We are so excited to announce our new feature with Dr. Karol! Each week we are happy to have Karol answer any of our reader questions. Anything from health, diet, fitness and lifestyle questions are encouraged, so feel free to send over your questions for inclusion! If you'd like to submit a question please don't hesitate to send over an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. We love to help you achieve wellness, every day. This week's question is women's health related and tackles postmenopausal relief.
Vitarock Reader Question:
"Hi Dr. Karol. It's been 7 years since menopause and I’m still having mild hot flashes a few times a day. Is it true this may continue for many years to come? I have never used HRT nor do I want to. Do you have any suggestions?”
Dr. Karol's Tips for Postmenopausal Relief
"Thank you for your question. The average age of Menopause in North America is 51 years. Menopause begins when there is a continuous 12 months of no menstrual flow in women who are not pregnant (and who have not had their ovaries or their uterus removed). Some symptoms of menopause can begin 3-4 years before menopause starts. For example, missed periods or irregular menstrual flow. Menopause ends when all of the symptoms of menopause end as well. On average, this takes 4 years after the start of menopause. However, this figure is an average and the actual time period for individual woman varies greatly. It is possible for Menopause to last up to 10 years but to last more than 10 years is extremely rare. Eventually symptoms of menopause end in all women.
With respect to natural treatments for menopausal symptoms (including hot flashes), the best are those which increase estrogen levels in a natural and safe way (note: symptoms of menopause are mainly caused by decreasing estrogen levels). Natural foods that increase estrogen or that contain estrogen like compounds (for example phyto-estrogens) are Flax Seeds, Tofu, Soy Beans, Dried Apricots, Garlic, Red Cloves, Common Sage, and Mexican Wild Yam. With respect to diet, increase your anti-oxidant intake (i.e.. vegetables, low sugar fruits, green leafy vegetables, berries), and add fish oils to your diet for anti-inflammatory and cardio-protective properies. Aim to decrease bad fats (trans, saturated, and animal), as well as refined sugars. Finally, add lots of fluids (clean cold water), and of course add the above-mentioned foods that increase estrogen.
Be sure to avoid cigarettes as they exacerbate hot flashes. The same goes for alcohol, but red wine in moderation is fine. Also try and avoid hot and spicy foods. Try to engage in regular exercise and maintain a balanced weight. Use cotton clothing to help keep cool, get adequate light (seek out places that have lots of natural light and that are not depressive) and stay positive in uplifting environments. Yoga, meditation, support groups, good quality seep (with the help of supplements if necessary) and intimacy all help with menopausal symptoms, including hot flashes. Finally, with respect to supplementation, the products Promensil and Menopause 1 A Day by A. Vogel is quite likely the best on the market. This product is especially tailored for the symptom of hot flashes and is clinically proven to be effective."
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