Menopause – It gets us all at some time or another.
It has been said that only 3 things in life are certain: Death, taxes, and menopause.
I am sure that you would agree with me that menopause is not something you would wish onto your worst enemy. Whether it is the hot flushes, the night sweats, the forgetfulness, or any of the problems it gives us in the bedroom…
But wish as we may, it gets us all at some time or another. And then we wish that we have searched for a solution long before we needed it.
When we start searching for ways to get rid of it, or at least ease the f–king horrid symptoms, google spits out a long list of crazy solutions that range from home remedies involving garlic in your tea, all the way to that dreaded thing the doctors recommend – HRT.
For those of you who might not be familiar with HRT’s – it stands for Hormone Replacement Therapy. The quacks are quick to tell us that is the only way to go, but they rarely mention the seemingly endless list of negative side effects that will stuff up your body so far that you wish you could just have your hot flushes back instead. I mean for fudge sakes! It increases the risk of breast cancer by almost 75% – how on this green earth is that a solution?!
Anyway, that is enough ranting about how immensely screwed up the medical industry is for now, and let’s get back to some actual useful and SAFE ways to make menopause as bearable as possible.
Now first off, I just want to say that this is by no means the end all be all of menopause treatment – this is simply my personal experience, and what worked for me.
So here are the 4 lifestyle changes I made and the supplements I use to help me manage this hell-on-earth called menopause…
1. Foods I added to my diet
There are certain foods that are just fantastic and I add to my meals at least once a week, but often more. Here’s the shortlist:
- Legume protein. Soybeans, chickpeas, lentils, etc.
- Flaxseed. Only about 3 tablespoons on salads and so through the week, since too much is rumoured to be bad
- Leafy greens. Tons and tons of things like kale and spinach.
- Nuts and seeds. Almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds are fantastic snacks!
- Salmon. Great source of omega 3, and an even better excuse to get sushi!
- Avos. These are like me – all the good kinds of fat!
2. How I changed my exercise routine
I was already pretty active since I love the outdoors, and would often go hiking or jogging on the weekends – and maybe fit in a short run or two during the week.
But I realised I would have to up my game if I wanted to take charge of my menopause, so I added some super simple solutions:
5 min workout –
Time is often the biggest excuse we have for not exercising. But we all have 5 minutes to spare during – especially if it will help with menopause! I found the best time for me is just before I get into the shower in the morning, and here is my easy routine:
Do each of these for one minute, at your own pace. You may not make it the full minute at the start, but push yourself to go the full minute. Even if you are going slooooowly at the end!
- Jumping Jacks
- Ab crunches
- Push-ups (“Ladies” push-ups are perfectly fine – You are a lady!)
Walking or running for 20 minutes, 3 times a week –
As I mentioned, I was already running twice a week on a good week, but now I have committed myself to do it at least 3 times during the workweek, as well as whatever fun outdoors activities happen on the weekend!
I prefer to do Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. But it is completely up to you and your schedule. But I urge you to do it at least 3 times per week, otherwise, it is extremely difficult to get into a routine and make it a joyful habit rather than a burden.
And that’s it for my exercise routine – See? It can be simple! 🙂
3. How I prioritised my sleep
I know it can be extremely difficult for some of us to get a good night’s sleep during menopause – you know, due to the hot flushes and all (urgh!).
But I made some changes that really helped me sleep better and maybe they may work for you too.
- Make sleep a priority. Instead of just getting into bed and hoping for the best, actually treat it as a priority and set a bedtime for yourself, and stick to it.
- Cool your room. I now sleep with the aircon on a nice cool 18 degrees and take my nice powerful fan with me whenever I am traveling and not sure if there is an aircon or a fan.
- Cooler PJs. I make sure to only sleep in pajamas made from cotton or bamboo – they are the best for helping to keep cool.
- No phone 90. This is probably the hardest one for most of us, but I have committed myself to a hard rule of not being on my phone, laptop, or watching TV for at least 90 minutes before going to bed. The dreamy Doctor Mike has a great video on it here. Rather read a good old-fashioned book.
That’s about that as far as sleeping goes. So make sure to get into a good bedtime routine, and put that phone away!
4. The supplements I use
While lifestyle changes will go a long way towards easing menopause, I would not have been able to do it without the help of the supplements below. They are all completely natural, and simply – as the name says – supplement my lifestyle to help me deal with menopause.
I get all of them on takealot, which is easy and convenient as I order them all together and they are delivered to my door.
- Vitamin D. In the summer I prefer to get it from the sun, but it can be hard during the winter so I use this one: NOW Foods Vitamin D3
- Vitamin B-12. It is great to help keep me feeling energized, and I use this one: Viridian B-Complex B12
- Collagen. Since osteoporosis, skin aging, and hair thinning are accelerated by menopause, I take collagen daily. I love this one: Zoost Collagen
- Menopause Relief. This one has been a total game-changer for me. This is the closest thing I have found that has the benefits of HRT, without any of the side effects. It is from the same company as the collagen I use, and I simply cannot go without this stuff! Definitely recommend giving it a try: Zoost Menopause Relief
I hope you could find something useful out of my experience, and I wish you all the best with this journey through menopause!