If menopause is a natural stage in every woman’s life, why not treat it naturally? Even though Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) has been the most popular treatment for menopause in the past, in recent years more and more women have instead been giving naturopathic remedies a try.
The reason? Many women are concerned about the risks associated with HRT, and are seeking relief for menopausal symptoms in drug-free ways. Keep reading to know more about these natural remedies.
Watch your diet
You are what you eat (or so they say), so be sure to eat fresh and healthy foods during menopause. Try to increase your intake of grains, oats, wheat, brown rice, tofu, almonds, cashews, fresh fruit, veggies and fish.
Foods you should try avoid are meats such as beef, pork and chicken, which can contain a high amount of saturated fats, and anything caffeinated, alcoholic or carbonated.
Don’t forget your vitamins and minerals
Adequate Vitamins and minerals are essential during menopause. In your diet you should always include Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, Calcium, Magnesium, and Vitamin D.
Vitamin D is particularly important when treating menopause as it promotes healthy bone renewal and hormonal balance, which is key during this time. As aging occurs, absorbing Vitamin D becomes extremely important therefore incorporating it in your diet is important. Foods that contain high amounts of Vitamin D are sardines, tuna, salmon, fortified dairy products, and eggs.
Dong Quai: The second most widely used herb in China, it’s anti-inflammatory and may be effective at regulating PMS symptoms and the menstrual cycle. It has been traditionally used to reduce hot flushes and vaginal dryness.
Evening Primrose Oil: This oil, extracted from the seeds of the Evening Primrose plant, has high levels of essential fatty acids and may help with PMS symptoms, especially breast tenderness.
St. John’s Wort: This herb has long been used as an alternative treatment for menopausal mood swings, depression and insomnia, as well as improving relaxation and reducing stress and anxiety. You can drink it as a tea or take it as a supplement.
Chasteberry: Chasteberry improves the production of progesterone by stimulating pituitary function. It can be helpful in reducing perimenopausal symptoms such as vaginal dryness and hot flushes, and is used to control depression.
Ginseng: This herb is used to treat fatigue, anxiety and stress. You can have it as a tea, powder or extract.
Never stop exercising
Regular exercise is one of the single most important things a woman can do to improve her overall health and well-being. It not only makes you feel good, but will also help with your flexibility and coordination.
Exercise is also crucial to maintaining strong and healthy bones, which tend to weaken with age. It also plays an important role in reducing the risk of many types of cancer and heart diseases.
There are some skeptics out there, however some women report finding relief from their menopausal symptoms through acupuncture – especially from menopausal depression and hot flushes.
Mindful breathing and meditation
Practicing yoga and meditation can be highly effective at relieving menopausal symptoms. Deep breathing techniques can have a calming effect on your body and relax your mind, which can subsequently help with anxiety and hot flushes. Dedicating an hour or so to yourself a day can be extremely rewarding and liberating.
To start, all you have to do is make sure you’re in a quiet place. Inhale through your nose to the count of four, then hold your breath for three counts. Finally, exhale through your mouth. You’ll need to repeat this at least three times.
Yoga can help you with stretching and flexibility, which is something people tend to lose with age. More importantly, yoga relaxation and meditation techniques can also aid with stabilising moods, relieving irritability, and help with depression.