Facts about Menopause

Menopause…it’s like the death sentence…some women would rather die than be called menopausal.

All women, no exception, will go through menopause. Some will have it easy, others…not so easy.

Only 20% of women will suffer the problematic symptoms such as hot flashes, sleep disturbance, mood swings, depression, vaginal dryness and loss of libido. The rest will go through life without even feeling that they have  entered into menopause…except for the absence of monthly periods which at that age should be a welcome break.

Menopause is the lost of estrogen from the female body due to “drying up” of the ovaries. Estrogen is responsible for making women look like women and not like men. It promotes softness and smoothness of the skin, makes hair look shiny and thick, gives the spine its strength and straight posture and it keeps the vagina wet and well-lubricated.

So, what about the 20% of these women? Should they just suffer in silence? Will they just accept the wrinkles, the dryness and depression as part of the aging process? I should say not!

There are various natural and not-so-natural ways to combat this unavoidable aging process.

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The solution is simply in the diet. Foods rich in soy such as taho, tokwa, tofu, and soymilk may provide a good source of phyto- or plant estrogen. Other food sources are monggo, oatmeal, dried beans and sesame seeds. These plant estrogens can relieve symptoms of hot flashes, dryness of the skin and vagina.

Food supplements like Vitamin E and herbs like red clover, black cohosh and primrose oil have also been known to help some women in reducing their discomfort.

Not to be overlooked is exercise such as yoga, tai chi or just plain walking. These can do wonders for women suffering from menopausal symptoms. Exercising even just for 30 minutes everyday can allow the secretion of endorphins which are known as the “happy hormones”. Endorphins leave one with a feeling of wellness, increased energy level, and stress-relief.

If all else fails, do not be afraid of taking hormonal replacement therapy or estrogen. Bad publicity and several poorly-conducted researches have put estrogen in a bad light. Women fear that taking estrogen will automatically cause cancer. This is not true. With proper monitoring and guidance from your physician, estrogen will restore softness and smoothness of the skin, strength of the bones, libido and vaginal moisture. This could be your fountain of youth! Goodbye, hot flashes!

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