This is a natural process which usually occurs in women around age 50. The definition of menopause is the cessation of menses for 12 months. Perimenopause is the time before menopause and postmenopause is the time after menopause.
Menopause occurs when there are no eggs left in the ovaries. This absence of active follicles results in a reduction of estrogen and progesterone levels. The pituitary gland, responds to this drop in hormones by increasing FSH and LH. After menopause FSH and LH continue to be secreted in large and continuous levels.
With the decrease in estrogen, bone loss and increased cardiovascular risks occur.
Symptoms of menopause differ for each individual.
|· Hot flashes
||· Loss of memory and cognition
|· Night sweats
||· Vaginal dryness and thinning
||· Urinary dysfunction
||· Changes in sexual response and sex drive
||· Facial hair and hair loss
|· Weight gain
||· Irregular bleeding *
*Please see your doctor, if you are experiencing irregular bleeding.
Conventional Treatments: HRT
HRT is prescribed to alleviate hot flashes, prevent osteoporosis and fractures and to improve vaginal discomfort. Increased Risks with HRT: endometrial cancer, breast cancer, dementia, gallbladder disease, venous thromboembolism, heart disease, strokes Disease Prevention with HRT: colon cancer, macular degeneration.
1. Low fat, high fiber, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds are the most beneficial diet for nearly every individual. Reduce animal fats, total fats and simple carbohydrates.
2. Soy and flax seeds have phytoestrogenic effects and decrease vasomotor symptoms, improve lipid profile, slow bone loss and dilate coronary arteries.
3. Exercise benefits heart, bones, moods, blood sugar levels and hot flashes. It prevents CAD, osteoporosis and breast cancer. 30-45 minutes of aerobic exercise 4-5 times a week and 2-3 times a week of weight training is usually prescribed. Please consult your doctor if starting a new exercise program, over 40 years old and/or have an existing health concern.
4. Sage tea has proven to help alleviate hot flashes and is a very gentle but effective treatment.
5. Black Cohosh is one of the most studied and used herb to alleviate menopausal symptoms.
6. Panax ginseng improves depression, anxiety and vitality.
7. Vitamin B6 and B12 help enhance mood and energy and help alleviate insomnia and anxiety.
8. Natural Progesterone Cream is used for the management of more severe menopausal symptoms especially during perimenopausal years. During this time, the body's progesterone level decreases more rapidly than the body's estrogen's level. This creates an estrogen dominant state producing moods swings, hot flashes, vaginal dryness and irregular menses. The cream gently balances hormone levels.