Key nutrient are important to consider if you are going through the menopause. Whichever menopausal symptoms you experience, the change in the balance of your hormones is the cause. A well-balanced diet is essential because it helps the body adjust to the hormone changes.
There are a plethora of nutrients that help minimise the symptoms and even assist the passage of menopause and also help you maintain healthy bones.
B Vitamins are known as the “stress vitamins”. This is because symptoms of B-vitamin deficiency include tension, irritability, poor concentration and anxiety.
Fatigue – a common symptom of menopause – makes women feel deeply exhausted even though they haven’t done much physical activity throughout the day. B Vitamins help reduce the amount of stress on the adrenal glands, which are required to produce oestrogen during the menopause. They can be useful if you are suffering from reduced energy levels. It is important to take a complex and a formulation that you can absorb with no nasty fillers.
Vitamin C is essential to the manufacture of collagen. Collagen provides skin its elasticity. It helps prevent and treat vaginal dryness, a painful condition which develops when the vagina loses some of its ‘stretch’. Vitamin C can be easy to miss out on if you are watching your weight and possibly on a keto or restricted diet.
This vitamin plays a very important role in the prevention of breast cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis. We don’t get it naturally from food in sufficient amounts so the sun or a supplement is required. Again, you really need to ensure you take a balanced amount along with other key nutrients and select the active form, Vitamin D3.
Vitamin E is also helpful for vaginal dryness and has been proven to help reduce hot flushes. It can dampen the immune system which can be beneficial for some ladies as a short term assistant for hormonal balance.
Iron is required to help your red blood cells transport oxygen to the rest of the body. Men store more iron compared to women and the loss of blood each month during menstruation means that women require more iron than men. A deficiency of iron will result in anaemia, which makes you feel sluggish and tired all the time. It is really important to have a blood test to check your iron and ferritin levels as you do not want to take a supplement and potential cause iron toxicity.
Symptoms of a deficiency in Omega 3 fatty acids can include dry skin, lifeless hair, cracked nails, fatigue, depression, dry eyes, aching joints, and breast pain. Omega 3 supplements have been shown to reduce the frequency of hot flushes and improve depressive symptoms in menopausal women.
Magnesium plays a vital role in 300 different enzymatic functions. It is essential in maintaining optimum bone health, which is increasingly important during the menopause. Known as “nature’s tranquiliser”, magnesium supplementation assists mood and anxiety. Picking the correct formulation for your symptoms is critical for success.
Calcium is needed by the body to maintain bones, teeth, nails and hair. It is also required for healthy heart rhythm and blood pressure. To minimise the symptoms of menopause and maintain healthy bone mass, make sure to supply your body with these nutrients throughout the day. Dairy foods have become increasingly common to be eliminated from the diet of women for various reasons which can unfortunately leave ladies in deficit. Kale, spinach and tofu, are some examples of calcium rich non-dairy foods.
These nuggets are just a few simple suggestions. Dietary and lifestyle changes are integral in the stages of menopause. If you wish to explore this further Gillian Killiner is a dietary expert and lifestyle coach. She has helped thousands of women over her 22 years as a Dietitian. She would be delighted to help you…