Women’s health series: four tips for women going through menopause
As part of our Women's Health Series, we've put together our top four health tips for women going through menopause.
If you're struggling with menopause symptoms, don't grin and bear it. Our guide below looks into how to feel your best while going through this change.
Menopause causes the hormone oestrogen to decrease which affects your metabolism, meaning it’s easier to gain weight. These hormone changes also affect your bone strength, increasing risks of fractures.
So when your body is going through the changes of menopause, it’s important to stick to a healthy diet.
Try these tips
Eat more calcium-rich foods like milk, yoghurt and kale for healthy bones
Add omega-3 fatty acids to your diet, including mackerel, salmon, flax seeds and chia seeds to decrease hot flushes
Whole grains, fruit and vegetables are also recommended for women going through menopause to lower blood pressure and reduce hot flushes
Eat more protein to improve your muscle mass and bone strength
Avoid these foods
Sugar, processed carbs, alcohol and caffeine – these can increase hot flushes
Foods high in salt as they can lower your bone density even further
If you’re experiencing some painful menopause symptoms, such as joint pain, muscle tension or you’re having difficulty sleeping, getting a massage can help.
Massage promotes the feeling of relaxation which can soothe everything from anxiety to achy muscles. By stretching out the muscles, it relieves tension and helps with joint pain.
Menopause affects sleep because of the range of side effects and symptoms. From hot flushes to night sweats, it’s completely normal for your sleeping pattern to be knocked out of balance when you’re going through this change.
How to improve your sleep
You don't have to put up with it, there are things you can do to get your sleeping pattern back to some kind of normality:
Avoid big meals, spicy foods, caffeine or alcohol to decrease your chances of hot flushes in the night
Go to the toilet before bed to avoid having to wake up during the night
Stress can make sleeping difficult, so do whatever you can to reduce your stress levels – try regular massages or exercising
Create a good night time routine that you stick to, and try to go to bed at the same time every night
Make sure your room is a cool temperature and you’re wearing lightweight pyjamas to avoid nightly sweats
It’s been confirmed that exercise eases menopause symptoms, including loss in muscle and bone density, sleep problems and a lack of energy. Not only will it help your physical symptoms, but regular exercise is known for boosting mental health too.
Recommended exercises for menopause
Resistance training to keep strong bones
Yoga to soothe hormonal symptoms and improve balance
Cardiovascular exercises for heart health