Important nutritional tips
Difference between peri-menopause and menopause
Perimenopause is the time in our lives when our periods become irregular, sometimes combined with heavy bleeding and extra pain. If we haven’t had a period for longer than a year, then we start talk about the Menopause.
So what does actually happen?
We have reached that time in our life that we can’t reproduce anymore so initially our sex hormones levels are all over the place, mainly oestrogen and progesteron. Eventually, we will have no or very little sex hormones leftover.
The change into these sex hormones goes together with several unwanted symptoms. Just to name a few, hot flushes, low mood, irritability, dryness, itchy skin etc
A positive nutritional approach can decrease these symptoms exponentially.
Below are a few good tips:
Blood glucose balancing:
- Reduce sugar intake and refines foods
- Increase wholesome foods like legumes, brown rice and pasta, rye bread and vegetables
- Control intake of caffeine and theine
- Avoid fizzy drinks
These are plant oestrogens that balance our natural oestrogen. They decrease hot flushes if eaten on a regular basis.
They can be found in soya (tofu, tempeh), chickpeas, lentils and parsley. Most vegetables contain a small concentration of phytoestrogens so eat as many as possible.
Broccoli, cauliflower, turnip, kale, rocket and watercress are all types of cruciferous vegetables. Those vegetables contain an enzyme that will help with the detoxification of oestrogen in the liver which in turn will help decreasing menopausal symptoms.
Add those vegetables to a smoothie as the enzyme gets released once the vegetables are being chopped in a raw state.
Omega-3 fatty acids:
Signs of an Omega 3 deficiency are dry skin, lifeless hair, cracked nails, fatigue, depression, dry eyes, lack of motivation, aching joint, difficulty in losing weight, forgetfulness, breast pain – all symptoms that could be ‘blamed’ on the menopause. They need to be supplemented around the menopause because they can help with many of the symptoms. Furthermore, because they help to ‘lubricate’ the body in general, they can help with vaginal dryness.
Not only is Vitamin C important for preventing illness but it also has specific benefits at the menopause. It can help with hot flushes and also helps to build up collagen which gives skin its elasticity and it is therefore helpful in the prevention and treatment of vaginal dryness.
Most fruit and vegetables contain a fair amount of Vitamin C, mainly citrus and kiwi fruit. Add these to your diet on a daily basis.
This group of vitamins are important in the production of energy. A lack of them will make you fatigues, irritable and low mood.
Vitamin B’s can be found in eggs, meats fish, dark green vegetables and wholesome grains.
This mineral is described as the ‘natural tranquiliser’. Magnesium will help relax muscles, improve sleep, reduce irritability which are all symptoms of the peri- and menopause.
Eat nuts and seeds and dark green vegetables to increase you Magnesium intake.
These are very important nutritional tips to decrease menopausal symptoms. There are several herbs available that will also decrease those unwanted symptoms which I will go into in another article.
If you start focusing on eating the foods I mentioned above, you will notice a great improvement in you menopausal symptoms.