As a woman’s menstrual cycles comes to an end Menopause is the natural transition. The symptoms associated with menopause can last for several years. These can be quite uncomfortable and to ease the conversion you might consider changing some of your dietary habits.
Let’s begin with what exactly is happening during this process of change. The hormone estrogen which is what has allowed us to bear fruit the majority of our lives begins to decline and that is what causes perimenopause. Estrogen continues to decline and as a result menopause occurs. The decrease in estrogen disrupts the balance in progesterone.
While this is a normal process it results in a decrease in metabolism which leads to weight gain. It may also cause an increase in cholesterol levels and how your body digests carbohydrates.
The symptoms of menopause can be quite uncomfortable due to hot flashes and the inability to sleep. The lack of estrogen can cause the bones to be affected by a decrease in density of which can lead to fractures. There can be mood swings, irritability, and tiredness.
Fortunately, a change in your diet and exercise can help with many of the symptoms related to menopause.
- Eating food rich in Calcium and Vitamin D- This can assist in strengthening the bones and prevent fractures. Some great examples are dairy products, green, leafy vegetables, tofu, beans, certain cereals, fish, and eggs. The sun is also a very good source of Vitamin D.
- Maintaining a healthy weight- It is always a good idea to stay at an average weight for your height to prevent heart disease and diabetes. Research has shown that decreasing excess weight will help with hot flashes and night sweats. Getting plenty of fruits and vegetables will assist you with your weight loss challenge. Fruits and vegetables are also beneficial with the breakdown of bone structure.
- Trigger foods- These are foods that bring on the symptoms of menopause such as caffeine, alcohol, spicy foods, and high sugar content. These particular foods can increase mood swings, hot flashes, and occasionally headaches.
- Exercise- This is the key to maintaining many symptoms and assist in improving energy levels and metabolism. Another bonus of exercise is healthier joints, decrease stress, and improve sleep. It has been proven in studies that exercise helps prevent illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, stroke high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and osteoporosis.
- Drink plenty of water- 8-10 glasses of water can prevent dryness that is caused by the decrease of estrogen, assist with weight loss, and reduce the bloating that is associated with menopause.
- Avoid Salt- High salt intake in menopausal women is linked to decreasing bone density, increasing the risk for hypertension, and promotes better overall mental health.
Simply changing your diet, exercising, and getting a good night’s rest will make the transition of menopause a little more tolerable.