can lead to a lot of symptoms that could possibly be mistaken for other things like depression, PMT or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).’ It is thought that around 20% of women taking hormone therapy can’t tolerate progesterone and around half of those affected will stop taking their hormone therapy because of the side effects it produces.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref7\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy is progesterone problematic?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDr Tomlinson says, ‘Most of the progesterones that are prescribed to us throughout our lives as contraceptives or hormone therapy will be progestogens – synthetically created hormones that can be different in structure and compound make-up to the natural progesterones produced by your ovaries. The alternative to these are the newer “body identical” ones and micronized varieties which are being developed. These are more naturally sourced (currently from yam) and have more similarities to your body’s natural progesterone. Women tend to have fewer side effects with these and research has shown them to be safer in terms of risks of breast cancer, blood clot and heart disease. The most common body identical progesterone currently being used in HT is called Utrogestan.’\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eEstrogen tends to cause fewer problems but commonly can make you feel sick and headachy when you first start taking it. It can also trigger other gastrointestinal problems including abdominal cramps, vomiting, bloating, flatulence, diarrhea, and heartburn. Dry eyes and leg cramps are other recognized side effects.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref8\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e,\u003ca name=\"_ftnref9\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e If you have been prescribed testosterone side effects are rare but can potentially include increasingly oily skin and acne, excess hair, and weight gain.\u003ca name=\"_ftnref10\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat to do if your hormone therapy is making you feel ill\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTrack your symptoms \u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003eusing our tracker to pinpoint how they manifest themselves and if, and when, they get better or worse. Don’t automatically think you can’t tolerate any hormone treatments ever. As it is frequently pointed out just as there is no one size fits all solution for perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms, equally there is no one HT solution for every woman.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExperiment\u003c\/strong\u003e. As Dr Tomlinson M.D. says, ‘Having side effects with one hormone therapy regimen should not stop you from trying an alternative type. Changing your hormone therapy to a formulation more tailored to your hormone sensitivities may reduce or stop some, or all, of the issues you are experiencing.’ It might be something as simple as changing to a different delivery method: side effects tend to be milder when using patches or pessaries than taking pills. \u003cem\u003eWhen\u003c\/em\u003e you take your hormone therapy is also significant – for example, if your tablet makes you feel nauseous many women say that taking it with food and at night can stop you feeling sick. It is also worth pointing out that some women have noticed when using patches or gels that the amount of hormone they absorb through their skin can vary according to the brand of hormone therapy they are using– so if yours appears to be too low or high it can be worth experimenting to find a brand that works best for you. In short, tweaking the dosage and altering the type of progesterone used and\/or when you take your hormone therapy can all help. As Dr Tomlinson explains, ‘Progestogens and progesterones are either given sequentially (12-14 days in a 28 day cycle) or continuously (daily). Those on sequential hormone therapy may find a complete change in their symptoms on the days where they are taking both the estrogen and progesterone together, compared to the days when they just on the estrogen alone. If this is the case, then changing the progesterone being used or the timing of it would be advised.’\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-size: 1rem; color: var(--color-body);\"\u003eTry a different form of progesterone\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-size: 1rem; color: var(--color-body);\"\u003e. Micronized progesterone, made from yams, is also generally better tolerated, and metabolized than the synthetic versions – with the added benefit that it has been shown to help improve sleep quality, something that is often a key concern during menopause.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca style=\"font-size: 1rem;\" name=\"_ftnref11\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca style=\"font-size: 1rem;\" href=\"#_ftn11\"\u003e[11] \u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan style=\"font-size: 1rem; color: var(--color-body);\"\u003eFor this reason, it is generally recommended that you take yours at night.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWork with an experienced and knowledgeable health professional. \u003c\/strong\u003eDr Tomlinson is keen to point out that you need to discuss any changes with your physician. She adds that although as it might seem that taking less progesterone might ease any adverse side effects, reducing your dose could leave you with insufficient endometrial (lining of the womb) protection leaving you at an increased risk of endometrial hyperplasia and endometrial cancer. Speak to your physician if you are having issues so you get the maximum benefits from your hormone therapy.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAlternative treatments to hormone therapy\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf ultimately you can’t find an\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e hormone therapy\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e treatment that you get on with or you simply don’t want to take it anymore there are other prescribed medicines that can potentially help including Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) – antidepressants which are effective at reducing night sweats. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/cbt-for-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCognitive Behavioral Therapy\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e (CBT) is a talking therapy that can help you deal with some of the more problematic psychological symptoms of menopause including stress, worry and mood swings. Vaginal lubricants are easily available online or at the pharmacist and can help reduce uncomfortable vaginal dryness.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are also a range of diet and lifestyle changes that can help minimize perimenopause and menopause symptoms including \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003etaking regular exercise\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e; eating a \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ehealthy menopause-friendly diet\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e, taking vitamin and mineral supplements containing \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/bloating\/phytoestrogens-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ephytoestrogens (like yam),\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/how-does-alcohol-affect-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003elimiting alcohol\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e, stopping smoking and finding effective ways to \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/anxiety-and-menopause\/\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003emanage stress and worry\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e. Many women find they can successfully manage their symptoms this way.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources \u0026amp; resources\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/my.clevelandclinic.org\/health\/treatments\/15245-hormone-therapy-for-menopause-symptoms\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.psycom.net\/premenstrual-dysphoric-disorder-pmdd\/pmdd-or-pms\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.hopkinsmedicine.org\/health\/conditions-and-diseases\/endometriosis\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.hopkinsmedicine.org\/health\/conditions-and-diseases\/endometriosis\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn4\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/academic.oup.com\/humupd\/article\/23\/4\/481\/3814217\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn5\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/30296186\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn6\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/journals.asm.org\/doi\/full\/10.1128\/JVI.77.8.4558-4565.2003#:~:text=Progesterone%20Increases%20Susceptibility%20and%20Decreases%20Immune%20Responses%20to%20Genital%20Herpes%20Infection,-Authors%3A%20Charu%20Kaushic\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn7\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/academic.oup.com\/humupd\/article\/3\/2\/159\/840053\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn8\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/patient.info\/medicine\/oestrogen-hrt-estradiol-conjugated-oestrogens\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn9\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/abs\/pii\/S0378512203003815\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn10\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/thebms.org.uk\/wp-content\/uploads\/2022\/12\/08-BMS-TfC-Testosterone-replacement-in-menopause-DEC2022-A.pdf\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn11\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/29962247\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606718853426", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Does-HRT-make-meno-worse-smaller-1600x1042_8a2397c6-fb01-4fb2-9800-c30b7e8fcef3_768x.jpg?v=1701311080", "title" : "Can hormone therapy make your symptoms worse?", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Image_of_HRT_Pills_fe0d663d-78b4-4860-84cc-04605d40156b_1200x.jpg?v=1701311101", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eWhat is Hormone Therapy (HT), and could it be for you? Our doctor, Shilpa McQuillan, has created the really useful guide to demystify HT: what it is, how it works, the options available, the risks, and the benefits.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs the name suggests, Hormone Therapy (HT) is a treatment designed to replace the hormones in your body that you no longer make around the menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBut before we dive into what HT is and how it works, let’s recap on the role your hormones play during menopause. Estrogen (one of your female hormones) is mainly produced in the ovaries and is responsible for controlling many functions in the body including the production of an egg each month (ovulation). But as you get older, the store of eggs in your ovaries naturally declines. Menopause – your last period – happens when your ovaries stop producing eggs and your body’s estrogen levels fall. This drop in estrogen is the cause of many symptoms we associate with the menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat is Hormone Therapy (HT)?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe main type of hormone in HT is estrogen. However, you may need to replace other hormones such as progesterone and testosterone, which are available in some treatment regimes. HT mainly aims to relieve symptoms related to estrogen deficiency such as hot flashes, urogenital irritation (bladder and vaginal area), joint aches, headaches and mood disorders.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhich kind of HT regime is best for me?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe type and dose of hormones you need varies between women – HT is tailored to your individual needs. If you choose to try HT, your doctor or gynecologist will talk to you, look into your medical history and make suggestions about what might work best for you. So now let’s take a closer look at the options you might discuss…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHT regime #1: estrogen alone\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor most women who have had their womb removed (hysterectomy) then you will be prescribed an estrogen-only HT. This is because most of the benefits of HT come from the estrogen, whilst the progestogen is only used to protect the lining of the womb.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eImportant:\u003c\/strong\u003e There are certain medical cases such as endometriosis, where you may be advised that you need a combination HRT even after having a hysterectomy – please check with your surgical team or GP if you are one of these women.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat are the different types of estrogen HT and how do you take it?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMost HT containing estrogen works systemically and is circulated throughout the body.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt comes in a variety of forms. For example:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou can take a tablet every day – like a contraceptive pill.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTransdermal estrogen is the kind that you apply to the skin, either in the form of a patch, gel or spray.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ePatches\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003ePatches are stuck onto the skin, often on your bottom or upper thigh and are changed every few days. One worry some women have is whether the patch will fall off especially when wet, for example during showering, swimming, exercising, or even those dreaded hot flashes and sweats. Fear not, these patches are designed to stick on really well!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWomen also sometimes ask about how to remove the patch, and whether it will leave a mark. Though these patches can stay on well through most activities, they are quite easy to remove when you are ready – like a waterproof plaster. You can gently wipe away any residue left from the adhesive with makeup remover or baby mineral oil and a dry cloth.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eEstrogen gel\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eEstrogen gel usually comes in a pump, tube, or sachet. It can be rubbed anywhere on the body but it should not be applied on the breasts and is not for use in the vagina.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt usually takes around an hour for the gel to be absorbed and you should avoid applying anything else – such as moisturizers – in that period. The amount of gel you need varies between women and your doctor will discuss how much you should use. I usually start at the lowest dose and adjust this depending on how well symptoms are controlled. It is important to wash your hands thoroughly after use.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003eEstrogen Spray\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eEstrogen Spray comes in a hand held pump with a wide circular spray cone. You place the spray cone in direct contact with the flat hairless skin of your inner forearm. Once one spray has been released onto the skin you leave this to absorb into the skin for at least 2 minutes – you do not rub it in. Further sprays, if needed, are sprayed onto different patches of the same or alternative forearm. You can get dressed soon after it has all be absorbed and should wait 60 minutes or more before bathing or swimming.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow to choose between a tablet or transdermal (patch\/gel)?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eI’m a firm believer in patient choice. However there are some advantages and safety reasons for using transdermal HT:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIt is easier to adjust the dose of transdermal HT. This is especially important in those whose requirements change over the course of treatment. For example older women usually require a lower strength or some women have symptoms or side effects that fluctuate.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTransdermal HT carries a lower risk than oral tablets for clots and stroke.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTransdermal is safer for those who suffer from conditions such as migraines and epilepsy.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTransdermal HT does not lower libido, something which can be linked to oral tablets.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHT regime #2: topical vaginal estrogen\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome women may only experience symptoms that affect the vagina or bladder area. Therefore, it may be more suitable to prescribe a treatment that can be applied to this local area and does not affect the whole body. There is no evidence that giving estrogen alone in this form increases the risk of womb cancer, so these regimes do not require women to take added progestogens.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow do you take it?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eVaginal estrogen comes in the form of creams, vaginal tablets, and rings. You can rub the cream on the vulva and lower vaginal area. The vaginal tablets are inserted higher up using an applicator. How often you use the cream and tablets varies but usually women use them everyday for two weeks, and then twice a week thereafter.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eVaginal rings are inserted into the vagina and steadily release a small amount of hormone. They are changed every three months. Most women do this themselves, but your doctor or nurse may be able to do this for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eImportant: topical vaginal estrogen should not be confused with the estrogen gel (mentioned above) which circulates around the body and is used to treat more widespread symptoms such as hot flashes and joint aches.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHT regime #3: Adding Progestogene to Estrogen HT\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis regime is recommended if you still have your womb. This is because the progestogen helps to keep your womb lining thin and reduces your risk of developing womb cancer. How much progestogen you need depends on whether you are still having periods which we will cover in more detail below.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow do you take it?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a few ways you can take HT containing both estrogen and progestogen. The easiest way is in a single combined pill or patch.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnother way is the separate the estrogen and progestogen. This is particularly useful when a woman’s estrogen requirements need adjusting over the course of treatment, but you only need a small consistent dose of progestogen to protect the womb lining. The estrogen HT is provided continuously in the form of a tablet, patch or gel and is taken as directed in the section above ’What are the different types of estrogen HT’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are two approaches to providing the progestogen hormone:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIn the form of an oral tablet.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUsing an IUD. This is a small device that is fitted in the womb and can stay there for up to four years. I really encourage women to consider this as there are many benefits including: not having to remember to taking a pill everyday in addition to the estrogen HT you choose; and providing a reliable long lasting contraception if this is still required. It is also one of the best treatments for heavy, painful periods if this is something you suffer from.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCyclical HT (adding Progestogen to estrogen HT)\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen you last had a period affects how much progestogen you need. If you are still having periods or your periods stopped less than a year ago you will be advised to have ‘cyclical’ HT. This regime mimics the monthly cycle and estrogen is provided throughout the month but the progestogen is only needed for part of it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eLike taking the the contraceptive pill, there is a ‘withdrawal’ bleed, which occurs in the days following the course of progestogen, as the womb lining is shed. In some regimes, there may only be a ‘withdrawal’ bleed every few months.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow do I take cyclical HT?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe easiest way to take cyclical HT is in a single combined pill or patch. In the first half of the month, the tablet or patch will contain estrogen only and in the second half, it will contain both progestogen and estrogen.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may prefer or be advised to take the estrogen and progestogen separately. You will be offered the various options of estrogen HT regime as directed in the section above ’What are the different types of estrogen HT’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou can then take a seperate oral progestogen tablet in the last 12-14 days of the month or have a Mirena coil fitted which will last four years.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eContinuous HT (adding Progestogen to estrogen HT)\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you have not had a period for over a year or you have already been using cyclical HT for more than a year you may be advised to start ‘continuous’ HT.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThese regimes contain both estrogen and progestogen hormones that are are released steadily throughout the month without a break and are used to achieve a ‘period-free’ HT.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow do I take continuous HT?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe easiest way to take continuous HT is in a single combined pill or patch. Unlike cyclical HT, it will contain both progestogen and estrogen throughout the entire month.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you choose to separate the estrogen and progestogen hormones (or are advised) then you will be offered the various options of estrogen HT regime as directed in the section above ’What are the different types of estrogen HT’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou can then take a seperate oral progestogen tablet. Unlike cyclical HT, you will take this every day of the month. Alternately you can have a Mirena coil fitted which will last 4 years.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHT regime #4: Tibolone\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is a synthetic hormone which mimics the effects of estrogen, progestogens, and testosterone. It has similar benefits to continuous HT and is taken continuously to achieve a ‘period free’ HT. It is similarly prescribed in those who have not had a period for over a year or who have already been using cyclical HT for more than a year.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTibolone is taken as an oral tablet once a day. However, it may only be prescribed by specialists, and you will need to discuss this with your doctor.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHT regime #5: Testosterone\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is known to most people as the ‘male hormone’. However, women also produce this hormone and like estrogen, these levels can fall reaching the menopause. Low levels of testosterone can result in symptoms such as low sex drive (libido); low energy; and poor concentration. If you experience these symptoms, it is important to discuss with your doctor whether testosterone may be a safe treatment option. Testosterone may be prescribed alongside all the approaches above\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTestosterone is usually given as a cream or gel which you rub into your skin. Depending on the brand, you may take this every day or a few times a week. It is important to wash your hands thoroughly after use.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\" style=\"text-align: center;\"\u003e“As well as symptom management, HT can also help to protect your bones and safeguard heart health”\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003chr\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIs HT suitable for me?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you are interested in taking HT, your healthcare provider can check which regimes are safe and suitable for your individual needs. The risks and benefits of each type of HT will depend on your age, your general health, and any personal or family medical problems – there’s more information on that later in this article.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eBenefits of HT\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are many ways you can manage menopause, but HT has been shown to be the most effective treatment to reduce your symptoms and reduce your risk of osteoporosis and heart disease. It is especially important to help protect bone health in those with premature menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eRisks of HT\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eBelow I outline the main risks of HT, but be aware that risks vary depending on your individual circumstance as well as type and dose of treatments.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHT is not generally recommended for women with a history of stroke or deep vein thrombosis (clots in the veins); breast cancer; womb cancer; or severe liver disease.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is also not usually appropriate to start HT in those over the age of 60 . However, this does not mean that women who started it before the age of 60 should stop on reaching this age – in fact, there are benefits of longer-term usage. As well as symptom management, HT can also help to protect your bones and safeguard heart health.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBreast cancer\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is probably the risk most women worry about. It is important to note that the risk is very small (one extra case of breast cancer in one thousand women taking HT per year. That is less than 0.1%).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003eGood to know:\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis risk only applies to those taking a combined HT (HT with progestogen) and not in those taking estrogen only HT. In addition, there is no increased risk in those under the age of 51 taking HT. It is also worth noting that your individual risk of developing breast cancer depends on underlying risks factors including as high alcohol intake, smoking and being overweight.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eStroke and clots in veins\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWomen taking HT in the form of oral tablets can have an increased risk of stroke or clots in the veins.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThis risk is very small especially if you are below the age of 60 and is more likely in those with risk factors such as smoking, being very overweight, or a history of stroke or clots.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eFurthermore, there is no increased risk in those taking HT in the form of skin patches or gels.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat are the side effects of HT?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSide effects of HT are – medically speaking – not serious and depend on the type of HT you take. They usually occur the first three months of starting HT and settle down over time.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe most common side effects are:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ebreast tenderness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ebloating\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003efeeling sick (nausea)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eleg cramps\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eskin irritation from skin patches.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou should discuss any side effects at your HT review as they may be overcome by changing the brand, dose, route, or regime.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIrregular light bleeding or ‘spotting’ is also a common side effect in the first 4-6 months of taking continuous HT. However, you should consult your doctor if you experience heavy bleeding within this time; bleeding that lasts more than 6 months; or bleeding that starts suddenly after 3-6 months, when you previously had no bleeding at all.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eManaging menopause symptoms with HT in the long term\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eHT is a medicine you should review regularly with your Doctor\u003cspan style=\"color: var(--color-body);\"\u003e or gynecologist. You should have an initial review three months after starting HT, and yearly thereafter.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThese reviews should include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003echecking symptoms control\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eany side effects\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eensuring appropriate type and dose of HT.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eGood to know:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere is no set time limit for how long you should be on HT.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eFor some women long term use of HT may be required for symptom relief\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eThe decision on how long to continue HT should be shared between a woman and her doctor.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Dr Shilpa McQuillan MRCGP MRCOG DFSRH\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" style=\"margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.38;\"\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan is a doctor with a difference; she brings a wealth of specialist knowledge when it comes to women’s health. Previously a Hospital Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Shilpa now works in general practice, providing patients with resident expertise and knowledge on women’s health concerns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/shilpa-mcquillan\/\"\u003eRead Shilpa’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou might also be interested in reading:\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\/\"\u003eNutritionists’ Guide to Menopause\u003c\/a\u003e by Rosie Letts, Qualified Nutritional Therapist\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/menopause-perimenopause-and-post-menopause-a-doctors-overview\/\"\u003eMenopause, perimenopause and post menopause – a doctor’s overview\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eLast updated – Medical review, September 2022\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719279410", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Image_of_HRT_Pills_fe0d663d-78b4-4860-84cc-04605d40156b_768x.jpg?v=1701311101", "title" : "Hormone Therapy (HT) guide", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Trigger-for-menopause-and-periemnopause-1-1600x545_1200x.jpg?v=1698247231", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eMore than a million women will experience perimenopause and menopause each year in the US\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\" name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e – a time when the sex hormones including estrogen start to go into freefall triggering a range of physical and emotional changes. Whilst there is not much anyone can do to control this natural hormonal upheaval, new research from Health \u0026amp; Her has pinpointed how lifestyle habits can potentially ignite and exacerbate perimenopausal symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhy this is an important piece of research is that by understanding what these triggers are, and the reasons why they can set off symptoms, it becomes easier to identify how they might impact on you. In short, the better informed you are, the more in control of your symptoms you should feel.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe Health \u0026amp; Her research was conducted over the course of a year and involved 69,277 UK women. Its findings help us to understand the real-life concerns of those going through this transitional time. Not least the fact that more than 80% of the women identified at least one lifestyle trigger which made their perimenopause\/menopause symptoms worse. So, what are the top 10 triggers? What exactly are they doing to your body and what can you do to help minimize their effects?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #1: Stress at work\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhether working to tight deadlines, having to do a presentation, taking part in a Zoom event, dealing with tricky colleagues, the threat of job cuts and\/or a lack of job satisfaction your workplace can be a pretty relentless source of stress and worry. Unsurprisingly, perhaps over half the women (53%) in the Health \u0026amp; Her study identified stress at work as a trigger of their perimenopausal or menopausal symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Dr Rebeccah Tomlinson M.D., a doctor with a special interest in menopause explains, “Stress is a natural physical and psychological reaction to life. In small doses it is fine but when it revs up especially during work, the body goes into flight or fight mode. Your brain signals the release of the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline, which prepares your body for action.” Why these symptoms can be aggravated during perimenopause and menopause is because estrogen helps to balance cortisol levels, so when levels of estrogen drop, this can make it harder for you to deal effectively with stress.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Practical things you can do to help include taking regular exercise (read our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003etop 5 exercises for perimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e) and getting enough sleep (\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/menopause-disturbed-sleep\/\"\u003eour experts explain what can help\u003c\/a\u003e) and whether you are in the office or WFH don’t suffer in silence – be open and honest and ask for support if you feel you have an excessive workload and\/or unrealistic targets or deadlines. Julie Dennis, menopause work coach also suggests you prioritize your most important tasks of the day first; don’t feel you have to strive for absolute perfection and if you feel like your brain is fogging up quite literally give yourself a break. As she says, ‘Seriously, five minutes away from your desk can dramatically improve your concentration.’\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #2: A stressful event\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThese are an unavoidable part of life and research confirms an association between stressful events and worse menopause symptoms\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\" name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e The study showed that 47% of women said that stressful events triggered symptoms for their symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e It is not necessarily the event in itself that is the primary trigger here but more how you respond to it. Many of us can spend a huge chunk of time over thinking and catastrophizing, either before and after an event, and these negative thought patterns can raise levels of stress and worry leading to tension headaches, sweating, palpitations, digestive issues, problems sleeping and the temptation to anaesthetize negative feelings with alcohol or overeating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Almost any form of exercise (including a brisk walk) helps to reduce stress hormones and stimulate production of feel-good endorphins. Practicing relaxation techniques like yoga \u0026amp; meditation or mindfulness and breathing exercises can also help you to both better manage stress and remain more positive. Many women have also benefitted from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) a type of talking therapy which teaches coping strategies including how to change negative thoughts, feelings and behaviors into more positive ones. There is evidence\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\" name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e to show that CBT can also help with perimenopause and menopausal worry, low mood and sleep problems. Plus, it has been shown to help reduce the impact of hot flashes and night sweats. Ultimately, we all deal with stress differently, and what helps one woman might not work for another, so it can be a matter of trial and error – and a combination of factors including eating better, getting more sleep and limiting alcohol – that can create a more effective buffer against stressful events and perimenopausal symptoms generally.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148647\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Sugar trigger menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-1024x256.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-1536x384.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-1600x400.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-1200x300.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-992x248.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092117\/Article-Slim-Banner4.jpg 1667w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #3: Sugar\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is near impossible to have a diet that is completely sugar free, and there are natural sugars (like fructose in fruit and lactose in milk and dairy products) which are important as part of a balanced diet but generally we almost all exceed the recommended amount of added or ‘free’ sugars we should be having daily.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn4\" name=\"_ftnref4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e Given that 45% of women in the study logged sugar as a trigger of symptoms, it makes sense to cut down.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e It is well-documented that sugary snacks and drinks cause high spikes in blood sugar followed by crashing lows which impact on your energy levels and mood. Blood sugar fluctuations can also affect your concentration and can magnify the effects of brain fog, which are already a symptom of perimenopause\/menopause for many. The temptation when you ‘crash’ is to then get another quick energy and mood fix from yet more sugar causing blood sugar levels to zigzag out of control. Evidence also shows that those who eat a diet high in sugar tend to sleep less deeply and are more restless at night due to the stimulating effects of sugar.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn5\" name=\"_ftnref5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Reduce your intake of obviously sugary foods like cakes, biscuits and chocolate but also be mindful that there are hidden added sugars in savory products like shop-bought pasta sauces, salad dressings, ketchup and relish. Aim to satisfy sweet cravings with more natural and healthy sugars like those in fruit, dried fruits and try substituting cinnamon for table sugar in hot drinks and sprinkled on cereals and porridge (it provides a natural sweetness, is said to help stabilize blood sugar and is virtually calorie-free).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148641\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Caffeine trigger alcohol\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-1024x256.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-1536x384.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-1600x400.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-1200x300.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-992x248.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092107\/Article-Slim-Banner2.jpg 1667w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #4: Caffeine\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eHaving a morning latte, a diet cola as an afternoon pick-me-up or an espresso after a meal might seem innocuous enough but caffeine can crank up symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Perimenopausal, menopausal or not, sensitivity to caffeine will differ from person to person but the Health \u0026amp; Her study shows us that 44% of women logged caffeine as a trigger for their symptoms. Dr Tomlinson explains that “caffeine accelerates your nervous system, increases alertness and interferes with the absorption of vitamins and minerals. Whilst it might seem like a good pick me up after a bad night’s sleep, caffeine can also have a detrimental effect on sleep, causing insomnia, one of the most common symptoms of perimenopause and menopause.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Try to keep a lid on the amount of caffeine you drink (most nutritionists and dietary experts suggest a cut-off point of three to four regular cups a day, but you know your own limits) and\/or switch to decaffeinated varieties or drinks that are lower in caffeine (like antioxidant-rich green tea which has many health benefits including helping to improve bone density\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\" name=\"_ftnref6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e something affected by falling estrogen levels). If you really can’t live without your caffeine fix, try not to drink anything containing it (including coffee, tea, cola, energy drinks or chocolate) after around 3pm as it is likely to disrupt your sleep. Taking a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement should help with any potential nutrient shortfall linked to your caffeine intake.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148650\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"Alcohol trigger menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-1024x256.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-1536x384.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-1600x400.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-1200x300.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-992x248.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092122\/Article-Slim-Banner.jpg 1667w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #5: Alcohol\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt can be hard to turn down a drink with friends or not to reach for a tipple at wine o’clock, but alcohol has few (if any) health benefits and 4 in 10 women in the Health \u0026amp; Her research identified alcohol as a trigger for their symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Unfortunately, us women are already at a disadvantage when it comes to drinking as we generally have a harder time metabolizing it than men. Alcohol also causes your blood vessels to dilate and raises your body temperature. When your fluctuating hormones are already disrupting your body’s internal thermostat and causing hot flashes and night sweats, you can see how having alcohol in your body is unlikely to improve things. Alcohol has also been shown to raise levels of the stress hormone cortisol, disrupt your sleep, worsen depression, cause mood swings and increase dehydration (and this comes on top of the dehydrating effects caused by hot flashes and night sweats). If you drink regularly you also more likely to put on weight (and again perimenopause and menopause already makes you more susceptible to weight gain).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Aim to have at least two or three nights a week when you don’t drink and consider switching to lower or non-alcohol alternatives. Be inspired by events like sober October or ‘sober curious’ sites which can offer helpful advice on how to reduce, or stop, drinking. Think of all the positives of not indulging – no hangovers, saving money, better sleep, better skin, better mood and better perimenopause\/menopause – rather than seeing abstaining as something punitive.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-148644\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-300x75.jpg\" alt=\"fatty foods trigger menopause\" width=\"1000\" height=\"250\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-300x75.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-1024x256.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-768x192.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-1536x384.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-1600x400.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-1200x300.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-992x248.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-576x144.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-400x100.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-200x50.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3-600x150.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2023\/02\/19092112\/Article-Slim-Banner3.jpg 1667w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #6: Fatty food\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e39% of women in the study logged eating fatty foods as a trigger for their symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Research has shown women who have a diet high in unhealthy fats prior to the menopause have higher estrogen levels than women who don’t but when those estrogen levels begin to drop, and their menopause symptoms kick in, they are more pronounced and problematic. Foods high in trans fats (which raise the levels of ‘bad’ cholesterol and increase your risk of heart disease) are also thought to reduce serotonin (the so-called ‘happy hormone’ responsible for stabilizing mood) in the brain, leading to low mood, depression and memory problems.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\" name=\"_ftnref7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e Added to this, eating more fatty or deep fried foods like fries, chips, doughnuts and pizza can put you at an increased risk of heart disease, and that risk is already amplified by simply being in the perimenopausal or menopausal phase.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Cut down on unhealthy fats (like the ones found in processed meals, cakes, pastries and biscuits) and eat more healthy ones (like olive oil and those found naturally in avocados, nuts and seeds and oily fish like salmon). Try to include more fruit and vegetables in your diet – research shows menopausal women who ate more fruit and veg had fewer menopausal symptoms than those who ate more fatty foods and sweets.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\" name=\"_ftnref8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e For more expert nutritional advice read Everything you need to know about diet for menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #7: Hot weather\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhilst hot weather and sunshine can offer a variety of health benefits, unfortunately, 32% of women reported hot weather as a trigger for them.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Fluctuating hormone levels make many women more sensitive to hot weather. This is thought to be due to the action of the hypothalamus – a gland in the brain which helps to regulate our internal temperature – becoming adversely affected by falling estrogen levels. Plus, the heat can make it harder to sleep and if you are already dealing with night sweats this can just compound the problem and make you increasingly dehydrated. Lack of sleep coupled with dehydration can then leave you with brain fog and feeling tired, moody and stressed. This can then set in motion a whole negative cycle of triggers and symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e For instant relief from the heat (and hot flashes) it can be helpful to carry a cooling spray around with you or invest in a portable neck fan to help regulate your body temperature. Keep well hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day and eating water-rich foods like fruit and vegetables and natural unsweetened yogurt. Investing in clothing and nightwear specially formulated to reduce menopausal sweats can also help keep you cooler.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #8: Cold weather\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe research showed that just under a third of women logged cold weather as a trigger for their symptoms like aching joints, skin changes, dizziness and digestive issues.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Cold wintery weather – and the accompanying shorter days and longer hours of darkness – tend to make us less active as we go into hibernation mode. The less we move the more likely we are to experience joint stiffness and pain plus it can also make our digestion more sluggish (moderate exercise improves gut motility – the flow of food through the gut – which, in turn, reduces constipation). The darker days of winter can also exacerbate low mood and the lack of sunlight means we don’t get the vitamin D we need. Vitamin D is produced naturally in the skin on exposure to UV light (hence it often being called the ‘sunshine vitamin’) and low levels of it have been linked to low mood and depression\u003ca href=\"#_ftn9\" name=\"_ftnref9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e, joint pain in the over 50s\u003ca href=\"#_ftn10\" name=\"_ftnref10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e and an increased risk of coming down with respiratory conditions like cold and ‘flu.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn11\" name=\"_ftnref11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Regular exercise. The health benefits of exercise are well-documented and for perimenopausal and menopausal women include not only a reduction in physical symptoms like hot flashes but also improvements in psychological ones like being better able to manage stress. Even better, do it outdoors in the morning when the light is brighter as this will help to better regulate your circadian rhythm or sleep\/wake cycle keeping you more alert during the day and better able to sleep at night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #9: Dietary changes\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eJust over a quarter of women in the study reported that dietary changes as a trigger of symptoms including digestive issues, bloating and skin-related symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e Perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms can impact greatly on our mood and this can impact on our food choices. When you are tired you are less likely to have the energy to make healthier food from scratch and you are also more likely to crave quick-release sugary, carbohydrate and\/or fatty ones to give you an instant energy burst. This is not only likely to result in chaotic blood sugar levels but also to you putting on weight and possibly a cycle of yo-yo dieting. Poor food and lifestyle choices can also stand in the way of developing good gut health – something that is fast becoming synonymous with good health generally – by adversely affecting the balance of beneficial gut bugs or microbiome. Achieving a diverse and thriving gut microbiome (dehydration, lack of sleep, alcohol stress can also disrupt it) is something that can benefit not just your digestive health but also how you feel psychologically. \u003ca href=\"#_ftn12\" name=\"_ftnref12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Eat as diverse a diet as you can with plenty of plant-based foods like fruit and vegetables, nuts and seeds and pulses and healthy protein like oily fish, eggs and natural yogurt to encourage the beneficial bugs in your gut to thrive. Research shows that those who eat a diverse range of foods are more likely to have higher levels of ‘good’ gut microbes.[12] Taking a live culture supplement can also help to feed these good bugs. Familiarize yourself with which foods are more likely to aggravate symptoms and which ones are likely to improve them by reading Diet tips for a healthy perimenopause and diets and recipes to help balance hormones during menopause. Keeping a symptom diary can also help to pinpoint anything you have eaten that is more likely to provoke your perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eTrigger #10: Spicy food\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you are partial to a curry or a zingy chilli it might be time to dial down the spice as a quarter of women surveyed reported that spicy foods triggered symptoms such as stomach problems, palpitations and bladder sensitivity.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhy?\u003c\/strong\u003e It is widely acknowledged that spicy food triggers hot flashes in perimenopausal and menopausal women and we know the active ingredients in things like chilli (capsaicin) and black pepper (piperine) dilate your blood vessels and overly dilated vessels tend to amplify vasomotor symptoms (like severe sweating, hot flashes and night sweats). Chillies and pepper are also known to contain acids that can cause a burning sensation in the wall of the stomach triggering indigestion, bloating and diarrhoea.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat can help?\u003c\/strong\u003e Keeping a symptom diary can initially alert you to what specific spices are triggers for you. When you have identified the likely culprits, you don’t have to resign yourself to a life of bland, beige food – instead add a bit of kick and extra color with spices and flavors that don’t provide as much heat like cumin, turmeric and mild curry powder and see how you respond to those. As a short-term remedy for soothing an upset stomach sip a peppermint or ginger tea. In the longer term, and if you are prone to tummy troubles generally, try and improve your gut health by nurturing, nourishing and balancing your ‘good bugs’ and building a thriving microbiome. Taking a daily live culture supplement should help.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSources \u0026amp; references:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\" name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.nia.nih.gov\/news\/research-explores-impact-menopause-womens-health-and-aging\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\" name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/33503073\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\" name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.tandfonline.com\/doi\/abs\/10.1080\/13697137.2020.1777965\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref4\" name=\"_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.nhs.uk\/live-well\/eat-well\/food-types\/how-does-sugar-in-our-diet-affect-our-health\/#:~:text=Adults%20should%20have%20no%20more,day%20(5%20sugar%20cubes).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref5\" name=\"_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC8848117\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref6\" name=\"_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/abs\/pii\/S0271531709001110?via%3Dihub\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref7\" name=\"_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.psychologytoday.com\/gb\/blog\/the-resilient-brain\/201506\/trans-fats-bad-your-brain\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref8\" name=\"_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.researchgate.net\/publication\/339305156_Higher_intakes_of_fruits_and_vegetables_are_related_to_fewer_menopausal_symptoms_a_cross-sectional_study\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref9\" name=\"_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.verywellmind.com\/the-link-between-vitamin-d-and-depression-5089428\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref10\" name=\"_ftn10\"\u003e[10]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/23595144\/\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref11\" name=\"_ftn11\"\u003e[11]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.bmj.com\/content\/356\/bmj.i6583\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref12\" name=\"_ftn12\"\u003e[12]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/joinzoe.com\/learn\/gut-brain-connection\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606562779442", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Trigger-for-menopause-and-periemnopause-1-1600x545_768x.jpg?v=1698247231", "title" : "What top 10 triggers make perimenopause and menopause worse (and what you can do about them)", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=237" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=237" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=237" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/237" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 22, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/brain-fog/", "name": "Brain fog", "description": "Brain fog is a common symptom along with memory loss and other cognitive issues. Browse our range of supplements chosen by women experiencing mental performance issues.", "id": 237, "term_id": 237, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "brain-fog" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=231" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=231" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=231" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/231" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 25, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/hot-flushes/", "name": "Hot flushes", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing hot flushes and vasomotor symptoms have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 231, "term_id": 231, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flushes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=228" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/228" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 25, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low energy", "description": "Energy levels can fluctuate in perimenopause and menopause. Browse our range of supplements and products that women have chosen to support their energy levels.", "id": 228, "term_id": 228, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=234" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=234" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=234" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/234" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 33, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Browse our range of supplements and product that women have chosen to support normal psychological or cognitive function", "id": 234, "term_id": 234, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=227" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=227" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=227" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/227" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 18, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/night-sweats/", "name": "Night sweats", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing night sweats and vasomotor symptoms have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 227, "term_id": 227, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "night-sweats" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=221" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=221" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=221" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/221" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 23, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping problems", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing sleeping problems have chosen. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 221, "term_id": 221, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=229" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=229" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/229" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight gain", "description": "Browse our range of supplements and products that women experiencing menopause weight gain have chosen as part of a healthy lifestyle. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 229, "term_id": 229, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537842994", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Jane-Collins-3-576x636_small.jpg?v=1697658441", "name" : "Jane Collins", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health & Her Editor" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/What-is-Perimenopause_1200x.jpg?v=1697662804", "html" : "\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause is defined literally as ‘around the time of the menopause’. Put simply, it is the stage of life when you’re still having periods but your hormones begin fluctuating, and diminishing, potentially triggering a number of physical and emotional changes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhen does perimenopause begin?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eOn average, women start experiencing perimenopause aged 46 and it typically lasts around four years before their periods stop and the transition into menopause takes place. For others this stage can last anything up to 10 years.\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat does it involve?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopausal symptoms commonly include \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/hot-flashes\"\u003ehot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-energy\"\u003etiredness\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-mood-changes-brain-fog\"\u003ebrain fog\u003c\/a\u003e, low mood, headaches, stress and worry, feeling overwhelmed, forgetfulness, \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/night-sweats\"\u003enight sweats\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Joint-pain\"\u003ejoint aches\u003c\/a\u003e, weight gain, vaginal dryness and itching and increasingly \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/period-changes\"\u003eerratic periods\u003c\/a\u003e. \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/why-do-periods-get-worse-before-menopause\"\u003eYour periods might become heavier and more frequent; lighter and spaced further apart or a combination of these\u003c\/a\u003e. A number of women’s health studies \u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e \u003c\/sup\u003e have shown the changes to your menstrual cycle typically follow three distinct phases:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e1. Early perimenopause\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003eThis is when you are still having regular periods but are experiencing some perimenopausal symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e2. Mid perimenopause\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003eThis stage is indicated by increasingly irregular periods, but you are not skipping any. So more than seven days (could be longer or shorter) difference from the beginning of your given cycle to the next.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e3. Late perimenopause\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003eThis is characterized by you missing periods and having more than 60 days between them.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat do the experts say about perimenopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDr Kate Burns, a menopause specialist doctor, describes what is happening to you physiologically to create this unpredictable cycle during perimenopause: “Instead of having a regular periodical swing of estrogen and progesterone, which most women have if they have a 28-day cycle, the release of hormones can become very irregular. This causes random shedding of the lining without any sort of pattern.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhilst your hormones might be in freefall and your periods are all over the place it is important to remember that you can still get pregnant around perimenopause and menopause. As Dr Burns explains, “even though we may think pregnancy is one of the only things we don’t have to think about, it is possible for women to conceive and carry a child up to the age of 55, so effective contraception is important for the duration of menopause.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere is everything you need to know about \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-contraception-everything-you-need-to-know-about-menopause-038-contraception\"\u003econtraception through menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHow do you recognize perimenopause?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePinning down exactly when your perimenopause starts is tricky – complicated by the fact that no two women experience it in the same way – and many, completely understandably, don’t recognize that they are experiencing often classic signs of perimenopause because these are also normal responses to other things going on in their life. In fact, in a study of 1,000 women carried out by Health \u0026amp; Her in 2019, a whopping 90% failed to recognize their symptoms could be due to their fluctuating hormones and chalked them up to aging, stress and worry.\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/sup\u003e It took an average of 14 months for women to make the link according to the study.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eInterestingly too, while period changes were reported as a common symptom of perimenopause – and this is often widely regarded as the onset market of menopause – findings showed this was not the case for 4 in 10 women.\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn1\" href=\"#_ftnref1\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhat is the difference between perimenopause and menopause?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eHealthcare professionals define menopause as the 12 months after your last period. After those 12 consecutive months have passed without a period you are officially into menopause but whilst you might have stopped menstruating you are still likely to go on experiencing mental and physical symptoms associated with menopause. On average these can last for around four years, most commonly between the ages of 51 to 54\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[6] \u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003eas your body adjusts to diminishing levels of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Unfortunately, even though most mental and physical symptoms will improve after this time, often those like \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/loss-of-sex-drive-at-menopause-is-it-biological-or-psychological\"\u003elow libido\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/sensitive-bladder\"\u003esensitive bladder\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/painful-sex\"\u003epainful sex\u003c\/a\u003e can continue into later life.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat should you expect?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eYour journey through perimenopause will be unique and how it affects you may be nothing like the way it affects your friends or relatives (if you even \u003cem\u003eknow\u003c\/em\u003e how it has impacted them).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTo give you more of an idea of what you might expect Health \u0026amp; Her recently conducted research involving 62,117 women going through perimenopause\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[7]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e. They were asked to reveal their most common symptoms and these are listed below in order of prevalence:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-energy\"\u003eLow energy\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/stress-worry\"\u003eStress \u0026amp; worry\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-mood\"\u003eLow mood\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/sleeping-issues\"\u003eSleeping problems\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/brain-fog\"\u003eBrain fog, memory loss \u0026amp; poor concentration\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Joint-pain\"\u003eJoint aches\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/bloating\"\u003eBloating\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/exercises-for-menopause-weight-gain\"\u003eWeight gain\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-libido\"\u003eLow libido\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/headaches\"\u003eHeadaches from perimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/night-sweats\"\u003eNight sweats\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/hot-flashes\"\u003eHot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/digestive-issues\"\u003eDigestive issues\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/sensitive-bladder\"\u003eSensitive bladder\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/skin-changes\"\u003eSkin changes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePalpitations\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDizziness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/vaginal-dryness\"\u003eVaginal dryness\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis might seem like a pretty daunting array of symptoms, and you can see how you might not make an immediate connection between feeling tired, stressed and having aching joints with fluctuations in your hormones. But as consultant gynecologist and menopause specialist, Dr Anne Henderson, points out, “There is barely a part of the body estrogen doesn’t affect. It impacts the central nervous system, the skeleton, the cardiac system, the bladder, skin, nails, hair, teeth – everything is affected.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eInterestingly, the same Health \u0026amp; Her study also highlights that mood and psychological symptoms typically present in the earlier stages of perimenopause, whilst physical ones like hot flashes or joint aches become more common later on. Symptoms can then become progressively, albeit temporarily, worse, as your hormone levels fluctuate and gradually decline \u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\"\u003e\u003csup\u003e[8]\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTry our \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/pages\/symptom-checker\"\u003eperimenopause symptom checker\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhen to see a doctor about perimenopause\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf your symptoms are impacting on your quality of life, consider seeking help from your doctor or a menopause specialist doctor. \u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\"\u003eGetting support from an experienced specialist can help you get back to feeling like yourself again\u003c\/a\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\/\"\u003e.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThe information and advice provided on our website including expert advice, articles and resources, are not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your own doctor or other health care provider.​\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eReferences and sources\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e Research commissioned by Health \u0026amp; Her and carried out by Censuswide. 1,001 women between the ages of 45-60 were surveyed.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e Ref: Avis, N. E., Brockwell, S., Randolph Jr, J. F., Shen, S., Cain, V. S., Ory, M., \u0026amp; Greendale, G. A. (2009). Longitudinal changes in sexual functioning as women transition through menopause: Results from the Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation (SWAN). Menopause (New York, NY), 16(3), 442.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e Harlow, S. D., Gass, M., Hall, J. E., Lobo, R., Maki, P., Rebar, R. W., \u0026amp; STRAW+ 10 Collaborative Group. (2012). Executive summary of\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003cbr\u003e \u003csup\u003ethe Stages of Reproductive Aging Workshop+ 10: addressing the unfinished agenda of staging reproductive aging. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology \u0026amp; Metabolism, 97(4), 1159-1168.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn4\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e What Women Want At Menopause Survey, 2019\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftnref1\" href=\"#_ftn5\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e What Women Want At Menopause Survey, 2019\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn6\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e Research commissioned by Health \u0026amp; Her and carried out by Censuswide. 1,001 women between the ages of 45-60 were surveyed.\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn7\"\u003e[7]\u003c\/a\u003e Health \u0026amp; Her research conducted Oct 2020 – Sept 2022\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn8\"\u003e[8]\u003c\/a\u003e Health \u0026amp; Her research conducted Oct 2020 – Sept 2022\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003csup\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftn9\"\u003e[9]\u003c\/a\u003e https:\/\/www.tandfonline.com\/doi\/abs\/10.1080\/13697137.2020.1777965\u003c\/sup\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca name=\"_ftn2\" href=\"#_ftnref2\"\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538793266", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/What-is-Perimenopause_768x.jpg?v=1697662804", "title" : "What is Perimenopause? ", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537810226", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Profile-5-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697658439", "name" : "Helen Roach", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritionist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/perimenopause-and-diet-photo_1200x.jpg?v=1697662808", "html" : "\u003cstyle\u003e\u003c!--.article-template__content h4{ padding-top: unset;}--\u003e\u003c\/style\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt's old news now that the way you eat can have a massive impact on how you feel. With fad diets popping up every other week, suggesting you need to slash sugar, forget fat, cut carbs, it can feel more than a bit frustrating to try to begin any journey towards healthy eating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMaking adjustments to your diet can be tough at the best of the times, but going through perimenopause inevitably makes it ten times harder.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFood can be one of the greatest joys in life, and any attempt to totally remove any of the treats you enjoy, or begin any extreme crash-course diet can leave you feeling worse than before you started it. Maybe you stuck it out for a few days or weeks until your body was so desperate it caved in and you gained all the weight back, or maybe you felt so lethargic and peaky that you had to throw in the towel.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause can often cause \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/weight-gain\"\u003eweight gain\u003c\/a\u003e, confidence issues, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/stress-worry\"\u003eanxiety\u003c\/a\u003e and self-esteem problems, alongside the physical symptoms of constipation, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/bloating\"\u003ebloating\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Sleeping-problems\"\u003epoor sleep\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-energy\/\"\u003elowered energy\u003c\/a\u003e. You may be looking for any solution to help, and fad diets are often some of the first you may be able to find - but they might be doing more harm than good! Yo-yoing weight can just make you feel worse, and cutting out food groups is neither sustainable nor good for your body and your mind.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may just give up all together! However, eating and drinking like you used to might not be the best option either. The best course of action to help your perimenopause experience might be to change your diet - but in a healthy way. Adequate nutrition and regular exercise could do a world of good to help alleviate some of your toughest symptoms and make you feel stronger, brighter, and back to your old self - without giving up delicious and filling food. Don't worry - answers are out there! Here's our handy guide to help you understand what the best diet for perimenopause might look like so starting your journey towards healthier eating and a better perimenopause can be easy and fuss free.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/hot-topics\/menopause-exercise-the-top-5-best-exercises\"\u003ebest exercises to help keep you fit and healthy through perimenopause and menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow does perimenopause affect your metabolism?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhen perimenopause starts, our hormones start to fluctuate with the aim of bringing our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/why-do-periods-get-worse-before-menopause\"\u003emenstrual cycle and fertility to an end through menopause\u003c\/a\u003e. Progesterone and estrogen, the main hormones affected by perimenopause, can cause a host of mental and physical changes, some of which specifically affect your body and fitness levels, and as a result can worsen your symptoms. Another culprit is the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/coping-with-stress-and-anxiety-during-menopause-expert-advice-from-a-gp\"\u003estress hormone, cortisol\u003c\/a\u003e, which often increases due to hormonal changes alongside the daily stressors of life such as children, parents, and employment. Reduced estrogen and increased cortisol can be a troublesome pairing, and have been linked to problems with the stomach and gut, alongside weight gain. Changes in progesterone and estrogen alone are also linked to poor sleep, low energy and mood, fatigue, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Joint-pain\"\u003ejoint issues\u003c\/a\u003e, and struggles with anxiety and confidence. These symptoms might lead you to snack more to give yourself a sugar rush to bump up your energy levels, or to comfort yourself through the psychological stressors. This is normal and not something to feel ashamed about - your body and your mind are going through a lot, and reaching for food is a natural reaction, especially if you're struggling to spike up the energy to do your everyday tasks.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHowever, with the gut problems already present and lurking at the door of perimenopause, reaching for food might sometimes make it worse, making your digestive issues worse and perhaps contributing to increased weight gain. As such, perimenopause can lead to a frustrating cycle - you're struggling with confidence and weight, as well as low energy and a bad stomach, so you turn to food to get you through it, but the food you're eating might make those confidence, weight, energy and stomach issues, starting the vicious circle all over again!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere's more information on \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/perimenopause-to-menopause-and-post-menopause-a-doctor-s-overview\"\u003ehow perimenopause and menopause can affect your body\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow can perimenopause impact your daily life?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou might feel like you're struggling more with your mental perception of yourself and your self-esteem, while if your food intake is upsetting your energy levels and disturbing your sleep cycle through pain and discomfort, physical symptoms such as fatigue, brain fog, and irritability. Alongside the perimenopause-specific problems of the body and digestive systems, as a result of general aging the digestive enzymes and stomach acid which help us to digest food properly are produced in lower amounts. This lowering can cause problems for the gut bacteria. Gut bacteria is vital for producing key vitamins we need to stay healthy and function properly, and when it's damaged or not as diverse it can cause heartburn, indigestion, bloating, gas, and constipation. Alongside general age problems related to the digestive tract, as our muscle mass decreases naturally with time, our likelihood for insulin resistance, which makes it more difficult for us to break down sugar, weight gain and fat retention can become more likely.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat can you do to help relieve the impact of perimenopause on your diet?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eMost importantly, remember that you do have options - and hope! The above may read a bit like a depressing laundry list of problems, but there are easy steps you can make with your diet and lifestyle to alleviate these symptoms. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/hot-topics\/yoga-for-menopause\"\u003eExercise, like yoga\u003c\/a\u003e for instance, has been linked to improved stomach issues, alongside increased muscle mass, weight loss, better mood, energy and cognition. For more information and what exercises are best to help you through perimenopause and menopause, check out our comprehensive menopause exercise guide for information on what exercises are best for menopause symptoms. Alongside exercise and resistance training, diets that are low in sugar, high in fibre, and have moderate protein with good fats included can do you a world of good and boost you back up to feeling the top of your game.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eProbiotic supplements can sometimes help with gut problems and discomfort from digestion.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat foods help with perimenopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are definitely a few food groups you should try and hit to make sure that your body is getting adequate nutrition. These are:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eProtein\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs your muscle mass starts to decrease during perimenopause, it can mean that your body is more prone to fat retention, which might not only hurt your self-esteem but can also affect your health. So, we want to aim to eat food that will help us retain that muscle mass. Making sure you get an adequate amount of protein is crucial - and it can also help to regulate your appetite and blood sugar, helping sort out that low energy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFoods to focus on: lean protein like salmon and chicken, sugar-free natural peanut butter, beans, nuts, pulses, lentils, eggs, yogurt and spinach.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eCalcium\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eOne of the biggest worries during perimenopause and menopause is the threat of osteoporosis and heart disease. During perimenopause and menopause, our bone density begins to decrease, leading to brittle bones, arthritis, and osteoporosis. The heart also suffers from not receiving the critical nutrients it requires. Making sure that your diet includes calcium can be a great way to help prevent this. Seeking out some calcium and vitamin D supplements can also be a good way to ensure you're getting enough for your bone health.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFoods to focus on: broccoli, milk, fish and legumes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003ePhytoestrogens\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens are naturally-occurring compounds found in plants that belong to a group of substances called polyphenolic compounds. They have a similar chemical structure to estrogen and often behave in a similar way when ingested into the body. Like \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003eHT (hormone therapy)\u003c\/a\u003e, some nutritionists believe that increasing your phytoestrogen intake during perimenopause and menopause can help relieve symptoms caused by fluctuating estrogen. Making sure that your diet includes some of these can be tied to alleviating some of the difficult symptoms of menopause, or if you're not fussed on soy products (where phytoestrogens are most commonly found), a good option may be to take a supplement that contains them, such as \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/products\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her's Perimenopause supplement.\u003c\/a\u003e For more information, check out how \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/phytoestrogens-and-menopause\"\u003ephytoestrogens play an important part in keeping you healthy through menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFoods to focus on: peas, beans, soy products such as tofu and tempeh, alfalfa and Brussel sprouts\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eFiber\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eEnsuring that you have enough fibre in your diet is crucial to help your perimenopause journey. Not only can fiber keep you fuller for longer, it can help with constipation and stomach pain, and has also been tied to preventing heart disease and cancer. Fiber can help with digestion and gut bacteria, but is also great for helping to manage your weight and boost your energy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFoods to focus on: fruits, vegetables, grains from sprouted breads or vegetable pastas\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWater\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is the crucial one! Though you might be tired of hearing all of the benefits of water, keeping well hydrated can be incredibly beneficial for your general health and mood. Making sure you get the recommended 6-8 glasses a day can go toward making you feel a lot better, and also can improve your skin and hair.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eSpecialty Ingredients beneficial for Perimenopause\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome ingredients might be a little bit more off the beaten path, but can provide a great boost for your mood and physical health. Some good specialist food items to try and incorporate into your daily routine can be:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eFermented soya products\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eTypically eaten in countries such as Japan, China and Korea, fermented soya products are a fantastic way to introduce live bacteria into your gut whilst pleasing your palette, with dishes such as Natto, Kimchi, Cheonggukjang, Miso, Gochujang. Whilst some of these might not instantly appeal, they are a tasty and healthy way to support gut health - an important factor at any life stage. The element of soya in these dishes means that they will feature plant components that help to balance female hormones, managing the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eBeneficial bacteria\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eMost easily found in supplements, beneficial bacteria is a great way to improve overall health. Did you know that gut bacteria produce 90% of your body's erotonin? Serotonin is a hormone that helps to improve mood and leads to the creation of melatonin- the hormone that enables us to sleep. Taking a bacteria supplement daily is advised for general wellbeing.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat foods make perimenopause worse?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are unfortunately some food and drink products that might be making your experience a bit worse. You don't have to cut them out completely, but reducing your intake of them might help you feel a lot better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eSaturated Fats\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eFound in animal products such as red meat, cheese, milk and butter, alongside oils such as coconut and palm oil, saturated fats can raise your cholesterol and contribute to weight gain.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eRefined Sugar\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eRefined sugar like fructose and processed carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta and pizza can wreak havoc on your hormones and leave you feeling sluggish and low energy. They can also contribute to weight gain and low mood.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAlcohol\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhile a sip of wine can help you relax, overconsuming alcohol can often be one of the key reasons your perimenopause symptoms seem to be worse after a night out. Alcohol consumption can interfere with internal body temperature, sleep schedules, and leave you feeling tired and fatigued.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eCaffeine\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eCaffeine is a nightmare for inducing anxiety and making worrying worse, as well as throwing your sleep schedule way out of line, which can lead to an increase in troubling symptoms such as fatigue. Caffeine can also have an impact on issues with bladder control.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat are the best swaps you can make?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThough this may all seem a bit daunting, the move from a diet that can exacerbate perimenopause symptoms to one that alleviates them is actually relatively easy to do. There are plenty of tasty and easy swaps for products you enjoy to ones that taste just as good but that won't hurt your symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eFruit flavoured yoghurts\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for full fat Greek yoghurt (this has less sugar and more protein than low fat versions, and also contains good bacteria for wellbeing)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDesserts \u003c\/strong\u003e– Coconut \u0026amp; Chia seed dessert (soak chia seeds in coconut milk overnight)\/ coconut yoghurt\/avocado and dark chocolate mousse (hand blended together) with a pinch of salt\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCoffee\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for decaffeinated or barley\/chicory drinks e.g. A.Vogel Bambu\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTea\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for decaffeinated or caffeine free herbal teas – not all are – opt for ones that state caffeine free on the packaging\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ePasta\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for vegetable pasta (zucchini, cucumber, pepper etc)\/quinoa\/buckwheat\/wild rice\/beans\/lentils\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eRice \u003c\/strong\u003e- swap for cauliflower rice\/konjac rice\/cabbage rice\/mushroom rice\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eNoodles \u003c\/strong\u003e- swap for konjac noodles\/shirataki noodles\/eggplant noodles\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhite or wheat-based bread -\u003c\/strong\u003e swap for sprouted breads\/protein such as pumpernickel\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWhen baking with wheat flour \u003c\/strong\u003e- swap for coconut or almond flour\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSoft drinks\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for fresh fruit spiced water - mineral water with herbs\/fruit: ginger\/lime\/lemon\/crushed watermelon \u0026amp; mint\/cinnamon\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eJuices \u003c\/strong\u003e- swap for smoothies that contain the peel and rind of fruits along with a protein and fat component such as Planet Paleo Protein drink or Innocent protein drink (limit your intake to 250 ml)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBurger \u0026amp; fries\u003c\/strong\u003e – swap for bun-less burger and salad\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSweets \u0026amp; confectionary\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for dark chocolate (90% cocoa solids)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSugar\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for agave nectar, cinnamon, palmera jaggery (coconut sugar),\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMashed potato\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for mashed cauliflower\/sweet potato\/root veg\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eCocktails\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for red wine or soda water \u0026amp; spirits\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBarbeque sauce\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for soy sauce\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eTomato sauce\u003c\/strong\u003e - swap for mayonnaise\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003ePerimenopause Diet Plan\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eA typical day of the very best diet for perimenopause should ensure that you have all the nutrition you need to keep you feeling on top of your game - but it should be tasty too! An example of a beneficial perimenopause diet could be eating foods like this:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eBREAKFAST\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eMexican baked eggs - 2 eggs, black beans (handful) \u0026amp; tomatoes (1 plum) in a pan with black pepper, paprika, chives, garlic \u0026amp; turmeric.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eLUNCH\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eCooked broccoli with a base of chilli, garlic, anchovies and spring onion, made with rice pasta (spaghetti).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eDINNER\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eZucchini spaghetti with sardines and tomato sauce, parsley to serve.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eSNACKS\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eOlives and gorgonzola, coconut yoghurt.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eEating for your symptoms does not need to be tasteless or depressing, and neither does it mean you have to throw your all into a very restrictive diet. There is no magic answer or miracle food that you need to eat to take away your symptoms or act as a complete treatment, but making a concerted effort to swap out some of the more dangerous or unhealthy parts of your diet for some that are equally tasty, but beneficial for your symptoms, could really raise your quality of life. Try it - you deserve to feel good from the inside out!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/headaches-during-menopause-does-diet-make-a-difference\"\u003eHow diet can help relieve headaches and migraines\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThe information and advice provided on our website including expert advice, articles and resources, are not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your own doctor or other health care provider.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538858802", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/perimenopause-and-diet-photo_768x.jpg?v=1697662808", "title" : "Perimenopause Diet Nutrition & Foods for Healthy Perimenopause ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=239" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/239" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 14, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. 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Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. 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We've pulled together a range of products to help you to maintain brain and cognitive function*.\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 666, "term_id": 666, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "memory-loss" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=668" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/668" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/night-sweats/", "name": "Night Sweats", "description": "Night sweats in menopause occur frequently and can be a challenge to manage for many. Here are some of the best supplements, remedies and products to help deal with the symptoms and keep you cool so you can enjoy a better night of sleep.", "id": 668, "term_id": 668, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "night-sweats" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=669" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=669" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=669" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/669" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 3, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/other-symptoms/", "name": "Other Symptoms", "description": "Menopause can be complex, with women experiencing an average of 8 symptoms - though there are over 30 recognised symptoms, and more that women themselves connect. If you're searching for help with less-common symptoms like digestive issues, brittle nails or hair loss, you'll find products to support you through the menopause here. Menopause can be complex, with women experiencing an average of 8 symptoms. Thankfully, Health & Her has handpicked a selection of products to support you through the menopause.", "id": 669, "term_id": 669, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "other-symptoms" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=672" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=672" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=672" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/672" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/poor-concentration/", "name": "Poor Concentration", "description": "Products to help support normal brain function*.\n*results may vary person to person", "id": 672, "term_id": 672, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "poor-concentration" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=673" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/673" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sensitive-bladder/", "name": "Sensitive Bladder", "description": "Urinary changes like frequent urination and leaky bladder are really common at menopause due to changes in oestrogen levels. Take action with pelvic floor trainers and avoid embarrassment with practical products to help with incontinence.\r\n", "id": 673, "term_id": 673, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sensitive-bladder" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=674" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/674" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/skin-changes/", "name": "Skin Changes", "description": "Changing hormones at menopause can have a big impact on your skin, including increased dryness, itching, acne, a rash and even facial hair. Our range includes the most advanced nutritional supplements to support skin from within, as well as products to help plump, restore, hydrate and nourish even the most sensitive menopausal skin.", "id": 674, "term_id": 674, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "skin-changes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=675" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/675" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 11, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping Problems", "description": "Experiencing perimenopause or menopause related sleep problems? Explore our natural sleep remedies and clever ideas to help with restless nights - our selection of menopause sleep aids are tried and tested by the women who have been there too.", "id": 675, "term_id": 675, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=679" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=679" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/679" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/weight-gain/", "name": "Weight Gain", "description": "Our carefully curated selection of products can provide support with menopause weight loss as part of a healthy lifestyle. Our range includes diet plans, vitamins, creams, and more. ", "id": 679, "term_id": 679, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "weight-gain" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538072370", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Deb-002-aspect-ratio-1-1_small.jpg?v=1697658451", "name" : "Dr Deborah Lancastle", "summary" : "", "title" : "Health Psychologist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Mental_Health_in_Perimenopause_Dr_Deborah_Lancastle_1200x.jpg?v=1703251437", "html" : "\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause, the stage before menopause, can be a particularly difficult time for women, both physically and psychologically. Mental health issues – such as anxiety, depression, fluctuations in mood, and fatigue – are often some of the first symptoms to present themselves when a woman goes through perimenopause. This can be frustrating, upsetting, and can leave you feeling more than a bit defeated – especially since it can often feel as if you are undergoing it alone.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause itself is rarely discussed, let alone the mental health symptoms that come with it. But the most important thing to remember is that you aren’t alone. These symptoms are common – Health \u0026amp; Her have conducted research that shows 9 in 10 women will suffer mental health issues as a result of perimenopause, 77% of whom have never struggled with mental health before.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\" name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e The most common symptoms women suffering with perimenopause-related mental health demonstrated were low energy, lack of motivation, anxiety, low mood, depression, anger spikes, and feelings of worthlessness – so if you’re experiencing any of these, do not feel alone or isolated in these emotions. Women all around the world are dealing with the same feelings and sharing the same experiences.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThrough Menopause Awareness Month \u0026amp; World Perimenopause Day, Health \u0026amp; Her are working to bring attention to how mental health can be affected by perimenopause and menopause, and how best to get women back on their feet and feeling good. Alongside launching our specially formulated \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/perimenopause\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\/\"\u003ePerimenopause Mind + supplement\u003c\/a\u003e, designed to target and improve mood and mind symptoms, we are campaigning to raise awareness of perimenopause and mental health on a larger scale. Our research shows 9 in 10 women aren’t able to recognize the symptoms of perimenopause\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\" name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e – which is concerning, considering that 86% of women experience mental health changes as a result.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\" name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e What we’re seeing is women not having full information about what is causing their issues, and not feeling able to speak to anyone about it.\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/Mental-Health-Infographic-Update9924-scaled-e1633512178436.jpg\"\u003e \u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt’s time to start talking about perimental health, as the best way to get on the road to feeling better is to understand why perimenopause can make you feel this way, how it can affect you, and most importantly, how to access the treatment and coping methods you need to get you better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-scaled.jpg\"\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone wp-image-52181 size-large\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1024x296.jpg\" alt=\"Statistics about perimenopausal woman and mental health: 1 in 10 have suicidal thoughts, 9 in 10 suffer mental health issues as a direct result of perimenopause, 37% haven't sought any help, and 80% don't talk to their partners.\" width=\"1024\" height=\"296\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1024x296.jpg 1024w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-scaled-200x58.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-scaled-600x174.jpg 600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-300x87.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-768x222.jpg 768w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1536x445.jpg 1536w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1600x463.jpg 1600w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1200x347.jpg 1200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-1080x313.jpg 1080w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-992x287.jpg 992w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-576x167.jpg 576w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-400x116.jpg 400w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/10\/28135825\/Website-Graphics-01-280x81.jpg 280w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\" \/\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat are the symptoms of Perimenopause?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause is a stage that hasn’t received attention in the way menopause has, but it can have an equally important and dramatic – if not more so – effect on your mental health. Mental health changes are the earliest signs of perimenopause.  It is vital to know the warning symptoms of perimenopause to ensure you get the right help if your mental health is affected – especially since our research shows on average the link between symptoms and perimenopause takes 14 months to recognize. As menopause specialist Dr. Heidi Kerr explains,\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e‘increasing awareness to women about perimenopause is vital as the arrival of many troublesome symptoms unexpectedly in their 40s \u0026#8211; not the assumed 50s \u0026#8211; can have a dramatic effect on daily life at home, at work and in relationships. By having a greater understanding of the hormonal changes that are taking place and the impact they can have on their bodies, women will be able to make good decisions about their health at an earlier stage to help alleviate symptoms and improve their ongoing health. This will allow them to reap the benefits as they move forward into their next decade and beyond. If you’re having severe symptoms and think you’re experiencing perimenopause, speaking to a healthcare professional can help. ’\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow does perimenopause affect mental health?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are a few ways that perimenopause can play havoc with your mental health in ways that are particularly difficult to deal with. This often requires a holistic approach to treat.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYour perimenopause could be causing;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAnger and mood swings\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eLittle things that used to go over your head may be starting to bother you incessantly – like your partner’s breathing, your children’s incessant questions, or a particularly difficult task at work. Instead of getting through it, you may feel suddenly and extremely angry – so angry that it can be difficult to contain. These extreme emotions aren’t limited to anger, and can often be characterized by extreme panic or extreme worry. They are unpredictable and can leave you feeling a loss of control.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eFatigued, low-energy, and low-motivation\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis is the most common reported symptom of menopause-related mental health, with our research finding 58% of women reporting lack of motivation and energy.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn1\" name=\"_ftnref1\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e If you’re feeling tired, low-energy, unable to get up and go like you used to, your perimenopause or menopause might be to blame.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAnxiety\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eCharacterized by a persistent feeling of worry, nervousness, and dread, anxiety can make it feel impossible to do the smallest and most routine of tasks without fear. You may find yourself overthinking and panicking about events that others don’t seem to think twice about, events that you used to attend with ease. Anxiety can also cause panic attacks and disturb your sleep patterns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eBrain fog\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may feel like you’re losing your memory – you can’t remember what was next on your to do list, you may have trouble concentrating on tasks, or may make small mistakes in your everyday routines. Brain fog is characterized by a loss of concentration and difficulty in remembering, and it can make work and life very difficult. 1 in 4 women admit to making mistakes at work, with 1 in 6 calling in sick to avoid work entirely.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDepression\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eDepression can often play hand in hand with anxiety and low energy. With a pervasive sense of low mood, fatigue, and unhappiness, depression can leave you feeling irritable, make it difficult for you to concentrate, and unable to take joy or pleasure in the activities you used to enjoy. It can often be accompanied by appetite changes, disturbed sleeping patterns, suicidal thoughts, and even physical pains like cramps and headaches. Studies have indicated that women going through perimenopause are more vulnerable to depression. Our research has indicated 44% of women reported feeling like they did not want to get out of bed in the mornings, while 1 in 10 admitted to having suicidal thoughts.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn2\" name=\"_ftnref2\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e Depression can make you feel defeated, and leave your regular life feeling impossible.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eLow self-esteem\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eThat dress you used to love now hangs, hidden, at the back of your wardrobe. You feel unintelligent or silly at work even when you know you’re doing a good job. You don’t want to see or spend time with people as you constantly overthink or feel down about yourself – how you speak, how you look, how you think. 43% of perimenopausal women reported feeling like they didn’t want to see family or friends because they felt too low in themselves. Perimenopause and menopause can alter your self-confidence and leave you feeling worthless.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOften these symptoms can appear together in clusters or one can feed into the other – like low-self esteem and depression. Treatment, then, can be a holistic approach that seeks to target all of them together. A specially formulated supplement, such as Health \u0026amp; Her’s \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/perimenopause\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\/\"\u003ePerimenopause Mind +\u003c\/a\u003e, which contains a natural blend of vitamins, minerals and active botanicals to help balance hormones, support psychological and cognitive function alongside energy levels, could be an option to treat your mental health changes in a multifaceted, holistic way.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2022\/06\/30121652\/Website-Graphics.gif\"\u003e\u003cimg decoding=\"async\" class=\"alignnone size-full wp-image-79282\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2022\/06\/30121652\/Website-Graphics.gif\" alt=\"\" width=\"768\" height=\"316\" \/\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat causes mental health issues during perimenopause?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerimenopause and menopause cause fluctuations in various hormone levels, especially estrogen and progesterone, and these hormonal changes can affect the mood, and can also worsen physical symptoms. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/pii\/S0165032716308746?casa_token=jqkfV8r1f4UAAAAA:GL2vI9-VET6DEgwkLo0V7APIeDnC95F1Q73kQAFrP9_CT6m63o65Vedum-v0wrm-AlnfPxKOOzkH\"\u003eStudies\u003c\/a\u003e have demonstrated that mental health changes are \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.sciencedirect.com\/science\/article\/pii\/S1521693406001398?casa_token=-6RKJaaycQkAAAAA:xdxYu4Vi6ec3ALNcowkc6w-ImMt3F_lZkHgfVoUU1tmhpy4qqqa0ChSFXd9Bocy8hEX7FgkOFWFL\"\u003eespecially common during perimenopause\u003c\/a\u003e, when hormonal changes are at their most prominent. Beyond the hormonal changes happening within your mind, perimenopausal women are also vulnerable to mental health issues due to the difficulties the physical symptoms of perimenopause and menopause can have on the emotions, such as a lack of proper, good-quality sleep caused by insomnia, self-esteem issues caused by potential weight gain, and the strenuous physical effects of joint aches, hot flashes, and cramps. Combined with what is generally quite a stressful stage in life – looking after both parents and children, gaining more responsibility within career fields, and dealing with mortgages, house upkeep, and relationship stress – this stage in life can often leave you more likely to develop emotional strains. If you have had mental health issues in the past, perimenopause can also exacerbate these.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs menopause specialist Dr Kate Burns describes,\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e\u0026#8216;as well as mood swings being triggered by your hormone levels fluctuating up and down more than they usually would be during the menopause, as you progress through perimenopause the overall levels of estrogen and progesterone in your body will also be slowly dropping as your ovaries slow down. Your body has to adjust to lower levels of these hormones which can also cause your mood to decline. There is also some evidence that lowering estrogen levels may be linked to lowering levels of serotonin, a very important chemical in the brain that is closely linked with our mood and emotions.\u0026#8217;\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow to protect your mental health during perimenopause\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e There are a myriad of ways to help you through perimenopause and to treat any mental health changes you may be experiencing. There are a selection of tools and methods that can help aid you through the transition depending on the severity of your symptoms and your personal feelings.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eVisit your healthcare provider or a qualified menopause health professional. Y\u003c\/strong\u003eour general healthcare provider can give you advice, an ear to listen to, and provide medical intervention if your symptoms are severe enough. If your symptoms are making it hard to go about your day to day life, you should visit a qualified professional to help discuss options like antidepressants or HT.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSupplements can provide a helpful option for women looking to seek a more holistic and natural approach.\u003c\/strong\u003e Specially formulated by expert nutritionists and using ingredients designed to target the areas that are feeling vulnerable, Health \u0026amp; Her offers a range of supplements that can help with specific symptoms such as brain fog, or wider ranges that focus on buoying up your mental health generally, such as the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/perimenopause\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\/\"\u003eperimenopause mind+ supplement\u003c\/a\u003e, specially designed to improve low mood, cognition, and improve the nervous system. An ideal option for women seeking a natural way to manage their perimenopause symptoms, it has been expertly formulated with a natural blend of vitamins, minerals and active botanicals to support hormone balancing, optimum psychological and cognitive function, energy levels and normal functioning of the nervous system.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHT to help with hormone levels\u003c\/strong\u003e. If your symptoms are hormone related, your healthcare provider may recommend starting you on hormone therapy to stabilize your hormonal changes and prevent estrogen depletion. This might seem a bit intimidating at first, but HT can do wonders in helping stabilize your hormones, improving your mood and also helping to prevent problems such as osteoporosis and heart disease. For more information, check out \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her’s guide on HT\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eSleep aids and advice for insomnia\u003c\/strong\u003e. If lack of sleep is making you irritable, anxious, and low-energy, different tools can help you get your sleep routine back in order. Advice such as finding a regular sleep pattern, cutting down on stimulants, and seeking out solutions such as CBT or lavender sleep aids could help normalize your sleeping routine and leave you feeling better mentally. For more advice and information on how sleep affects your mental health and how to improve it, visit \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/menopause-disturbed-sleep\/\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her’s sleep aid guide\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eDietary plans to help keep you healthy\u003c\/strong\u003e. Diet can have a huge impact on your energy and emotional well-being. Cutting down on certain foods that exacerbate your symptoms can lessen fatigue, and keeping an overall healthy diet can work wonders in helping you feel better. For more advice on how to improve mood with food, visit Health \u0026amp; Her’s advice on \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/mood-changes-during-menopause-does-what-you-eat-make-a-difference\/\"\u003ediet and emotional changes\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eExercise programs to keep active and encourage endorphin release\u003c\/strong\u003e. Exercise can be a stalwart line of defense in helping improve your mood. By releasing endorphins, exercise can provide a burst of happiness and energy that can help power you through the day, while certain exercises such as \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sleeping-problems\/menopause-yoga-nidra-disturbed-sleep\/\"\u003eyoga\u003c\/a\u003e have been linked to improvements in mood and relaxation.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHow do I identify whether what I’m going through is perimenopause?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her has created an easy symptom tool to help you understand whether your combination of mood issues is indicative of the early signs of perimenopause. If you’re worried or in doubt, remember\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch5 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eD\u003c\/strong\u003eepression\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003ch5 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eA\u003c\/strong\u003enxiety\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003ch5 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eM\u003c\/strong\u003eood\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003ch5 style=\"padding-left: 40px;\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eN\u003c\/strong\u003eo energy\u003c\/h5\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you have one or more of these symptoms, alongside an erratic period, consider going to consult with a professional to see what your options are for help. The Health \u0026amp; Her App is available to download on the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/apps.apple.com\/gb\/app\/health-her-menopause-app\/id1519199698\"\u003eiOS App Store\u003c\/a\u003e and the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/play.google.com\/store\/apps\/details?id=com.healthandher\u0026amp;hl=en_GB\"\u003eAndroid Play store\u003c\/a\u003e. Studies have shown that logging your symptoms has been linked to proven health benefits such as symptom reduction, heightened quality of life, and better health awareness.\u003ca href=\"#_ftn3\" name=\"_ftnref3\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhen should I see a doctor?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf your mental health is impeding on your everyday life and making it hard to get out of bed, do regular tasks, and causing you to feel like you have little hope, the best thing to do is always to go see a professional doctor who can listen carefully to what you’re experiencing and then discuss potential suitable treatments to help you feel better. They can offer a range of other solutions that can have you feeling back at your best. Check in with your local family healthcare provider, or schedule a visit with a specialist to talk through how best to treat your mental health and menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat treatments can your doctor offer?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eYour healthcare provider could provide a variety of options to help treat your mental health. As Dr Kate Burns describes, \u0026#8216;depending on what combination of symptoms you are experiencing and their severity, a trial of HT may be recommended. Alternatively, for some women antidepressants may also be appropriate. Regardless, it is always vital to consider additional, non-medical ways to help improve your mental health and wellbeing; such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), mindfulness, yoga, exercise and healthy eating.\u0026#8217;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMillions of women go through perimenopause and menopause annually, and many of them are struggling with mood issues and mental health changes, with little information or support from those around them. If you are struggling, more than anything, it is important to remember that you are not alone – and there is hope! There are medical interventions alongside options such as Health \u0026amp; Her’s \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/psychological-function\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\/\"\u003ePerimenopause Mind +\u003c\/a\u003e supplement and app which can work to help shore up your mental health and leave you feeling stronger and better. Perimenopause has been linked to issues with mood and emotion in thousands of women, and up until recently, there hasn’t been a lot of material disseminated on why that is, or how to get better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her want to say enough is enough. You deserve to get the help and treatment you need, and the support you need to get you feeling like your best self – and there’s no shame in that.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eReferences and Sources\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\" name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e[1]\u003c\/a\u003e As evidenced by a survey of 2,000 UK women aged 46-60 who have experienced perimenopause, carried out by OnePoll on behalf of women’s health website and free app Heath \u0026amp; Her.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\" name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e[2]\u003c\/a\u003e Ibid\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\" name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e[3]\u003c\/a\u003e Andrews, R., Hale, G., Lancastle, D., John, B. (2020). Evaluating the effects of symptom-monitoring interventions on menopausal health outcomes: a systematic review.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref1\" name=\"_ftn1\"\u003e[4]\u003c\/a\u003e Out of 2,000 women aged 46-60\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref2\" name=\"_ftn2\"\u003e[5]\u003c\/a\u003e As evidenced by research commissioned by Health \u0026amp; Her and carried out by Censuswide. 1,001 women between the ages of 45-60 were surveyed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"#_ftnref3\" name=\"_ftn3\"\u003e[6]\u003c\/a\u003e Out of 2,000 women aged 46-60\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606718918962", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Mental_Health_in_Perimenopause_Dr_Deborah_Lancastle_768x.jpg?v=1703251437", "title" : "Mental health and perimenopause ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=228" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=228" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/228" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 25, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/low-energy/", "name": "Low energy", "description": "Energy levels can fluctuate in perimenopause and menopause. Browse our range of supplements and products that women have chosen to support their energy levels.", "id": 228, "term_id": 228, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-energy" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537941298", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Dr.-Sophie-Bostock-aspect-ratio-1x1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658445", "name" : "Sophie Bostock", "summary" : "", "title" : "Sleep Expert and Coach" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Sleep-during-menopause-1600x1067_1200x.jpg?v=1697662816", "html" : "\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eIs menopause messing with your sleep? Here are tools, techniques and treatment to reclaim your rest\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eIf you’re struggling to fall asleep, or stay asleep through the night, you’re not alone. In this article, Doctor Sophie Bostock, Sleep Expert and Evangelist, explains why sleep problems can feel so overwhelming at menopause, and signposts evidence-based strategies for improving your sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow common are sleep problems during menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eSleep problems are very common in the general population, with as many as 1 in 3 adults reporting trouble sleeping. There is no doubt that menopause creates additional challenges for sleep, with most surveys suggesting that at least 1 in 2 women during have difficulty falling asleep, or waking up during the night, during the menopausal transition.(1,2)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRecent data from the Health \u0026amp; Her Menopause Symptom Tool and Tracker reveals that over three quarters of women using the tool have trouble sleeping.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" style=\"line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cimg style=\"display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;\" decoding=\"async\" class=\"aligncenter size-medium wp-image-7178\" src=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-300x266.jpg\" alt=\"Health \u0026amp; Her Symptom Tool - Sleeping Problems\" width=\"310\" height=\"275\" srcset=\"https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-300x266.jpg 300w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-200x178.jpg 200w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool-360x320.jpg 360w, https:\/\/media.healthandher.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/03\/28141754\/Sleeping-Problems-Health-Her-Symptom-Tool.jpg 500w\" sizes=\"(max-width: 420px) 300px, (min-width: 421px) 768px, (min-width: 769px) 1024px, 100vw\"\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe good news? Although widespread, this tells us that sleep problems are not universal, or inevitable.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor many women, sleepless nights are temporary, but research suggests that as many as 1 in 4 women going through menopause may meet criteria for insomnia disorder.1 Doctors define insomnia disorder as difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep through the night, or waking up feeling unrefreshed which persist for at least 3 nights a week, for 3 months or more, and which have a serious negative impact on work, relationships, health or quality of life.(3)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eIs menopause to blame for my poor sleep?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you're regularly woken up by night sweats, you probably feel in little doubt that menopause is to blame for poor sleep. But whether or not you experience hot flashes, sleep is vulnerable to a range of different influences which coincide with the onset of menopause:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes-in-menopause\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eHot flashes\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e and night sweats:\u003c\/strong\u003e Night sweats typically start to disrupt sleep in perimenopause and persist for several years post-menopause. Not all \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes-a-doctors-overview\"\u003ehot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e wake you up, but they are associated with increased arousal in the brain, which is linked to lighter sleep.(4) To maintain deep sleep, the body needs to cool down, so when your internal temperature dial is running wild, it interferes with both getting to sleep, and staying asleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eMental health challenges:\u003c\/strong\u003e Menopause also often coincides with stressful life events. Lower levels of estrogen can alter the regulation of hormones and transmitters which influence mood, such as serotonin, making you more vulnerable to depression.(1) Sleep and mental health are closely connected: poor mental health tends to get in the way of quality sleep, and lack of sleep heightens our sensitivity to stress, making us more vulnerable to anxiety and depression.(5) If you feel like you're stuck in a cycle of stress and sleeplessness, focusing on taking control of your sleep can often by the simplest way to start to tackle that cycle.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ePain: \u003c\/strong\u003eestrogen levels influence both pain perception and inflammation, and recent studies have found an increase in chronic pain during menopause, which can disrupt sleep.(6) The timing of menopause also coincides with an increase in the diagnoses of chronic health conditions, which may also add to pain and discomfort.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eWaking to urinate at night (nocturia):\u003c\/strong\u003e Lower levels of estrogen can lead to drying of the genital tract, discomfort and strong urges to urinate; another cue for disrupted sleep.(1)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eNatural ageing:\u003c\/strong\u003e Older adults typically experience lighter and more disrupted sleep than younger adults, especially in the second part of the night. We sleep in cycles which are typically about 90-110 minutes long. It's important to know that waking up several times between sleep cycles is natural; most good sleepers roll over and forget about it. Try not to let waking up itself become a source of anxiety. If you don't worry about waking up, it'll be much easier to fall back to sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eOther sleep disorders:\u003c\/strong\u003e Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, but there are other common conditions which merit medical attention. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is a condition where narrowing of the upper airways leads to pauses in breathing throughout night, and is often associated with loud snoring. OSA disrupts deep sleep and leads to extreme sleepiness during the day. Sleep apnea can occur at any age but becomes more common in postmenopausal women, potentially because of a reduction of the hormone progesterone. Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) is the sudden urge to move your legs can interfere with getting to sleep. RLS seems to be more common in perimenopause, especially for women who have night sweats.(7)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat impact can poor sleep have on menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eLack of sleep can have a pretty miserable impact at any time of life, but the effects on menopause are particularly significant because sleeplessness tends to magnify the negative effects of hormonal changes, which can worsen a whole range of symptoms, which further disrupt sleep.. leading to a negative spiral.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor example, lack of sleep alone can cause fatigue, greater sensitivity to pain, memory loss, a reduction in sexual arousal, weight gain and increased inflammation – all of which can also be consequences of menopause.2 The effects of sleep are particularly notable for mental health. For example, one night without sleep can increase anxiety by 30%, fuelling worry and stress levels.(8)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eData from Health \u0026amp; Her's Symptom Tool reinforces the links between poor sleep and worse physical and mental health. In a sample of over 30,000 women, those with severe sleep problems experience an average of 10 menopause symptoms, vs. 6 for good sleepers. The severity of symptoms for the poorest sleepers was also higher – 3.6 out of 5 on average, vs. 3.1 out of 5 for good sleepers.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt's important to note that you don't need to 'catch up' on every hour of missed sleep. Rather than lying in bed, worrying about lack of sleep, a better approach is to get out of bed and do a relaxing activity, only returning to bed if you're sleepy tired. After a sleepless night, the brain will try and compensate with a more restorative sleep the following night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat can you do to improve sleep quality?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you understand how sleep works, you can feel more confident about practicing positive sleep habits, which could prevent occasional sleep problems turning into full blown insomnia. So what controls when we sleep? There are two main forces involved(9):\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003ea) Your circadian rhythm, or body clock\u003cbr\u003e\u003c\/strong\u003eOur bodies are designed to operate on a 24 hour or 'circadian' sleep-wake cycle, to allow for action during the day, and recovery at night. Every cell has its own internal clock, but a master body clock in the brain keeps them all coordinated. The master clock is very sensitive to light; in daylight, it sends a strong alerting signal, whereas in darkness, it sends a 'ready-to-sleep' signal, via production of the hormone, melatonin. We produce less melatonin as we age (regardless of menopause) which is one reason sleep gets lighter as we get older.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\" margin-bottom:=\"\" margin-top:=\"\"\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eb) Sleep pressure\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSleep pressure builds up gradually the longer we've been awake, owing to build up of a waste chemical called adenosine, making us feel drowsy. Sleep pressure works independently to the body clock and is reset by sleep. If sleep pressure is high, and there is no alerting signal from the master clock, we're likely to sleep. Most sleep hygiene advice, including the advice below, is designed to help these two natural sleep forces work together.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e1. Maintain a regular wake-up time:\u003c\/strong\u003e if you get up at similar times every day, your body responds with the regular release of melatonin before you get into bed, which aids restful sleep. Haphazard sleep-wake patterns, and weekend lie-ins, confuse the body clock and delay the production of melatonin, leading to lighter sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e2. Use bright light to energize:\u003c\/strong\u003e Sit by the window or go outdoors in the morning to feel more alert, and wake up the body clock. In the hour before bed, dim the lights, and avoid light from screens which can interfere with melatonin. During the night, keep your environment as dark as possible, with blackout blinds and\/or an eye mask, and use dim lights if you need to get up at night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e3. Practice the skill of relaxation:\u003c\/strong\u003e too much stress, especially in the evening, interferes with the production of melatonin. This can delay the body clock and lead to lighter, more disrupted sleep. Take time to unwind and detach from the day before bed. Relaxation techniques such as progressive muscle relaxation, yoga and mindfulness can all help switch off the stress response, and lead to more restorative sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e4. Go to bed when you're sleepy:\u003c\/strong\u003e you won't be able to sleep if you haven't built up enough sleep pressure. If you don't feel tired, do something relaxing until your eyelids feel heavy, and only then get into bed. If you're feeling fatigued, a short 20 minute nap after lunch can be a useful boost to mood and energy levels, but be wary of long naps late in the day which can reset sleep pressure, and interfere with night time sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e5. Cut down on stimulants: \u003c\/strong\u003e caffeine temporarily masks the effects of sleep pressure, and increases arousal. Even caffeine 6 hours before bed can interfere with sleeping through the night.10 Some people use alcohol to get to sleep but as it is broken down by the body it interferes with natural sleep, leaving you feeling fatigued the next day. Caffeine and alcohol can both worsen night sweats and hot flashes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e6. Get active during the day:\u003c\/strong\u003e physical activity sends a signal to the master body clock to stay alert, and helps strengthen sleep pressure. Regular physical activity improves sleep quality at all ages. Avoid vigorous exercise close to bedtime, since this can increase body temperature, and push back the body clock.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e7. Keep the bedroom cool at night:\u003c\/strong\u003e a daily fall in body temperature is a cue for sleep, so keeping your bedroom a few degrees cooler than typical room temperature, with air circulating, can help. Use layers of light bedding which you can easily remove if you get too hot. Some women who experience severe night sweats recommend sleeping on soft towels, which are easy to change at night.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat treatments are available for persistent sleep problems in menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you're concerned about a chronic sleep problem, it's a good idea to discuss this with your doctor. A multidisciplinary approach to treatment is recommended, which takes into account not only your hormonal profile, but also any pain or chronic health conditions, and what's going on in your work and family life, and your treatment preferences.(1)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe recommended first line treatment for Insomnia Disorder is called Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I).(2,11) Like other \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/cognitive-behaviour-therapy-for-hot-flushes\"\u003eCBT approaches\u003c\/a\u003e, CBT-I is a toolkit of different techniques to address unhelpful thoughts and worry, but also helps to reset healthy sleep patterns. Techniques include using a sleep diary, good sleep hygiene, relaxation techniques, and sleep restriction, which involves changing your sleep window to increase sleep pressure, and consolidate broken sleep. CBT-I can be delivered effectively as 1-2-1 or group therapy, as self-help books or online programmes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003eHormone Therapy (HT)\u003c\/a\u003e is commonly prescribed to manage hot flashes, and most studies report a modest improvement in sleep quality, as well as low mood.(1,2)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA recent trial compared 6 different approaches to improving insomnia in over 500 women with hot flashes over 12 weeks.(12) The strongest improvements in sleep quality were reported for CBT-I. Interestingly, while CBT-I didn't reduce the number of night sweats, it did reduce how bothersome they were, and improved overall satisfaction with sleep. Smaller sleep improvements were seen for HT (oestradiol), antidepressants (escitalopram, venlafaxine), regular aerobic exercise and yoga. Omega-3 supplements had no effect.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSleeping pills are not recommended for more than a few weeks use owing to potentially harmful side effects, so are rarely prescribed at menopause. Taking pills won't help to address the behaviors that get in the way of sleep, so even if you're using pills as a temporary measure, it's also a good idea to focus on positive sleep habits.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat alternative approaches are there?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you find an approach which helps you to cope with hot flashes and night sweats, it's likely to have benefits for sleep too. Similarly, rituals which help you to relax and detach from the day in the hour or two before bed can help ready the mind and body for sleep. For some people this might mean a warm bath, herbal tea, reading, writing a journal or meditation(13); whatever helps you personally to put the day to rest.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDietary factors can also influence sleep. Maintaining a varied and healthy diet will help to prevent deficiencies of nutrients which have been linked with poor sleep, such as magnesium, calcium, vitamin D and 5-HTP (a precursor to melatonin).(14) Research into the effects of dietary supplements on sleep at menopause has mostly been limited to small trials, but it's an active area for research. For example, isoflavones, which can mimic the effects of estrogens, and valerian root, have been shown to have mild sedative effects.(15) A registered nutritionist can help you to apply the latest evidence for supplements, as well as understanding risks and side effects.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eKey takeaways\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are many simple things you can do to improve your natural sleep quality. The approach with the strongest evidence for reducing insomnia in menopause is CBT-I. Simply knowing that poor sleep can turn up the dial on your emotional sensitivity can be empowering. If you feel tired and overwhelmed, remind yourself that the sleepless brain has a tendency to hijack logical thoughts and feelings. Try and look at the situation from your best friend's perspective. Protect time to unwind before bed to give your body the best chance for a restful slumber.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eReferences\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eHachul et al. (2017) Chapter 10. Insomnia and Menopause Clinical Handbook of Insomnia (Current Clinical Neurology) (3rd edition) Ed. Attarian\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBaker et al. (2018) Sleep problems during the menopausal transition: prevalence, impact, and management challenges Nature and Science of Sleep 2018:10 73-95\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAmerican Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition. Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Association, 2013\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBonnani et al (2019) Insomnia and hot flashes. Maturitas 126 (2019) 51-54\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFang et al (2019) Depression and sleep disturbance: a review on a bidirectional relationship, mechanisms and treatment J Cell Mol Med. 23(4): 2324-2332.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGibson et al. (2019) Menopause symptoms and chronic pain in a national sample of midlife women veterans Menopause 26(7):708-713\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eJoffe et al. (2010) Evaluation and Management of Sleep Disturbance During the Menopause Transition Seminars in Reproductive Medicine 28(5):404-21\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBen Simon et al (2020), Overanxious and underslept. Nature Human Behaviour, 4, 100-110(2020)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBorbely et al (2016) The two-process model of sleep regulation: a reappraisal. J Sleep Res 25(2) 131-143\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDrake et al. (2013) Caffeine effects on sleep taken 0, 3, or 6 hours before going to bed. J Clin Sleep Med 9(11):1195-120\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eNowakowski \u0026amp; Meers (2019) Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia and Women's Health: Sex as a Biological Variable Sleep Med Clin 14(2):185-197\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGuthrie et al (2019) Effects of Pharmacologic and Nonpharmacologic Interventions on Insomnia Symptoms and Self-reported Sleep Quality in Women With Hot Flashes: A Pooled Analysis of Individual Participant Data From Four MsFLASH Trials. Sleep 41(1)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGarcia et al. (2018) The effects of mindfulness and relaxation training for insomnia (MRTI) on postmenopausal women: a pilot study. Menopause25(9):992-1003\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIkonte et al. (2019) Micronutrient Inadequacy in Short Sleep: Analysis of the NHANES 2005-2016. Nutrients 11(10)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDe Franciscis et al. (2019) A Nutraceutical Approach to Menopausal Complaints. Medicina 55(9)E544\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e", "id" : "606539022642", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Sleep-during-menopause-1600x1067_768x.jpg?v=1697662816", "title" : "How to sleep better during Menopause ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=675" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=675" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/675" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 11, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sleeping-problems/", "name": "Sleeping Problems", "description": "Experiencing perimenopause or menopause related sleep problems? Explore our natural sleep remedies and clever ideas to help with restless nights - our selection of menopause sleep aids are tried and tested by the women who have been there too.", "id": 675, "term_id": 675, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sleeping-problems" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/siniz-kim-626150-unsplash-1_1200x.jpg?v=1697662851", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan discusses hot flashes – what are they, why do they happen, and how can you reduce the impact they’re having on your life. From lifestyle changes to Hormone Therapy (HT), there’s a lot you can do to get keep cool and in control.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat are hot flashes?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHot flashes are often described as an intense feeling of warmth that ‘spreads through’ the body and face, even in times others may not feel warm. Often, they can be associated with excess sweating and palpitations.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThey can affect you in many ways. Some women get occasional hot flashes that do not impact on their quality of life too much. However, others may experience many more flashes or find them uncomfortable and embarrassing, resulting in disruption to their normal routine, work, and sleep.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy do hot flashes happen?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHot flashes are thought to be caused by the change in hormones (mainly low levels of estrogen) that affect your body temperature control. They can occur early in the lead up to menopause – what’s called perimenopause, the time when you are still having periods – and after the menopause for many years.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eAre they anything to worry about?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHot flashes are usually harmless. However, if you are experiencing other symptoms such as weight loss, diarrhea, muscle weakness, or feel generally unwell then you should talk to your Doctor to make sure menopause is the cause of these symptoms\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow can you help manage hot flashes?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHow you manage your hot flashes depends on how badly they are affecting you. Some women find them ‘mild’ and cope without any treatment – but if you are finding them challenging, there’s a lot you can do.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eLifestyle factors – the simplest first step\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere are many lifestyle factors that trigger hot flashes and by modifying these, you can really help ease your symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt can be hard to balance healthy living and the demands of busy modern lives, but investing some time and energy now in looking after your body can be really beneficial. Do what you can and see how you get on – but every small change helps a great deal, so see what you can manage.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTry to limit alcohol\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt is important to limit alcohol intake because drinking alcohol can change the body temperature in many ways. Firstly, our liver breaks down alcohol. This digestion process results in heat production and can lead to a ‘warm feeling’. Alcohol also causes our blood vessels to dilate, resulting in the ‘facial flushing or blushing’ that some people experience. Excess alcohol also causes sweating – because the body trying to rid itself of toxins. As you can imagine, none of this helps when your hormones are triggering hot flashes too.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eCut out the caffeine\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eCaffeine stimulates our nervous system causing us to feel ‘on edge’ and can result in flashes and palpitations.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eQuit smoking\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSmoking cigarettes can cause hot flashes. This is because cigarettes contain nicotine which causes our body to release chemicals that increase our heart rate and our body temperature.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTry to avoid getting stressed or anxious\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis can also stimulate our nervous system – ‘the fight or flight response’ resulting in hot flashes and sweating. You can read more about how to manage this in our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/stress-anxiety\"\u003e‘stress and anxiety’ article\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTalk to your healthcare provider about your medical health and medications\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eYou may be on some medications that can trigger hot flashes. In addition some medical conditions such as an overactive thyroid or diabetes can also make your symptoms worse . It is important you discuss how to minimize these effects with your doctor.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTry and keep cool \u003cbr\u003e\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIt may be helpful to modify your environment to keep cool when you are experiencing hot flashes and sweats. For example:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eWearing lighter clothing and layers that can be easily removed –there’s lots of helpful advice in the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-dress-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003e‘How to dress for hot flashes’ article\u003c\/a\u003e by stylist and dressmaker Gilly Woo.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eConsider your bedding – try lighter, breathable sheets instead of thick duvets, and consider a cooling pillow.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTurn down the thermostat – where you can, try to keep the room cool, and where you can’t, use a fan.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch3\u003eWhich treatments are available on prescription?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003ch4\u003eHormone Therapy (HT)\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis is the most effective treatment available from your Doctor to reduce hot flashes. As the main cause of hot flashes around menopause is a drop in hormones (in particular estrogen), HT aims to replace these hormones. In addition, HT has been shown* to reduce your risk of brittle bones (osteoporosis). In addition, taking HT (especially estrogen only HT) can reduce your risk of cardiovascular (heart and blood vessel) disease. The greatest benefits are seen if women start HT within 10 years of their menopause. You will find more information in ‘Doctor’s guide to HT’ \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003earticle here\u003c\/a\u003e – it covers the options available, common myths, and the questions women often ask when they are considering HT.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eNon-hormonal treatment options\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHT might not be suitable for everyone, and is only one type of treatment. Other ‘prescribed’ medicines have also been shown to help too, and these include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eClonidine\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis is a non-hormonal drug licensed for treating hot flashes and a good alternate where HT is not safe. Clonidine is traditionally a treatment for high blood pressure therefore may not be suitable for some patients on other medications or with low blood pressure. It can also cause sleep disturbance at higher doses, but this is something your doctor should discuss with you before prescribing.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eGabapentin\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis can be used to improve hot flashes. Some women also like this medication as it can improve their sleep. The main side effects occur with higher doses and include drowsiness, dry mouth and weight gain.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAntidepressants\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSome medications such as Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and Selective Noradrenaline Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSNRIs) may be considered as an alternative for treating hot flashes where HT is not safe. This should be considered carefully with your doctor as they are not licenced for this use and at high doses can themselves cause side effects associated with menopause such as low libido, nausea, and dry mouth.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHot flashes may be one of the most common menopause symptoms, but knowing that other women are sharing your experience doesn’t always make it easier. If you’ve tried the self-help steps above, your healthcare provider is a great first point of call to talk about other options including HT.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf you’re nervous about talking to a healthcare professional, please don’t be. Try to remember that we’re here to help, that we’ve ‘heard it all before’, and that we really care about helping you feel well. You may find it useful to read my article \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\"\u003e‘Talking to your doctor about menopause’\u003c\/a\u003e. Here, I address some common worries women have about the menopause and approaching their doctor, as well as providing some practical tips and ideas on how to get the most out of doctor appointments.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Dr Shilpa McQuillan MRCGP MRCOG DFSRH\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/menopause-experts\/shilpa-mcquillan\/\"\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan\u003c\/a\u003e is a doctor with a difference; she brings a wealth of specialist knowledge when it comes to women’s health. Previously a Hospital Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Shilpa now works in general practice, providing patients with resident expertise and knowledge on women’s health concerns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/perimenopause-to-menopause-and-post-menopause-a-doctor-s-overview\"\u003eMenopause, perimenopause and post menopause – a Doctor’s overview\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/yoga-for-hot-flashes\"\u003eYoga for hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e with Uma Dinsmore-Tuli\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/cognitive-behaviour-therapy-for-hot-flushes\"\u003eCBT for hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e with Myra Hunter\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/how-to-dress-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eHow to dress for hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e with Gilly Woo\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606539678002", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/siniz-kim-626150-unsplash-1_768x.jpg?v=1697662851", "title" : "Hot flashes – A doctor’s overview ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=668" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/668" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/night-sweats/", "name": "Night Sweats", "description": "Night sweats in menopause occur frequently and can be a challenge to manage for many. Here are some of the best supplements, remedies and products to help deal with the symptoms and keep you cool so you can enjoy a better night of sleep.", "id": 668, "term_id": 668, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "night-sweats" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/rawpixel-561412-unsplash-1-1600x1170_1200x.jpg?v=1697662885", "html" : "\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSome of the most challenging menopause related symptoms are the ones you can’t see. Dr Shilpa McQuillan discusses the psychological side of menopause, and the symptoms many women visit her for help with: stress and anxiety, low mood and feeling tearful, irritability and mood swings.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eMany people think of hot flashes and night sweats as the main symptoms women experience as they approach their menopause. But in fact there are also many psychological symptoms that occur. These are the symptoms that people don’t physically see – so can be more difficult to deal with.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDuring menopause, psychological symptoms can be overbearing, impacting on your physical health as well as affecting relationships at home and in the workplace. Some of the symptoms many women describe include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003elow mood\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eanxiety\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eirritability\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003epanic attacks\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003efeeling tearful\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003elow self- esteem\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003emood swings\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhy do we get more stressed and anxious at menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere are many reasons that you can experience mood changes around the menopause. Changes in the balance of your hormones is one of them.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eNormally, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. One of the roles of cortisol is to deal with stress. It is important that you have the right balance of cortisol in your body, otherwise we can become quite unwell.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThe hormone estrogen helps maintain the level of cortisol in the body.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAs you go through menopause, the levels of estrogen begin to drop. This means you can’t regulate your cortisol levels as effectively as before, causing you to experience mood changes and stress more readily.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTestosterone also plays an important role on our mood and concentration (as well as libido and energy). Many people think of testosterone as the ‘male hormone’, but it is actually produced by the ovaries in high quantities. Like estrogen, these levels drop around menopause and result in low mood and brain fog.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eStress – and the vicious circle it can trigger\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eStress can be a challenging symptom to manage. The more you are stressed, the more you can experience symptoms such as sleep problems; headaches; difficulty concentrating (‘brain fog’); sweating; and palpitations. Furthermore, the more menopause symptoms you experience i.e. sleep problems, flashes, sweating and headaches can in turn cause you to experience more stress and have low mood and anxiety. This can feel like a ‘vicious circle’, but thankfully there are ways to break free.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHow can you help manage stress and anxiety?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTwo people can go through the same stressful experience but cope in very different ways.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere are many factors that determine this such as your own personal health, and what kind of relationships and support you have. There are also many lifestyle factors that can help you cope with stress. These factors are a good place to start if you’re struggling with mood changes, anger, stress and anxiety – and there’s lots of help on this website to support you in making positive changes.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePositive steps to make today are…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHealthy diet\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIt is important to have a balanced diet and maintain a healthy weight. This means eating a diet that includes plenty of fruit and vegetables. Try and opt for foods low in fat, sugar, and salt (no more than 6 grams per day). This in turn can help boost your energy, improve your sleep, as well as prevent conditions including diabetes and heart disease, which themselves are associated with depression and anxiety. There’s lots of help here on Health \u0026amp; Her, including: \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/menopause-nutrition-how-to-eat-for-a-healthier-happier-menopause\/\"\u003eMenopause nutrition advice\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eRegular aerobic exercise\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhen you exercise your body releases endorphins. These are known as the ‘happy hormones’. These help keep your mood stable, and give you more energy to do the things you enjoy. In turn it can help improve sleep quality. If you’re not yet including exercise in your routine, there are some videos on Health \u0026amp; Her that may help including \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/expertise\/exercise-practitioner\/\"\u003emenopause routines for you to try at home\u003c\/a\u003e created by personal trainer and some of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003ethe best exercises to try in menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLimiting alcohol intake\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eOur brains rely on a careful balance of chemical and hormones that control our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Alcohol disrupts this balance. Initially, you may have a feeling of being relaxed and confident. This is because the part of the brain causing ‘inhibition’ is affected. As more of the brain is affected, there is more hormonal imbalance resulting in feelings of anger, aggression, and anxiety. Therefore alcohol is known as a natural ‘depressant’. It is important to keep health risks from drinking alcohol to a low level. This is best achieved by drinking no more than the recommended 14 units per week.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIt is ok to have the odd glass of wine, but may be tempting to drink more if you are feeling low, and this is likely to make you feel worse. It may be helpful to try some social activities that can help boost your mood, like meeting a friend for a walk, indulging in a relaxing massage, or just taking time out for a yoga class. There are some free classes – designed for menopause – \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/expertise\/yoga-therapist\/\"\u003eyou can try here\u003c\/a\u003e on Health \u0026amp; Her.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePharmacy medications\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou can get some calming tablets from your pharmacy. It is important you check with your doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take these.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eCognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eCBT is a well-recognized treatment for stress and anxiety. Generally, the techniques used include improving mental health, relaxation techniques, mindfulness, and sleep hygiene.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou can find more information in our \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/cbt-for-menopause\/\"\u003e‘CBT for menopause’ advice by Professor Myra Hunter\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHormone Therapy (HT)\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTaking HT replaces the low levels of estrogen. By restoring the balance, many women find their mood more ‘stable’ and uplifted, with improved energy levels and motivation.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSome women may also need to replace testosterone levels to improve their energy and stress levels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAntidepressants\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSome antidepressant medications such as Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and Selective Noradrenaline Re-uptake Inhibitors (SSNRIs) are known for their treatment in depression and anxiety. Women who already suffer from these mood disorders, and who develop worsening symptoms around menopause, may benefit from starting these medications.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHowever, it’s really important to get the right treatment for you. If you think your symptoms are related to menopause then it’s actually very unlikely antidepressants will work – and you should talk through your options with your doctor.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you would like to know more about how menopause can affect you psychologically, Clinical Psychologist Deborah Lancastle has written an overview of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/coping-with-emotions-menopause\/\"\u003ecoping with emotions during menopause\u003c\/a\u003e. There is also help from Relate to explore \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/how-to-manage-stress-anxiety\/\"\u003ehow to manage menopause stress and anxiety in relationships\u003c\/a\u003e. You might also be interested in using exercise and complementary therapies – there’s advice from different practitioners in the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/stress-worry\/\"\u003eExpert Advice section\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAbout Dr Shilpa McQuillan MRCGP MRCOG DFSRH\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan is a doctor with a difference; she brings a wealth of specialist knowledge when it comes to women’s health. Previously a Hospital Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Shilpa now works in general practice, providing patients with resident expertise and knowledge on women’s health concerns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/shilpa-mcquillan\/\"\u003eRead Shilpa’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606540267826", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/rawpixel-561412-unsplash-1-1600x1170_768x.jpg?v=1697662885", "title" : "Stress and anxiety – a doctor ’s overview", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=653" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/653" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 12, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/brain-fog/", "name": "Brain Fog", "description": "Here are the best supplements and vitamins for brain fog a symptom that can be common during menopause. Menopause can also cause; memory loss and other cognitive issues but these vitamin supplements support products could help you begin to feel like yourself again.", "id": 653, "term_id": 653, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "brain-fog" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538301746", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/AnitaNEW_jpeg_small.jpg?v=1697658463", "name" : "Anita Ralph", "summary" : "“Herbal medicine has so much to offer women in managing their health, and is particularly good at helping with functional conditions such as menopause and perimenopause.”", "title" : "Qualified Medical Herbalist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/maddi-bazzocco-1174194-unsplash__1_-1_7f80ec27-cf75-4469-aa4d-d035ad19e9ce_1200x.jpg?v=1701311104", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eQualified Medical Herbalist Anita Ralph discusses natural ways to control hot flashes. Well-tolerated, safe and highly effective, can medicinal herbs and food plants provide natural relief for you?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHot flashes are a common symptom experienced by many women at menopause. The patients I see in my clinic describe feeling symptoms ranging from mild heat to something like a raging inferno. They sometimes occur with palpitations – a feeling that the heart is beating fast or more forcefully. This is a clue to the complex hormonal causes of hot flashes that involve ‘stress hormone’ production, and they can start several years before actual menopause is reached, because they are a response to change.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/hot-flashes-a-doctors-overview\/\" target=\"_blank\" rel=\"noopener noreferrer\"\u003eHot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e may be the result of other health problems in the body – so it is important to discuss your symptoms with your health practitioner to make sure of the cause of your flashes. However, flushing and sweating of any cause is a response to production of hormones released in response to different types of stress.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHerbal medicine – natural help for hot flashes\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHerbal medicine has many potential solutions to this disruptive symptom and is most effective to direct treatment at the root cause. Herbal medicines contain beneficial compounds, but herbs do not work exactly as ‘natural drugs’. It operates in that interesting area somewhere between food and medicine, and so it is often very safe to use. Menopause is a normal period of transition allowing the body to change from decades of menstruation (and the hormones that are necessary for menstruation) back to a state of relative hormonal calm. It is that transition that requires us to be flexible.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis means if we are struggling with mental or physical stress; we may have less capacity to cope with the changes required. Improving capacity to cope and improving general health are key areas of concern for the medical herbalist,  so we can often help with menopause even when other strategies have failed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eMenopause is partly about the reduction in the production of estrogen from our ovaries, and this is often given as a reason for hot flashes. We can produce all of the hormones we need post-menopausally, if we are in optimal health, and other parts of our body have a role to play with successful menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eDietary modifications: a natural alternative to HT?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSome medicinal herbs and some food plants are known to contain compounds similar to (but not the same as) estrogen. Increasing these foods into everyday dietary choices can improve hot flashes for some women for whom low estrogen levels are very obvious. These women may have been long-term users of the contraceptive pill, or had conditions such as endometriosis or fibroids leading to raised levels of estrogen.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eExcellent plant sources of these so-called ‘phytestrogens’ (phyto means plant) include pulses, beans and lentils, and also linseed – sometimes called flax seed. These natural sources of estrogen can help reduce menopausal symptoms but do not stimulate the estrogen receptors that are involved in breast cancer, in fact they may often block them.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003ePractical ways to help yourself\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAdding foods such as beans and lentils into your diet at least three times per week, and 1-4 teaspoons of ground flaxseed most days will provide good natural sources of the raw materials from which our body can make safe estrogen-like compounds.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ePulses and linseed help with the elimination of waste products from the body which can also help hormone balance, and they are sources of soluble (soft) fiber, a natural prebiotic that will also support the liver, and microbiome (ecosystem of friendly gut organisms).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003ePlant sources of estrogen have to be processed by our digestive system to be useful. Your liver can make different types of estrogen, though it needs raw materials from our diet – or from herbal medicines. It’s the liver itself that has to transform what we have eaten into something useful – or not!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf we also have digestive or liver problems, we may have more difficulty in manufacturing our own estrogens which can lead to worsening of symptoms of menopausal change.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHappier gut, fewer flashes\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eA medical herbalist will want to address any digestive problems because this will also improve the efficacy of any herbal medicine taken! Herbal teas such as chamomile and fennel seed have soothing calming and healing effects on the digestive lining. This can send calming messages to the brain and nervous system that can for some women help reduce the experience of hot flashes. The digestive effects of the two herbal relaxants will also improve our ability to make those post-menopausal estrogens naturally.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eKeeping our microbiome (ecosystem of friendly gut organisms) intact, will help our body manufacture post-menopausal estrogens. If you are experiencing frequent infections around menopause (recurrent infections including urinary tract infections can be a problem associated with menopausal changes), getting help that avoids antibiotic use will make it easier for the body to perform its role at menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eLooking at the hormonal system\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDuring menopause, our whole hormonal system is adapting and changing. There are changes in your reproductive organs, but also your \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.btf-thyroid.org\/information\/your-thyroid-gland\"\u003ethyroid\u003c\/a\u003e (which controls your metabolism) and your \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.yourhormones.info\/glands\/adrenal-glands\/\"\u003eadrenal glands\u003c\/a\u003e (which produce hormones including adrenaline that work as ‘chemical messengers’ in the body).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHerbalists can support these areas of your body using herbs called ‘adaptogens’. As every person is different, it’s best to seek help to find the right combination for you. However, there are some options that easily available, and very supportive, so suitable for you to try at home.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eOats can be taken as a food (porridge or oat milk), and they can also be used as a ‘tea’ of the oat flower and stalk (before the seed has formed). This herbal tea of oat flower, sometimes called milky oats or oat straw, acts like a ‘tonic’, it is delicious and is gluten free. Oats have a mild adaptogenic effect but are not over-stimulating, so they are ideal for some people at menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eIs your body trying to tell you something?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTo recap, hot flashes are symptoms of a deeper interruption to what should be a natural process of adaptation. Finding natural solutions to stress, chronic pain, inflammation or infections will help. This may be the first time you have taken reviewed your health as a whole. Avoiding antibiotics and restoring your gut function and your gut microbiome will also help.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat to expect if you consult a medical herbalist\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHerbal medicine can provide essential support at this time and can be tailor-made to your needs. If you see a qualified medical herbalist, you will have several carefully selected herbs in your prescription, and some dietary suggestions also tailored to you, so that you can have a robust, flexible and reliable approach to your own symptoms. A consultation is an opportunity to look at your health as a whole, and reflect on what your body needs. It is possible to help our body with the process of adaptation at menopause using safe, healthy and reliable herbal medicines.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eNext steps and handy resources\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHerbs and natural medicines – though generally very safe and well tolerated – can be incredibly powerful, so it’s really important to research and choose your practitioner carefully. Look for:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eMembership of \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.americanherbalistsguild.com\/member-profiles\"\u003eAmerican Herbalists Guild\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eA Masters degree in herbal medicine.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eDid you know? A fully qualified medical herbalist trains for 4 years – and studies the same medical sciences as a medical doctor.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Anita Ralph\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnita harnesses the powerful medicine of plants and foods to provide a natural alternative – or complement – to pharmaceutical medicines. She runs her own busy herbal consultancy, inspires the next generation as a teacher of herbal medicine, and works alongside our lead gynecologist to offer a holistic approach to women’s healthcare through the Gynae Expert practice. A practicing medical herbalist since 1990, Anita is a member of the \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.nimh.org.uk\/\"\u003eNational Institute of Medical Herbalists\u003c\/a\u003e and the \u003ca href=\"http:\/\/www.thecpp.org\/\"\u003eCollege of Practitioners of Phytotherapy\u003c\/a\u003e and has a masters degree in herbal medicine.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/anita-ralph\/\"\u003eRead Anita’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes\/yoga-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eYoga for hot flashes by Uma Dinsmore-Tuli\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/makeup-for-hot-flushes-by-caroline-barnes\/\"\u003eMake-up for hot flashes by Caroline Barnes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/cognitive-behaviour-therapy-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eCBT for hot flashes by Myra Hunter\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes\/how-to-dress-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eHow to dress for hot flashes with Gilly Woo\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719344946", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/maddi-bazzocco-1174194-unsplash__1_-1_7f80ec27-cf75-4469-aa4d-d035ad19e9ce_768x.jpg?v=1701311104", "title" : "Hot flashes – a herbal perspective", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538268978", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Gill_3-576x575_small.jpg?v=1697658461", "name" : "Gilly Woo", "summary" : "", "title" : "Stylist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/priscilla-du-preez-228220-unsplash__1_-1_4a597979-90f7-40e3-b899-b09f2d939f57_1200x.jpg?v=1701311102", "html" : "\u003ch4\u003eStylist’s secrets to manage your wardrobe even if your temperature’s out of control\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are Gilly Woo’s secrets of staying stylish when you’re feeling hot, hot, hot… Have you ever ended up in a meeting feeling like you’re boiling alive? Been so desperate to cool down that you’ve stripped down to your tank top and just styled it out (or hoped you did!)?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFelt cool and confident as you stepped out of your home, only to feel like you’ve run a marathon in ski-suit by the time you arrived at that important meeting?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAround 75-80% of women going through the menopause will experience hot flashes, and they can vary in severity and frequency from a minor annoyance once or twice a day to a stressful struggle every fifteen minutes! The good news? There are many things you can do to alleviate this symptom and make hot flashes easier to deal with, starting with your clothing choices.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are some of the simplest changes that have helped many women struggling with hot flashes alter the way they dress for work and play.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eKnowing the properties of different materials and picking certain fabrics, styles and combinations when choosing what to wear can help you feel more comfortable, cool and stylish before, during and after a hot flash.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy hot flashes can be a problem\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eHot flashes can be very distressing. You may feel like your face is getting redder and redder and everyone is looking at you, but any visible flushing of your face and chest will rarely appear as bad as it feels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt sounds simple, but look in the mirror next time you have an episode to put your mind at rest – knowing this has helped many women!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are some of the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/temperature-regulation\/\"\u003ebest supplements for menopause temperature regulation\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere’s absolutely no reason why you can’t look and feel stylish and comfortable during the menopause. By following a few simple rules when choosing clothing to wear for different occasions and activities, I’m hoping those pesky hot flashes will have less of a negative effect on your life.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eStyle tip #1 – get fabric savvy\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eI’ve been a dressmaker and stylist for over 20 years and in my experience people are often confused about the difference between fabrics (ie: cloth) and fibers (ie: the raw material that the cloth is made from). There are natural fibers such as cotton, silk, hemp, wool and cashmere and synthetic fibers, such as polyester, nylon, acrylic and spandex. Then there are ‘inbetweeners’ like viscose and rayon which are not synthetic, (they are made from heavily processed plant derivatives), but are man-made fibers so not natural either.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eIs natural always best?\u003c\/strong\u003e Breathability is an excellent property in a garment when you are prone to experiencing sudden acute episodes of intense heat. This is because the fabric will let air get to your skin which will help regulate your temperature. So it is important to choose clothes made from breathable fabrics, but how do you know which clothes are breathable? Most people assume that natural fibers make more breathable textiles than synthetic fibers but this is not always the case.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eHow to check breathability\u003c\/strong\u003e In general tighter knits or weaves create less breathable fabrics. Look for thinner materials and finer yarns. Try holding fabric up to the light, the more light that passes through, the more breathable the fabric.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eBalancing function, feel and practicality\u003c\/strong\u003e Natural fibers tend to feel nice against the skin and often feel more luxurious than synthetics but synthetics are usually easier to care for and more durable. They also keep their shape better after washing and drying. For this reason I recommend looking for blends such as cotton with a percentage of Lycra or polyester, or a silk\/viscose blend, to find out what your clothes are made of just check the label. As a general rule avoid fabrics that feel particularly stiff or plasticky as they will likely make you sweat.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eStyle tip #2 – let’s talk about sweat \u0026amp; exercise\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eRegular exercise is a good idea for everyone, but particularly for menopausal women. Exercise stimulates our ‘happy hormones’ making us feel generally better as well as helping to keep weight stable, joints supple and loads of other good stuff. \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/hot-topics\/best-exercises-for-menopause\/\"\u003eHere are some of the best exercises for Menopause\u003c\/a\u003e. The choose best clothing for your workouts consider how moisture-wicking, quick-dry fabrics can help you feel fresh throughout.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMerino wool is preferable to nylon and polyester as is doesn’t retain odor like synthetic materials. Don’t be fooled into thinking that all wool is hot and itchy! There are plenty of marvelous summer weight merino wool blends out there perfect for the gym and casual wear. Fit wise it’s a good idea to wear your sports kit reasonably snug. This will offer some support as well as wicking sweat away from your skin, helping you feel dry and comfy. If you feel self conscious in fitted clothing you can wear a loose swingy tank top or T shirt made from a very fine flowing fabric as a modesty layer.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eGo for your favorite color or black, but avoid grey marle (unless you want to show off how hard you’ve been working!) because any wet patches will go dark and be very noticeable. Of course you can apply this advice to your everyday wardrobe too. A form fitting camisole or tank top under a more flowy tunic or wrap top is a great smart\/casual look.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eStyle tip #3 – go with the flow\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eFlowing fabrics are generally a good choice for your everyday wardrobe. Where possible look for garments with a roomy armhole This helps avoid the dreaded sweat patch and is generally less restrictive and more comfortable. Choosing viscose, rayon or a blend could be better than pure silk or cotton because natural fibers will take longer to dry. Just check the labels in your clothing to see what garments are made from. If you struggle to find a deodorant that works adequately try one formulated for men. I’ve been using men’s deodorant for years because I think it’s more effective, though I am baffled as to why the formula would be different for men! There are also lots of great natural products on the market which don’t block sweat glands like chemical deodorants do.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eLayering\u003c\/strong\u003e Lightweight flowy fabrics are also super for layering. If you feel self conscious about bare arms or cleavage be sure to have a lightweight cover-up under your sweater on in your bag in case you feel the sudden need to remove your sweater or jacket.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eProtection from sweat patches\u003c\/strong\u003e For smarter more fitted garments you could add some little cotton patches to the armpit area if you are worried about sweat patches. You can buy these from most haberdasheries or online and they just require a couple of tacking stitches to apply. You could even use small safety pins if you don’t have a needle and thread. They will help to absorb any moisture and stop it showing on the outside of your outfit and they can be easily removed and thrown in the washing machine so are great for dry clean-only garments too.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong style=\"font-weight: 600;\" data-redactor-tag=\"strong\"\u003eAdd a little silk to your style\u003c\/strong\u003e A pure silk scarf can be a helpful item to have in your wardrobe. Silk satin feels cool to the touch (therefore it’s also a great lining fabric for coats and suit jackets.) The softness of the fabric feels luxurious and comforting against skin. Scarves are fabulous for adding a splash of color to an outfit and great for covering a flushed neck and chest if you feel the need. It’s an easy, small, light weight, item to keep in your purse in case you ever feel the need for it and wrapping it around your neck may help make you feel warmer if you suffer from chills after a flash. Another purse staple might be a cooling water mist spray. This can provide instant relief and a good friend of mine swears by it!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eStyle tip #4 – be party prepped to look and feel great\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDon’t avoid parties because of hot flashes! Choose occasion wear that you feel fabulous in and if needs be, get it altered to make it more suitable for you. Find a good local dressmaker and get armholes widened by an inch or neck lines lowered. If your skin feels sensitive during a flash, I would suggest avoiding big heavy necklaces. Perhaps choose a fabulous pair of earrings or a bracelet instead. A heavy necklace could intensify any clammy feeling or make you feel hotter. This also goes for high necked styles of tops and dresses. A nice scoop or a V neck will let the air get to your skin, but if you like the look of a high neck you could choose styles with sheer panels, or get your dressmaker to add them. A spinning ring can be a nice finishing touch if you sometimes feel a little anxious in ‘high stakes social situations.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eTop tips for staying stylish, fashionable \u0026amp; cool\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo to summarize, my top tips for dressing to cope better with hot flashes are:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eChoose breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eWear airy styles with roomy armholes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eInvest in a silk satin scarf or two\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAvoid grey marle or any fabric that changes color when it’s damp\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eGet some cotton arm-pit pads\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLook for silk satin lining fabrics for your tailored clothing\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAvoid any plasticky or stiff feeling fabrics and cloth with a very tight weave\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eFinally, find a good local dressmaker to make any necessary alterations to you favorite clothes!\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Gilly Woo\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eStylist and dressmaker Gilly Woo has worked with hundreds of women to help them look and feel fantastic, whether they’re stepping on to the red carpet, down the aisle, or out in style.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eGilly Woo – known to her family as Gill Cockwell – began her sewing career at the tender age of six and was sketching designs and fashioning garments by the time she was ten. Since 2000, she has built a brand synonymous with quality, individuality and style – though most of all, she helps women find and express their most confident, fabulous selves. From dresses cut to dazzle for brides who use wheelchairs to red carpet looks featured in magazines and worn to The UK National TV Awards Gill’s portfolio is as diverse as the people she’s worked with. She’s an experienced stylist on magazine photo shoots and catwalk shows, has taught hundreds of people to sew, and has even stepped back in time on UK TV… \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/gilly-woo-designer\/\"\u003eRead Gill’s full biography her\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/hot-flashes\/yoga-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eYoga for hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/skin-changes\/makeup-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eMake up for hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/cbt-for-menopause\/\"\u003eCBT for hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719312178", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/priscilla-du-preez-228220-unsplash__1_-1_4a597979-90f7-40e3-b899-b09f2d939f57_768x.jpg?v=1701311102", "title" : "How to dress for hot flashes", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538170674", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Julie-Dennis2_small.jpg?v=1697658456", "name" : "Julie Dennis", "summary" : "", "title" : "Career Coach" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/managing-01-1_8d5304ec-510e-4416-987c-f3a853e1584d_1200x.jpg?v=1701311099", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHow many woman hours are being lost to menopause every year? How much does that cost us personally and professionally? And what – as women, colleagues, and businesses – can we do about it? Julie Dennis, Menopause Coach and Trainer, explores how we can all take steps to manage menopause at work…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhy do we need to work harder to manage menopause at work?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eWomen currently make up almost half of the global workforce. Alongside increasing life expectancy and the rising retirement age these numbers are expected to continue to rise. Figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that the number of economically active women has jumped three times faster than their male counterparts over the past couple of years and women aged 50 to 64 are the fastest growing economically active group.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHowever, many organisations are yet to catch up with this changing demographic and lack the support, policies and culture to support the specific needs of women in the workplace. This is particularly true for women working through menopause. The risk for businesses in terms of loss of talent, knowledge and experience is real, with 1 in 4 women considering leaving work because of the severity of her symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe average cost of replacing an employee was estimated to be over $4000, and that’s just the process of hiring. The figure doesn’t include HR and management time plus the loss of productivity whilst bringing the new employee up to speed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThere is a significant legal risk too with a handful of high-profile cases coming to light in recent years. Notably:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eMs Merchant v BT in 2012 – Ms Merchant was suffering from menopause related stress and poor concentration levels and provided evidence from her doctor to support this. Despite being required to consider health reasons in matters of underperformance, her manager chose not to and she was dismissed. The tribunal found she had been subject to gender discrimination on the basis that the manager would not have handled a non female related condition in the same way.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMs Davies v Scottish Courts and Tribunal Services 2018 – Ms Davies had been prescribed medication for menopause-related cystitis which was taken by dissolving in water. One day she was worried the water containing the medication had been drunk by two men and voiced her concerns. They hadn’t drunk the water but she was put through a health and safety investigation, disciplinary action and finally dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct. The tribunal found she was unfairly dismissed and subjected to disability discrimination.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSo the business case for supporting women working through menopause is compelling – finding ways of better managing the menopause at work is the right thing to do, and it’s commercial common sense too\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eAnd for women themselves it hardly seems fair that at a time when you may well be at the top of your game suddenly your body and mind seem to turn against you. Add kids and – or – aging parents into the mix and the overwhelm, stress and lack of specific support can knock your career off track.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eAdvice for women managing menopause symptoms at work\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe physical and psychological symptoms of menopause women experience are far reaching in the workplace and typical examples include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003ePoor memory and concentration resulting in a drop in performance and productivity.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSleep disturbance which has been proven to affect memory, the ability to think strategically and manage moods.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMood swings which can have impact on the wider team.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eHot flashes which aren’t just uncomfortable – they are also embarrassing and can result in a reluctance to attend internal or client-facing meetings for fear of visibly breaking into a sweat.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFor many women the symptoms can lead them to doubt their ability to lead and manage both client and colleague relationships.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eDon’t just take my word for it…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eHere are a collection of powerful quotes collected during my Menopause at Work Survey in 2018 demonstrating how symptoms can directly affect job performance, interactions with colleagues and career confidence:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“Brain fog and debilitating fatigue, nausea and aching body have seriously affected my memory, my ability to think and problem solve and I’ve struggled to get through the day on many occasions.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“I have forgotten to attend meetings and I’ve had emotional outbursts and tears which impact on my ability to manage others.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“Very poor short term memory made it hard to remember facts and figures. Hot flashes in meetings made it hard to concentrate and were embarrassing. Sleep disturbance meant I was permanently exhausted.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“I can see lips moving but really struggle to focus and take in what’s being said or understand it.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“Brain fog and poor concentration means I find it takes much longer to do tasks than it used to and I find it hard to remain focused on the task in hand.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“I find it difficult some days to recall protocols and guidelines off the top of my head like I used to. I doubt myself more over decisions I make, even when I know they are right.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e“Mood swings mean I snap at people who don’t deserve my overreaction.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e8 simple, actionable ways to manage menopause symptoms at work\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThe good news is it doesn’t have to be that way and there are some simple practical steps you can take to keep you on track professionally.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eEat your frogs early and the biggest one first\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eThis is a metaphor for tackling the most challenging task of your day – the one you would typically put off. Deal with it early and relax into your day.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eDevise a strategy for managing email\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf the first thing you do each morning is check your email you’re immediately letting the needs of others hijack your day rather than focusing on your own work priorities. Set specific times to read and respond to email.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eAvoid perfectionism\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e80% is usually enough. So relax your expectations and accept that striving for perfection isn’t a good use of your time ,or a realistic outcome.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eDevelop a meetings strategy\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cbr\u003e There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to complete your priority work tasks and sit through lengthy meetings. Avoid non-essential meetings and when appropriate send a team member in your place..\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eReview your regular tasks\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003cbr\u003e Free up time by ditching tasks that are no longer relevant. Is there a report you complete on a weekly or monthly basis that lacks value or would be better completed by a colleague?\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eManage expectations\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf you don’t think a project is going to be completed to the agreed schedule alert the project lead sooner rather than later.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eWhen the going gets tough, the tough get going\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eSeriously, take a break – five minutes away from your desk can dramatically improve your concentration during the periods you work.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cstrong data-redactor-tag=\"strong\" style=\"font-weight: 600;\"\u003eAsk for help\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eFinally, if you feel you need to speak to your Line Manager, HR or Occupational Health about how menopause is affecting your work use this confident conversation framework to manage the dialogue:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eBook a time as you would for any other important work discussion.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePrepare what you’re going to say ahead of the meeting.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTalk specifically about how symptoms are affecting your work, e.g. poor concentration levels means certain tasks are taking you longer to complete.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eOffer a solution – for example, flexible start \/ finish times or home working to help manage poor sleep patterns.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eAdvice for colleagues\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTypically colleagues want to help and be supportive but are unsure how to do so or are worried about saying or doing the wrong thing.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf that’s you, here are five small things that could make a big difference to team members working through menopause:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003col style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eWhilst women may use humor among themselves as a coping mechanism this is very different from treating the whole issue as a joke.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eA cup of tea isn’t the answer – caffeine can make symptoms worse!\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eWhilst your organisation may promote a menopause friendly environment remember not everyone is comfortable talking about it.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBe open to listening just as you would if a colleague was sharing concerns about an issue like dyslexia, anxiety or diabetes – you’re not expected to have a solution or be an expert.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDon’t assume it’s the menopause – your colleague may be going through a divorce, bereavement or simply having a bad day.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003ch2\u003eAdvice for employers\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eUltimately what we want is to normalize menopause at work and employers can do that by focusing on three key areas:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eAwareness – raise awareness for all employees by introducing menopause as an inclusive topic.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eEducation – educate managers so they understand the issues in the context of work.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSupport – provide specific support for female employees so they can make an informed choice as to how to manage symptoms.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eTo create a menopause-friendly workplace develop a menopause toolkit using the most effective means of communication within your organisation to support each of these three pillars.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eBest practice examples other organisations have implemented comprise:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cli\u003eIntroducing menopause as an inclusive topic by leveraging what’s already in place rather than making sweeping changes e.g. promoting the employee assistance program for anxiety related symptoms.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eUtilizing the power of conversation. A consistent theme that runs through Kirklees Council’s approach to menopause at work is the importance of talking about menopause and how this can make such a difference. There’s a link to the case study at the end of this article.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDeveloping a menopause policy or guidance document to inform leaders, managers and employees alike of your company’s approach to menopause related issues. One of the first organisations to introduce a menopause guide to support women in the workplace was Action for Children – find a link to this in the resources box at the end of this piece.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eRunning expert-led workshops for female employees on how to deal with menopause symptoms at work and at home. These sessions can result in rapid improvements in symptoms like flashes, sleep and energy levels leading to a positive impact on mood, the ability to think clearer and achieve much more during the working day.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMenopause ambassadors or champions can lead the change, take action and set up regular menopause socials. Creating an open forum for women to talk and share experiences can quickly make a difference to confidence levels.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eIf you’re struggling with menopause symptoms at work, there’s lots of help and advice available here on Health \u0026amp; Her. Try our Symptom Checker to shortcut to articles and practical products to help improve you workday.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/symptom-tool\/\"\u003eTry the Perimenopause Symptom Checker\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Julie Dennis\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/julie-dennis\/\"\u003eJulie Dennis is a Menopause Coach\u003c\/a\u003e and Trainer who works with organisations across the UK to introduce menopause as an inclusive topic, and improve the experience of women working through menopause. Personally speaking, she has experienced menopause managed with and without HT, so can really empathise with women’s experiences, and provide practical advice that’s tried and tested.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eUseful resources:\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003eRead the Kirklees council case study:\u0026nbsp;\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/pulse\/menopause-work-case-study-kirklees-council-julie-dennis\/\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.linkedin.com\/pulse\/menopause-work-case…\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.gov.uk\/government\/publications\/menopause-transition-effects-on-womens-economic-participation\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.gov.uk\/government\/publications\/menopau…\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;‘Economic transition: effects on women’s economic participation’\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.tuc.org.uk\/sites\/default\/files\/Menopause%20survey%20report%20FINAL_0.pdf\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.tuc.org.uk\/sites\/default\/files\/Menopau…\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;‘The menopause: a workplace issue’ Wales TUC report\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e‘Eat that Frog’ – Brian Tracy\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719246642", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/managing-01-1_8d5304ec-510e-4416-987c-f3a853e1584d_768x.jpg?v=1701311099", "title" : "Managing menopause at work ", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538006834", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Rosie-Letts_small.jpg?v=1697658449", "name" : "Rosie Letts", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritional Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/new2-sara-dubler-710148-unsplash-scaled-1_1200x.jpg?v=1697662829", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eTucking into tasty food to relieve menopause symptoms? It can’t be that simple… can it? Rosie Letts is a qualified nutritional therapist, and explains the vital role good nutrition can play in a more positive menopause experience. From how plants can stand in for dropping estrogen through to why a little belly fat is no bad thing, discover how a little self care and a mindful menopause diet can help you feel strong and even banish symptoms…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAre you feeling unsure about what to expect from your transition into menopause? The menopause actually pinpoints the stage when you haven’t had a period in 12 months, which is distinctly different to the time when you may experience symptoms like your body thermometer going off the scale, disturbed sleep, increased belly fat and migraines.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat happens to hormones at menopause?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eIn the years leading up to the menopause there is a distinct reduction in both the quality and quantity of viable eggs in your ovaries, and a chaotic fluctuation in the hormones responsible for reproduction.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAn increase in estrogen can cause a change in the length of your menstrual cycle, heavy periods with surprise flooding, breast tenderness, and irritability. The rapid decline in estrogen is associated with night sweats, hot flashes, low mood and problems with memory.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIs HT my only option?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003eHormone therapy (HT)\u003c\/a\u003e, as its name suggests, is used to replace or ‘top up’ the body’s natural supply of hormones in order to relieve your menopause symptoms. Not every women chooses to take, or is able to take HT. This could be due to your family’s medical history, e.g. breast cancer or deep vein thrombosis. You may have concerns about the safety and side effects of HT, or you may simply prefer to avoid medication and opt for a natural approach to alleviate your menopause symptoms where possible. Only you and your doctor\u0026nbsp;can decide if hormone therapy is right for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe good news is that there are alternatives to HT and that nutrition can play a leading role in not only reducing your symptoms but future proofing your health.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis article explores the connection between your diet and your menopause experience. You will be relieved to hear that where menopause nutrition is concerned, small changes make a big difference, so now is the perfect time to learn how to nourish your body effectively.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat can affect the type and severity of symptoms?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eNot all women experience menopause symptoms equally, and the severity of your symptoms could be partly genetic.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe also know that your weight can affect your symptoms. Women with a higher\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.nhs.uk\/live-well\/healthy-weight\/bmi-calculator\/\"\u003eBMI\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003eend to have fewer symptoms, particularly night sweats and hot flashes, than those whose weight is within the ideal range(1). The reason for this is fascinating.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/pages\/symptom-checker\"\u003eCheck your menopause symptoms today\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eA little belly fat is a good thing?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eYour body is always trying to find the ideal balance. In response to lower ovarian estrogen, your body will lay down fat cells (particularly around your belly) capable of estrogen production. It’s your body’s way of topping up hormones levels and whilst high estrogen can cause an array of unpleasant symptoms, estrogen docking stations are found all over your body helping to support bone and heart health, memory and concentration as well as your genitourinary system. So a little belly fat is, in fact, helpful. An excess is associated with heart disease though, so balance is key.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAdditionally, the more weight you carry the less physically active you may be, and we know that the duration of some symptoms is shorter in women who have higher physical activity(2).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eTry\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/collections\/shape-management\/\"\u003eproducts for shape management\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHow do I reduce my symptoms?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eSmoking(6), caffeine and alcohol are adversely associated with menopausal symptoms so avoid these where you can. They place stress on the body and whilst they may give you a short term fix, they deplete your body of vital nutrients that it needs. You can relieve associated anxiety and stress with magnesium-rich green vegetables, wholegrains and nuts, as well as B vitamins found in meat, offal, fish, eggs, oats, brown rice and nutritional yeast. Supplements can also be really helpful if you want to be sure you’re supporting your body as well as possible.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere’s evidence that you’ll experience fewer menopausal symptoms the more vegetables and fruit you eat(7), so aim for 7 portions per day and focus on eating regular meals packed full of nutrition. Include whole foods (beans and legumes, fish particularly oily ones such as salmon, mackerel and sardines, poultry, nuts, seeds, olive oil, some wholegrains including brown rice, oats and quinoa, and a little red meat) to nourish your body, keep your blood sugars stable and balance your hormones.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFollowing a low glycaemic load or Mediterranean(8) diet could help keep your weight down. You’ll also find that as your fibre intake increases, you’ll feel fuller for longer, excrete troublesome excess hormones and feed your gut bacteria. The bacteria in your gut are fundamental to feeling healthier. They help you to obtain key nutrients from your food; support your immune system to keep you healthy; provide an environment where your feel good brain chemical, serotonin, is made; influence weight and even make vitamins.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou’ll find links to detailed articles about specific symptoms by myself and other specialists at the end of this article, plus links to useful resources.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eEstrogen from plants – is it possible?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens are compounds that naturally occur in some plants, which mimic your body’s own estrogen. To a limited extent, phytoestrogens could serve as a type of natural HT.\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may find that\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/phytoestrogens-and-menopause\"\u003eincreasing the amount of phytoestrogens in your daily diet relieves symptoms\u003c\/a\u003e. These plant compounds have mild estrogenic effects, displacing your own estrogen if there’s too much or increasing activity if your levels are low(9). Soya is a good source of phytoestrogens with tofu, tempeh and edamame beans all being versatile ingredients, plus ground flaxseed and wholegrains.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eRemember to rest\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eRemember that sleep gives your body a chance to repair and rebuild itself. Additionally, poor sleep can create a heightened perception of your menopausal symptoms(10) so wind down with soothing Lemon Balm or Chamomile teas and top up levels of nature’s tranquiliser, magnesium, by adding a cupful of magnesium salts to warm bath water and soaking for 20 minutes twice a week. If you can’t switch off, a supplement that contains L-theanine with Lemon Balm, which can help with worry and sleep issues(11).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnother\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/menopause-yoga-nidra-for-disturbed-sleep-and-low-mood\"\u003egood way to relax is to try restorative Yoga Nidra.\u003c\/a\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTreat menopause as a marathon, not sprint\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eAbove all, remember that this journey towards menopause can start in your forties and on average will last 4-5 years, but in some cases can last more than 10 years. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, and whilst addressing your nutrition may not produce overnight results, the evidence points towards real improvements.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTreating yourself with care\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eTo summarize, many women transitioning through menopause experience unpleasant symptoms, such as hot flashes, poor sleep, migraines and weight gain. A whole-foods diet high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, high-quality protein and dairy products is likely to reduce menopause symptoms. Here is\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/weight-gain\/\"\u003emore information about weight gain in menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens and healthy fats, such as omega-3 fatty acids from fish, may also help. Certain foods and drinks are known to make symptoms worse, so you may want to limit added sugars, processed carbs, alcohol, caffeine and high-sodium or spicy foods as well. These simple changes to your diet may make this important transition in your life easier. They will also stand you in good stead for better overall health in later years.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAbout Rosie Letts\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eRosie is a qualified and registered nutritional therapist. She has worked with hundreds of women experiencing menopausal symptoms, helping to combine nutrition and lifestyle changes that have helped to prevent or reduce the severity of symptoms including sleeping problems, mood changes, weight gain, and headaches.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHer qualifications, memberships and awards include: BSc in Nutritional Therapy – University of Westminster; ICHAN outstanding practice 2018 award; Member of the Complementary \u0026amp; Natural Healthcare Council (CHNC); Member of the British Association of Nutritional Therapists (BANT).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUseful resources:\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLearn about the\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.patrickholford.com\/topic\/low-gl\"\u003elow glycaemic load approach.\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eReferences\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e1 Tan, M., et al. (2014). The effect of physical activity and body mass index on menopausal symptoms in Turkish women: a cross-sectional study in primary care. BMC Women’s Health, 14(1).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e2 Guthrie, N., et al. (2009). Duration of vasomotor symptoms in middle aged women, a longitudinal study. Menopause, 2009; 16(3), pp. 453-7.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e3 Wardle, J., (2016).’ Menopause’ in Clinical Naturopathy – an evidence-based guide to practice (2nd ed.), Chatswood:Elsevier Australia, p. 474.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e4 Norton, S., et al. (2014). Cognitive-behavior therapy for menopausal symptoms (hot flushes and night sweats). Menopause, 21(6), pp.574-578.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e5 Elavsky, S. (2009). Physical activity, menopause, and quality of life. Menopause, 16(2), pp.265-271.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e6 Whiteman, M., et al. (2003). Smoking, body mass, and hot flashes in midlife women. Obstetrics \u0026amp; Gynecology, 2003;101(2), pp.264–272.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e7 Soleymani, M., et al. (2018). Dietary patterns and their association with menopausal symptoms. Menopause, e-pub ahead of print [online] Available at:\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/30363011\" rel=\"nofollow\"\u003ehttps:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pubmed\/30363011\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cspan\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/span\u003e(Accessed 4 February 2019).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e8 Sayón-Orea, C., et al. (2015). Adherence to Mediterranean dietary pattern and menopausal symptoms in relation to overweight\/obesity in Spanish perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. Menopause, 22(7), pp.750-757.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e9 Rietjens, I., et al. (2016). The potential health effects of dietary phytestrogens. British Journal of Pharmacology, 174(11), pp.1263-1280.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e10 Larson, R. \u0026amp; Carter, J. (2016). Total sleep deprivation and pain perception during cold noxious stimuli in humans. Scandinavian Journal of Pain, 13(1), pp.12-16.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e11 Türközü, D. \u0026amp; Şanlier, N. (2015). L-theanine, unique amino acid of tea, and its metabolism, health effects, and safety. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 57(8), pp.1681-1687.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u0026nbsp;\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606539252018", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/new2-sara-dubler-710148-unsplash-scaled-1_768x.jpg?v=1697662829", "title" : "Menopause nutrition: How to eat for a healthier, happier menopause", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/briana-tozour-16x9_b6ebd780-aa61-4bea-af33-1329c2d74c63_1200x.jpg?v=1701311107", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eFrom the time you start noticing changes and symptoms to beyond your last period, menopause is a time of multiple changes. Many of us feel mystified by what’s going on. So if you’re wondering ‘am I perimenopausal’ or want to understand what’s going on with your hormones, doctor Shilpa McQuillan is on the case, explaining what to expect and why.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat is the menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause, or other terms such as ‘the change’, ‘the climacteric’ means to permanently stop having periods. It is diagnosed once a woman has no menstrual periods for 12 months in a row.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhen will I experience menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor many women this occurs between the age of 45 and 55 (with the average age in US being 52). For some women this may occur ‘early’ before the age of 45, or even ‘prematurely’ below the age of 40, known as Premature Ovarian Insufficiency (POI).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor many women, it can be difficult to know if you are going through the menopause, especially if you already have scanty or irregular periods. We often refer to the time that leads up to the menopause – which can be months or years – as ‘perimenopause’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHow to tell if you are perimenopausal or menopausal?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDuring the perimenopause, some women may continue to have regular periods but experience symptoms of menopause. In other women, they may start to notice changes to their periods such as more scanty, lighter periods or even heavier before they stop altogether. A good way to understand if you might be perimenopausal is to observe for menopause symptoms including hot flashes, anxiety, low mood and sleep problems (more about this later in this article). \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMany women may find these symptoms distressing and confusing as they are not aware that you can experience menopausal symptoms whilst still having periods. Speak to your healthcare provider if you feel this could be you and you would like more information on how to manage this. Some women also find it helpful to keep a diary of their periods and symptoms they are experiencing. Health \u0026amp; Her have produced a \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\/\"\u003ePerimenopause symptom checker\u003c\/a\u003e which is helpful digital way to track your symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhy does menopause occur?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eEestrogen is a hormone mainly produced in the ovaries and is responsible for controlling many functions in the body including the production of an egg each month (ovulation). As a woman gets older, their store of eggs in the ovaries naturally declines. The menopause occurs when your ovaries stop producing eggs and your body’s estrogen levels fall. As a result, there are many changes that can occur to the body including no longer having periods and the symptoms we associate with the menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat is early menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePremature or early menopause can occur at any age and sometimes there is no clear reason. However sometimes, there may be a reason women’s ovaries stop working early. For example:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSurgery to remove your ovaries. It is important to discuss this with your doctor as soon as possible as it is likely you will experience menopause symptoms and may need hormone replacement.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eTreatment for some cancers may require radiotherapy aimed directly at your ovaries or pelvis. Some medications including chemotherapy may also affect the ovaries. Both of these can result in damage to your ovaries and an early menopause.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eThere are some medical conditions that can cause early menopause. For example chromosomal abnormalities (such as Turners syndrome), or rarely, infections such as mumps or tuberculosis.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHaving a family member with early menopause may increase your chance of an early menopause.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere are tips for \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/managing-menopause-at-work\/\"\u003emanaging menopause in the workplace\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhat are ‘the symptoms’?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe key thing to remember is that everyone is different. Some women do not experience any symptoms, but majority of women will, and this can really impact on both physical and mental aspects of your life including relationships, work, and activities.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThe symptoms associated with menopause tend to be a result of hormone imbalance and lack of estrogen. There are over 30 symptoms associated with menopause, but the most commonly experienced symptoms include:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHot flashes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eNight sweats\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSleeping problems\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eChanging periods\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eMood changes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eStress, anxiety and anger\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWeight gain\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLow energy\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eBrain fog\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eJoint aches\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eLoss of libido (sex drive)\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eVaginal dryness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eUrinary changes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003ePainful sex\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eHeadaches\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eSkin changes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome of these symptoms can be common and ‘typical’ of what we associate with menopause, but they might also be vague, and things ‘just do not feel right’.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAlso it is worth noting that some other medical conditions have similar signs and symptoms to menopause. It is important to visit your doctor to discuss and explore this further.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eWhen should I seek help?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf your symptoms are bothering you then it is worth exploring what options are available. There are many different treatments available depending on your individual symptoms and needs.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHere is \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\/\"\u003ehow to talk to your doctor about menopause\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eAre there any health worries to be aware of around menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause itself is not ‘dangerous’. However, it’s important to be aware that some hormone changes that occur such as low estrogen can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease (such as heart attacks and strokes), and bone problems such as osteoporosis (brittle bones). \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eNormally when women go through the ‘natural menopause’ (after the age of 45) the estrogen stores are enough that just taking care of yourself by following a healthy diet, taking regular exercise, not smoking and limiting alcohol intake can reduce these risks and improve your overall health.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHowever, if you go through an early menopause then your estrogen and other hormone levels are low from a young age and you may need to top these up to prevent osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. It is therefore really important you go to your healthcare provider if you are below 45 and have symptoms that sound like the menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs well as lifestyle, it is important to make use of the screening services offered by healthcare professionals to keep a check on your health. This includes breast and cervical screening. There are some things you can do at home, for example regularly checking your breasts. You can seek advice from your doctor if you are unsure how to do this.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eDo I need any tests?\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you are over the age of 45, diagnosing menopause can be based on symptoms alone.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eBelow 45, you may need a blood test to confirm menopause. This is because as there are many other reasons your periods can stop before this age and your doctor may advise having further tests to investigate this.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eIf you are showing signs of ‘premature’ menopause, you may also be offered other tests. This is because it can be associated with other medical conditions that may need looking into and treating.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2 dir=\"ltr\"\u003eCan I still get pregnant?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDuring perimenopause (the lead up to menopause) and even shortly after your periods have stopped you may still be able to get pregnant. If you are using hormonal contraception such as the pill, mini-pill, IUD or subcutaneous implant, this may be masking the fact you could still be having periods.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is therefore important that you discuss whether you need contraception with your healthcare provider.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs a general rule, it is safe to stop using contraception if:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou are not on any hormones and have not had any periods for more than one year and are over the age of 50.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"ltr\"\u003eYou are not on any hormones and have not had any periods for more than two years and are under the age of 50.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Dr Shilpa McQuillan\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan is a doctor with a difference; she brings a wealth of specialist knowledge when it comes to women’s health. Previously a Hospital Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynecology, Shilpa now works in general practice, providing patients with resident expertise and knowledge on women’s health concerns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/shilpa-mcquillan\/\"\u003eRead Shilpa’s full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" style=\"line-height: 1.2; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp dir=\"ltr\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003c!--\u003cp dir=\"ltr\" style=\"line-height: 1.2; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;\"\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/ua\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/how-to-talk-to-your-doctor-about-menopause\/\"\u003eHow to talk to your doctor about menopause\u003c\/a\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e--\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719410482", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/briana-tozour-16x9_b6ebd780-aa61-4bea-af33-1329c2d74c63_768x.jpg?v=1701311107", "title" : "Perimenopause to menopause and post-menopause – A doctor’s overview", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=653" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=653" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/653" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 12, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/brain-fog/", "name": "Brain Fog", "description": "Here are the best supplements and vitamins for brain fog a symptom that can be common during menopause. Menopause can also cause; memory loss and other cognitive issues but these vitamin supplements support products could help you begin to feel like yourself again.", "id": 653, "term_id": 653, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "brain-fog" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=232" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=232" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=232" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/232" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/headaches/", "name": "Headaches", "description": "Headaches and migraines may be a common issue during menopause and perimenopause, and they can spike with annoying regularity because of changing hormones. Here are some of the best natural products to soothe and manage menopause headaches.", "id": 232, "term_id": 232, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "headaches" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=659" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=659" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=659" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/659" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/headaches/", "name": "Headaches", "description": "Headaches and migraines may be a common issue during menopause and perimenopause, and they can spike with annoying regularity because of changing hormones. Here are some of the best natural products to soothe and manage menopause headaches.", "id": 659, "term_id": 659, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "headaches" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=663" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=663" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=663" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/663" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 9, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/joint-aches/", "name": "Joint aches", "description": "Supplements for menopause joint pain can help relieve common joint aches and aching symptoms felt through perimenopause and menopause. Here are some of the best naturally based supplements and vitamins and support products can help relieve aches and pains that commonly occur in the legs, back, knees and pelvis during menopause. \r\n", "id": 663, "term_id": 663, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "joint-aches" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=668" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=668" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/668" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 10, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/night-sweats/", "name": "Night Sweats", "description": "Night sweats in menopause occur frequently and can be a challenge to manage for many. Here are some of the best supplements, remedies and products to help deal with the symptoms and keep you cool so you can enjoy a better night of sleep.", "id": 668, "term_id": 668, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "night-sweats" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=670" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/670" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/painful-sex/", "name": "Painful Sex", "description": "Painful sex during menopause could be relieved with our selection of menopause lubricants and dyspareunia management products that can help to make sex comfortable again. Choose from a selection of products and assistive measures to help enjoy sex without unwanted pain.", "id": 670, "term_id": 670, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "painful-sex" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=671" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=671" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=671" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/671" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/period-changes/", "name": "Period Changes", "description": "During perimenopause, periods can be often be heavier and longer than usual. So whether you're looking to relieve cramp discomfort, catch unexpected leaks, or manage the heaviest flow, we've ensured that our carefully selected period care range has you covered.", "id": 671, "term_id": 671, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "period-changes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=673" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/673" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sensitive-bladder/", "name": "Sensitive Bladder", "description": "Urinary changes like frequent urination and leaky bladder are really common at menopause due to changes in oestrogen levels. Take action with pelvic floor trainers and avoid embarrassment with practical products to help with incontinence.\r\n", "id": 673, "term_id": 673, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sensitive-bladder" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=674" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=674" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/674" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/skin-changes/", "name": "Skin Changes", "description": "Changing hormones at menopause can have a big impact on your skin, including increased dryness, itching, acne, a rash and even facial hair. Our range includes the most advanced nutritional supplements to support skin from within, as well as products to help plump, restore, hydrate and nourish even the most sensitive menopausal skin.", "id": 674, "term_id": 674, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "skin-changes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=677" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/677" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/vaginal-dryness/", "name": "Vaginal Dryness", "description": "Vaginal dryness products, like lubricants and Smile Maker vibrators, can help to relieve vaginal dryness that occurs during menopause and perimenopause. Choose products that are kind to the skin and could help reduce dryness and vulva irritation or naturally formulated lubes, vibrators that are recommended by gynaecologists.\r\n", "id": 677, "term_id": 677, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "vaginal-dryness" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/concha-rodrigo-472725-unsplash-scaled-1-1600x1200_1200x.jpg?v=1697662876", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eThere's no skirting around it: changes to flow around menopause can bring with then sudden, unexpected periods; and heavier flow that's hard to cope with. Urinary changes - or so-called 'sensitive bladder'- is equally tricky. Thankfully our stylist Gilly Woo is as practical as she is chic, and has lots of helpful advice to to see you through, whether you're worried about 'oops moments' or a surprise visit from Aunt Flo.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDuring perimenopause your periods can become unpredictable. They may be more frequent, less frequent, heavier, lighter, last longer or become shorter than you're used to. So just when you thought you had your period routine sorted, Bam! You body throws a curveball and you need to adapt again. To make matters worse another delightful symptom we sometimes have to deal with is urinary incontinence. Joy!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eOf course, it's more important than ever to exercise regularly, look after yourself with great food and mindfulness, and to get anything you're worried about checked out with your doctor or gynecologist, but I'm not an expert on all that.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhat I am an expert on is fabrics, apparel, and practical solutions I've tried in real life, so let's get started on what you can do and wear to make it easier to deal with leaks and flows.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eMenstrual cups - the best thing ever?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eTraditional period products like tampons and disposable towels are hard on the planet, and hardly gentle on your precious body. Most use harsh chemicals and non biodegradable materials and are individually wrapped in loads of nasty plastic. They are also expensive!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSo tip number one is to make the switch to a menstrual cup immediately. Not only will these wonderful inventions save you money, (they last for up to ten years), they are better for the planet and much, much more healthy for you. If I you experience vaginal dryness you will find a cup more comfortable than a tampon because a tampon absorbs any moisture and a cup just catches the flow. I personally have been using one for about 5 years and I love it. Since I invested in mine, cup technology has moved on considerably and many improvements have been made.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou can now buy menstrual cups with built in air valves making removal and correct insertion easier, as well as cups in loads of different shapes and sizes, so you're bound to find the perfect cup for you. For instance, if you experience painful sex and vaginal tightening then a smaller cup may suit you better.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBut there are even more benefits to making the switch to a cup - you can wear the exact same menstrual cup regardless of how heavy your flow is making it ideal for unpredictable periods. You can also wear your cup safely for 12 hours, much more convenient that the 4-8 hours you can wear a tampon.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou don't have to worry about packing tampons or pads in you bag, just insert your cup in the morning and everything you need is with you throughout the day. I really can't recommend them enough - if you haven't yet joined the revolution yet, buy a cup today.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eMore sustainable sanitary wear\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eWhile we're on the subject of better more sustainable sanitary wear, there has been another big revolution in the last two years. Period underwear should be a staple in every menstruating women's wardrobe. They are basically magic pants that wick away your period with no need for pads or liners.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eI was skeptical at first, \"What sorcery is this!\" and I'm yet to invest in a pair myself but they are definitely on my wish list after reading the brilliant 5 star reviews of some of the products I've heard of. An absolutely genius invention, these pants look and feel just like everyday underwear but they have four special layers to keep you fresh and dry; moisture wicking cotton, an odor trapping lining, super absorbent fabric and a leak resistant barrier.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePeriod pants are washable, reusable and absolutely perfect for wearing during your period with a cup for extra piece of mind, or alone a few days before or after your period to prevent little leaks or if you\\u2019re not entirely sure when Aunt Flo might come a calling. Bear in mind periods and pee are two different things and sometimes require different products. However, some brands do make briefs especially designed for both kinds of leaks so you're covered for every eventuality.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003ePads and panty liners\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you prefer to wear a sanitary towel or panty liner for extra protection then it's well worth looking into organic options. As well as being better for the environment they are kinder to your body.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAnother idea is to look into reusable ones that can be thrown in the washing machine and used again and again. If you are feeling crafty you could even make your own. Check out YouTube for some easy to follow tutorials or buy from a small business on Etsy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eDon't forget, sanitary towels, although sometimes cheaper than products specially designed for urinary incontinence, are not suitable for pee because they stay wet and can cause discomfort. Try a specially designed product instead. It will be worth it to spend a little more money and be comfortable, confident and dry all day.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003e'Oops moments?' Don't accept them.\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou do not have to accept urinary incontinence as an unavoidable consequence of getting older. There are so many things you can do to prevent and cure it. From exercise, pelvic floor trainers and supplements and cutting out certain things from your diet, right through to medication. Don't suffer in silence, talk to your healthcare professional and take action. There's lots of help to get started here on Health \u0026amp; Her \\u2013 find links at the end of this article.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWhat if the worst does happen?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eEven with all these precautions, occasionally accidents do happen, and if one does, don't freak out! We've all been there, so try to laugh it off. Wear dark colors and choose quick drying fabrics for skirts and trousers, tie a coat or sweater around your waist, and carry a bag in front of you to get you to where you need to be to get changed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePlease bear in mind that it is not very likely that anyone around you will even notice. People are busy and self absorbed. Everyone is looking at their cellphone and no one is looking at your crotch. Believe me, you might feel like it's the most obvious thing is the world, but the reality is your secret is safe and no one has noticed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Gilly Woo \u003cbr\u003e\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eGilly Woo - known to her family as Gill Cockwell - began her sewing career at the tender age of six and was sketching designs and fashioning garments by the time she was ten. Since 2000, she has built a brand synonymous with quality, individuality and style - though most of all, she helps women find and express their most confident, fabulous selves. From dresses cut to dazzle for brides who use wheelchairs to red carpet looks featured in magazines and worn to The National TV Awards Gill's portfolio is as diverse as the people she's worked with. She's an experienced stylist on magazine photo shoots and catwalk shows, has taught hundreds of people to sew, and has even stepped back in time on UK TV…\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/menopause-experts\/gilly-woo\"\u003eRead Gill's full biography here\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in...\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003c!--\u003ca href=\\\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/all-symptoms\/asking-for-help-with-intimate-menopause-symptoms-practical-tips-to-deal-with-embarrassing-questions-2\/\\\"\u003eDr Deborah Lancastle \\u2013 Asking for help with intimate menopause symptoms\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cbr \/\u003e\\n--\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/why-do-periods-get-worse-before-menopause\"\u003e Gynaecologist Anne Henderson explains why periods get worse at menopause\u003c\/a\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003c!--\u003ca href=\\\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/sensitive-bladder\/how-to-do-pelvic-floor-exercises-jane-dowling-of-meno-and-me-explains-all\/\\\"\u003eJane Dowling \\u2013 Pelvic Floor exercise video.\u003c\/a\u003e--\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606540103986", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/concha-rodrigo-472725-unsplash-scaled-1-1600x1200_768x.jpg?v=1697662876", "title" : "Don’t let periods or leaks dampen your style ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=671" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=671" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=671" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/671" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/period-changes/", "name": "Period Changes", "description": "During perimenopause, periods can be often be heavier and longer than usual. So whether you're looking to relieve cramp discomfort, catch unexpected leaks, or manage the heaviest flow, we've ensured that our carefully selected period care range has you covered.", "id": 671, "term_id": 671, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "period-changes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=673" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=673" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/673" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/sensitive-bladder/", "name": "Sensitive Bladder", "description": "Urinary changes like frequent urination and leaky bladder are really common at menopause due to changes in oestrogen levels. Take action with pelvic floor trainers and avoid embarrassment with practical products to help with incontinence.\r\n", "id": 673, "term_id": 673, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "sensitive-bladder" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=286" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=286" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=286" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/286" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 6, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/pelvic-floor-function/", "name": "Weak pelvic floor", "description": "Take action with to combat weak pelvic floor muscles with pelvic floor trainers. Here are some of the best pelvic floor products that may help to relieve menopause related pelvic floor related symptoms and issues. ", "id": 286, "term_id": 286, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "pelvic-floor-function" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=678" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=678" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=678" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/678" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 2, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/pelvic-floor-function/", "name": "Weak pelvic floor", "description": "Take action with to combat weak pelvic floor muscles with pelvic floor trainers. Here are some of the best pelvic floor products that may help to relieve menopause related pelvic floor related symptoms and issues. ", "id": 678, "term_id": 678, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "pelvic-floor-function" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537974066", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Uma-Dinsmore-Tuli-aspect-ratio-1x1-1-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658447", "name" : "Uma Dinsmore-Tuli", "summary" : "", "title" : "Yoga Therapist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/robin-benzrihem-1354596-unsplash-1-1_44d3b5c7-65c4-4793-836b-57286614d24a_1200x.jpg?v=1701311112", "html" : "\u003cp style=\"font-weight: 400;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #333333;\"\u003eCan yoga help you take control of your hot flashes? Though you may not be able to stop that hot tide rising, Yoga Therapist Uma Dinsmore-Tuli has a very clever yoga move that you can master to cool, calm and manage hot flashes naturally.\u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIn this short video, you’ll learn a yoga breathing technique that you can do pretty much anywhere* to reduce your temperature – Uma calls it natural air conditioning! No stretchy kit, yoga mat or flexibility required… just your tongue and a few minutes spare. We’ve tried this breathing trick, and can promise that it really works, so take 5 minutes and pick up a brilliant tool to master those hot flashes. *expect raised eyebrows on the tube, but when you’re hot, you’re hot!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ciframe src=\"\/\/www.youtube.com\/embed\/-XFyxFpuCHE\" width=\"500\" height=\"281\" frameborder=\"0\" allowfullscreen=\"allowfullscreen\" data-mce-fragment=\"1\"\u003e\u003c\/iframe\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Uma Dinsmore-Tuli\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/uma-dinsmore-tuli\/\"\u003eUma has 20 years experience of sharing yoga therapy for women’s health\u003c\/a\u003e, though she started her yoga career aged four, joining her mom watching Yoga on TV. Her career since has been just as intellectually curious and inquiring, spanning different schools of yoga and yoga therapy including Structural Yoga Therapy, Satyananda Yoga and Iyengar Yoga. Uma gained her Yoga Biomedical Trust Diploma in Yoga Therapy in 1999, and subsequently trained in Structural Yoga Therapy and Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy, and worked as a yoga therapist with special expertise in women’s health. She is a recognised teacher of the British Wheel of Yoga, and is an International Association of Yoga Therapists’ Certified Yoga Therapist (C-IAYT). \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eYou might also be interested in…\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/night-sweats\/cognitive-behaviour-therapy-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eCBT for menopause and hot flashes – Professor Myra Hunter\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/expert-advice\/hot-flushes\/hot-flushes-a-herbal-perspective\/\"\u003eHerbal approach to hot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/skin-changes\/makeup-for-hot-flashes\/\"\u003eMakeup for hot flashes by Caroline Barnes\u003c\/a\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719508786", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/robin-benzrihem-1354596-unsplash-1-1_44d3b5c7-65c4-4793-836b-57286614d24a_768x.jpg?v=1701311112", "title" : "Yoga for hot flashes", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=660" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=660" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/660" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 16, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/hot-flashes/", "name": "Hot Flashes", "description": "Browse our range of hand-selected products to help you manage hot flushes and accompanying vasomotor symptoms such as sweating and red face. Curated with care, and tried by women who've been there too.", "id": 660, "term_id": 660, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "hot-flashes" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537875762", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/HH-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658442", "name" : "Health and Her", "summary" : "", "title" : "" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/surgical-menopause-image_1200x.jpg?v=1697662806", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eSurgical menopause, or a hysterectomy, can be a difficult decision to make and a challenging journey to undergo. Dr Victoria Hobbs answers some of your most pressing questions around surgical menopause, and gives you the rundown on what you can expect from a surgical menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat is a hysterectomy?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause, medically defined as when it has been twelve consecutive months since your last period, and the ending of your menstrual cycle, on average occurs at the age of 51 years in the UK. However, it can be induced early through medical and surgical treatments.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eA hysterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the uterus, and often the ovaries, fallopian tubes and cervix as well. (The cervix is often removed to remove the risk of cervical cancer and to stop the need for smear tests.)\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf your doctor recommends a hysterectomy, then depending on the reason for the hysterectomy you may be advised to have your ovaries removed as part of the procedure. The reasons for removal can include a family history of conditions such as ovarian cancer, or if you are post-menopausal and your ovaries no longer function.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eThe surgical menopause – what is it, and how is it different from a natural menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDuring the time leading up to menopause, known as perimenopause, many women notice their periods beginning to change – often becoming erratic and irregular. Although these symptoms can be normal, they can also be caused by specific medical conditions, and so if your periods are severely impacting your quality of life, you should seek help from your GP. Depending on the cause, your GP may offer a range of medical treatment options to help you with heavy periods, but for some women, these options are not a good fit for their bodies and don’t ease their symptoms. If your periods aren’t getting easier, a specialist gynaecologist may suggest surgical intervention to remove the uterus and sometimes the ovaries.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHysterectomy and ovary removal, known as oophorectomy, is often seen as drastic, but it is a safe procedure that helps many women – by stopping painful periods or preventing the possibility of pregnancy (if pregnancy is not right for them). It is true, however, that women who have undergone a surgical menopause can often experience a sudden onset of severe menopausal symptoms. And as such, it is essential to consider what effect removing the ovaries will have on your body, both to consider other beneficial treatment options like HRT, and to prepare yourself for surgery.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf a woman chooses to remove her ovaries, this removal, as well as the natural physical effects of surgery, will trigger a surgical menopause. Unfortunately, a surgical menopause can still be accompanied by menopause symptoms – including, but not limited to, sweats, hot flushes, joint pain, mood and sleep disturbances. Due to this, it is really important to discuss with both your gynaecologist and GP prior to surgery if you should be started on Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) after the operation. Many women find a surgical menopause much more severe than a natural menopause due to the sudden nature of oestrogen levels falling and the body having no time to gradually adjust as it does with a natural menopause. HRT can help ease the symptoms that accompany this sudden drop in oestrogen. The severity of menopause symptoms that can accompany a hysterectomy means that it is important to plan for these symptoms prior to surgery.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eSymptoms after surgical menopause may include;\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003edepression\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ebleeding\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehot sweats\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ehot flushes\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003epanic attacks\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003emuscle pain\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ememory loss\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003emigraines\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ebrain fog\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003elibido\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003edizziness\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eeyesight issues\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003earthritis\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ebloating\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eweight gain\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003earthritis\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eThe benefits of HRT after surgical menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eA common belief is that HRT is only used to help women going through a ‘natural’ or non-surgical menopause, when in fact there are reasons to take HRT post-surgical menopause. Receiving HRT after a hysterectomy is both safe and effective, especially for those under the age of 50. HRT can improve quality of life by reducing the difficult symptoms that can be triggered by a surgical menopause. HRT can also have the added benefit of preventing osteoporosis (bone disease) and heart disease by protecting the bones and the chest. HRT may not be a suitable option for all women, especially if the woman has a history of endometrial, ovarian or breast cancer, and again this should be discussed prior to surgery to plan what alternatives would be offered to alleviate menopausal symptoms.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMost women who are offered HRT after a hysterectomy will only require oestrogen. HRT provides a source of oestrogen to counteract the body’s loss of the hormone through either natural or surgical menopause. This will help alleviate the symptoms brought on by low or depleted oestrogen, such as hot flushes, night sweats, palpitations, headaches, insomnia, fatigue, bone loss and vaginal dryness. Women who still have a uterus or cervix will also require progesterone to protect the lining of the uterus from the build-up effects that oestrogen has on the endometrium. The main exception to this is if a woman has severe endometriosis. This condition can lead to deposits of endometrial lining outside of the uterus. As such, this should be discussed with a gynaecologist after the operation to determine if the woman also needs progesterone within the HRT to protect any deposits in the pelvis, and if so, for how long.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eHRT can usually be started immediately after surgery. This is why it is so important to discuss your HRT before you undergo surgery and have it ready to start after the operation. Here’s more information about types of HRT and benefits of transdermal HRT article.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat should you do to prepare for a hysterectomy?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is important to understand that any type of hysterectomy is a major operation. Undergoing such an operation can seem frightening, but there are steps you can take to prepare and make it easier on both you and your body. You could consider building up your fitness levels by doing regular exercise – such as walking, yoga, pilates, or other gym work. 150 minutes of cardio activity that results in getting out of breath spread over the week can help do a world of good in your recovery. Working on your pelvic floor can help build muscle, reducing your risk of vaginal prolapse and aiding bladder function.If overweight (high BMI), trying to achieve a healthy weight before surgery will also be hugely beneficial. It will make both the surgery and the post-operative recovery easier. Weight loss can be very difficult, particularly around the time of the perimenopause, but can be achieved by avoiding processed foods which tend to be high in fats and processed sugars, looking at portion control and aiming for a diet rich in vegetables and fruit,\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eRecovering from a Hysterectomy\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eIt can take up to 12 weeks to recover from the physical effects of a hysterectomy.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou are likely to stay in hospital for between 1-3 days after the procedure.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIt is possible you will have had a catheter (tube into the bladder) during the procedure to monitor how much urine you are producing; this needs to be removed and you will need to make sure you can pass urine.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eYou will also have internal stitches which usually dissolve by 6-12 weeks post-surgery, so it is important you gradually build up activity levels so as not to damage this healing process. You must avoid heavy lifting and ensure you have enough fibre in your diet, so you do not get constipated.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eBy 6 weeks you will be able to drive again.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis may seem overwhelming, and frightening – as all surgeries do. There are many facets to consider before getting a hysterectomy. It is a big operation, and as a result, does require recovery and preparation, and an awareness of the difficulties that go alongside it. It is important to remember, however, that for many women a surgical menopause has dramatically improved their quality of life; has brought them joy in their body again. What works for one woman will not necessarily work for another, and as such, while a hysterectomy isn’t right for one person, it could be right for someone else. Your quality of life, and your body, are of paramount importance, and if you think that a surgical menopause could be what you need, don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor and a specialist gynaecologist about it to learn more. It is important to remember that while it is a big choice to make, a hysterectomy is a safe surgical procedure, and though it isn’t a decision to be taken lightly or without awareness of the side effects, it isn’t something to fear.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eSurgical Menopause Need-to-Knows\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eSome women may need slightly higher doses of oestrogen to control their symptoms if going through a surgical menopause at a younger age as the body will have been used to having naturally higher levels prior to surgery.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIf your symptoms do not seem to be under control with the initial dose of HRT, please discuss this with your doctor in more detail because the dose maybe increased or changed.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eIf you are going through a surgical menopause before the age of 50 years, the benefits of taking HRT are very likely to outweigh the small risks. HRT can help seriously improve menopausal symptoms, protecting your bones from osteoporosis and protecting your heart from heart disease\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eEven with combined HRT (both oestrogen and progesterone) there is no increased risk of breast cancer when taken under the age of 50.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eAlthough there is no time limit to how long you can stay on HRT, this should be discussed on an annual basis with your doctor.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSome women may also benefit from the addition of testosterone as part of their HRT plan if oestrogen alone is not fully resolving symptoms.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003ePlease do not suffer in silence and talk to your GP if you are having problems.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003cp style=\"padding-left: 120px\"\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538826034", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/surgical-menopause-image_768x.jpg?v=1697662806", "title" : "Everything You Need to Know about Surgical Menopause - Side Effects, Symptoms, Management and Recovery Time", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538039602", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Shilpa-McQuillan-576x576_small.jpg?v=1697658450", "name" : "Dr Shilpa McQuillan", "summary" : "", "title" : "General Practitioner" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/rawpixel-602153-unsplash2_7lbx-38-1_6f8edae9-8cdd-48d3-bfe8-5c4156dd1cde_1200x.jpg?v=1701311117", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eNot sure where to start when it comes to discussing menopause with your doctor? Doctor Shilpa McQuillan is here for you, with practical advice to make the most of your appointments – even when it’s time to talk about symptoms you might find embarrassing!\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMany recent surveys and studies have shown that menopause can negatively impact your quality of life. This isn’t surprising given the vast range and intensity of symptoms it can cause. However, what does surprise me is that some women are reluctant to seek help from their doctor.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAs a doctor myself, I find this disappointing and have performed a survey locally to find out common worries women have, some of which I have relayed below. You may be able to relate to these thoughts or have similar concerns. In this article, I’ll take a look at why women might feel this way, and how to reduce worries and concerns with some simple, practical actions.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’m embarrassed to discuss my intimate symptoms”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’m scared I will be judged for having such minor symptoms and wasting an appointment”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“My doctor’s a man, I’m worried he will lack empathy and won’t understand”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I don’t want to face the menopause – I’m scared of being old before my time”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“The symptoms I have frighten me, what if it is more serious than menopause”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“The treatment scares me- there are lots of side effects I’ve heard”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I want someone who will listen not just tick the boxes”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’m worried menopause will make me fat but the doctor will probably just tell me to change my diet”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’d rather not try HT, there’s a high risk of breast cancer”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I just want someone who cares. In the past, my doctor has tried to put me off HT but my friends feel so much better with it”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’ve read my exhaustion can be due to menopause but I’m worried my doctor will say it’s all in my head”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“My doctor is male and I prefer not to talk about intimate problems – it’s embarrassing”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I didn’t know my doctor can address the relationship problems I am having”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt seems that women’s concerns are as individual as their symptoms – but there are answers that I hope will reassure you and help you feel more confident about talking to your healthcare professional.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eGetting the right help starts with speaking out\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’m scared I will be judged for having such minor symptoms and wasting an appointment”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’m worried menopause will make me fat but the doctor will probably just tell me to change my diet”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eMenopause affects women in different ways due to the wide range of symptoms that can occur. Therefore, the impact it has on quality of life can significantly vary from woman to woman. It’s important that you feel you are supported and are given the right options for you – and your doctor can be a fantastic support in getting the help you need.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eThere’s no need to be embarrassed\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’m embarrassed to discuss my intimate symptoms”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“My doctor’s a man, I’m worried he will lack empathy and won’t understand”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“My doctor is male and I prefer not to talk about intimate problems – it’s embarrassing”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eSome people still see menopause as a ‘taboo’ subject and are afraid to talk about it. Try to remember that menopause is common, and your doctor will have ‘seen it before’. Whether your doctor is male or female, we are trained to be professional and to provide the best level of care.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eBe honest, tell your story, and most importantly explain how it is affecting you. This will help your doctor to tailor the information and choices to best suit you. You may also find it helpful to bring in a friend or relative along with you for moral support.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eSee your conversations as a journey together\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I want someone who will listen not just tick the boxes.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I just want someone who cares. In the past my doctor has tried to put me off HT but my friends feel so much better with it.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I’ve read my exhaustion can be due to menopause but I’m worried my doctor will say it’s all in my head.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYour doctor wants to help but may feel limited by the amount of information to discuss in an often-short appointment (commonly 10 minutes).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou mustn’t feel rushed, so think of your menopause as a journey and be prepared to arrange more than one appointment so that you feel all your questions and concerns are addressed.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eThis will give you and your doctor the time you need to explore all the treatment options suited to you. You can also help to make the most of the time available by preparing carefully – there are ideas on how to do that at the end of this article.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003eWorried that your doctor can’t help?\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I don’t want to face menopause – I’m scared of being old before my time.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“The symptoms I have frighten me, what if it’s more serious than menopause?”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e“I didn’t know my doctor can address the relationship problems I am having.”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may feel that your situation is complex and that your family practitioner or healthcare provider hasn’t been able to fully cover what is needed for you to make a decision. You must be aware that doctors do have knowledge about women’s health and menopause, but that most are not specialists.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is ok to be honest, and express your feelings. If your family healthcare provider knows they have not been able to fully help you they may be able to still support you through the journey but also seek expert advice from another colleague in their practice or refer you to another specialist.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch4\u003ePreparation and research: what you can do to help\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003eBe prepared in advance. Making a list of questions or points you wish to discuss will ensure your doctor understands your agenda from the start and will cover the things most important to you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIn addition, have some vital information ready to help your doctor tailor treatment that is safe and suitable for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eKeep a symptom diary and make notes including timelines for changes to your periods, mood changes and sleep patterns. Health \u0026amp; Her’s App Symptom Tracker might be a helpful way to do this digitally.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eKnow your body well. It is important you are aware of any relevant medical problems you or your close family members may have had such as a history of breast or ovarian cancer, heart disease, clots in the legs or lungs (Venous-thromboembolism) Make note of any previous operations you have had on your womb, ovaries or cervix.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDo some research and make notes on any treatments you like the look of, or have already tried.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch4\u003eAbout Dr Shilpa McQuillan MRCGP MRCOG DFSRH\u003c\/h4\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/about-us\/menopause-experts\/shilpa-mcquillan\/\"\u003eDr Shilpa McQuillan\u003c\/a\u003e is a doctor with a difference; she brings a wealth of specialist knowledge when it comes to women’s health. Previously a Hospital Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Shilpa now works in general practice, providing patients with resident expertise and knowledge on women’s health concerns.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e5 tips on How to Talk to Your doctor about intimate or embarrassing symptoms\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eExpert psychologist Dr. Deborah Lancastle knows that if you’re struggling with more intimate menopause symptoms like \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/menopause\/\"\u003eurinary changes\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/menopause-vaginal-changes-explained\/\"\u003evaginal dryness\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/vaginal-dryness\/painful-sex-menopause\/\"\u003epainful sex\u003c\/a\u003e, or \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/us\/expert-advice\/period-changes\/why-do-periods-get-worse-before-menopause\/\"\u003echanges to your periods\u003c\/a\u003e, speaking to your doctor can seem like an insurmountable task. But if you don’t speak out about your symptoms, healthcare professionals can’t help – and that’s what we are here for after all! Here are Dr. Lancastle’s top five tips on how to speak to your doctor about symptoms that may feel a bit embarrassing to acknowledge. \u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e1. Prepare in advance\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may feel more confident and in control, if you have found out about your problem before you see your doctor . For example, you could read about your problem and the advantages and disadvantages of different treatments before you go to your appointment.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePerhaps read through some articles on this website such as the ‘how to talk to your Doctor about menopause symptoms’, explore some decision aids and discuss your thoughts about treatment options with your family and friends to get things clear in your head.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e2. Think about how long you might need\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eIf you need to discuss several issues with your doctor , ask the receptionist if it is possible to book a longer appointment. Doctors may have a time limit on appointments, but if you’ve booked extra time in advance you won’t feel rushed and will be able to take your time to explain everything that’s going on.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e3. Book an appointment with a doctor you are comfortable with\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou may have more of a rapport with one or two doctors at your practice. If so, find out if it is possible to book an appointment with that doctor . You may have to wait to see a named Doctor, but if your symptoms are not urgent and you would be more comfortable talking to a particular doctor you may prefer not to rush.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e5. Work out your goals for the appointment\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eOne strategy that has been found helpful by women (5) dealing with another medical challenge is to write down brief answers to these 2 questions before you see your doctor:\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eQ1: “What is the main thing I want to achieve in this appointment?”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is best if this is about the issue that is worrying you most and\/or is having the biggest impact on your quality of life (e.g., discuss HT, find out about counselling to help you deal with other demands in your life, get some advice about urinary incontinence).\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eQ2. “What are the questions I want to ask?”\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eWrite down a few questions that will be particularly helpful to you. Make these relevant to the priority you have decided upon in Question 1. E.g., If your priority is to sort out urinary incontinence you might want to find out if there are any particular exercises you can do and if there is a health professional who can help you to check if you are doing these correctly.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e5. What if you just can’t get the words out?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eSometimes people find that once they get to the doctors they are suddenly unable to talk about the reason for their appointment. If you find this happening to you and you have prepared brief answers to the 2 questions suggested in Tip 4, just slide this piece of paper over the desk to the doctor! The doctor will then be able to follow up with questions that get to the heart of your worries.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp style=\"margin: 0cm;\"\u003e\u003cspan style=\"color: #0e101a;\"\u003e \u003c\/span\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719607090", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/rawpixel-602153-unsplash2_7lbx-38-1_6f8edae9-8cdd-48d3-bfe8-5c4156dd1cde_768x.jpg?v=1701311117", "title" : "How to talk to your doctor about menopause", "symptoms" : [ ]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606538203442", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Relate_Circle_small.png?v=1706174818", "name" : "Relate", "summary" : "", "title" : "Relationship Counsellors" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Libido_1_1a1be76b-c6b9-445b-b87e-fe9c03a5240c_1200x.jpg?v=1705937287", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eLibido, sex drive, sizzle, in the mood… call it what you will, your desire to have sex can take a real hit during menopause. Whatever the reasons – physical or emotional or a mix – it’s a change that can can really affect relationships. Relate, a UK-based network of relationship counselors, talks about what might be happening and how couples in conflict can find balance together again.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eI want less sex – what’s going on?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eDuring menopause your sex life is likely to be very different as you adjust to the biological changes that you are going through. You might find that sex is less enjoyable, you’re not as interested in having sex, you might experience vaginal dryness or simply feel too exhausted to initiate it.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat might be happening for your partner?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePartners often respond to this change in the couple’s sex life by sulking or trying to initiate sex more often. They can feel distanced by the lack of sex and want to use sex to feel close again. This mismatch in desires leads to cycle of increased conflict over intimacy. The more pressure a partner puts on the other to have sex the more they withdraw, this in turn leads to a situation where the women feels even less understood and as a result less loved. Sex then becomes a battleground with one partner feeling rejected and the other completely unsupported. Women may also be going through a time of uncertainty about their role in life. Their kids may have left home, their body may feel different, and they might then wonder if their partner will start to back away from them too. This combination of uncertainty can start to affect a woman’s confidence and libido. Sex therapy can help with these kind of problems. It uses a combination of education about the biological changes that happen at menopause and a counseling approach so you can find a way to understand each other’s experiences.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat can help increase my libido?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli style=\"list-style-type: none;\"\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli\u003eDon’t focus on having sex – think about other things you can do to be intimate. Try massage, kissing or just holding hands – the idea is to take away the pressure to perform and just enjoy feeling close.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eTalk and think about sex – the brain is the body’s biggest sexual organ so just thinking or talking about sex can help to boost desire. If you’re avoiding having sex you may think that talking about it only makes the problem worse but the reverse is often true.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eRely on your partner to initiate sex – if your desire has reduced you might need your partner to take the lead when it comes to getting things started. You might find that this approach can spark your desire, but be mindful that you aren’t putting too much pressure on yourself to have sex when you’re not in the mood.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eMake time for your sex life – spend time together where the focus is on being intimate – again, try to ease off on the pressure to have sex. Your partner can make things a whole lot more enjoyable by taking a gentle approach and remembering to be kind and caring.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eSee a sex therapist – while this isn’t always necessary, your relationship might benefit from their help if you are constantly arguing or are finding it hard to understand what’s going wrong. They will be able to help you see how you are both withdrawing from the relationship and find a way to renegotiate how the relationship works. They can also provide ‘psycho-education’ this is advice and education about the physical changes that menopause brings that can help you understand how your sex life will be different.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eDon’t compare your sex life to your friends – there can be big differences in couple’s sex lives at this life stage. It’s just more unnecessary pressure to be looking at everyone else’s sex life and thinking yours should be as ‘good’.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eImprove your diet and lifestyle – this can improve any other symptoms such as tiredness or hot flashes that might be affecting your interest in sex – there are lots of resources on this website to help with this, including: a Nutritionist’s Guide To Menopause; a personal trainer’s Menopause Exercise Guide; and detailed advice on managing specific menopause symptoms.\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWill my libido ever come back?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eHaving a lower sex drive can be an unavoidable part of the menopause but if both partners can work on trying to approach their sex life differently and taking the pressure off to get back to how they were before you are likely to be able to tap into a desire to have more sex. If you feel sex has become a battleground and you’re too upset with your partner to think about experimenting with how your sex life could be different then sex therapy can be a really helpful way to start sorting out any misunderstandings and rebuilding trust and intimacy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eAbout Relate\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eRelate is a UK provider of relationship support, and last year they helped over two million people of all ages, backgrounds, sexual orientations and gender identities to strengthen their relationships. Read about them here You might also be interested in. Loss of sex drive at menopause by Anne Henderson, gynecologist Painful sex and relationships – how to talk about it and improve things together       \u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606719639858", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Libido_1_1a1be76b-c6b9-445b-b87e-fe9c03a5240c_768x.jpg?v=1705937287", "title" : "Loss of libido in perimenopause and menopause - Working through it with your partner", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=665" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=665" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/665" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 21, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/low-mood/", "name": "Low Mood", "description": "Menopause mood swings, depression, emotional instability and rage can affect many parts of your life, including relationships and work. Here are products that can assist with regulating your moods and help you to maintain a positive mindset. Choose from naturally formulated products and supplements to help you cope with menopause mood changes.", "id": 665, "term_id": 665, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "low-mood" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=670" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=670" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/670" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 5, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/painful-sex/", "name": "Painful Sex", "description": "Painful sex during menopause could be relieved with our selection of menopause lubricants and dyspareunia management products that can help to make sex comfortable again. Choose from a selection of products and assistive measures to help enjoy sex without unwanted pain.", "id": 670, "term_id": 670, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "painful-sex" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=677" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=677" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/677" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 7, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/vaginal-dryness/", "name": "Vaginal Dryness", "description": "Vaginal dryness products, like lubricants and Smile Maker vibrators, can help to relieve vaginal dryness that occurs during menopause and perimenopause. Choose products that are kind to the skin and could help reduce dryness and vulva irritation or naturally formulated lubes, vibrators that are recommended by gynaecologists.\r\n", "id": 677, "term_id": 677, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "vaginal-dryness" }]} ,{ "author": { "id" : "606537810226", "image_url" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/Profile-5-576x768_small.jpg?v=1697658439", "name" : "Helen Roach", "summary" : "", "title" : "Nutritionist" }, "featuredImage" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/phytoestrogens-photo-2_1200x.jpg?v=1697662812", "html" : "\u003cp\u003eFor many women, the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause can be frustrating and can affect everyday life. Though there are options available to medically treat menopause, for women who are looking for an alternative, many symptoms can be helped by using natural compounds to help target and support the hormones that are changing during menopause. A group of these natural compounds, called phytoestrogens, are currently attracting attention for the potential of their estrogen-mimicking properties as a way to treat menopause.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt can be hard trying to find clear guidance on how phytoestrogens work, and what they can do for your body. Read on for advice and answers from Health \u0026amp; Her's expert nutritionist, Helen Roach, on what phytoestrogens are, how they work, and why they could be an option for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat is phytoestrogen?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens are naturally-occurring compounds found in plants that belong to a group of substances called polyphenolic compounds. They have a similar chemical structure to estrogen and often behave in a similar way when ingested into the body. Like \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/hormone-therapy-ht-guide\/\"\u003eHT\u003c\/a\u003e (hormone therapy), some nutritionists believe that increasing your phytoestrogen intake during perimenopause and menopause can help relieve symptoms caused by fluctuating estrogen.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eHow do phytoestrogens work?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens attach to estrogen receptors, potentially creating a change in hormone and enzyme levels. They can mimic estrogen in the body, and when phytoestrogens enter the body, the body's estrogen receptors attach to them as they would normal estrogen, albeit less firmly, helping make up a deficit of estrogen common during perimenopause and menopause. Additionally, it is thought that phytoestrogens can block estrogen and xenestrogens (man-made estrogens found in skincare, industrial products and plastics, food, insecticides and building supplies) when they reach excessive levels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003ePhytoestrogens and Menopause Symptoms\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens are doubly beneficial as they help maintain the right balance of estrogen - low estrogen is behind some of the most difficult symptoms of perimenopause and menopause, such as \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/hot-flashes\"\u003ehot flashes\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/night-sweats\"\u003enight sweats\u003c\/a\u003e, palpitations, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/headaches\"\u003eheadaches,\u003c\/a\u003e \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/Sleeping-problems\"\u003esleeping issues\u003c\/a\u003e, \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/low-energy\/\"\u003efatigue\u003c\/a\u003e, bone loss and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/vaginal-dryness\/\"\u003evaginal dryness\u003c\/a\u003e, plus more. And excess or high levels of estrogen has been said to pose health risks including breast or uterine cancer. In addition, if high levels of estrogen are present during perimenopause or menopause, it can cause bloating, breast tenderness, and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/blogs\/expert-advice\/tagged\/period-changes\"\u003eheavy bleeding\u003c\/a\u003e. Consuming phytoestrogens such as those found in fermented soy and red clover isoflavones may work to help women achieve a healthy balance to both raise and regulate their estrogen levels.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003eWhat are the benefits of phytoestrogens for menopause?\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eA question commonly asked is 'do phytoestrogens help with menopause?'. Well, current research indicates that phytoestrogens affect women in perimenopause and the early stages of menopause. In countries where women tend to have a diet rich in phytoestrogens - such as Japan - research suggests a lower incidence of difficult menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, and a lower risk of breast and uterine cancer and osteoporosis. A \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.tandfonline.com\/doi\/full\/10.3109\/13697137.2014.966241\"\u003e2014\u003c\/a\u003e study indicated that phytoestrogens reduced the frequency and severity of hot flashes in menopausal women, alongside a \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov\/pmc\/articles\/PMC3276006\"\u003e2011\u003c\/a\u003e study that found that phytoestrogens helped in preventing osteoporosis in menopausal and post-menopausal women. Other studies have indicated that phytoestrogens may play a part in aiding heart health and preventing the growth of breast cancer cells, though more research is needed for both of these claims.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eFor some women, starting HT can come with a set of challenges, or be inaccessible altogether - either the side effects are difficult, or it can’t be used due to a family history of breast cancer. In these cases, phytoestrogens can provide an alternate route to explore. However, it is important to remember that phytoestrogens bind less firmly to the body's estrogen receptors than traditional synthetic and body-identical estrogen, and as a result, can be weaker in their effect. You should always visit a healthcare professional if you are struggling with severe perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms to discuss what treatment options are right for you.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens can also help with postmenopausal hirsutism (the abnormal growth of hair on the face and body). Androgen hormones are responsible for male pattern hair growth and come about as the result of testosterone dominance. When hormones fluctuate during perimenopause and menopause, and as estrogen levels are depleted after menopause, testosterone can dominate, leading to increased androgen production, facial hair growth, and thinning of hair on the head. phytoestrogens can help to balance overall hormone levels, and when used alongside Vitamin B6 and specific herbs like Saw Palmetto, can reduce androgen production.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch3\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eAre there any disadvantages to taking phytoestrogens?\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/h3\u003e\u003cp\u003eWe naturally consume phytoestrogens every day, in a lot of the foods we eat, and indeed, people who have a diet rich in phytoestrogens tend to be eating whole, natural foods, and thus demonstrate improved levels of health. However, though phytoestrogens may be an option to explore for women looking for alternatives for hormone therapy, phytoestrogens have similar properties and benefits to synthetic estrogens, and as a result, may have similar side effects, albeit at a reduced rate. This may include an increased risk of obesity or problems with ovary function. Despite this, it is very difficult to consume phytoestrogens to a harmful level through diet and supplements, and it is not clear from any medical research that consuming them have any negative side effects.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003ch2\u003ePhytoestrogen-rich foods for menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003eYou are likely consuming phytoestrogens already and simply don't know it - especially if you are vegan or vegetarian. A plant-based diet often contains phytoestrogen-rich foods to help with menopause, as phytoestrogens are often present in food used as meat substitutes, especially those derived from soy, such as tempeh and tofu. \u003cstrong\u003eThese compounds tend to fall into three distinct categories, and as such, are found in different groups of food:\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003col\u003e\u003cli\u003eIsoflavones - found in soybeans, soy nuts, tempeh and red clover\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eCoumestans - found in peas, beans (including soya), brussel sprouts, alfalfa and clover sprouts\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli\u003eLignans - mainly found in seeds such as flaxseed and pumpkin\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ol\u003e\u003cp\u003eThere are 5 main isoflavones found in soy or soy products. These include genistein, daidzein and glycitein, formononentin, and biochanin A. It is thought that the forms of isoflavone found in fermented soy products are the most effective form. The best option in terms of dietary phytoestrogens is fermented soy, as the phytoestrogens within it are thought to be more bioavailable due to the fermentation process it undergoes. Fermentation is particularly beneficial for digestion as the lactic acid bacteria flourish in your gut. Increased gut bacteria leads to better digestion by lessening the incidence of bloating\/indigestion, as well as increasing the production of serotonin (the feel good hormone which is also instrumental in the production of melatonin, which helps you sleep) and most interestingly, could help to heighten the impact of phytoestrogen activity through specific enzyme production. However, fermented soy doesn't always taste great! Don't worry, though - you don't have to switch to a diet solely comprised of fermented soy. phytoestrogens are quite common in our diet and are derived from whole grains, seeds, beans, root vegetables and soy.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003e Foods high in phytoestrogen include;\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cul\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eSeeds - such as linseeds or flax, pumpkin, sunflower, poppy, and sesame\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eWhole grains - such as rye, oats, and barley\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eBran - such as wheat, oat, and rye\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eBeans and lentils - such as chickpeas, kidney beans, lima beans, mung beans, pinto beans, and split peas\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eFruits - especially apples and berries\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eSoybeans and soy products - tempeh, soybeans, and tofu\u003c\/li\u003e\u003cli dir=\"\\\u0026quot;ltr\\\u0026quot;\"\u003eVegetables - especially cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts\u003c\/li\u003e\u003c\/ul\u003e\u003ch2\u003ePhytoestrogen Supplements for Menopause\u003c\/h2\u003e\u003cp\u003ePhytoestrogens can also be found in supplement form, such as the presence of Red Clover in the \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/products\/health-her-perimenopause-mind-food-supplement\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her Perimenopause Supplement\u003c\/a\u003e and \u003ca href=\"https:\/\/healthandher.com\/en-us\/products\/health-her-menopause-multi-nutrient-support-supplement\"\u003eHealth \u0026amp; Her Menopause Supplement\u003c\/a\u003e. Red Clover (Trifolium pratense) is a flowering plant belonging to the legume family. It has been used in traditional medicine to treat a variety of symptoms including coughs and colds, and as a blood purifying tonic most recently revered for its phytoestrogen content. These menopause phytoestrogen supplements work to complement the existing phytoestrogens you eat and ensure you are receiving an adequate\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003eIt is important to remember that making lifestyle changes such as eating healthily, with a diet rich in phytoestrogens, can improve your quality of life and may make a difference if you are experiencing difficult menopause symptoms. However, if you are struggling severely with menopausal symptoms, you should visit a qualified medical professional to discuss and outline all your potential treatment options. Despite this, phytoestrogens indicate some real benefits in helping treat the difficult side of perimenopause and menopause and aiming for a diet that includes them could potentially do some real good.\u003c\/p\u003e\u003cp\u003e\u003cstrong\u003eThe information and advice provided on our website including expert advice, articles and resources, are not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your own doctor or other health care provider.\u003c\/strong\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e", "id" : "606538957106", "thumb" : "https://healthandher.com/cdn/shop/articles/phytoestrogens-photo-2_768x.jpg?v=1697662812", "title" : "Phytoestrogens and menopause ", "symptoms" : [ { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=239" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=239" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/239" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 14, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. 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", "id": 239, "term_id": 239, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=650" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=650" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/650" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/us/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 6, "link": "https://healthandher.com/us/expert-advice/bloating/", "name": "Bloating", "description": "Bloating can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Here are some of the best supplements to help with menopause and bloating. Choose from probiotics, collagen and assorted natural supplements for menopause bloating to help relieve the symptoms of menopause bloating. ", "id": 650, "term_id": 650, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "bloating" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=237" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=237" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=237" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/237" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 22, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/brain-fog/", "name": "Brain fog", "description": "Brain fog is a common symptom along with memory loss and other cognitive issues. 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", "id": 291, "term_id": 291, "taxonomy": "symptom", "slug": "dry-eyes" }, { "parent": 0, "acf": [], "_links": { "wp:post_type": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/product?symptom=245" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?symptom=245" }, { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/advice?symptom=245" } ], "curies": [ { "templated": true, "name": "wp", "href": "https://api.w.org/{rel}" } ], "about": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/taxonomies/symptom" } ], "self": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom/245" } ], "collection": [ { "href": "https://healthandher.com/wp-json/wp/v2/symptom" } ] }, "meta": [], "count": 2, "link": "https://healthandher.com/expert-advice/hair-loss/", "name": "Hair loss", "description": "An unexpected symptom of the menopause, hair loss or hair thinning can be difficult to come to terms with. That's why we have stocked some of the best brands to help with this symptom. 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