Natural ways to manage the symptoms of menopause
Here are the top tips for tackling the side-effects of menopause head-on.
The changing levels of hormones during menopause can affect the body’s ability to regulate temperature. This results in hot flushes and night sweats.
Spicy food, caffeine and alcohol can all contribute to elevating your temperature, so avoid them if you can.
Wear layers and add sheets to the bed so you can add or take off items depending on your temperature and keep a small handheld fan in your bag as well as one beside the bed.
As a rise in temperature will cause you to sweat, it’s important to keep hydrated too. Drinking between eight and 12 glasses of water a day will do the trick. It will also help ease bloating and skin dryness that’s associated with menopause.
Keep a diary about how you’re feeling and what you were doing, eating or drinking when symptoms start.
If you can find patterns, you can identify potential triggers and know what foods and situations to avoid.
Broken sleep and insomnia can make dealing with other menopause symptoms feel even tougher to cope with.
Try some relaxation exercises before bed, such as yoga stretches or tai chi.
Avoid caffeine and alcohol and reach for a soothing herbal tea instead.
Lighter nightwear and separate bed linen from your partner can also help to reduce the effects of night sweats.
Conquer the emotional rollercoaster
Your body’s hormonal changes can lead to mood swings, depression and anxiety. It’s important to recognise when your mood changes.
Reaching out to loved ones and talking about how you’re feeling will help, as will seeking support from friends and family.
Exercise can help lift your mood and relaxation techniques such as deep-breathing, meditation and aromatherapy can help alleviate stress.
Train your brain
Fight the fuzzy feelings of brain fog and forgetfulness by keeping your synapses firing on all cylinders with a range of new challenges.
Try reading a new book, learning a new language or how to play an instrument.
Jigsaw puzzles, crosswords and sudokus are all great ways to give your grey matter a workout.
Another possible side-effect of all the hormones buzzing around your system is stubborn weight gain around the waist that just won’t seem to shift. Take back control by making sure you follow a healthy, balanced diet that’s packed with veggies and lean protein.
Eat regular meals keeping your portion sizes under control and avoid processed foods and excess sugars.
Getting active every day will also help – step out for a walk or jog, try a Zumba class or do a spot of gardening to get your body moving.
For more helpful advice and important information about menopause, listen to the Annual Menopause Special with Dr Sally Cockburn on Saturday, October 12 from 6pm.
Advice is for information only. Always see your doctor if you notice changes in your health.