Natural remedies for the menopause


the menopause can be a rediscovery of self
This transition from one stage of womanhood to another, brings a series of emotional and physical changes - largely hot flushes and night sweats. But for some women, the menopause is a time of celebration! A time to be free of cultural constraints!
Physical effects include fluctuating menstrual cycles, flushes and night sweats, joint pains, fatigue, headaches, insomnia and vaginal dryness.
And the emotional changes are just as wide ranging – mood swings, depression, decreased sex drive – but personal perspective plays a large role in how women get through it.
Leslie Kenton, author of Passage to Power cites attitude as the key component to a happy menopause. Fear and subsequent osteoporosis, ageing, dryness, depression and tiredness arise because women are ill prepared for the profound personal and biochemical changes which begin before menstruation ceases.
“Power, energy and freedom are the rewards of a natural menopause,” she says, adding that buoyant health and individuality are the gifts of letting go and loving the self beyond the confines of motherhood.
Nutritionist Patrick Holford says that with the right exercise and nutrition, women need not suffer at all. Walking, jogging and dancing increase bone heath and reduce the risk of osteoporosis while eating plenty of hormone producing foods such as bananas, apples, pulses, soya, seeds and carrots will help balance the body’s needs.
Natural supplements for a natural hormone boost
  • Vitamin E is good for supple skin and healthy reproductive organs
  • Kelp for iodine and to help weight loss and depression
  • Evening Primrose Oil for essential fatty acids to treat nerves and skin
  • Royal Jelly with a high potency vitamin B complex
Brewer’s Yeast or brown rice, fresh fish, sesame seeds will ensure a good supply of B complex which fights stress and depression and is a powerful aid during the menopause
To take HRT or not?
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) delays menopausal symptoms, which might be a blessing if you don’t feel equipped to deal with them, and has proven success in eradicating flushes and vaginal atrophy but the menopause is only delayed, not stopped and HRT comes at a price – it is linked to cancer and gallstones.
HRT allows your body to cope with the reduction of oestrogen, but it does so synthetically. Avoid  chemical foods including caffeine, salt and alcohol to help your body naturally cope with the reduction in oestrogen.
Herbal remedies
Despite the EU Directive, some herbs are still as popular as ever.  
  • hot flushes – black cohosh, sage, motherwort, St John’s Wort
  • mood swings – St John’s Wort, motherwort
  • hormones – wild yam, agnus castus
Are you going through the menopause? It’d be great to hear from you about you deal with it.