How to Stay Active and Healthy During Menopause
How to Stay Active and Healthy During Menopause
As the old saying goes, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”. But, unfortunately, this doesn’t hold true when it comes to menopause. As women age, there comes a time when our bodies will start to change and menopausal symptoms start to occur. Such symptoms include hot flashes, mood swings, weakening of the bones, and slower reaction time. The good news is that these issues can be reduced.
There was a time when menopause was met by doctors with a typical response of using Hormone Replacement Therapy. At the time, it was not only thought that hormone therapy could help with the symptoms of menopause, but also reduce your risk of heart disease, osteoporosis, memory problems, and breast cancer, and could even help you to look and feel younger. It sounded like a miracle drug, but it wasn’t to be. In 2002 the Women’s Health Initiative found that synthetic estrogen and progesterone actually could increase the risk of strokes, breast cancer, and heart attacks.
So what is the alternative? Of course, women shouldn’t feel like they’re trapped and have to suffer unnecessary symptoms in their older years. Women should feel happy and confident in their bodies, no matter what their age. This is certainly possible, even without the use of hormone therapy. There are a few simple and natural methods you can utilize in everyday life to help ease and alleviate the symptoms associated with menopause.
Your Shoes Were Made For Walking
Promotes: Calorie burning, stress control, regulating hormone levels
One of the symptoms associated with menopause is fatigue. Daily walks can help to improve energy levels, as well as help keep you at an optimal weight and reduce stress levels.
Walking is a great exercise for beginners and is actually a great way for people to stay active without having a big impact on your joints or your bones. Whether you’re new to exercise or simply want a low impact exercise to help you get started on the road to living a more active lifestyle, walking is certainly one of the best options.
Just Keep Swimming
Promotes: Calorie burning, muscle building, increased heart rate, improved heart health
Stress can be a factor in many people’s lives that leads to further health complications such as increased blood pressure, fatigue, and problems with sleep. Menopause can cause stress for many women as they notice many changes with their bodies.
One way to combat stress is through the fun activity of swimming. You aren’t limited by a pool, either. You can swim at the beach, at home (if you’re lucky enough), or even join a local swim group that may include water aerobics and water fitness exercises. It’s also a great way to get to know some new people in your local area.
Super Women Need Strength Training
Promotes: Building bone and muscle strength, burning body fat, increased metabolism
Estrogen is needed to help lay down bone, and because your estrogen levels reduce during menopause, this is a prime reason why osteoporosis can affect many women going through this time in their lives. Strength training is the perfect way to help improve your muscle strength, bone strength, improve posture, tone muscles, and help keep your weight in check.
The easiest way to get started is by heading to your local gym for a trainer to give you the best tips. Or you can start at home with resistance bands and light dumbbells.
Carb Loading Isn’t Such a Bad Thing
Promotes: Serotonin levels
Reduces: Mood swings, feeling low, and/or depression
Hormones can do so much to our bodies throughout our lifetime and the menopause stage isn’t avoiding these changes either. Some women struggling with lower moods and depression have been found to have lower levels of serotonin. This is when you may often feel the craving for sweet foods and you may feel grumpier than usual.
With a quick carbohydrate rich snack such as a multigrain bagel with jam or perhaps some air-popped popcorn, you may find this is the sufficient boost you need to get your serotonin levels rising and helping you to achieve a better mood.
Choose Better Produce
Promotes: Increase in estrogen levels
Reduces: Night sweats, hot flashes, and weight gain
If you’re considering your diet, one thing you can look at is choosing the right fruits and vegetables to add to your diet. Some foods have a mineral called boron, which does seem to help increase estrogen levels in some women.
One study found that menopausal women losing weight with a low-fat diet full of vegetables and fruits also helped to reduce their hot flash symptoms. With the right foods, you can keep your weight in check and help to reduce hot flashes. It’s a win-win!
Promotes: Better mood, healthier heart
Reduces: Hot flashes
If you’re looking for an overall diet change that has been linked with reducing heart disease, decreasing depression, and is good for your heart and brain, then look no further. The Mediterranean diet is full of Omega-3 fatty acids thanks to the prevalence of fish, as well as plant-based foods, whole grains, legumes, olive oil, and plenty of herbs and spices for ultimate flavouring. Some studies have now also shown that this diet can help prevent heart attacks, strokes, and type 2 diabetes.
There are plenty of healthy and natural alternatives to hormone therapy to help reduce the effects you may feel when going through menopause. By taking a look at some of your lifestyle choices and foods you’re consuming, you’ll be well on your way to feeling better, both inside and out, during what will be some of the greatest years of your