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Loving God more. Loving others more. Living obediently in Christ.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Menopause, diet and stress

There are some parts of the world where women rarely suffer from the symptoms of menopause.  In fact, the Japanese recently added the term "hot flash" into their language because the symptom did not exist in their culture.  Other international cultures with rural pockets of people have been studied with regard to menopause.  Those who have maintained their cultural lifestyle (uninfluenced by western diet) have no symptoms of menopause - even to the extent that women of "menopausal" years feel that they have a new found freedom.   

Outside of having hot flashes and night sweats, menopause symptoms (such as fatigue, difficulty sleeping, hormonal imbalance, mental fog or trouble concentrating, headaches, bloating, depression, mood swings and memory troubles) are similar to the symptoms of eating a diet low in nutrition, high in animal protein, and high in fat and sugar.  Even acne in menopausal women can be related to the diet.  Perhaps it is easier to blame menopause for various symptoms rather than the diet because the patient would prefer to keep eating her rich foods and the doctor would prefer to medicate the problem.  There is a better way to deal with menopause.  Eating a plant based diet, rich in fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains can provide all the needed nutrients to get a body back into hormonal balance.  Eliminating sugar, caffeine, butter, cheese, dairy and animal protein is also a very important change in the diet.  Caffeine, sugar and fat in the diet can trigger hot flashes and heart palpitations.  Animal protein slows the digestion down, causes the IGF-1 hormone factor to rise in the blood stream, and contributes to feeling fatigued.

Dr. Pam Popper - Hormon Replacement Therapy and Vegetarians Live Longer

Menopause is getting worse because the quality of the Standard American Diet continues to decline.  As a nation, we are eating more dairy, meat and sugar than every before.  Obesity is an epidemic, and so are the metabolic syndromes that go with obesity.  

Menopausal symptoms are also more pronounced because of stress levels.  Erin Lommen discusses the adrenal function and stress in this video.

Is Menopause Worse for the Current Generation?  Erin Lommen, ND

Stress cannot be managed if a person is sleep deprived.  Also, getting 8 hours of rest per night is not adequate if the first two hours of sleep begin after mid-night.  Go to bed at 10 pm to get the most productive night of rest - and reap the benefits of improved health!

Dr. Mercola has a couple of good articles on menopause.  The sencond article addresses the common use of soy as an estrogen replacement and the related dangers.

What about SOY?

This article has a good summary of the risk of using HRT, the benefits of treating menopause with diet and reducing the chances of suffering from chronic diseases related to aging in women.  http://www.plantbasedhealth.com/index.php/suffering-from-menopause.html

Jeni Skues, via the Northern Lights Health Education website, has a good workshop on stress - offering good mechanisms to cope with stress from a Christian perspective.  Check it out! http://www.rev14.com/pages/Stress/Stress.html

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