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Management of menopause

2012 March 16

Coping with menopause

To relieve these symptoms, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is often recommended. But synthetic hormones often lead to breast cancer, strokes, heart attacks, and blood clots. More and more doctors recommend lifestyle changes and natural remedies to cope with menopause. These are primarily related to diet, exercise, and mental outlook.

Diet

  • Add soy to your diet. A half cup serving of soy milk and tofu gives out about 35 to 50 mg of soy isoflavones.
  • Avoid stimulants such as coffee, tea, spicy food to keep hot flushes under control.
  • Include herbal treatments such as ginkgo biloba, evening primrose oil, and black cohosh.
  • Have whole grains in your diet. Brown rice, corn, pasta, crackers and other whole grain foods contain antioxidants and multi-vitamins.
  • Include flax in your diet. Flaxseed lengthens the menstrual cycle. In doing so, it increases the estrogen-progesterone ratio and alleviates hot flashes. This is also rich in antioxidants, omega 3 fatty acids, and stabilizes cholesterol levels.
  • Cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli and brussels sprouts are good for you.
  • Green tea has antioxidants and phytochemicals. Three to six cups of green tea daily has reportedly contributed to weight loss.
  • Tomatoes and yellow fruits such as mangoes, oranges and vegetables like carrot are also recommended.
  • Drink lots of water
  • Consume at least three servings of low-fat dairy products every day for your daily calcium intake. Dark leafy greens are also a good source of calcium. This is important for building bone density.

Exercise

Exercise is particularly important for women as they age. Exercise is essential to the development of strong bones and a strong heart. Exercise, coupled with a healthy diet, helps to keep weight in check and contributes to a sense of well being and mood improvement. People who are not physically active tend to suffer with a variety of diseases such as coronary disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and osteoporosis. Depression, and even dementia, can be traced back to lack of physical activity.

Your routine should include:

    • Walking
    • Yoga for flexibility/toning
    • Weights for building bone density

A word of caution: consult your doctor before starting an exercise routine.

Mental outlook

Be positive. Menopause is inevitable so there’s no point getting depressed. Chances are if you follow the correct diet and exercise routine, you will be upbeat and cheerful. Join a hobby class, go on a trip, get a new wardrobe… do what makes you happy.

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