When you step in the mid-forties, the biological clock starts ticking as you inch closer to menopause. The physical and mental changes can vary from person to person. While they may be easy to handle for some women, others often struggle to get through the phase. Although menopause isn’t a disease, the drop in hormone levels leads to several uncomfortable symptoms.
You may have hot flashes and night sweats that can give you sleepless nights. Other signs include bone loss, unexplained obesity, mood changes, and urinary complaints. While these symptoms can affect the quality of life, you can deal with them with the right measures. Here are the ones you can adopt to make the menopause transition a tad easier for your body and mind.
Load up on calcium and vitamin D
While visible symptoms are often problematic, bone loss is a serious concern when you near your menopause. The hormonal changes can cause bones to weaken, which elevates the risk of osteoporosis. The condition will not show up right away, but you may suffer eventually. Eating a diet high in calcium and vitamin D can be your best defense strategy.
Dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yogurt are the best sources of calcium, though you can find a lot of it in non-dairy sources like leafy greens, beans, tofu, and sardines. Calcium-fortified cereals and juices are also a good choice. You can get your daily dose of vitamin D from sunlight, while food sources include oily fish, eggs, and cod liver oil.
Maintain a healthy weight
Unexplained weight gain is also a sign of impending menopause, and it can be a reason to worry. It often happens due to aging, a sedentary lifestyle, genetics, and hormonal changes. You may end up gaining body fat, specifically around the waist. It puts you at high risk of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.
Fortunately, this sign is easy to deal with, provided that you are ready to invest in a healthy lifestyle. Switch to fresh foods like fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, and low-fat dairy. Cut down sugar, fats, and processed foods. Physical activity is equally important as it helps in maintaining weight and keeping mood swings at bay.
Focus on better sleep
The worst you can expect to happen during this phase is insomnia, but it is a sign that most women have to struggle with. Hot flashes and night sweats are the biggest culprits that deprive you of restful sleep. Thankfully, there are effective remedies to curb both symptoms and get rid of insomnia. The best thing to do is stick with natural therapies rather than rely on sleeping pills.
Start by identifying the trigger foods and drinks. These signs are often aggravated with the intake of caffeine and alcohol. You can find hot flash solutions like cooling products and moisture-wicking clothing. Deep breathing also helps with cooling down. Hot flashes get worse and result in night sweats. You can curb the symptom by using light blankets instead of heavy quilts. Apart from these solutions, relaxing therapies like massage and tai-chi near bedtime can go a long way in promoting better sleep.
Meditate for mental wellness
When hormones take a dip after the forties, your moods get harder to control. You may often feel cranky and emotional without any reason. Stress and anxiety run high, and some women even have to deal with depression, all due to the hormones going haywire. Your mental health deserves as much attention as physical well-being as you get a step closer to menopause.
Meditation keeps your moods on track, so make sure that you make it a part of your daily schedule. Start your morning with a few minutes of deep breathing and meditation, and repeat the routine in the evening as well. You will experience a new balance in your mood along with a surge of physical and mental energy. If things still seem hard to manage, your doctor may prescribe a low-dose birth control pill or antidepressants, but natural is always the best.
Steer clear of headaches
Most women start experiencing headaches as they step into their forties, but they seldom associate these sudden aches with menopause. Migraines can show up out of the blue or get worse if you already have a history. Fortunately, you need not rely on painkillers for managing such headaches as there are several natural remedies around.
Maintain a journal to identify the triggers so that you can avoid them. For example, you may have them along with hot flashes or when you drink alcohol. Eating heavy meals can also cause headaches, so stick with small, light, and frequent meals. If headaches persist despite lifestyle changes, seek medical help at the earliest.
Another common symptom that women experience during menopause is dryness. You may also have bouts of acne and excessive hair loss. It happens due to a sudden drop in estrogen levels. Optimal water intake helps restore the suppleness and radiance of your skin. You end up looking young and fresh. Drink at least 8-12 glasses of water daily and steer clear of sugar-laden, caffeinated, and alcoholic drinks.
Drinking water does wonders for your hair and skin, but there is a lot more it does for your body. It keeps you full and reduces impulse eating, so you need not worry much about weight loss. Hydration also boosts metabolism, which means that you can burn calories faster and with less work. Drinking water reduces the bloating caused by hormonal imbalance.
While menopause can be a tough time for most women, these simple remedies make it easier to deal with its symptoms. The best thing about these measures is that they are safe and natural, so you never have to worry about any side effects. Moreover, these are inexpensive and easy to adopt. Living healthy during your menopause phase is easier than you may have imagined. Just embrace these simple lifestyle changes, and you will look and feel much better.