Menopause or cessation of menses, is a normal stage in a woman‘s life, which occurs in mid or late forties. This stage signifies that the end of the reproductive cycle, which starts from early teens in a woman’s life. This phase is different in every woman’s life.
Menopause is a stage when ovaries stop producing eggs and reduce the production of estrogens and progesterone hormones. The production of these hormones and their variations throughout the cycle results in ovulation and the rules in the absence of fertilization.
In menopause stage, the entire chain of endocrine glands, mainly, the gonads, thyroid and pituitary glands are affected.
Some women might find it difficult or even unbearable due to various disorders, hormonal restructuring and allied symptoms they face during this time.
Age of menopause
Menopause generally occurs between 47 and 51 years, but age has been found to vary – sometimes happening at 55 years or more or exceptionally happening prematurely in as less as 40 years.
Many a time’s artificial menopause is induced by treatments and surgery (total hysterectomy).
Researches point that early menopause may be associated with smoking while delayed menopause could be a result of obesity.
Symptoms of Menopause
Hormonal changes have different affect on different women. For some, it may be subtle enough to go unnoticed, while others may have some hard time coping with these fundamental body changes.
Some women may experience no change or no symptoms during their menopause, other than just the cessation of the menses. But usually it is a very difficult time for most of the women.
The most common symptoms of menopause are:
1) Irregular and less abundant menstruation until their complete disappearance. (Phasing of the rules)
2) Hot flashes at night.
Almost 75 percent of women passing through this phase complain of hot flashes which often persist over a year. (it may last up to 5-10 years in many cases). These flashes often occur at night and induce sleep deprivation resulting in fatigue and emotional instability.
Other common symptoms of menopause include:
- Morphological changes in the distribution of adipose tissue and associated obesity trend.
- Increasing scarcity of pubic and auxiliary hair
- Decreased volume and tone of the breasts, vaginal dryness, vulvar changes
- Change in mood: anxiety, Irritability depression, tension Palpitations and Headache
- Changes in libido with diminished interest in sex
- Insomnia and Partial memory loss
- Other symptoms like fatigue, numbness and backaches.
Causes of menopausal disorders
Most of the menopause related disorders can be attributed to hormonal imbalance. Other causes for menopausal disorders may be heredity, viral infections, radiation therapy, autoimmune disorders and chromosomal irregularities.
These hot flashes are due to an increase in vessel diameter. They may be accompanied by other signs such as cardiovascular palpitations.
Coping with Menopause Problems with 19 Natural & Home Remedies
While menopause is inevitable, the related disorders can be coped up by following some simple home remedies and natural cures. The symptoms of menopausal disorder will be alleviated, using the home remedies listed below.
I) Treat your self with little Indulgence: Researches prove that anxiety triggers release of cortisol and adrenaline both of which are likely to further aggravate discomfort associated with menopause.
Indulge in positive pursuits to keep yourself away from the thought of discomfort. Creative thinking triggers the release of several vital hormones which help correct the hormonal imbalances related with menopause. Incorporate practices such as mediation, yoga and massage in your lifestyle.
This is one of the best home remedies that you can do to get rid of menopausal discomforts.
II) Linseed: Linseed is a rich source of Omega-3 and other essential fatty acids that are beneficial for the heart. Linseeds also include lignans, which is a natural estrogen with vital antioxidant attributes. These properties make linseed one of the best and most effective home remedies for menopausal disorders like hot flashes, palpitation, dizziness and mental tension.
Linseed oil should be added to water and taken twice daily for effectively coping with menopausal disorders.
III) Indian spikenard: Indian Spikenard has vital micronutrients which helps in soothing or calming of the mind and nervous system and correct the nutritional deficiencies in your body. This is especially effective home remedy, if menopause is accompanied by general weariness, fatigue, irritability and hot flashes in the night. It should be taken in small quantities of 2gm daily. It should be taken on empty stomach in morning and in the night before bedtime.
IV) Liquorice: Liquorice contains estrogen, which to an extent compensates for the loss caused by hormonal imbalances during menopause. One teaspoon of this powder should be taken daily, for treatment of all menopausal disorders.
V) Milk: Osteoporosis, which is characterized by weakening of bones, is one of the most common dropouts of hormonal changes during menopause. Milk contains nutrients like calcium and vitamin D, which helps counter the weakening of bones. On an average, a woman requires 800-1200 mg of daily calcium intake which equates to taking 3 glasses of milk a day during menopause period.
VI) Pumpkin seeds: Pumpkin seeds are perhaps one of the best defenses against several menopausal problems. For one, pumpkin seeds contain L-tryptophan, a substance which is highly effective in treatment of irritability, mood swings and depression. Next, pumpkin seeds are a rich source of Zinc which helps in preventing osteoporosis – the most common after effects of menopause.
Pumpkin seeds also contain anti-inflammatory attributes that provides protection against many infections associated with menopause. The seed helps fight cholesterol level in the body and is an effective remedy for palpitations and dizziness associated with menopause. It is also a rich source of magnesium which helps correct several menopause related imbalances.
Pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds should be ground well and mixed in water. The paste should be taken twice daily preferably in the morning and evening for alleviating symptoms of menopause
VII) Beet juices: Beet juice is rich in minerals which help correct hormonal imbalances in the body. The juice is very effective in alleviating symptoms like hot flashes, irritability and other disorders related to menopause.
VIII) Sunflower seeds: Sunflower seeds contain high levels of plant estrogen and are an excellent home remedy for menopausal disorders, since they compensate for loss of this vital hormone in the body. Sunflower seeds should be soaked in water and ground to a paste. The paste should be applied to the vagina for quick relief. Sunflower seeds can also be added to boiling milk and taken internally for best results.
IX) Flaxseed: Flaxseeds have properties very similar to those of linseeds. Linseeds also a very useful home remedy for menopausal disorders like hot flashes, tension and anxiety. The seeds should be soaked overnight in water and ground to a paste. The paste should be applied to vagina to compensate of lack of estrogens and to relieve symptoms of menopause. The seeds can also be ground and mixed in water and drunk as a mix.
X) Primrose oil: Primrose oil contains antithrombotic properties that change plasminogen into fibrinolysin which helps in making good those hormonal imbalances which result in irritability and headaches. The oil also has anti-inflammatory properties which are helpful in preventing osteoporosis, which is the most common after effect of menopause. The oil can be massaged on body parts to compensate for weakening of bones related to menopause. A few drops of the oil can be taken orally
XI) Carrot: Carrot contain minerals and nutrients useful in relieving tension. It effectively relieves the person of symptoms like night sweat and fever. Add one teaspoon of carrot seeds in boiling cow’s milk and keep it for ten minutes. This can be taken once daily for relief from sudden changes in mood, irritability, anxiety, depression, tension and headaches related with menopause.
XII) Cabbage juice: Cabbage is a rich source of phytonutrients and sulforaphane which helps increase the production vital enzymes and hormones that detoxify and help restore the hormonal imbalances resulting from menopause. Extract juice from cabbage by adding a little water and this should be taken several times a day for relief from menopausal disorders.
XIII) Indian ginseng: Indian ginseng is a very useful home remedy for insomnia, depression, fatigue and anxiety associated with menopausal disorders. Indian ginseng has been used in the Ayurveda – the traditional Indian medicine system with beneficial results in women suffering from menopausal problems. Indian ginseng should be dried and finely powdered. This should be added to milk and taken at least twice a day morning and evening for best results.
XIV) Almond oil: Almond oil besides being good for the skin also nourishes the nervous system and helps reduce body cholesterol. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and can be applied externally over the body if menopause is accompanied by general irritability, fatigue and mood swings.
XV) Soybean: Soybean is a rich source of lecithin which is an effective home remedy for fatigue, palpitation, nervous tension and other symptoms associated with menopause. Soybean also helps in prevention of hardening of arteries which is a common complain related with menopause. Take a handful of soybeans and grind to a powder. The powder should then be mixed in water and this should be taken daily for relief from menopausal problems.
XVI) Olive oil: Olive oil is very effective in providing relief from menopausal disorders. Add a few drops of olive oil to water and a few drops can also be added to a glass of milk. Drink this regularly for better results.
XVII) Garlic: Garlic helps dilate blood vessels and improve blood circulation in the body. Thus a liberal intake of garlic helps in curing several disorders related to garlic. Crush a few cloves of garlic and add to boiling water. Strain after it cools, and drink it twice a day for relief from pain and other symptoms of menopause.
XVIII) Alfalfa leaves: Alfalfa leaves are useful home remedy for menopausal disorders. Take alfalfa leaves and boil with a little water and after it cools down, drink this mix at least twice a day to get relief from menopausal disorders.
XIX) Other herbs: Herbalists recommend use of Mohra powder, Calx, Saraca Indica, Hen’s Egg Shell, Terminalia Chebula and Zahar for treatment of various symptoms of menopausal disorder in women.
Dietary recommendations for fighting menopausal disorders
Diet should consists of nuts, vegetables, fruits , with emphasis on:
- Vitamin E rich food, like nuts , sprouts etc
- Vitamin D rich foods like homemade cottage cheese and unpasteurised high quality milk.
Foods to avoid
- Refined and processed food
- Food rich in white refined sugar
- Avoid emotional stress and exhausting activities , which may make you more tired and irritant. Engage in outdoor activities and good amount of exercising to keep the mind away from the symptoms.
- Take regular sleep on daily basis.
- Wear light and cotton cloths to bed
Side note: Medical treatment for menopausal disorders
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is prescribed for women with severe menopausal disorders. The therapy is given only after complete cessation of menstruation. The therapy tends to address hormonal gaps and is effective in getting rid of reducing hot flashes and other associated hormonal disorders.
However HRT is recommended only if the imbalance is severe, as HRT has been found to have side effects like breast or cervical cancer.