The Menopause is defined as absence of menstrual periods for 12 months. When the menopause kicks in the functions of
the ovaries cease. The ovaries are the main source of female hormones, which control the development of female body features. The hormones (oestrogens) regulate the menstrual cycle and pregnancy. There is no way of predicting when an individual woman will enter menopause but an average age is 51 years old - a good indication is identifying when it occurred in the mother as the onset is generally at a similar age.
Symptoms of Menopause include:
- Irregular vaginal bleeding
- Hot flushes
- Night sweats
- Emotional/cognitive symptoms
- Vaginal symptoms
- Urinary symptoms
Complications of Menopause
- Cardiovascular disease
- Hormone therapy
- Other medical therapies
- Complementary medicine therapies
Managing Menopause symptoms
There is no need to sit back and suffer the symptoms of menopause, there are various supplements that can help ease the symptoms:
Soy Isoflavones are rich in phytoestrogens, which have mild oestrogenic affect. This supplement appears to balance the receding hormone
levels and reduce hot flushes.
Wild Yam - headaches in some women become a concern during menopause. Relief may just be ahead of you with Wild Yam
which is a useful during the menopause.
Valerian - relax with yoga, hot showers and drink hot herbal teas and worry less! Reduce your anxiety and tension and take Valerian to aid in your sleep.
Exercise your mind
Ginkgo Biloba - poor concentration and memory are commonly experienced during the menopause. Ginkgo can increase blood circulation to the brain and thus improve memory.
Evening Primrose Oil and Starflower Oil - both contain essential Omega-6 fatty acids, which can combat dry skin, eczema as well as breast tenderness.
Calcium and Vitamin D - adequate intake of these vitamins is an absolute must during the menopause as the bones are more prone to osteoporosis during this time. To combat Calcium loss, Calcium taken with Vitamin D for extra absorption is essential.
Omega-3 - the possibility of cardiovascular disease during the menopause cannot be ruled out. The hormone oestrogen acts as a protective barrier before the menopause, however as the hormone declines in the body during and after the menopause stress induced high blood pressure can set in. For this reason supplementation with fish oils and flaxseed oils is an important consideration. Scientific research suggests that
certain chemical compounds in Omega-3s may aid in heart health.
Multivitamins - we all complain of feeling tired at times but for women during the menopause it is particularly prevalent - fatigue sets in and energy is drained. A good all round supplement with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants will provide the extra defence needed to fight off infections and boost energy.
Vaginal yeast infections
Acidophilus is full of ‘friendly bacteria’. After the menopause there is a significant drop in oestrogen and vaginal yeast infection rates can increase as a result. Multiple scientific papers suggest Acidophilus works to combat vaginal yeast infections thus relieving the sufferer of the unpleasant symptoms.
A healthy balanced diet is the best way to consume all the nutrients we need. Sometimes however this isn't possible and then supplements can help. This article isn't intended to replace medical advice. Please consult your healthcare professional before trying any supplements or herbal medicines.