Between hot flashes, night sweats and mood swings, menopause can make you feel like your hormones are staging a coup. While you might not be able to halt the uprising, you can bring calm, and find some relief in the process.
Eating a healthful diet, lowering your stress level, exercising regularly and getting enough sleep are the best things you can do to ease your symptoms. In addition, doctors at the Cleveland Clinic have handpicked a few products that can also help.
Chill Out With Stress Free Now
It’s 50 degrees outside, you’ve got the A/C cranked, you’re sweating through your T-shirt and your coworkers are fighting for control of the thermostat. Stress strikes when you feel powerless in the face of a difficult situation. And menopause certainly brings with it a whole new host of challenges…that you can learn to manage. The key: approaching them from a place of serenity. According to Thomas Morledge, MD, a practitioner at the Center for Integrative Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic, stress can aggravate the very symptoms of menopause that cause us stress in the first place. Talk about a catch-22.
Stress Free Now, an eight-week program developed by physicians at the Cleveland Clinic, teaches you relaxation techniques that have been shown to reduce hot flashes in women, Dr. Morledge explains. By getting your stress under control, you may be able to reduce the intensity and frequency of your hot flashes. Plus, the program can help you feel better about yourself and all of your day-to-day challenges, so when symptoms do strike, they won’t feel quite so overwhelming.
Try This: Stress Stree Now
The Joy of Soy
Menopausal symptoms like irritability, sweating, insomnia and vaginal dryness occur when female hormones like estrogen take a nosedive. Soy contains chemicals called isoflavones, which mimic estrogen. Adding 100 milligrams to your daily diet, by way of supplements, could help relieve symptoms and may be a safe alternative to hormone replacement therapy. Before you go jumping for soy, know this: Soy isoflavones don’t work for everyone, which is part of the reason why clinical trials have been so inconclusive, Dr. Morledge explains.
Though scientists are still trying to completely figure out why that is, one theory points to the type of bacteria in your gut. We don’t all digest soy isoflavones the same way. If they don’t get broken down into equol, a bacterial by-product of isoflavone, they may not provide relief. Another theory is related to the dose of the specific type of isoflavone (there are three major types) — the clinical trials have used different products containing various amounts. Though soy isoflavones are considered safe for most women, Dr. Morledge recommends discussing them — and all supplements — with your doctor before taking any.
Try This: Soy Isoflavones
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