Hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, fatigue and sheer frustration — do these sound familiar? Menopause is a natural transition that is unique for each woman, but for many it comes with a lot of unpleasant symptoms that can disrupt the normal flow of daily life.
Menopause is the point at which a woman stops ovulating and menstruation ceases, indicating the end of fertility. As a normal event, menopause is usually confirmed when a woman has not had a menstrual period for 12 consecutive months. Most women experience menopause between the ages of 40 and 58, with the average at about age 51. Symptoms can start occurring several years prior actually entering menopause. This stage is called peri-menopause.
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT), estrogen replacement therapy (ERT), and prescription drugs can be effective in treating symptoms of menopause, but many can have negative side effects.
More women are choosing to use natural alternatives that can be as effective as other prescription treatments. Here are some natural options to help reduce the symptoms of menopause:
Soy contains isoflavones, which are phytoestrogens, or plant estrogens. Eating soy and integrating a soy supplement into your diet can help to relieve menopausal symptoms, particularly hot flashes.
A recent clinical trial at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), a prominent teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, found that 52 percent of women who took a soy extract called AglyMax had reduced hot flashes over a 12-week period.
AglyMax is a unique soy germ extract that contains isoflavones in their most usable form called aglycones. A special fermentation process maximizes the benefits obtainable from the soy bean and also produces healthy antioxidants.
“What we are trying to find is a safe and effective alternative to hormone therapy,” says senior author investigator George Blackburn, a doctor at the Department of Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Surgery at BIDMC. “Our study found that patients who consumed the soy supplement showed a reduction in the number of hot flashes.”
Regular exercise is important for overall health, but can help in relieving the symptoms of menopause as well. Exercise is great for reducing stress and strengthening the cardiovascular system and bones. Additional benefits include fewer migraines, reduced insomnia, lower cholesterol and a more toned physique.
It’s important to wear layered clothing when possible so you can adjust if you feel hot. Cotton clothing is a good option because the fabric allows for air circulation. This is particularly crucial during bedtime so you can get a sound, rejuvenating sleep. When you do get a hot flash, relax and take deep breaths. Sip cool drinks and use ice packs as needed. Avoid coffee, alcohol and hot baths or showers before bed. Try to track the triggers that cause hot flashes (spicy food, work stress, etc.) and avoid those activities in the future.
Acupuncture and yoga are alternative medicine options that might be helpful for menopausal women. Some people have found that acupuncture helps to relieve hot flashes and yoga helps to aid the body in relaxation, lessening mood swings and depression.
If you or someone you know is going through menopause, there are many options that can help with the sometimes difficult symptoms. Visit www.Effisoy.com or call (866) 783-3762 to learn more.
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